It's not the writers. There are lots of writers in Hollywood who would love to write original stories, and original film ideas get pitched all the time. The suits at the studios often just don't want to take the risk with something new and original because sequels and remakes come with built-in name recognition and are a safer way to ensure a film will make money. Writers have to make a living, so they take whatever jobs they can get, and often that means writing tired, unoriginal sequels and remakes because those are the only jobs available.
You don't lose access to Gmail (or Docs, Calendar, Blogger, or any other Google service that doesn't require Google+) if you're banned from Google+. The only way you can get a full Google-wide ban is if you're caught breaking a Google-wide policy such as spamming or illegal activity. They've also changed their policy so they give you fair warning to change your username before they lock your account, and there's an appeals process in place to get your account back if you do get banned for using a fake username.
They also won't ban you just because your name doesn't match your birth certificate. They're only locking accounts for people who are using obviously fake names.
There's a long blog post from a Google VP that goes into a lot of detail on the issue here: https://plus.google.com/113116318008017777871/posts/VJoZMS8zVqU
I learned to write in cursive while I was in school. Then I entered the real world and have never had any use for it since.
Here's my question: This article lists some of the domain registrars that are performing shady practices, but what about a list of registrars that are playing by the rules and won't try to screw you over in some way? Or is the entire system such a mess now that there are no good ones left?
X3: Terran Conflict still has its DRM listed on the Steam page. It's the last item on the list under "Game Details", on the right-hand column:
3rd-party DRM: TAGES(TM)
5 machine activation limit
All of the other games I've checked that I know have 3rd party DRM also have it listed.
I do agree that it would be nice if Valve would make a stand on 3rd party DRM, though. Steam makes 3rd party DRM redundant, so it's incredibly obnoxious when a game on Steam comes bundled with other DRM software (not that most DRM isn't obnoxious anyway).
That's a bug that they fixed a long time ago. They also changed the training mode since then so you don't have to go through basic control training if you're already an experienced player. Now, you just have a quick little obstacle course that determines whether you understand some basic techniques like rocket jumping, and then it puts you into a quick 10-minute bot match (the difficulty of which is based on how many obstacles you were able to pass in the obstacle course), to determine your skill placement, so it can match you up against players of similar skill.
On top of that, all of Western Digital's performance-tuned "Caviar Black" line of drives are now carrying 5-year warranties (in addition to their enterprise-class and Raptor drives, which have always had 5-year warranties). I used to be a big Seagate fanboy and only bought their drives when possible, but lately I've been a lot more impressed with Western Digital's product lineup. My next hard drive purchase will probably be WD.
The reason these overclocks are significant is that the Phenom wasn't able to reach the clock speeds that AMD originally expected it to, and that's one of the reasons it's had such a hard time competing with the Core 2. They were expecting to be selling 3 GHz Phenoms soon after launch, but the first Phenoms to ship were only 2.3 GHz, and even now the fastest Phenom chip is a 2.6 GHz part that struggles to overclock much past 3 GHz or so regardless of the cooling that's used. Even though clock speed by itself isn't a good indicator of performance, especially when comparing different architectures, if a processor was designed to be competitive at 3 GHz and they're only able to get it to 2.6 GHz reliably, that's a big problem.
If AMD has solved their clock speed limitation issues with the Phenom 2, that may help put them back on track to being competitive again. It's still too early to start celebrating until we see benchmarks, but it's good news nonetheless.
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