19:55 PM

Newswatch: Silicon's Heir; HTTPS Advocates; Cyber Squatting on Facebook

Wednesday 8am Silicon Valley news report:

Stanford scientists discover a possible successor to silicon -SiliconValley.com

The researchers found that electrons in a chemical compound called bismuth telluride have a unique property: They can travel without resistance, losing no energy. This suggests that there might be a new way to carry more information than silicon-based chips can handle.

Obama backs repeal of tax on personal cell phones -Reuters

A 1989 law requires companies seeking to deduct worker cellphones as an expense to track personal use with painstaking documentation of minutes. The government, in a notice last week sought public comment on making compliance easier, but now says the law should be scrapped altogether.

AP eyeing better deals with Internet heavyweights -AP

Charging consumers and relying more directly on ads would herald a significant change for the AP, which traditionally has gotten most of its revenue from selling its material to other media - newspapers, broadcasters and, more recently, Internet sites. About 17 percent of the AP's revenue come from the Internet or other digital sources.

Adobe Systems posts drop in 2Q profit, sales -AP

Chief Financial Officer Mark Garrett said Adobe is continuing to invest in the areas of its business that will drive growth once the economy recovers. These include its core Acrobat and Creative Suite products, which bring in the bulk of Adobe's revenue, as well as products like LiveCycle, which is aimed at large businesses.

Judge tosses long-running lawsuit against Oracle -AP

A federal judge has thrown out a long-running lawsuit accusing Oracle Corp. (ORCL) (ORCL) of misleading investors about the company's health before the tech meltdown of 2001 whacked its sales and stock price.

Gmail to Get More Protection From Snoops -NYTimes

Free, always-on HTTPS is pretty unusual in the email business, particularly for a free email service, but we see it as an another way to make the web safer and more useful. It’s something we’d like to see all major webmail services provide.

Social Networks Spread Defiance Online -NYTimes

Many Twitter users have been sharing ways to evade government snooping, such as programming their Web browsers to contact a proxy — or an Internet server that relays their connection through another country.

Encrypt the Cloud, Security Luminaries Tell Google - Update -Wired

“Few users know the risks they face when logging into Google’s Web applications from an unsecured network, and Google’s existing efforts are little help,” the letter reads. “As a market leader in providing cloud services, Google has an opportunity to engage in genuine privacy and security leadership, and to set a standard for the industry.”

Facebook user names leave their cyber mark -SFGate

In an effort to prevent cyber squatters, the company allows users to fill out forms to bar others from registering their trademarks. Members also can contest registered user names through an intellectual property infringement form. Yu stressed that the company owns every user name and "can assign or restrict them as we see fit."

Google vs. Bing: The fear stops here -SFGate

Bing is probably better than Google anticipated and early indications are favorable in terms of user adoption; however not on any scale to threaten Google's position. I wouldn't be surprised if Google is taking Bing seriously and trying to carefully assess its algorithm.