iFive: Mobile Video Wars, Facebook’s Geo-location, Swine Flu 2 (Infectious Boogaloo), Malaria Nexus, U.K.’s Green Truck Stop

While you were sleeping, innovation resigned in a truly innovative way: It wrote a letter to its boss, and sent it snail mail.

While you were sleeping, innovation resigned in a truly innovative way: It wrote a letter to its boss, and sent it snail mail.

1. A couple of “cool new mobile features” are to be unveiled by Google on Thursday for Android phones. It’s doubtful that the announcement will herald the OS’s version of FaceTime, although some people are saying that this is what Google needs to battle the iPhone 4. While both firms are given the bum’s rush by Search Engine Land’s Danny Sullivan, Grant Robertson tells Apple to buy Skype outright.

2. According to CNET News, Facebook’s geolocation feature is just weeks away from launch–so maybe it’s not just Google Me that’s causing the current Facebook lockdown. Although details are still shady, there’s speculation that Facebook will be using the same local search firm that Twitter uses for its Places directory, as well as the events check-in service Hot Potato, which it bought earlier this year.

3. Just when you think it’s safe to come out, another one pops up. Although the H1N1 virus–known by its fans as swine flu–has officially been mothballed by the WHO, there’s a new medical baddie in town. It’s known as NDM-1 (New Delhi metallo-beta lactamase) 1 positive, its rise is due to health tourism, and it’s a gene present in gut bacteria, and it’s totally resistant to antibiotics.

4. Reed Elsevier has launched what may become Bill Gates’ favorite website: Malaria Nexus. Although the name is exotic enough to qualify as a candidate for one of Frank Zappa or Grace Slick’s offspring, it’s a global malaria resource that “aims to become the leading forum for malaria researchers, editors and opinion leaders.”

5. It may seem like an oxymoron, but an eco-friendly filling station has been given the thumbs-up in Britain. The Gloucester Gateway rest area will include charging points for EVs, a grass roof on the gas station and a vegetable patch by the coach park. And the food available will be local produce, with 70% of meat, dairy, eggs and bakery sourced from the environs. And, in other green transport news, Zipcar‘s merger with Streetcar has been referred to the U.K.’s Competition Commission.

About the author

My writing career has taken me all round the houses over the past decade and a half--from grumpy teens and hungover rock bands in the U.K., where I was born, via celebrity interviews, health, tech and fashion in Madrid and Paris, before returning to London, where I now live. For the past five years I've been writing about technology and innovation for U.S.