Larry Page taking over as Google CEO, Eric Schmidt will remain as Executive Chairman

Google’s Q4 financial results press release contains a bombshell: as of April 4, co-founder Larry Page (on the far right, above) will replace Eric Schmidt as CEO and assume responsibility for day-to-day operations and product development and strategy.

That doesn’t mean Schmidt is leaving — he’ll carry on as Executive Chairman and serve as an advisor to Page and co-founder Sergey Brin, focused on external things like “deals, partnerships, customers and broader business relationships, government outreach and technology thought leadership.”

As for Sergey, he’ll now “devote his energy to strategic projects, in particular working on new products,” with the simple title of Co-Founder.

Schmidt’s clarified and explained the change in a blog post, saying that the idea is to make leading Google as efficient as possible, and that “Larry, in my clear opinion, is ready to lead.”

It’s clear the idea is to frame this as a simple organizational shuffle — Schmidt says that he, Brin, and Page “anticipate working together for a long time to come” — but there’s no question that Schmidt’s reign as CEO set a clear tone for Google as the company expanded beyond search and into new markets like smartphones, connected televisions, and operating systems, and we’re curious to see what Page’s style is like.

We’re also very curious to hear more about why the change was made — although Schmidt, Page, and Brin have worked together for over 10 years, there’s always been some tension between the co-founders and their CEO, particularly over user privacy. In any event, this is a momentous change both for Google and the industry — we’ll see what happens next.

26 T-Shirts for Internet Geeks and Web Workers

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T-shirts are an interesting communication vehicle. They allow you to express yourself and to connect with like minded people.

Over the years I came across some cool t-shirts for Internet geeks and web workers, and today I decided to compile a collection of them. All the images are linked to where you can buy the t-shirt (no affiliate links, don’t worry). Enjoy!

A Google TV Set-Top Box is Coming

A Google TV Set-Top Box is Coming

We knew vaguely that Google was looking toward the living room, but the NYTimes has the details on Google TV, an ambitious platform to deliver web content to Android-based set-top boxes and TVs through partnerships with Sony, Intel, and Logitech.

Google hopes that the new platform will succeed where dozens of lesser efforts have failed—to truly and seamlessly integrate web content onto TVs, bringing services like Twitter and sites like YouTube, in addition to games, webapps, and, of course, Google’s search, to the big screen. The Google TV software reportedly includes a version of Google’s Chrome browser for doing some light surfing, as well.

The Times says Google TV will be delivered on set-top boxes that use Intel Atom chips and run an Android-based platform, though the technology will also reportedly be built directly into Blu-ray players and TVs from Sony. Additionally, Google is working with Logitech to built a keyboard-equipped remote control for the platform.

Though spokespeople from the companies wouldn’t comment on the project, the Times notes that Intel and Logitech have recently put out job listings for programmers with Android experience.

Television is a relatively unexplored frontier for Google. It’s one of the few spaces left in which the company it is yet to extend its services (as well as its advertising.) But Google TV is far from a sure thing. Many companies have struggled to figure out the right user interface to finally make web on TV make sense. Google’s interfaces tend toward toward the functional, rather than the beautiful, but on a big screen, the sexiness factor cannot be ignored.

Bringing web content to TVs is a role that’s still very much up for grabs. If Google TV, which has reportedly been in works for months, is the right solution for the problem—Gmail was for web mail, Buzz was not for social networking—then it could very well could be the platform that finally brings the power of the internet to the realm of the couch-potato.

Inside the Apple-Google War: It’s Personal

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The New York Times has a long, juicy look at what’s been going on behind the scenes with the ever-escalating conflict between Google and Apple. The cause for all the enmity, according to insiders? Ego.

When Apple filed suit against HTC earlier this month, it was clear that Google and Apple’s romance had turned sour. But the Times’ article, which draws on “interviews with two dozen industry watchers, Silicon Valley investors and current and former employees at both companies,” offers a sense of just how personal this battle is and always has been. The writers begin by summarizing:

Samsung unveils new smart phone with own software

Wireless Show Samsung

Samsung Electronics Co., the largest maker of cell phones for the U.S. market, on Sunday revealed the first phone running Samsung’s own “smart” software system, bada. With bada, Korea-based Samsung is taking the TouchWiz system used on its touch-screen non-smart phones and making it the basis of a smart phone platform to take on Apple Inc.’s iPhone and Research In Motion Ltd.’s BlackBerry. Samsung also makes phones based on other competing smart phone systems: Android, created by Google Inc., and Symbian, of which Nokia Corp. is a major backer.

J.K. Shin, the president of Samsung’s phone division, said the goal of bada was to expand the market for smart phones, making them available to people across the world who have made do with non-smart phones. The new phone, dubbed the Wave, is a touch screen phone like the iPhone. It features a highly saturated, high-resolution screen using organic light emitting diodes, or OLEDs.