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Comment: State of Oklahoma as well (Score 5, Informative) 1103

by Dios (#44153185) Attached to: Employers Switching From Payroll Checks To Prepaid Cards With Fees

This frustrated me this year. I received a pre-pair card from the State of Oklahoma for my OK Tax Return. I swear I filled out the direct deposit info, but perhaps I didn't (I could check my copies...). What upset me is the fees for funds withdrawals/etc. This is my money, the state and its corporate partner shouldn't be making money off me when I try to get it.

The card did allow a single withdrawal without a fee at an ATM. I couldn't find an ATM it would work in. Finally logged in to the associated website and transferred to my banking account, with a $0.75 fee. What a crock!

Here's the Oklahoma website pdf detailing the info: http://www.tax.ok.gov/it2011/RefundCard.pdf
and their FAQ: http://www.tax.ok.gov/faq/faqDEBITCARD001.html

NASA

+ - Swiss scientists crafting 'janitor satellites' to remove space junk ->

Submitted by EwanPalmer
EwanPalmer (2536690) writes "Swiss scientists say they plan to launch a "janitor satellite" specially designed to get rid of orbiting debris known as space junk.

The 10-million-franc (£7.6m) satellite CleanSpace One — the prototype for a family of such satellites — is being built by the Swiss Space Center at the Swiss Federal Institute for Technology in Lausanne, or EPFL."

Link to Original Source
Graphics

The Nuts and Bolts of PlayStation 3D 154

Posted by Soulskill
from the wait-till-the-bayonetta-guys-get-ahold-of-this dept.
The Digital Foundry blog took an in-depth look at how Sony is introducing 3D technology to PlayStation 3 games. They give a step-by-step description of how the system generates a 3D frame (or rather, a pair of frames), and the graphical hurdles that need be to overcome to ensure the games look good. The article also discusses some of the subtle effects 3D technology can have on gameplay: "'One interesting thing came through in the immersion aspect was that in the first-person camera view, it felt so much more like being there. Typically when most people play MotorStorm, something like 90 per cent play in the third-person view,' Benson explains. 'As soon as we put the 3D settings in place, the first-person view became a lot more popular, a lot more people were using that view. This could indicate that 3D could perhaps change the standards, if you like.' ... 'We found that in the first-person view the game is giving you all the sorts of cues that you're used to in normal driving: speed perception, the ability to judge distances, things like that. It's far easier to avoid track objects.' The insertion of true stereoscopic 3D into MotorStorm also brings about a new sense of appreciation of the scale and size of the game world and the objects within it."
Image

Jordanian Mayor Angry Over "Alien Invasion" Prank 217

Posted by samzenpus
from the war-of-the-worlds dept.
krou writes "Jordanian mayor Mohammed Mleihan has taken a dim view of local newspaper Al-Ghad's April Fools prank, which saw a front page story claiming that 'flying saucers flown by 3m (10ft) creatures had landed in the desert town of Jafr.' The paper claimed that communication networks had gone down, and people were fleeing the area. The mayor called the local security authorities, who combed the area, but they were unable to find any evidence of the aliens. Mr Mleihan is now considering suing because of the distress it caused to residents: 'Students didn't go to school, their parents were frightened and I almost evacuated the town's 13,000 residents. People were scared that aliens would attack them.'" I guess they've never heard of Orson Welles in Jordan.
Science

Why the First Cowboy To Draw Always Gets Shot 398

Posted by timothy
from the more-guns-less-crime dept.
cremeglace writes "Have you ever noticed that the first cowboy to draw his gun in a Hollywood Western is invariably the one to get shot? Nobel-winning physicist Niels Bohr did, once arranging mock duels to test the validity of this cinematic curiosity. Researchers have now confirmed that people indeed move faster if they are reacting, rather than acting first."
Software

The Final Release of Apache HTTP Server 1.3 104

Posted by timothy
from the people-of-earth-you're-on-your-own dept.
Kyle Hamilton writes "The Apache Software Foundation and the Apache HTTP Server Project are pleased to announce the release of version 1.3.42 of the Apache HTTP Server ('Apache'). This release is intended as the final release of version 1.3 of the Apache HTTP Server, which has reached end of life status There will be no more full releases of Apache HTTP Server 1.3. However, critical security updates may be made available."
Microsoft

+ - Is Windows Vista in trouble?

Submitted by Ken Erfourth
Ken Erfourth (671941) writes "I'm a small computer shop owner, and I have noticed how little interest my customers have in Windows Vista. Now, the Inquirer.net is running a story about what they consider two powerful indications that Vista is failing in the marketplace.

One, Dell has reintroduced PCs running Windows XP on its website due to customer demand. Two, Microsoft is conducting a worldwide firesale on a bundle of Microsoft Office 2007/WindowsXP Starter Edition. According to Inquirer.net, at least, these are signs of serious problems selling Vista.

Are we seeing the stumbling of the Microsoft Juggernaught with the slow adoption of Windows Vista?"

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