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Cellphones

Tetris Clones Pulled From Android Market 396

Posted by Soulskill
from the bad-news-bears dept.
sbrubblesman writes "The Tetris Company, LLC has notified Google to remove all Tetris clones from Android Market. I am one of the developers of FallingBlocks, a game with the same gameplay concepts as Tetris. I have received an email warning that my game was suspended from Android Market due to a violation of the Developer Content Policy. When I received the email, I already imagined that it had something to do with it being a Tetris clone, but besides having the same gameplay as Tetris, which I believe cannot be copyrighted, the game uses its own name, graphics and sounds. There's no reference to 'Tetris' in our game. I have emailed Google asking what is the reason for the application removal. Google promptly answered that The Tetris Company, LLC notified them under the DMCA (PDF) to remove various Tetris clones from Android Market. My app was removed together with 35 other Tetris clones. I checked online at various sources, and all of them say that there's no copyright on gameplay. There could be some sort of patent. But even if they had one, it would last 20 years, so it would have been over in 2005. It's a shame that The Tetris Company, LLC uses its power to stop developers from creating good and free games for Android users. Without resources for a legal fight, our application and many others will cease to exist, even knowing that they are legit. Users will be forced to buy the paid, official version, which is worse than many of the ones available for free on the market. Users from other countries, such as Brazil in my case, won't even be able to play the official Tetris, since Google Checkout doesn't exist in Brazil; you can't buy paid applications from Android Market in these countries."
Security

CERT Releases Basic Fuzzing Framework 51

Posted by timothy
from the this-field-cannot-be-left-blank dept.
infoLaw passes along this excerpt from Threatpost: "Carnegie Mellon University's Computer Emergency Response Team has released a new fuzzing framework to help identify and eliminate security vulnerabilities from software products. The Basic Fuzzing Framework (BFF) is described as a simplified version of automated dumb fuzzing. It includes a Linux virtual machine that has been optimized for fuzz testing and a set of scripts to implement a software test."
Biotech

A Genetically Engineered Fly That Can Smell Light 111

Posted by timothy
from the lsd-way-cheaper dept.
An anonymous reader writes "It sounds like a cool — if somewhat pointless — super-powered insect: a fly that can smell light! Researchers added a light-sensitive protein to a fruit fly's olfactory neurons, which caused the neurons to fire when the fly was exposed to a certain wavelength of blue light. Adding the protein specifically to neurons that respond to good smells, like bananas, makes for a light-seeking fly."
KDE

Sneak Preview For Coming KDE SC 4.5 249

Posted by timothy
from the one-moment-in-time dept.
omlx writes "KDE SC 4.5 is in feature freeze right now. Therefore, I decided to share some early screenshots with you. In general there are no major changes; it's all about polishing and fixing bugs. There are a lot of under-the-hood changes in libs, which as end users we cannot see. KDE SC will be released in August 2010." Note: you can also try out a beta of the release now, if you'd like.
Image

Politically Correct Zoology 218

Posted by samzenpus
from the cover-all-the-naughty-bits dept.
flynny51 writes "Dr. Dylan Evans of the School of Medicine, University College, Cork, Ireland, has had a two-year period of intensive monitoring and counseling imposed upon him and as a result his application for tenure is likely to be denied. His offense — sharing an article from a peer-reviewed journal on fellatio in fruit bats."
Nintendo

New Hardware Models Highlight Nintendo's No-Transfer Policy 116

Posted by Soulskill
from the inconvenience-is-an-art-form-these-days dept.
An article at Wired discusses the difficulties involved in transferring games that were purchased and downloaded online when users replace their Wii or DSi. "Neither the Wii nor Nintendo’s portable DSi consoles have an upgrade path for downloadable content, since games are tied not to user accounts but to specific machines. It’s impossible for a user to copy content from an old console to a new one. Even some Wii owners whose machines have malfunctioned said it was difficult, or impossible, to get Nintendo to transfer the software licenses at its headquarters." One gamer, who bought the recently released black Wii console, explained that she got Nintendo to transfer her games, but needed to "mail both of her Wii consoles to Nintendo, and wait two weeks," hardly a convenient solution.
Image

Website Sells Pubic Lice 319

Posted by samzenpus
from the gift-that-keeps-on-giving dept.
A British website called crabrevenge.com will help you prove that there is literally nothing you can't find online by selling you pubic lice. A disclaimer on the site says the creators "do not endorse giving people lice," and the lice are for "novelty purposes only." The company also boasts about a facility "where we do all of our parasite husbandry and carefully considered selective breeding." Three different packages are available: "Green package - One colony that can lay as many as 30 eggs for about $20. Blue package - Three colonies to share with your friends or freeze a batch or two for about $35. Red package - A vial of 'shampoo-resistant F-strain crabs' which can take up to two weeks to kill for about $52."
Businesses

EA Introduces "Online Pass" To Get In On Used Games Market 223

Posted by Soulskill
from the gee-thanks dept.
EA Sports has unveiled a new feature that they hope will help them get a piece of the lucrative used games market: the Online Pass. Each of their new titles will come with a one-time code that allows access to "premium" content and features. Players who buy the games used can get the same content, but will need to pay $10 for the privilege. "According to EA, the content can include anything from title updates and downloads to features like online leagues — and even online gameplay and multiplayer modes. ... EA will offer 10-day trials of Pass content so that users can see what they would be getting. So far, EA seems to be limiting the premium add-on experiment to its sports portfolio. ... The company has apparently gained the support of retailer GameStop, which has been watching with a close eye efforts on the part of publishers to discourage its thriving used games business. According to the retailer, encouraging premium content add-ons still benefits GameStop, since it sells PlayStation Network and Microsoft Points cards. It praised EA's Online Pass as 'forward-thinking.'"
Television

MythTV 0.23 Released 214

Posted by kdawson
from the record-with-daring-and-whimsey dept.
An anonymous reader writes "After six months of our new accelerated development schedule, MythTV 0.23 is now available. MythTV 0.23 brings a new event system, brand new Python bindings, the beta MythNetvision Internet video plugin, new audio code and surround sound upmixer, several new themes (Arclight and Childish), a greatly improved H.264 decoder, and fixes for analog scanning, among many others. Work towards MythTV 0.24 is in full swing, and has be progressing very well for the last several months. If all goes according to plan, MythTV 0.24 will bring a new MythUI OSD, a nearly rewritten audio subsystem capable of handling 24- and 32-bit audio and up to 8 channels of output, Blu-ray disc and disc structure playback, and various other performance, usability, and flexibility improvements."
PC Games (Games)

Civilization V To Use Steamworks 295

Posted by Soulskill
from the hope-it-doesn't-get-you-in-hot-water dept.
sopssa writes "2K Games today announced that Civilization V will be using Steamworks for online matchmaking, automated updates, downloadable content and DRM for the game. Steam's Civ V store page is also available now, revealing some new information about the game. There will be an 'In-Game Community Hub' for online matchmaking, communication, and for sharing scenarios between players. While including Steamworks might put some people off, it might also indicate better online gameplay than in the previous Civilization games, where it was almost impossible to have a good game without playing with just friends."
Privacy

Lower Merion School's Report Says IT Dept. Did It, But Didn't Inhale 232

Posted by timothy
from the so-what's-a-few-snapshots-anyhow dept.
PSandusky writes "A report issued by the Lower Merion School District's chosen law firm blames the district's IT department for the laptop webcam spying scandal. In particular, the report mentions lax IT policies and record-keeping as major problems that enabled the spying. Despite thousands of e-mails and images to the contrary, the report also maintains that no proof exists that anyone in IT viewed images captured by the webcams."

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