Weekend Update, 05.23.09

wu-iphone

This Weekend Update is particularly exciting because of all the things happening here at All Things Digital. There is, of course, the upcoming D7 Conference, which promises to be more tech-extravaganza fun than a tweet from @sockington (if only half as cute), but this past week has also seen the launch of our very own iPhone app, meaning ATD has gone mobile–smart news for your smartphone (we’re still working out potential taglines).

Like past D: All Things Digital conferences, D7 boasts a great lineup of speakers and industry leaders. This year, the gang that’s all here is full of personality, wit, chutzpah and all that other good stuff that’s sure to make this one of the most interesting and revelatory events yet.

For instance, Microsoft (MSFT) is rumored to be debuting its latest upgrade to its search engine, Kumo, at D7. The conglomerate sorely needs a win here, especially in its losing battle to the ubiquitous Google (GOOG) for market share in search. Search was a big topic in general this week as Kara Swisher liveblogged Yahoo’s (YHOO) “chalk talk” and interviewed one of its speakers, head of Yahoo Labs and Yahoo Search Strategy Prabhakar Raghavan, an exchange in which Kara gets Raghavan to exclaim WOO! for “web of objects.” In addition, Google search bigwigs Larry Page, Eric Schmidt and Marissa Mayer could be found across several universities this week dispensing “be more lazy” speeches to fresh graduates.

This was also the week with the IPO for OpenTable, the online restaurant reservation company being the first in Silicon Valley to go public in a long time. Kara Swisher and John Paczkowski give their takes on the offering.

It was also a week of many faceoffs. Here’s a smattering of those that went tete-a-tete this week:

  • Craigslist vs. Henry McMaster. Winner: Craigslist. The online classifieds site retaliated with a lawsuit of its own after the South Carolina Attorney General threatened legal action.
  • Microsoft vs. the European Commission: In the latest antitrust case development, Microsoft and the EC have been going head to head over scheduling issues, of all things.
  • L’Oréal vs. eBay. Winner: eBay (EBAY). L’Oréal lost its latest lawsuit against the Web auctioneer over trademark-infringing cosmetic products sold on the site.
  • CollegeHumor vs. Amazon: More of a prank than a bout, CollegeHumor gamed Amazon’s (AMZN) system by artificially driving up sales of the Three Wolf Moon T-shirts, complete with outlandishly positive product reviews.
  • Comcast vs. Disney: Though Comcast (CMSCA) wasn’t pleased with Disney’s (DIS) partnership with online video site Hulu, the two companies were able to put aside their differences to form an ESPN360 pact.

More next weekend, but in the meantime, look out for all our coverage of D7!


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When you’re dying of malaria, I suppose you’ll look up and see that balloon, and I’m not sure how it’ll help you.

— Bill Gates, about Google’s plans to float broadband transmitters over Africa in hot-air balloons, in a Businessweek interview with Brad Stone