Today in Tech: Amazon hires Windows Phone vet for ‘secret’ project

Also: OMGPOP CEO leaves Zynga; Microsoft co-founder will open Palo Alto investment office. 

No joke: Amazon hires Windows Phone Charlie Kindel for ‘something secret’ [GEEK WIRE]

With the new role, Kindel has stepped down as CEO of his startup BizLogr, which makes an automated mileage reporting tool called MileLogr. He will remain a founder/owner, but he says he will mostly disconnect from the startup, and his technical co-founder, Stefan Negritoiu, will take the reins.

Kindel explains, “Amazon presented an opportunity to build something new that has ginormous potential. I simply couldn’t pass the opportunity up. As a double bonus, the idea that I can work in such a principled and customer focused company is really exciting to me.”

OMGPOP CEO Dan Porter departs Zynga; will be replaced by VP of Mobile Sean Kelly [BETABEAT]

Zynga confirmed to Betabeat that the decision was mutual and unrelated to the expiration of any “golden handcuff” clause in his contract keeping him at the company after the acquisition. Mr. Porter had been working on developing the sequel to Draw Something for the past year and felt it was in good enough shape to make the transition. Zynga launched Draw Something 2 in Sweden last week. The company picked Sweden to release the sequel–a celebrity-focused social network of sorts that emphasizes showcasing drawings over gaming–because Sweden was the first country where the first version hit no. 1 in the App Store.

Microsoft co-founder to open investment office in Silicon Valley [REUTERS]

The new office in Palo Alto will focus on emerging internet, software and technology companies, including middle and late-stage venture capital and pre-IPO deals, Paul Ghaffari, Vulcan Capital’s chief investment officer, told Reuters.

“We are going to expand our footprint in broad tech investments, we’d like to get more resources, people on the ground there (Silicon Valley),” said Ghaffari. “We have a real appetite to put new ideas in the portfolio.”

Bad credit? Start tweeting [THE WALL STREET JOURNAL]

Mr. Stewart is part of a growing group of entrepreneurs who believe that online reputations can tell lenders more about a person’s trustworthiness than the FICO score, the ubiquitous credit-rating score popularized by Fair Isaac Corp.

The FICO score is drawn from credit reports such as payment history, amounts owed and how long a person has successfully used credit.

Funny or Die releases teaser trailer for ‘iSteve’ [MACRUMORS]

iSteve is just one of three films focusing on Steve Jobs due for release, with Ashton Kutcher’s Jobs having premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January but experiencing a delayed public release and Aaron Sorkin’s Sony-backed film drawing on material from Walter Isaacson’s authorized biography of Jobs yet to begin production.

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