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+ - Over 100 Missing Episodes of Doctor Who Located->

Submitted by MajikJon
MajikJon (661494) writes "The BBC junking policies of the 60's and 70's resulted in the loss of hundreds of episodes of the classic series in its earliest years. Through the work of ardent fans over the succeeding decades, dozens of these lost episodes have been painstaking recovered and added back into the BBC archives. Now, it seems, the searchers have struck the mother lode. According to the Wikipedia, there are currently 106 missing episodes of the serial. If reports are correct, we may finally get to see all the episodes."
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Comment: Where to begin? (Score 2) 655

by MajikJon (#35608472) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How/Where To Start Watching Dr. Who?
There are really four epocs of Doctor Who. Epoc 1: The Black & White years. Doctors 1 & 2 (Hartnell & Troughton). The show in its earliest days. While there are things to be enjoyed here for hard core fans (like me) it's probably not for everyone. Unfortunately, many of the shows in this era do not survive, so it's impossible to fully appreciate or judge the first two doctors as fully as we might. Epoc 2: The Cheesy years. Doctors 3 & 4 (Pertwee & Tom Baker). Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed this era immensely. Jon Pertwee is probably my favorite Doctor. But the budgets and production values of this era is like watching a B-movie when you're used to big-budget Hollywood blockbusters. It can be painful. Still, a lot of seminal Doctor Who lore stems from this era, and for a true appreciation of Who, one must really start at the beginning of Pertwee's era and follow through to the end. (If you start with Tom Baker, you miss such formative events as the debut of The Autons, The Master, Sarah Jane Smith, and much of the background of The Doctor himself, as well as the Time Lords.) Epoc 3: The 80's. Doctors 5, 6 & 7 (Davison, Colin Baker, McCoy). Peter Davison was fantastic. Colin Baker was a joke. Sylester McCoy was intriguing, unfortunately the show ended (at least the original run) on his watch, so we didn't see as much of him as we should have. Cheesiness is still evident, but the show was evolving in this era. If you like the Modern Who enough to want to explore more, you could do well to start with the first 5th Doctor episode and see how far your interest takes you from there. Epoc 4: The Modern Era. Doctors 9, 10, 11 (Eccelson, Tennant, Smith). If you can't enjoy this show from the 2005 reboot, then you have no reason to watch anything earlier. The show has evolved into the modern era and become far more than anything before it. As others have suggested, you can watch from 2005 and get the vast majority of good "Who" without missing much. I have been a Who fan for over 20 years, and watched every extant episode at least once (as well as reconstructions of most of the "lost" episodes). I won't encourage anyone to take their interest in Who as deeply as I do (I mean, get a life, already). That being said, my vote would be to give the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 7th Doctors a chance. They all have their charms, and if you like what you see, the others might have something to offer you, as well.
Sci-Fi

+ - Next Doctor Who Season Designed To Make You Wait->

Submitted by MajikJon
MajikJon (661494) writes "Being a big fan of Steven Moffat's work on Doctor Who, I was thrilled when I learned he would become show-runner last year. Season Five did not disappoint. Now, however, it seems that he has some tricks up his sleeve to capitalize on his success. The BBC will be splitting the transmission of the series in order to introduce a major cliffhanger.
  "By splitting the series Moffat plans to give viewers one of the most exciting Doctor Who cliffhangers and plot twists ever, leaving them waiting, on the edge of their seats, until the autumn to find out what happens.""

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The Almighty Buck

EA Flip-Flops On Battlefield: Heroes Pricing, Fans Angry 221

Posted by Soulskill
from the put-your-money-where-your-gun-is dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Ben Kuchera from Ars Technica is reporting that EA/DICE has substantially changed the game model of Battlefield: Heroes, increasing the cost of weapons in Valor Points (the in-game currency that you earn by playing) to levels that even hardcore players cannot afford, and making them available in BattleFunds (the in-game currency that you buy with real money). Other consumables in the game, such as bandages to heal the players, suffered the same fate, turning the game into a subscription or pay-to-play model if players want to remain competitive. This goes against the creators' earlier stated objectives of not providing combat advantage to paying customers. Ben Cousins, from EA/DICE, argued, 'We also frankly wanted to make buying Battlefunds more appealing. We have wages to pay here in the Heroes team and in order to keep a team large enough to make new free content like maps and other game features we need to increase the amount of BF that people buy. Battlefield Heroes is a business at the end of the day and for a company like EA who recently laid off 16% of their workforce, we need to keep an eye on the accounts and make sure we are doing our bit for the company.' The official forums discussion thread is full of angry responses from upset users, who feel this change is a betrayal of the original stated objectives of the game."
Patents

Touchpad Patent Holder Tsera Sues Just About Everyone 168

Posted by timothy
from the how-about-a-first-known-infringement-filing-deadline-link dept.
eldavojohn writes "Okay, well, maybe not everyone but more than twenty companies (including Apple, Qualcomm, Motorola and Microsoft) are being sued for a generic patent that reads: 'Apparatus and methods for controlling a portable electronic device, such as an MP3 player; portable radio, voice recorder, or portable CD player are disclosed. A touchpad is mounted on the housing of the device, and a user enters commands by tracing patterns with his finger on a surface of the touchpad. No immediate visual feedback is provided as a command pattern is traced, and the user does not need to view the device to enter commands.' Sounds like their may be a few companies using that technology. The suit was filed on July 15th in the favoritest place ever to file patent claim lawsuits: Texas Eastern District Court. It's a pretty classic patent troll; they've been holding this patent since 2003 and they just noticed now that everyone and his dog are using touchpads to control portable electronic devices."

Comment: Re:RAID1 is not fool's gold (Score 1) 564

by MajikJon (#28590877) Attached to: RAID Trust Issues — Windows Or a Cheap Controller?
For a fixed database of static information, this may be true. The vast majority of database implementation, however, is one that is also being written to in realtime, such as a webserver database, or POS system where the overhead created by decreased write performance will more than negate any advantage in decreased seek times. Really, it all depends on the application you are running, and the specific circumstances of your network/system setup. RAID1 can be useful. I just rarely see it used correctly.

Comment: Re:RAID is never about protection. (Score 1) 564

by MajikJon (#28590825) Attached to: RAID Trust Issues — Windows Or a Cheap Controller?
...unless the data is lost due to file corruption (the most common cause), in which case, the corrupted data will be instantly mirrored to the second disk in your array and the data will be lost anyway. Honestly, there's only so often you can perform a backup without losing all your productivity altogether. Assuming daily backups, RAID1 is really only useful for saving a few hours work, at most, and only in certain extremely specific circumstances (i.e. a hardware disk failure, and NOTHING else).

Comment: RAID is never about protection. (Score 4, Insightful) 564

by MajikJon (#28587901) Attached to: RAID Trust Issues — Windows Or a Cheap Controller?
RAID1 serves only one function. Increased uptime. If avoiding having to spend 2 hours restoring from a backup is your primary goal, then RAID1 might make sense for you. Do you have an office full of workers that will all lose productivity if you have a system crash? If so, then RAID may make sense. Any other use of RAID1 is fool's gold. It will not protect your data from a system-level problem. It will not protect your data from corruption (especially not on a FAT32 file system, which was never intended for any partition size above 32GB in the first place). It will not even always protect you from a single drive failure, since the rebuild process in a RAID1 setup often kills the second drive while trying to recover data. As many have said already on the thread, RAID is not backup. Backup needs to be a completely independent device. Unless you have serious uptime considerations, RAID1 should not be part of your backup strategy.

APL is a write-only language. I can write programs in APL, but I can't read any of them. -- Roy Keir

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