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Avatar Blu-Ray DRM Issues 376

geekd writes "Once again, DRM only hurts legit content purchasers: 'An unusual glitch has angered some Avatar Blu-ray owners. For these unlucky people, since the disc won't play on their Blu-ray players, their new Avatar DVD serves no real purpose other than to sit idly on the coffee table. ... It appears the main culprit concerning playback issues with Avatar is, ironically, the disc's DRM (digital rights management). ... Even with updated firmware, a lot of Blu-ray players weren't prepared for these security measures. Despite the security problems, bootleggers are having a field day. Pirated copies of Avatar, according to Los Angeles Times, were available as early as January.'" Reader Murpster adds that this problem isn't specific to the Blu-ray version: "Got a regular Avatar DVD and it won't play on either of my DVD players. It will play on one computer DVD drive, if I want to watch it on a 12-inch screen."

Second Snag This Week Could Delay LHC for Weeks 160

sciencehabit writes "After a transformer failure earlier this week, the Large Hadron Collider has hit another snag — and this one is much more serious. As Science reports, 'At least one of the LHC's more than 1700 superconducting magnets failed, springing a leak and spewing helium gas into the subterranean tunnel that houses the collider ... How long [repairs take] will depend in part on how much of the LHC must be warmed to room temperature for servicing. If it's only a short section, the repair could be relatively quick. But the machine is built in octants, and if workers have to heat and cool an entire octant, then the cooling alone would take several weeks." Reader Simmeh contributes coverage from the BBC. We recently discussed the transformer malfunction at the LHC, which was a smaller problem and has already been fixed. Update - 9/20 at 12:52 by SS: CNN reports that the LHC will be out of commission for two months.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Metallica Guitar Hero Release Has Higher Quality Than CDs 102

Last week Metallica released a new album, Death Magnetic, on traditional CDs as well as downloadable content for Guitar Hero III. Fans quickly noticed that the sound quality on the CD version was noticeably below-par, thanks to the recording studio's decision to sacrifice range for loudness. However, the tracks released for Guitar Hero III made no such sacrifice, as proved by Mastering Engineer Ian Shepherd. NME found an audio clip comparing the two tracks. This comes alongside statements from Activision claiming that Aerosmith's recent venture into Guitar Hero is generating more success for the band than their actual albums.

One picture is worth 128K words.