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+ - Your Digital Life in Ultraviolet 2

Submitted by D.A. Zollinger
D.A. Zollinger (549301) writes "Not happy with the status quo, many of the major media companies have devised yet another DRM scheme named Ultraviolet. Going beyond the control of physical media, this DRM scheme further assists these major media companies to control digital copies as well. Their enticing mantra? Buy your movie once and play it anywhere! Problem? While they have 43 founding members, including big names in Hollywood, Personal Electronics, Mobile Phones, Computers and Software — conspicuously missing is the biggest player in mobile entertainment — DRM free Apple — and the largest media and entertainment conglomerate — Disney."
Power

+ - First Self-Sustaining Biomass Bot Eats, Excretes->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Researchers at the UK’s Bristol Robotics Laboratory just unveiled the Ecobot III, the first robot capable of powering itself by consuming and excreting biomass that can run unsupervised for a full week. The bot uses a set of 24 microbial fuel cells to break down its food, extracting electrons from the metabolic process to run ultra low-power circuitry. Chris Melhuish, director of the lab, said the robot was called Ecobot III, but admitted “diarrhea-bot would be more appropriate, as it’s not exactly knocking out rabbit pellets.” Well, as they say: garbage in, garbage out."
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Comment: Re:Internet hypochondria is already a phenomenon (Score 1) 245

by D.A. Zollinger (#32591610) Attached to: X Prize Foundation Wants AI Physician On Every Smartphone

In the industry, this is a concept that has already been talked about quite a bit. In fact, a common mantra heard at AMIA conventions is the oft recited, "Any physician who can be replaced by a computer should be."

Unfortunately, that is MUCH easier said than done. And while clinical decision support systems exist to help physicians with their patient diagnosis, every physician uses them as a guideline, and not as an absolute reference or comprehensive source of information. Experience is heavily valued, which is why every physician has 7+ years of postgraduate education and working in the field.

Real Time Strategy (Games)

Achron — an RTS With Time Travel 141

Posted by Soulskill
from the flux-capacitor-not-required dept.
An anonymous reader writes "As much as I'm looking forward to StarCraft 2, there's a new RTS gaming tech that has me even more enthused. The Escapist Magazine has posted interviews and footage of the upcoming 'meta-time strategy game' Achron, which was announced at GDC earlier this year. It's a multiplayer RTS where you can send things through time. The official site has some gameplay footage as well, and it looks like their tech is useful outside of gaming."

Comment: Wrong Criteria (Score 1) 372

by D.A. Zollinger (#27380039) Attached to: Best Grad Program For a Computer Science Major?

You are considering the wrong criteria in getting a degree. You should instead be asking yourself, "What would I enjoy doing more?" The passion in doing what you enjoy is the best way to maximize your earning potential. You will enjoy going to work everyday, you will be excited to take on and complete diverse projects, and your passion and drive will be obvious to anyone who is around you. People will interpret this as a hardworking ethic at the company , and/or love of the company you work at which will in turn translate in to a higher income.

So if you are interested in setting policy, go for your MBA. If you are interested in applying computer technology to the business setting, go for the MS in IT degree. If you are interested in programming, and the creation of computer tools, go for the MS in computer science. However, there are many fields of study that you did not mention that may be of interest as well, everything from software engineering (specialization in writing software), to computer engineering (designing specialized computing devices), to HCI (how people interact with computers), to the numerous sub specialties of informatics (I'm personally studying health informatics, and the creation of unique tools to better health care and help clinicians be safer and more effective).

Sounds like you need to do more research into what you want to do for the rest of your life, and change the criteria basis for which you are basing this decision.

Comment: Re:Timers? (Score 2, Insightful) 77

by D.A. Zollinger (#26842551) Attached to: Balancing Player Input and Developer Vision?

Exactly, make the hint button inaccessible for several seconds after a move has been made, justifying it by saying they haven't tried long enough to try figure out the next move. Imagine if you were sitting next to the player, what kinds of hints would you give them, and how often?

Developers should respond to the requests of their users, however, those requests should be tempered be the social aspect of user (player) interaction with the software (game).

Comment: Re:I like Steam (Score 4, Interesting) 241

by D.A. Zollinger (#25986831) Attached to: Valve's Gabe Newell On DRM

what's the problem?

The problem is that once you purchase the game, you cannot return it, you cannot sell it, and you cannot give it away/transfer it to another party.

As well, despite the fact that the steam version has no packaging costs, no printing costs, no warehousing costs, no stocking, shipping, or handling costs, you are still paying the same for the game as everyone else who bought it in the store.

Finally, the Steam store does not answer to market concerns, and operates arbitrarily. For example: In most stores, once the demand for a game has worn off, the price comes down in order to move the remaining copies of a game to make room for new games. In the Steam store, costs remain the same until the vendor authorizes a price reduction based on arbitrary decisions (increase sales volume, allow for pricing difference between game and sequel, etc.).

The technology embedded in Steam would allow for the first issue to be resolved, should Valve care to pursue this. As well, a second Steam store, not operated by Valve, yet accessible on the Steam system would ensure that the last two issues are properly addressed.

Education

+ - Student's Expulsion Over Facebook Photo Reversed 1

Submitted by mykevelli
mykevelli (1222406) writes "Following up Friday's article about a student being expelled for writing a 'threatening' photo description on Facebook, it seems once the pressure of a lawsuit backed by FIRE (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) came against the Board of Regents, they have backed down. Barnes claims that proper disciplinary processes were not followed for his expulsion and is also asking reimbursement for expenses associated with moving to another university and enrolling there for one semester. Yesterday, the Board of Regents reversed the expulsion of Hayden Barnes. It is unknown at this time whether or not Barnes plans to re-enroll and continue at VSU."
Handhelds

+ - Bacteria Feared Infesting Medical Mobile Devices

Submitted by D.A. Zollinger
D.A. Zollinger (549301) writes "With the uptake in mobile devices in medicine, especially with the uptake in computerized physician order entry (CPOE) systems, clinicians are starting to fear that the very devices used to help find information at the patient's bedside are breeding ground for infectious agents. This is mostly due in part to health information technology (HIT) adapting off-the-shelf PDAs and other computing devices instead of having enough clout to demand an inexpensive mobile computing device that can be easily cleaned and disinfected."
The Courts

+ - Has RIAA Abandoned "Making Available"?

Submitted by
NewYorkCountryLawyer
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "The RIAA's standard complaint (pdf) was thrown out last month by a federal judge in California as so much "conclusory" "boilerplate" "speculation" in Interscope v. Rodriguez. Interestingly, the RIAA's amended complaint (pdf), filed six (6) days later, abandoned altogether the RIAA's "making available" argument, which it first formulated in defending the dismissal motion in Elektra v. Barker. This raises a number of questions, including (a) whether the RIAA is going to stick to this new form of complaint in future cases, (b) whether it is going to get into a different kind of trouble for some of its new allegations, such as its contention that the investigator "detected an individual" (contradicting the testimony of the RIAA's own expert witness) and the allegation that the defendant should be held liable because he or she is "the individual responsible for that IP address at that date and time", a phrase which would appear to be meaningless in a copyright infringement context, and (c) what tack defendants' lawyers should take (this was one lawyer's suggestion)."

Engadget: Some new iPod nanos afflicted with tilted screens->

From feed by engfeed

Filed under: Portable Audio, Portable Video

The new iPod nanos are exhibiting screen problems for a small subset of owners, whereby the screen doesn't appear to be completely level within the casing. More than a dozen people have reported the issue on Apple's Support forums, with most reports saying video appears tilted slightly to the left. Apple is replacing units that exhibit the problem, although judging by some anecdotal reports, entire batches at certain stores have the problem, making replacement a far from adequate solution. Fortunately, it appears as if it's possible to notice the issue with the nano inside the box. At least now we'll know what the problem is if we run into any gadget fans with crooked necks.

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Office Depot Featured Gadget: Xbox 360 Platinum System Packs the power to bring games to life!


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The Courts

+ - Supreme Court rules Ebay sale binding.->

Submitted by Slurpee
Slurpee (4012) writes "The NSW Supreme court has ruled that making an offer of sale on Ebay is legally binding. In other words — you can't change your mind. In a case that reached the NSW Supreme Court, Peter Smythe sued Vin Thomas after he changed his mind on the sale of a 1946 World War II Wirraway plane after the eBay auction had ended. "It follows that, in my view, a binding contract was formed between the plaintiff and the defendent and that it should be specifically enforced," Justice Rein said in his decision. The judgment sets a precedent for future cases and means eBay sales could now be legally binding (At least in Australia)."
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