Early peek gives Google TV high grades; can Steve Burke save media?

> Forbes' Quentin Hardy has had a sneak peek at Google TV (Nasdaq: GOOG) and his reaction could chill the hearts of cable executives. "There is a lot to like," Hardy reports on his blog. "Google has designed a television that is also a supercomputing communications device." Story.

> On the other side of the media coin, Diane Mermigas sees Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) COO Steve Burke as something of a media savior. Burke, the heir apparent CEO of NBC Universal (and isn't it something how Comcast's merger is considered a done deal even as the FCC diddles with it?) "can trigger change from the get-go," she writes in a MediaPost op-ed. "Comcast has a unique opportunity to rejuvenate the content and advertising businesses into something much more," she wrote, pointing out that regulators and the public have "mistakenly" focused on Comcast's current role rather than the one "it will play in the rapidly changing competitive and economic landscape." Story.

> Cleveland, which has taken great pains to distance itself from the moniker "mistake on the lake," is talking about partnering with EPB Fiber Optics, Chattanooga's municipally-owned fiber-to-the-premises network, to take a deeper look at the smart grid as the way to deliver broadband services such as cable TV. Cleveland is already served by AT&T (NYSE: T) and Charter Communications (Nasdaq: CHTR). Story.

> This could be another whiff of nostalgia or the beefing up of yet more competition for cable in the business services space. EarthLink (Nasdaq: ELNK) has announced plans to acquire ITC DeltaCom to "create a leading IP infrastructure and solutions company by combining its existing ISP and IP-focused businesses with DeltaCom's integrated communications business," the ISP said in a news release.

And finally... the SCTE is expecting "more than a dozen" companies to showcase energy efficient products at its Green and Networks Home Pavilions during the Cable Tec Expo in New Orleans Oct. 20-22. News release.