TECH ROUNDUP: Google Removes Controversial App, LinkedIn's Newest Expansion

A look at the ways Mountain View companies have made the news this week.

Every week, Mountain View makes news with technology developments, discoveries and sometimes controversies.

In the weekly “Bits and Bytes” column we’ll relay the past week’s news highlights from our backyard giants, start-ups and small businesses alike.

Google has its head in the clouds: on Thursday, it launched Google Cloud SQL, a cloud computer program for app engine developers. Free in 2011, the service allows developers to code app engine applications using Google’s cloud-based database server. This eliminates costs that would otherwise be funneled into creating a database backend.

French Android app developer Enneme Moi said they created the app “Is My Son Gay?” to playfully promote a novel by the same name. But civil rights groups such as AllOut.org weren’t laughing, stating the app only served to futher stereotypes and promote homophobia. As a result, Google just pulled the French and English versions of the app from the Android Market.

LinkedIn made its debut on social media dashboard Hootsuite on Friday. Now users can simultaneously post updates on their profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and a slew of other social media sites.

Ditch your Firefox 3.6. That’s the gist of a campaign Mozilla will start next week for its users, in hopes that they will upgrade to the new Firefox 7. Firefox 3.6 will still be available, but likely only until the first quarter of 2012.

23andMe has launched a pilot gene sequencing program for $999, giving customers full access to their genetic code. The program taps into the “exome,” or a subset of a genome that contains the most important genetic variations. The service’s major competitor is Illumina’s whole gene sequencing, which starts at $7,500.

Synopsis, Inc. has purchased Extreme DA, but didn’t reveal the price tag on the deal. Synopsis makes software used in designing and making electronic componants. Extreme DA, based in Santa Clara, makes software for improving the design and manufacturing of integrated circuits. 


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