Linkages

Booting Up: Hold Tight, Twitter Just Redesigned Your Canoe

Welcome to your new canoe. (Photo: YouTube)

Two drivers in San Francisco have filed suit against Uber for allegedly siphoning too much of their tips. The on-demand car company calls the case “entirely without merit.” [The Verge]

Betaworks-owned Instapaper got a refreshing web-based redesign. [Gizmodo]

Twitter debuted a redesign yesterday that confused everyone. [CNet]

Netflix is using noted romance expert Aziz Ansari to bolster its comedy lineup. His latest stand-up special will premiere on the streaming service this fall. [New York Times]

Apple is seeking to trademark the word “startup” in Australia because sure. [TNW]

shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Zuck’s in Hawaii, While Kevin Systrom Looks So Maj Next to Rachel Zoe

(Photo: Instagram)

Hawaii Zuck-O Look who ditched the hoodie (but kept the Adidas sandals). Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was recently spotted indulging in a little Hawaiin R&R with wifey Priscilla Chan. US Weekly reports the pair “looked excited to be spending quality time together,” which makes sense since it’s pretty easy to be happy when you’ve escaped the maw of Silicon Valley. The Zucks also “chowed down” on something called “beachside burgers” at a “picnic table.” Stars: they’re just like us (but rich). Read More

Linkages

Booting Up: Digg Owner Betaworks Acquires Instapaper

Mr. Parker. (Photo: Flickr/Le Web)

NYC-based non-incubator Betaworks has acquired a majority stake in the article-bookmarking service Instapaper. Creator Marco Arment wrote on his blog that he will slide into an advising role “indefinitely” as Betaworks oversees operations and expands Instapaper’s staff. [PC Mag]

CISPA, the controversial Internet bill, is (probably?) dead. An anonymous source said that “there is no possible plan” to bring it up in the Democratic-controlled Senate because it faces little support from the party. [Daily Dot]

Some big names, like Sean Parker, Steve Ballmer, and Bill Gates, are joining Mark Zuckerberg’s political action committee, FWD.us. We would love to be on those brunch-planning emails. [AllThingsD]

Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer has joined the board of Jawbone, the hardware maker behind those groovy wireless headsets and speakers. [AllThingsD]

A study of Bitcoin exchanges revealed that 45 percent of them fail, often taking peoples’ money with them. And the exchanges that don’t shutter are more likely to be the target of cyber attacks. [Wired]

Unpleasantness

Developers: Don’t Push Any Updates to the App Store Right Now, Cause It’s Apparently Kinda Busted

Basically. (Photo: flickr.com/cameronparkins)

We leave the Internet for 24 hours, and this happens: Something is seriously wrong with Apple’s app store. As in, if you updated Instapaper or Angry Birds Space HD Free yesterday, there’s a good chance it just crashed upon launch. Users are having to perform clean installs, while developers are dealing with annoyed users who assume the fault lies with the app itself.

No one wants to do either of those things while recovering from a holiday hangover.

Instapaper creator Marco Arment kicked up the initial fuss with a rather disgruntled blog post. As he tells it, no sooner had Apple approved the latest Instapaper update than Mr. Arment received a flood of customer complaints that the app was no longer working. He wrote: Read More

App for That

News.me Brings News Discovery to the iPhone (And, Yes, It Lets You Browse Articles In the Subway!)

app_store_01

News.me, part of the Betaworks family of social web startups, just released a free iPhone app version of its news curation and discovery service and, due in part to the C train’s snail-like crawl from Brooklyn to Manhattan, we’re pretty psyched to test it out. The startup, which was born as a prototype in the New York Times Research and Development Lab, aims to solve the “too much stuff” problem when it comes to finding news you actually care about.

To pull the right articles from the social media deluge, News.me’s iPhone app analyzes the links shared by your friends and followers on Twitter and Facebook to determine what’s relevant to you, using some metadata from Bit.ly (another Betaworks company) to help figure that out.

News.me already has a pared-down email product (of the top five links a day) and an iPad app that launched last April, albeit without the Facebook connection. But as general manager Jake Levine told us yesterday, the iPhone app is where things get social. The clean interface displays a nicely-formatted photo, headline, and, immediately below that, what your friends have said about the article, including their tweets and Facebook status updates as well as reactions on News.Me. Read More

Read It Later

Readability Now Freedability! App Drops Freemium Model

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Readability is a close cousin of Instapaper: both beautifully and minimally designed “read it later” apps built right here in New York. The two have even collaborated. But while Instapaper’s Marco Arment dropped the free version of his app and now charges everyone $4.99, Readability just announced it’s dropped the paid version and making all its features, which included unlimited access to reading list, favorites and an archive, for free. Read More