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The awesome bar is the name of the new auto-completion system in Firefox's address bar. For example, it will log the title of each page you visit, so you can find a page by typing relevant words of the title (instead of a somewhat cryptic url).
I'm in the "Sometimes Useful but Love it" group. I use it only sometimes because I'm used to type urls of my favorite sites. However, when i need to retrieve a random page I browsed before, it's definitely awesome.
Software companies on the other hand don't have such incentive to go Open Source, since that reduce the dollar value of their product. And therefore you see MS opposing Open Source.
The odd one is/was...Sun, a company that never decided whether it was a hardware (servers) or software company (Java, Solaris,
Considering we're in 2009, that the game still isn't out, and that they're was multiple changes made to the game and it's release schedule during theses years, i wouldn't put much faith in that article now.
All this to say that I didn't know about this bug report/controversy for automatic update version. However this change was one of the first things I noticed on 9.04 and was very happy about it. Although I always clicked on the little icon to update my softwares in previous versions (i know how important updates are), this change makes updating easier, therefore it makes my life as a basic user easier and it's one more step in the right direction (and an important one that increases the likelihood i will one day recommends Ubuntu for less computer-savvy people, because it will help them keep their software updated).
So IMHO Shuttleworth was right on that one, and you should have used the STFU testing method before complaining.
So, MySQL is/was more than a bunch of code files that can be forked, it's a real company that started to make a dent in the database market, driving cost down for customers of such products, and producing incentive for both Oracle and MS to lower the prices of their products/enhance them to keep them competitive. By buying MySQL, Oracle removed one of its two competitors.
Sure, a newcomer may step in later on, and others open-source projects are likely candidates, but for now the market has only 3 players.
What i like in the book is to see things unravel one by one in a process that leads you from a starting situation till the unknown final situation. I like to ask myself "hmm this will probably ends like this", "will that character survives ? I'm not sure", or "can the character get out of this pinch ?". It doesn't need to be a major plot twist, it happens for every book from great classics to cheap moderns thrillers. Sure you have violent deaths, plot twists in any spy book, but you also have character/relationship evolutions in War and Peace.
If you tell me the final situation before hand, I won't care anymore about what happens, because I don't think "I'm at instant X with the main character, what happens next ?" anymore, I'm already at the final moment, instant X is past and no longer relevant.
That's also why i can't read the same book twice, or why i hate flashback books (Dark Tower IV, i'm looking at you).
So i say let's wait till the game is released and thoroughly tested by everyone...then we will see if this is more than marketing talk.
When I say playtime, I'm not talking about the length of one game. I'm talking about how long it took you to beat the game including all the Save/Reload or all the Game Over/Start Again you did before reaching the end for the first time. You don't beat Diablo (or Strider) on the first try, nor does your first victory happens in 3 min. Sure, there are people who can speed run games in a few min, but it took them hundred of hours to get this good (or find all the tricks/exploits/shortcut to skip areas).
It took 7 hours for my friend to reach the end point. He probably didn't get all the collectibles and didn't play on the hardest difficulty, but he doesn't see enough value in that to replay the solo mode (the multiplayer mode somewhat saves the game for him). Casual gamers aren't the ones who like to waste their time collecting stuff.
I admit some games offer lot of replay value and/or additional challenges and you may argue on that. But most of them just ask you to "find the 400 shorcuts" or "shoot the 200 hidden pigeons". IMHO theses kind of trick aren't replay value, but just a cheap trick from the devs to bump the time you need to get a 100% completion score.
On the other hand, despite my 30H of play in normal mode (harder difficulties must be unlocked), I'm still far from the end of NGB yet (and I'm neither looking for the best grades nor collecting all the items in each level).
I'm sick and tired of both the debilitating trend and shortening trend in the video game industry. I've got a friend which enjoys video game but isn't good at it and even him was disappointed that he finished Star Wars Force Unleashed in only 7 hours. I thought it couldn't be worse, but I've been proved wrong with a test I saw on the latest Terminator video game : apparently, you can finish it in 4 hours (and I'm not even talking about the price/hours ratio). Sure theses two games use well-known licenses, but this trend is occuring for almost every video game serie.
On the other hand, I'm currently playing Ninja Gaiden Black, which is reputed for its difficulty. I'm at the 2/3 point, it took me 30h to get there, and I've enjoyed every minute of it.
Your rant is nice and long (and partially true, for example i hate the way they charge for Live), but could you back it up by facts ? For example, how is the Xbox a train wreck ? how is it dying ?
Quick and dirty google search
The original Xbox was a real money sink, but it was a way to get a foothold in the console market. Now the Xbox 360, while still outpaced by the Wii, is the real deal and a money maker for Microsoft. Moreover, despite being the oldest console, its growth keeps increasing over the past 2 years.
However, that scoring system seems really convoluted.
In France, there is a quite popular robotic competition, the French Cup of Robotics. In 1998 they extended it to become an European competition called Eurobot www.eurobot.org . Robots are smaller but autonomous.
This mean you have to get reliable sensors (beware of infrared sensors under 1000 watts lights !), and a very reliable IA.
Because of that, teams work a full year to get a working robots, and many can't pass the homologation (that ensures the robot is able to score at least one point under optimal condition). Moreover, during the competition many robots won't start at the beginning of a game or end up stuck in a corner because of bad input from a sensor, collision, or glitch in the IA.
Therefore, a robot who can reliably score on every one of his 5 qualifying matches as a good chance of reaching the final 16. Best robots win