Apple Second Only To Google In Social-Network Buzz...70mph Robot Runs Like Cheetah—on Paper...Drunk on Ego, NPR Brands Its Own Internet Radio...San Diego Finally Puts All That Sunshine to Good Use

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In a survey of brand names dropped in the tweets and facials (is that the right term?) of today's social-networking mavens, Google came out primero, with Apple at #2, and Microsoft at #3. (Blackballed fans would know that Apple is #2 because it's the shit, but anyway...) The funny part is what didn't make the top 10: HP is there, but Dell is not; BMW yes, but Mercedes, nope; I see a Samsung, but I do not see Sony. As unscientific as this study by Sysomos is, it must tell us something. [AppleInsider]

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Wired wrote up MIT roboticist Sangbae Kim, father of the gecko-inspired Stickybot. His new plan? To make a robot that looks like a cheetah—and runs as fast as one. Yep, he's saying his carbon-fiber quadruped will hit 70 mph. Trouble is, this is all chalkboard chatter: It'll take 18 months for Kim and his colleagues to whip up prototypes of this evil-looking dude, so we have to wait to find out if he was right or nuts. [Wired]

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NPR today showed off a product that will hopefully soon come free with a donation to listener-supported radio. I say that not just as a fan of listener-supported radio, but as someone who would never specifically buy an NPR-branded radio. It aggregates all of NPR's affiliates under one button, and offers on-demand streams of Terry Gross and other awesome NPR folks, but none of this is exclusive to this device. Charitable notions aside, this makes no more sense than an NBC-branded TV (that also lets me watch Fox). [CNet]

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Having spent my whole life in the northern parts of these United States, I have always assumed that it's up to the sunnier parts to get with the solar-power program. At least San Diego sees the logic of this, and is going all in with alternative power. UC San Diego and CleanTECH San Diego are building a smart grid, which puts power back into the system when claimed from solar panels and other alternative sources. The school will produce 3.4 megawatts of renewable energy by next year, while San Diego Gas & Electric pledged to get 33% of its power from renewable sources by 2020. Maybe when they get over 100%, they can share the excess sunlight with those of us stuck in Cloudyville. [Treehugger; Image credit slack12/Flickr/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]