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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 9 declined, 1 accepted (10 total, 10.00% accepted)

Cellphones

+ - Apple Responds to FCC about iPhone App Approvals->

Submitted by
FangVT
FangVT writes "Apple has responded to the FCC about their approval process for iPhone applications and posted their response on their website. As expected their position is that everything they do is to provide the best possible user experience to their customers. They claim that most rejections are due to application bugs and they dodge the question about how many apps are rejected by saying that about 20% are rejected as first submitted but never saying what percent are rejected for reasons other than bugs. On the Google Voice application, which the FCC specifically asked about, they say that it has not yet been either rejected or accepted but that they are still reviewing it. They incorrectly (as near as I can tell) characterize Google offering an alternative to the built-in voice mail as disabling core iPhone functionality, but do not address why it shouldn't be up to the user to decide if they want to replace (or use alternatives to) some core functions.

They do provide a small amount of further insight into the review process. Every app is reviewed by at least two of 'more than 40 full-time trained reviewers' in order to try and keep the standards uniformly applied. There is also an App Store executive review board that reviews apps that 'raise new or complex issues.'"

Link to Original Source
The Internet

+ - Dumbing down and smartening up via the Web

Submitted by
FangVT
FangVT writes "In his column on Infoworld Ephraim Schwartz describes a trend towards "dumbing down" information on the web to appeal to the short attention span of "digital natives" (DNs). He cites Gartner's Media Blog, which claims that Digital Natives "graze somewhat randomly for information, scanning Web pages for photos and video, and reading the text only if the images capture their attention."
The article is short and near the end he raises two main concerns:

One, unless we get DNs to behave more like [non-natives], future generations will have a harder time developing the study skills they need to master and understand their environment in order to become the kind of professionals — doctors, architects, engineers — that we need to keep a complex society running.
My second fear is political. Unless our future generations learn to analyze content and understand issues by reading deeply, they will be far more susceptible to being manipulated — and not likely for noble goals.
So is this just another example of the age old arguments that kids today just don't know how to pay attention, or is this something more substantial?"
Sci-Fi

+ - Firefly to be reborn as an MMORPG

Submitted by
FangVT
FangVT writes "Wired is reporting:

Multiverse, maker of a free MMO-creation platform, plans to announce Friday morning that it's struck a deal with Fox Licensing to turn the show into an MMORPG in the fashion of Star Wars Galaxies or Eve Online.

Multiverse is not a game developer, but rather a platform provider whose product is still in beta. Instead of making the game itself, the company will hire a development team that will craft the virtual galaxy using Multiverse tools.

"Television series can be really good properties to turn into MMOs, because when you make a TV series, not only do you need great characters, but you need to create a full, rich, compelling place," says Multiverse co-founder and executive producer Corey Bridges. The universe of Firefly and its spinoff film, Serenity, featured everything from Old West-style towns to futuristic urban environments, gritty spaceships and pastoral retreats — freedom fighters, oppressive government agents, smugglers, outlaws, mercenaries, trader, townsfolk, futuristic geishas and a race of corrupted humans known as the Reavers. Bringing those environments and character types to life as an online game will be a challenge."

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