Internet's taxing times (week in review)

A senior senator is readying legislation to end tax-free Internet shopping, and Cisco kills the Flip. Also: Apple announces Final Cut Pro X.

We may be basking in the waning sunlight of tax-free Internet shopping.

A senator is preparing to introduce legislation that would rewrite the ground rules for Internet and mail order sales by eliminating the ability of Americans to shop at Web sites like Amazon.com and Overstock.com without paying state sales taxes.

"Why should out-of-state companies that sell their products online have an unfair advantage over Main Street bricks-and-mortar businesses?" Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said in a speech in Collinsville, Ill., in February.

Durbin, the second most senior Senate Democrat, will introduce the bill after the Easter recess, a Democratic aide told CNET. At the moment, Americans who shop over the Internet from out-of-state vendors aren't always required to pay sales taxes at the time of purchase.

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Cisco gives Flip video biz the boot

The company is ditching its Flip video camera business, which it bought for $590 million just two years ago, as it makes "tough decisions" meant to get it back on track.
•  Why Cisco killed the Flip mini camcorder

Google's acquisition of ITA Software closes

Despite being met with significant opposition in the travel search industry from companies that claimed buying ITA would give Google unfair power, the $700 million acquisition has cleared.
•  Google misses earnings expectations, but sales solid

Microsoft gives details on next Windows Phone OS

The software giant shows the ability for people to multitask, demonstrates Spotify and Qantas apps, and announces Angry Birds launch date.
•  Microsoft reveals more details on Windows Intune

What turns people off from buying 3D TV

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•  Conjuring up glasses-free 3D for iPad, iPhone

App Store placeholder hints at another iOS device

An iOS app listing with mention of an unnamed compatible device is stirring rumors that Apple plans to add another iOS app-capable device to join the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
•  iOS 4.3.2 arrives, fixes iPad 3G, FaceTime bugs
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Apple announces Final Cut Pro X

Apple gives users a sneak peek at the next generation of its Final Cut Pro software. The 64-bit video-editing suite is the first update to the tool since 2009 and cuts $700 off the current price.
•  5 things pros hope will be in the next Final Cut
•  The skinny on Final Cut Pro X (FAQ)

Facebook suit cites alleged Zuckerberg e-mails

Paul Ceglia claims a 2003 contract with Mark Zuckerberg entitles him to 50 percent of Facebook, and he says he has the e-mails to prove it.
•  Facebook foes lose appeal
•  Facebook, Baidu ink deal to create new Web site?

Celebrating 50 years since Yuri Gagarin's 'Let's Go!'

On April 12, 1961, the Soviet cosmonaut became the first human to go into space. Fifty years later, Gagarin's fame is as bright as ever, and he may be one of the few Soviets to retain his star power.
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Also of note
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•  Paul Allen says new book isn't revenge on Gates
•  SF passes Twitter tax break

 

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