China's Tencent Buys Riot Games for $400 Million

Tencent, the giant Chinese Web holding company, has bought Los Angeles-based Riot Games for about $400 million. Yet another big-dollar deal in an industry that’s seen a lot of M&A in the last year, and one of the biggest investments by a Chinese company in an American digital property.

A Schmidtstorm and More: 2010 in Pictures Photoshops

Looking back, 2010 “the year of” a lot of things–the tablet, the smartphone, the tweet and location. But it was also a year of complete silliness in tech. Because if you can’t laugh at Eric Schmidt telling critics of Google Street View to “just move,” Apple telling people that their grip–not the iPhone 4’s antenna–is faulty or Oracle’s “samurai CEO” Larry Ellison in a kimono, then, really, what’s the point?

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Game On: DeNA Buys iPhone Developer Ngmoco for $400 Million

In case you needed another data point about the booming app economy: Ngmoco, the software company known primarily for its Apple iPhone and iPod games, has been snapped up by Japanese gaming company DeNA. The deal could be worth up to $400 million, depending on earnouts.

Zillow's COO Rascoff Becomes CEO; Co-Founder Barton to Exec Chairman

In an interesting corporate move, the COO of online real-estate site Zillow, Spencer Rascoff (pictured here), has been promoted to CEO, replacing founding CEO Rich Barton. Barton will remain executive chairman of Zillow, a private company that is based in Seattle and has raised $87 million in funding since its founding in 2005.

Viral Video: "I Want Your Money"

In the interests of political fairness, here is a trailer for a documentary coming out in mid-October that takes aim at President Barack Obama’s economic policies. Titled “I Want Your Money,” the controversial trailer has already gotten over 1.76 million views on YouTube. (Take that, Michael Moore!)

Cisco's Fourth Quarter Expected to Be Pretty, Oh So Pretty!

Cisco Systems is expected to report strong fourth-quarter earnings later today after the markets close, which should be another boost to the tech market. The Internet computer networking equipment maker is being buoyed by a return to spending by customers eager to upgrade after recession pullbacks.

After Some Flashy Investing, Is Andreessen Horowitz's Next Move a Big New Fund?

Since it launched almost exactly a year ago with a $300 million fund, the venture firm of Andreessen Horowitz has cut a rather high-profile path through the Silicon Valley investing community. Now, according to sources and after spending about half its kitty, the firm is poised to begin another round of fundraising to further bolster its clout. While it is unclear how much the VC firm will raise, sources expect it to be much more than its first fund.

Can Two Tech Exec Candidates in California Compute With Voters?

While there have been politicians running for office in California before who have worked in the tech sector, there’s no doubt that the prospects for two of Silicon Valley’s more prominent execs–Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina–represent an unusual and interesting situation in the state’s history. With the tech sector a beacon of hope in a very rough economy and a symbol of health compared with a debt-saddled government, it’s no surprise both candidates are touting their time as CEOs of two of California’s better known digital giants–Whitman at eBay and Fiorina at Hewlett-Packard. But will it work, or does it leave both open to a lot more scrutiny than they think?

Weekend Update 5.29.10–The Countdown to Weekend Update D8 Edition

We’re in the final countdown for the D8 conference, which kicks off this Tuesday with Steve Jobs, live and unscripted. The pillows are being fluffed, the furniture arranged and the festive D8 crew bowling shirts distributed. You do not want to miss this. But before we can bring you all the D8 awesomeness, we should, as always, do a little wrap up of what was a fairly wild week in tech news, Weekend Update-style.

Microsoft Reports Strong Rebound: Happy–Well, Less Gloomy–Days Are Here Again! (Plus the Numbers)

With much easier comparisons due to a devastating period last year and an upswing in PC sales, Microsoft posted solid third-quarter earnings today after the markets closed. The Redmond, Wash.-based software giant said it had revenue of $14.5 billion in the quarter ended March 31, a six percent rise from a year ago. Net income was $4.01 billion, or 45 cents a share. That handily beat Wall Street expectations of $14.4 billion and 42 cents a share.

RealNetworks Posts Q4 Loss

SAP CEO Steps Down