While Apple’s MobileMe has so far been one of the only ways to get push data to the iPhone outside of the workplace, Google has launched a new mobile sync service that promises to do much of the same for free.

The beta release this week of Google Sync for iPhone relies on a newly-acquired license for Microsoft Exchange to both instantly push Google Calendar and Gmail contacts to the iPhone and iPod touch as well as to send those changes back out to Google’s usual web services.

The absence of multi-touch functionality on T-Mobile’s Android-powered G1 smartphone may have been a casualty of Google’s cordial relationship with Apple — one that the search giant would rather not disrupt.

An unnamed source inside the Android team told VentureBeat that Apple requested multi-touch be left out of the device, and Mountain View, Calif.-based Google was happy to comply.

The G1 has been criticized in several reviews for its touch user interface, which is “inferior to the iPhone’s,” as Walt Mossberg put it in his review for the Wall Street Journal. “It lacks the iPhone’s ability to flick between multiple pictures and Web pages, or to zoom in and zoom out of a photo or Web page by simply using two fingers to ‘pinch’ or expand the image,” Mossberg wrote.

The developers of the iPhone Craigslist app craigsphone [App Store link] seem to have found themselves in a bit of a pickle. Sure, most of Craigslist’s content is perfectly appropriate for all audiences — nothing too risque about buying a used bike or looking for an apartment — but there are some more adult areas of the service, including the ever-popular Missed Connections, that might just run afoul of the App Store’s ever-shifting sands of appropriateness. What to do?

Apparently, the answer is “throw up your hands and turn the URL over to Mobile Safari,” as you can see in the screenshot here. I’m not sure this is a particularly well-thought out workaround; there are plenty of other apps that can pull down adult-themed content, starting with Apple’s own YouTube tool and including ebook readers, RSS feed handlers, etc.

Earlier this week at New York ComicCon, Marvel announced their intention to sell “In-Motion” comic books through the iTunes Store. According to Marvel, the In-Motion comics go beyond the paperback books with animated panels and voice-over work from popular actors. Sounds like something that could be a lot of fun on an iPod touch or iPhone.

Speaking of paperbacks, traditional paper versions will be made available following iTunes releases. As of this writing, there’s no word on when these will be sold or for how much. I’ll sacrifice some geek cred here and admit that I’ve never been a comic book fan. However, I do get behind attempts to expand artistic endeavors into new territory. Good luck to Marvel!

Pixar obviously has an enormous stable of talent. But how does the company find the people they hire? Here’s a video explaining the process. Randy Nelson is dean of Pixar University, the company’s recruiting and training arm. As he explains, Pixar’s HR process overturns several widespread assumptions.

This year the Oscars are doing something a little different, what exactly no one really knows outside of 81st Academy Awards®, telecast producer Laurence Mark and executive producer Bill Condon and I would assume President Sid Ganis. Hints have been dropped such as the original shorts to be created by Judd Apatow, Baz Luhrmann and Bennett Miller and we also expect Hugh Jackman will break out into a dance number of some sort just to appeal to the Wolverine fans, but beyond that we are in the dark. However, we do know of one feature that will not be seen at the Oscars — Giant Robots!

In an exclusive interview Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen helmer Michael “The” Bay tells us when he got wind the producers of the Oscars were looking to go a different direction this year with the telecast he approached them with a pitch to bring Optimus Prime, Megatron and others from his feature film based on the toy line to the show. “I told them there was only one way to make the biggest award show on the planet even bigger outside of holding it at the Pentagon, and that was to feature the robots from my movie,” The Bay told me during a phone call early this morning.

Cartoon Network Picks Up Second Season of Lucasfilm Ltd.’s STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS Television Series

Groundbreaking Series Ranks #1 in Its Time Period With All Boys Demos Across All TelevisionBroadcast and Ad-Supported Cable, 2008 and January 2009

After debuting to record numbers and claiming the #1 series across the entire basic cable landscape in 2008 and through January 2009 with boys 6-11, Cartoon Network announced today that it has picked-up a second season of the hit CG-animated series STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS, from creator George Lucas and Lucasfilm Animation. Slated to premiere in the fall of 2009, the second season will continue to take audiences on new and exciting adventures, combining the legendary storytelling of Lucasfilm with innovative animation. The season one finale of Star Wars: The Clone Wars airs on Cartoon Network Friday, March 20 at 9 pm ET/PT.

As the Senate tried to work out the kinks in the stimulus bill last week, they – specifically Senate Republicans – gave the middle finger to the film industry.  With a vote of 52 – 45, 13 Democrats and one Independent (Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut) joined with 38 Republicans to remove $246 million in tax breaks for Hollywood production companies.

Republican Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and other Republicans took issue with a provision that would allow studio executives to write off 50 percent of the costs of their 2009 production equipment.  “They had their best January ever,” Coburn said.  John McCain echoed his sentiment, stating “Hollywood’s doing OK.”  California Democrats Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein opposed the removal.

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