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Submission + - Blizzard Eliminating Privacy on Battle.Net Forums (

Goatbert writes: Today Activision-Blizzard announced that in addition to the current (and controversial) implementation of their RealID social network for World of Warcraft and StarCraft 2, going forward all posts to the official Blizzard/SC2/World of Warcraft forums will display the posters First and Last Name. Handles or nicknames of any sort will not be allowed.

Submission + - Blizzard to Display Real Names in Forum Posts

Selfbain writes: According to this blue post, Blizzard will soon be transitioning to RealID and once the transition is complete, all forum posts will display the posters real first and last name with no option to disable it.

Submission + - Blizzard to require RealID for forums. (

An anonymous reader writes: Recently, Blizzard Entertainment implemented a feature to some of its current as well as all of its future games: RealID. Today, Blizzard announced that it intends to require usage of the real names of posters for its StarCraft II forums before release, and for its World of Warcraft forums shortly before the release of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm.

"The first and most significant change is that in the near future, anyone posting or replying to a post on official Blizzard forums will be doing so using their Real ID — that is, their real-life first and last name — with the option to also display the name of their primary in-game character alongside it. These changes will go into effect on all StarCraft II forums with the launch of the new community site prior to the July 27 release of the game, with the World of Warcraft site and forums following suit near the launch of Cataclysm. Certain classic forums, including the classic forums, will remain unchanged."


Submission + - The "Math Gap" revisited

MattW writes: "A few days Slashdot reported is no gender difference in math performance. Alex Tabarrok, posting on Marginal Revolution, notes that it all depends on what you mean by gap. He writes that the Wall Street journal reported the findings correctly: boys and girls have the same averages, but boys are more likely to both excel strongly or fail miserably. Quoting from the study, Tabarrok notes that for every measured grade, VR (Variance Ratio) is higher. So while the average between genders is the same, the pool of potential candidates for an extremely high level of aptitude has more men than women because of the higher variance."
The Courts

Submission + - Facebook Photos Land DUI Defendant in Jail (

Hyppy writes: "CNN is reporting that a prosecutor in Rhode Island has used a 20-year-old student's FaceBook photos to land him in jail after a DUI charge. The photos, which showed the student living it up at a party in a fake prisoner jumpsuit, were used to characterize the defendant as an "unrepentant partier who lived it up while his victim recovered in the hospital.""
The Internet

Submission + - Checking up on Nathan Myhrvold's 1993 predictions (

cost cob writes: "In September 1993, Nathan Myhrvold, then Microsoft's Chief Technology Officer, circulated a 29 page memo entitled Road Kill on the Information Highway (Warning: RTF file), with a number of predictions about the effect of the internet on different businesses. Among his predictions:
  • Computers in 2013 will be 1 million times faster than a 100 MHz 1993 processor.
  • By the year 2000, RAM will cost $1-$2 per gigabyte.
  • Typical desktop PC in 2000 will have over 100 Gigabytes of RAM.
  • Outsourcing: Any information based business or activity will cease to be geographically bound.
  • Online sales will have lower overhead and therefore lower prices.
  • Ebay: Distributed databases can post offers, resolve offers into completed transactions, handle authentication and security and handle all aspects of the marketplace.
  • The demise of communication equipment makers: LAN, PBX, WAN.
  • The cost of voice calls ($6 to $18 per hour within the US in 1993) will trend towards zero.
  • The demise of retail banking.
  • Books should be OK, but newspapers will suffer due to a decline in classifed revenue.
  • Information Highway Computers will exist, they will cost an order of magnitude less than PCs.


Submission + - Cut Cable Causes Chaos in Australia

i-reek writes: A contractor laying pipe for Queensland's water grid cut the Optus network's main fibre optic cable on the Gold Coast yesterday, causing loss of all its phone and internet services, and severely disrupting business. More than a million subscribers, including banks and Brisbane International Airport, were affected by the outage which lasted more than four hours. Attempts to reroute the downed services via a backup network failed. Queensland Premier Anna Bligh expressed concern that one severed cable could have such a huge impact on the state, and wants to know why a backup system did not prevent the shutdown.

Submission + - Rambus sues Nvidia for patent infringement (

mytrip writes: "Rambus is suing Nvidia, accusing the company of violating 17 Rambus-held patents on memory controllers. The suit was filed Thursday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

The Los Altos, Calif.-based company says that chipsets, graphics processers, and media communication processors across six different Nvidia product lines are illegally infringing. The patents held concern memory controllers for SDR, DDR, DDR2, DDR3, GDDR, and GDDR3 SDRAM."


Submission + - Superconducting Power Grid Launches in New York (

EmagGeek writes: "There is an article in IEEE about a new superconducting power grid that was energized in April in New York State. The lines operate at 138kV and are cooled to 65-75K to maintain superconductivity. These lines are run underground and can carry 150 times more electricity than copper lines of the same cross section (the article didn't say if they meant current or energy). The project is funded with taxpayer dollars through the Department of Energy."

Submission + - An open source computer from the firmware up.

ririarte writes: While software has made great strides since the early Linux and *BSD kernels of the early nineties, Hardware has gone mostly the other way and become more and more propietary with every new design iteration. Completely open source computers, from the firmware up, are very rare however, the OLPC XO being one noteworthy exception. PowerPC Linux vendor Terrasoft Solutions is introducing another one, a relatively affordable (US$ 1895) quad core linux workstation that is, imho, more remarkable for using IBM's Open Source Slimline Open Firmware than for being PowerPC 970 based. The rest of the specs are quite good as well, and the chassis shows a clear IBM workstation parentage. Just make sure to get a model M keyboard from Unicomp to match.

Submission + - Scientists pave way for 25nm CPUs (

arcticstoat writes: Scientists at the Space Nanotechnology Laboratory at MIT have potentially found a new way of extending Moore's law into the future, and have succeeded in etching a grid of 25nm lines into a silicon wafer. The new technique creates an 'interference pattern' using a light with a wavelength of 351.1nm. The interference pattern alternates dark and light zones, repeating them every 200nm. This allowed the scientists to etch 25nm lines into a silicon wafer, each of which were spaced 175nm apart. The process was then repeated three times, with a 50nm shift with each repeat, which resulted in an even grid of 25nm lines, spaced 25nm apart.
The Courts

Submission + - Duluth paper terms anti-RIAA decision "admirab ( 1

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes: "The Duluth News Tribune has devoted the entire front page of its Sunday Metro section to the new proceedings in Capitol v. Thomas. The paper termed Judge Davis's May 15th decision, indicating that he may have committed a 'manifest error of law' both 'extraordinary' and 'admirable'. It also mentioned something none of the legal briefs have mentioned, which is that the Atlantic v. Howell decision upon which the RIAA relied at the trial had been vacated 5 days before the trial, not months after the trial as Judge Davis has seemingly assumed. Commentaries from RIAA spokesperson Cara Duckworth, from NYCL, and from Jammie Thomas herself, also appeared on the page."

Submission + - European Pirate Platform (

Wildclaw writes: This weekend representatives from several European pirate parties met in Uppsala to discuss a unified platform for the 2009 EU parliament election. The platform includes solid suggestions to copyright reform, including making copyright only regulate commercial activity, limiting the length of copyright to within one generation, forbidding DRM and making it easier to create derivative works. Patents and civil rights are also very important parts of the pirate party platform, and especially the strong stance on privacy will likely draw voters.

Submission + - Microsoft Unleashes Vista Service Pack Details (

mikesd81 writes: "PC Magazine reports reports that Microsoft on Wednesday released details about its first service pack (SP1) for the Windows Vista operating system, an update that features security upgrades, improved performance, and support for emerging hardware and standards. Apparently, SP1 will be released to a "moderate sized audience" in the next few weeks and will be available to the general public by the first quarter of 2008. An exact date for release will be set after Microsoft evaluates customer feedback from SP1 beta. "A small group of testers has been putting a preview of the SP1 Beta through its paces to help prepare for broader release," Nick White, a Microsoft product manager, wrote in a Wednesday blog post. Vista SP1 will be available in three forms: express, stand-alone, and slipstream. The express version allows users to download a pared down version of SP1 online. It will take up approximately 50MB for x86-based operating systems and will only send the changes needed for a specific computer. Microsoft recommends that systems installing express or stand-alone have a minimum of 7GB of free disk space for x86 based operating systems and 12GB of space for x64-based systems. The slipstream version of Vista SP1, meanwhile, is Vista that already includes the service pack. Companies can use it to deploy Vista on new computers or to upgrade existing ones. Slipstream availability will be limited, but volume licensing customers will have access."

Submission + - Standards NZ votes against ISO adoption of OOXML (

mudshark writes: Despite a last-minute media carpet-bombing effort from Microsoft featuring quarter-page display ads in the major dailies, coupled with significant astroturf pressure from MS partners, Standards NZ has cast a vote of "no with comments" on the ISO/IEC proposal for adoption of Office Open XML as an international standard. This decision leaves the door open for changing to a "yes" vote in February 2008 if numerous technical considerations are addressed — including the possibility of merging OOXML with the existing standard Open Document Format. As the Tui ads seen across the country would say: "Let's merge OOXML with ODF. Yeah, right."

"I've finally learned what `upward compatible' means. It means we get to keep all our old mistakes." -- Dennie van Tassel