1. Apple and Google will be called back to testify before the Senate hearing on digital privacy on Thursday, but this time they'll also be joined by Bret Taylor, the CTO for Facebook. Microsoft won't be on the agenda, but discussions about policies concerning provider collecting data on their users probably will be—the fact that Apple's VP of Worldwide government affairs is there is a give-away on this. Let's hope the politicians are a little better informed this time.
2. The biggest rumor circulating on the wires is that Nokia's smartphone partnership with Microsoft is but the first step in a more complicated dance: Microsoft may be poised to buy the beleaguered Finnish firm's mobile division, with discussions scheduled to begin next week. Nokia's value is above $30 billion, but Microsoft has proved to have deep pockets with its acquisition of Skype...and Nokia has been surprisingly personal in trying to quash the rumor.
3. Facebook is desperate to foist location-based check-ins upon its clients, and has begun automatically merging Places with its promotional Pages system—for at least those Pages whose details contain an actual street address. It's a move to raise the profile of Places, and to drive revenue to Facebook through ad placements, because there's no other reason for Facebook to try this maneuver if Places was successful at self-promotion.
4. Denied their day in court by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and also barred from ever submitting their claims again, the Winklevoss twins have now vowed to take their appeal over the amount of money Facebook agreed to reward them as a settlement in an IP-ownership claim to the Supreme Court. Their allegation is that Facebook has committed securities fraud as part of the settlement.
5. Proving the interest in e-readers and their evolution into tablet devices, Barnes & Noble has revealed one million apps were downloaded from its own app store for the Nook Color Android device in its first week. The top five selected apps were Drawing Pad, Solitaire, Mahjong, and Angry Birds. Nook users, it seems, are also interested in non-book apps.