Enfors writes "CCP, developers of the sci-fi MMOG EVE Online, continue to impress with their open attitude towards players. In a thread on the EVE forums, an EVE Online player named Dire Lauthris describes difficulties he was having while making a fan movie that would illustrate a portion of EVE Online's background story. To make it 'historically correct,' he contacted CCP, the developers, to check on some facts. Instead of threatening to sue him for infringing on their intellectual property, they ended up inviting him to their offices to set him up with better movie-making software than the one he was using. Also, they had an employee record the narrator voice for his movie. The movie is now finished and available online. Massively is running a related article about storytelling in EVE."
Late-Eight writes "Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology are working on a new type of nanogenerator that could draw necessary energy from flowing blood in the human body. The hope is to incorporate the new nanogenerator into biosensors, environmental monitoring devices and even personal electronics that will require no fuel source, internal or external. Once completed, this new cellular engine could find various applications, even beyond medicine."
Fantastic Lad writes "The US Department of Defense (DOD) may already be creating a copy of you in an alternate reality. Putting supercomputers to an innovative use, the military is simulating our planet in an effort to predict the outcome of different scenarios. They might run tests to see how long 'you' can go without food or water, or how 'you' will respond to televised propaganda. Billions of nodes are created in the system, intended to reflect every man, woman, and child. 'Called the Sentient World Simulation (SWS), it will be a "synthetic mirror of the real world with automated continuous calibration with respect to current real-world information", according to a concept paper for the project. Simulex is the company developing these systems, and they list pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly and defense contractor Lockheed Martin among their private sector clients. The U.S. military is their biggest customer, apparently now running the most complex version of the system. JFCOM-9 is now capable of running real-time simulations for up to 62 nations, including Iraq, Afghanistan, and China. The simulations gobble up breaking news, census data, economic indicators, and climactic events in the real world, along with proprietary information such as military intelligence."
DrunkenTerror writes "The latest results for Valve's Steam hardware survey are in, and they provide a valuable look at the types of systems most gamers are using. They also show a much lower uptake of Windows Vista than Microsoft will likely be happy with. Only 5.27 percent of respondents had upgraded to Windows Vista. Ars Technica reports."
mrneutron2004 writes "A French physician and ardent Linux supporter is the one man you can all thank for adding support for 352 webcams in Linux. The Open Source OS world may still be a bit of a mess when competing with the ease of Windows, but efforts like this make you wonder. One man with drive, tenacity, and no funding does what no one else can do. And none of the major Linux distributions back this guy's efforts, even the big players dipping into the corporate world's coffers."
rowleyrw writes "The BBC are reporting, 'The British military is set to take one of its most significant steps into the digital age with the launch of the first Skynet 5 satellite. The spacecraft will deliver secure, high-bandwidth communications for UK and "friendly" forces across the globe.' It's not yet the Skynet of Terminator, but how long before it becomes self aware?"
UnreasonableMan writes "Jeff Hawkins is best known for founding Palm Computing and Handspring, but for the last eighteen months he's been working on his third company, Numenta. In his 2005 book, On Intelligence, Hawkins laid out a theoretical framework describing how the neocortex processes sensory inputs and provides outputs back to the body. Numenta's goal is to build a software model of the human brain capable of face recognition, object identification, driving, and other tasks currently best undertaken by humans. For an overview see Hawkins' 2005 presentation at UC Berkeley. It includes a demonstration of an early version of the software that can recognize handwritten letters and distinguish between stick figure dogs and cats. White papers are available at Numenta's website. Numenta wisely decided to build a community of developers rather than trying to make everything proprietary. Yesterday they released the first version of their free development platform and the source code for their algorithms to anyone who wants to download it."
PreacherTom writes to mention that this past Thursday many robots were honored at the government-sponsored Robot Awards 2006 in Japan. Winners include a feeding machine, a theraputic seal, and a giant automated vacuum cleaner. From the article: "Examples among the winners were MySpoon, which is a robot that helps to feed people who are paralyzed, and Paro, a furry robotic seal that responds to human touch and is designed for nursing home and hospital therapy."
PreacherTom writes "In the age of watches that have more computational power than Apollo 11's computer, one would think that the watchmaker has gone the way of the cobbler, the blacksmith and the Dodo. Quite the contrary. With the rise in interest for mechanical watches (especially luxury models), Rolex has sponsored a new school to train horologists in the arcane art. From the article: 'We were facing a situation today where we needed to foster a new generation of watchmakers,' says Charles Berthiaume, the senior vice-president for technical operations at Rolex and the Technicum's president 'Thirty to 40 years ago, there was a watchmaker at every jewelry store. That's not the case today,' he notes. Included are some remarkable examples of their training, dedication, and intricate patience as they take technology in an entirely different direction."
Krishna Dagli writes to mention a C|Net story covering a House of Representatives vote on restricting access to social sites on public terminals. The bill, which passed the House in a 410-15 vote, would bar users from accessing sites like Amazon, MySpace, or Slashdot from terminals in libraries and schools. Adults would be able to 'ask permission' to access such sites. From the article: "'Social networking sites, best known by the popular examples of MySpace, Friendster and Facebook, have literally exploded in popularity in just a few short years,' said Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, a Pennsylvania Republican and one of DOPA's original sponsors. Now, he added, those Web sites 'have become a haven for online sexual predators who have made these corners of the Web their own virtual hunting ground.'"
Steven Williamson writes "HEXUS.gaming's resident wood elf, Steven W, jumped at the chance to take the eye-opening trip to the Games Workshop HQ in Nottingham, home to the unique venue that is Warhammer World. What started out as a run-of-the-mill press event to see the latest real-time tactics videogame set in the Warhammer universe ended up capturing my imagination and quashing any previous hang-ups I almost certainly had about the people who played Warhammer and indeed the tabletop game that has spawned this latest PC game, Warhammer: MOC."
Hey folks, just throwing this up to let yall know I can't reply to anyone in that mousepad thread. Apparently I'm down to 1 post allowed per day, so that was it. All I can do is write journal entries now, can't even reply to comments in those. Thanks for playing!
Gah, ok, I gave it more that a fair shot, IMO, and yep, this new layout is terrible. It makes me feel even more colorblind that I already am. Wow, thanks, slashdot. You picked the one shade of green that I see as gray, and then slathered various shades of gray around that. Fucking brilliant. I can't tell what's green and gray anymore, and it makes me want to throw up. Anyone got a graph showing a decline in traffic after the switch? Comment volumes decreasing perhaps? This theme is terrible, hor
jjh37997 writes "A Homeland Security's privacy advisory committee member finds that flying without a photo ID is actually faster than traveling with proper identification. According to Wired the committee member, Jim Harper, accepted a bet from civil liberties rabble-rouser John Gilmore to test whether he could actually fly without showing identification. He found that traveling without ID allowed him to bypass the long security lines at San Francisco's International Airport, and get in faster than if he had provided his driver's license."