Trending: Amazon narrows HQ2 search to 20 cities, moving to next phase in contest for $5B economic prize

It was an unusually busy month of July on the technology beat in Seattle. And here’s my theory why: The weather sucked. With clouds and cold temperatures, Seattle geeks spent a good chunk of the month indoors coding, raising money and just getting stuff done.

The month was highlighted by the initial public offering of Zillow — the first IPO from a Washington technology company in 13 months — and the whopping sale of PopCap Games to Electronic Arts for as much as $1.3 billion.

Unfortunately, amid all of the excitement in the technology industry, there was some tragic news too. Google engineer Steve Lacey — a well known member of the Seattle tech community — was killed in a car crash earlier this week. (Todd and I both knew Steve, and our thoughts are with his family).

As our two weeks of summer finally arrives in Seattle, here’s a look back at the most popular stories for the month of July. Thanks again to everyone for your support of GeekWire.

Bitcoin befuddles U.S. customs agents, thwarting Seattle visit by digital currency guru (63 comments)

Intellectual Ventures responds to This American Life exposé: ‘We fundamentally disagree’ (38 comments)

Apple, Microsoft and the divergence of the personal computer market (9 comments)

Ballmer memo: Microsoft plans unprecedented boost in employee compensation, simpler reviews (18 comments)

A guide to why Amazon is losing the tax battle (21 comments)

Microsoft announces another Android patent deal and signals claims vs. Chrome (8 comments)

Microsoft doesn’t need to replace Steve Ballmer as much as it needs to replace Gates (29 comments)

Microsoft Bing innovates on iPad with ‘Lasso’ quick search (4 comments)

Seattle claims zombie world record from New Jersey (6 comments)

Windows Phone 7 customers love their phones (even more than Android customers do) (20 comments)

The 14 hottest startups in Seattle (at least in the view of Business Insider) (19 comments)

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