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Introducing The Segue


se·gue [seg-way]
to make a transition from one thing to another smoothly and without interruption.

Today, Micah and I are proud to introduce The Segue, our new weekly podcast covering technology, media, and pop culture. Our first official episode will debut later today, but you can check out our pre-launch Apple event special right now.

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Google Reader is going away on July 1. Here’s what you need to know.

Josh Ong, The Next Web

In case you forgot, Google is cutting off service on its RSS reader product on July 1. If you’re one of the remaining few that’s still using Google Reader, time’s running out for you to back up your feeds and find a replacement.

Everything you need to know about the end of Google Reader, and your RSS options.

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Apple’s Fall Schedule [Updated]

Update: First reported by AllThingsD, multiple sources have indicated the event date is September 10.

Apple will hold a press conference to announce the newest version of its iPhone on September 18, according to my sources. The next iteration of the iPhone will be released on September 27. Prior to the release of the new iPhone, iOS 7 will be released to the public on September 25, my sources stated.

Apple is planning another event, according to my sources, that will follow the September iPhone event, similar to Apple’s format from last year. A new version of the iPad and iPad mini, along with updates to the Macbook Pro line are scheduled to be announced.

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The Prism

Jill Lepore, New Yorker

Questions raised this month about surveillance conducted by the National Security Agency have been met, so far, with much the same response that Duncombe got from Graham in 1844: the program is classified. (This, a secret secret, is known as a double secret.) Luckily, old secrets aren’t secret; old secrets are history. The Mazzini affair, as the historian David Vincent argued in “The Culture of Secrecy,” led to “the first modern attack on official secrecy.”

In the wake of the recently unveiled NSA scandal, Jill Lepore contrasts our current situation with 1844, when the British government was accused of opening people’s mail.

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Ghosts of the Rio Grande

Brendan Borrell, The American Prospect

The path across the border is littered with bodies. Bodies old and bodies young. Bodies known and bodies unknown. Bodies hidden, bodies buried, bodies lost, and bodies found. The stories of the dead haunt the frontier towns from Nuevo Laredo to Nogales, and even deep within the interior of Mexico down to Honduras, someone always knows someone who has vanished—one of losdesaparecidos—during their journey north.

Crossing the Rio Grande is one of the most dangerous paths into the United States. Brendan Borrell tells the story of those lost on the road to a better life.

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Windows Chief Steven Sinofsky Out at Microsoft; Sources Say He Wanted ‘More Control at Microsoft’

Apparently, Microsoft is taking its cues from Cupertino, down to the executive changes. Following Apple’s ousting of iOS head Scott Forstall due to his frequent clashes with other senior members, Microsoft has parted ways with Windows Chief Steven Sinofsky, effective immediately. The change was first reported by AllThingsD’s Ina Fried.

Sinofsky was seen by many inside and out of Microsoft as the future of the company, but that belief has ended. Sources in Redmond say Sinofsky wanted “more control over the direction of Microsoft,” but senior executives were wary of his management style and lack of communication with the senior team, and ultimately decided to part ways immediately. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has sent a note to the team, first published by The Verge:

Over the past few months we have delivered the foundation for a new era for Microsoft. From Office to Bing to Windows Phone and Windows Azure, to Xbox and of course Windows and Surface and everything in between, we’ve unleashed a huge wave of devices and services that people and businesses love. I simply couldn’t be more proud of the effort you have all put in to get us here and to set the foundation for our future. At the Windows launch in New York, at the Windows Phone event in San Francisco, and again at the Build event on Redmond campus, I was struck that while externally many people look at these events as the finish line, they really represent the starting line of a new era.

As we enter this new era, and with the successful launch of Windows 8 and Surface behind us, Steven Sinofsky has decided to leave the company. Steven joined Microsoft in 1989 as a software development engineer and has contributed to the company in many ways from his work as a technical advisor to Bill Gates, to leading the evolution of the Microsoft Office business, to his direction and successful leadership of Windows and Windows Live as well as Surface. I am grateful for the work that Steven has delivered in his time at our company. Effective immediately, Julie Larson-Green will lead Windows engineering. She will be responsible for all product development for Windows and Windows Live, in addition to Surface. Julie has been a stalwart leader of building compelling “experiences” from her time on Internet Explorer, through the evolution of Office and most recently to the re-imagination of Windows. Her unique product and innovation perspective and proven ability to effectively collaborate and drive a cross company agenda will serve us well as she takes on this new leadership role. All of the current Windows engineering teams will report into Julie, and Julie will report to me.

Tami Reller will lead business and marketing strategy for Windows including Surface and partner devices. She will provide broad stewardship to our PC marketing efforts while managing the line business functions for Windows. Her work on Windows since 2007 has been exemplary and her strong talents in working with internal groups and partners will also serve us well. Tami also will report to me.

We are facing a time of great opportunity. What we have accomplished over the past few years is nothing short of amazing, and I know we have more amazing in us. I am excited about our people, I am energized by our ability to change and grow, and I look forward to the success which lies ahead. Thank you for all you do, and please join me in congratulating our new leadership and celebrating all that we have accomplished so far.


The official press release from Microsoft:

REDMOND, Wash. — Nov. 12, 2012 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that Windows and Windows Live President Steven Sinofsky will be leaving the company and that Julie Larson-Green will be promoted to lead all Windows software and hardware engineering. Tami Reller retains her roles as chief financial officer and chief marketing officer and will assume responsibility for the business of Windows. Both executives will report directly to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

These changes are effective immediately.

“I am grateful for the many years of work that Steven has contributed to the company,” Ballmer said. “The products and services we have delivered to the market in the past few months mark the launch of a new era at Microsoft. We’ve built an incredible foundation with new releases of Microsoft Office, Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, Microsoft Surface, Windows Server 2012 and ‘Halo 4,’ and great integration of services such as Bing, Skype and Xbox across all our products. To continue this success it is imperative that we continue to drive alignment across all Microsoft teams, and have more integrated and rapid development cycles for our offerings.”

“It is impossible to count the blessings I have received over my years at Microsoft. I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone I have had the good fortune to work with at this awesome company,” Sinofsky said.

Since 1993, Larson-Green has worked on and led some of the most successful products for Microsoft, including the user experiences for early versions of Internet Explorer, and helped drive the thinking behind the refresh of the user experience for Microsoft Office. For Windows 7 and Windows 8 she was responsible for program management, user interface design and research, as well as development of all international releases. She has a master’s degree in software engineering from Seattle University and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Washington University. In her new role she will be responsible for all future Windows product development in addition to future hardware opportunities.

“Leading Windows engineering is an incredible challenge and opportunity, and as I looked at the technical and business skills required to continue our Windows trajectory — great communication skills, a proven ability to work across product groups, strong design, deep technical expertise, and a history of anticipating and meeting customer needs — it was clear to me that Julie is the best possible person for this job, and I’m excited to have her in this role,” Ballmer said.

Reller joined Windows in 2007 from the Microsoft Dynamics Division where she held a number of leadership positions. She began her career in technology at Great Plains Software in 1984 while still in college, and was the company’s chief financial officer at the time the company was acquired by Microsoft in 2001. She has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Minnesota State University Moorhead and an MBA from St. Mary’s College in Moraga, Calif. In her expanded role she will assume the lead in driving business and marketing strategy for Windows devices, including Surface and partner devices, in addition to her current marketing and finance responsibilities.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

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Current News: Only The Biggest, Only The Best

Micah Singleton founded Current Editorials last year with the goal of “bringing to light some of today’s most creative and intriguing tech writers”. So far, the sole focus of our site has been to publish timely, long-form editorial content of the highest quality. We believe that opinions matter, which is why we chose to launch Current Editorials with a focus on editorials.

But we have decided that it is time to start growing our site. We plan to do this by expanding our talented staff of editorial writers, and by starting to publish a new type of content: News. Current Editorials will begin publishing News on a semi-regular basis in an effort to grow our readership, and to keep our readers as well informed as they can be. If you visited yesterday, you have already been treated to our first two news stories.

However, I should note that Current Editorials is not a news site, nor are we becoming one; our main goal is still to publish high-quality, long-form technology editorials. Micah and I will be heading up our news coverage, which will focus on only the biggest, and only the best stories. Stories that are relevant and truly news-worthy.

We are very excited about the future of Current Editorials, and we look forward to continuing to bring you fantastic editorial content and news coverage!

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CES: The Best of The Best, Before it Actually Starts

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) was scheduled to start today, and run until the 13th. I’m guessing that memo didn’t get sent out. News has been pouring out of Las Vegas over the last four days, with major announcements from Vizio, Nokia, and AT&T, among others. We at Current Editorials figured there is enough coverage, so in an attempt to lighten the load on your RSS readers, over the next few days we will be bringing you some of our favorite pieces from around the tech inter-web, in one easy to find place (that’s here). Here’s some of the best so far.

Nokia Lumina 900 –

With a 4.3-inch AMOLED ClearBlack display, 4G LTE, and a 1.4GHz processor, this is the first true WP7 high-end device.

 AT&T launches six LTE devices – Cnet

Five Android phones. One Android tablet. All with LTE. Pricing starting under $50 and topping out at $300. Verizon, watch out.

Nikon releases the D4 – TheVerge

It’s packing a 16.2MP sensor, and native ISO of up to 12,800. It’s also $6,000. But if you are looking for a high-end DSLR, this is the best.

Thermador Freedom Induction Cooktop – TheVerge

If you have $5,000, and a voracious need for high-tech cooking, this is your gadget. It’s absolutely ridiculous. In a good way.

Vizio unleashes a PC Line – Engadget

Vizio decided to enter the PC business, and take on everybody. At once. From 27″ All-in-one’s to 14-inch ‘thin + light’ laptop’s (even another tablet!), the TV maker seems ready to make a dent in the PC market. Only time will tell how big that dent will be.

Sony Z100, the Android-powered Walkman – TechCrunch

Never one to give up, Sony is still pushing their Walkman line, hoping to grab the non-Android, iPhone, iPod users. Which means your grandparents. Maybe.