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Submission + - Iceland's Eve Online May Be The Most Addictive Game Ever Made (businessweek.com)

pacopico writes: Eve Online recently crossed the 500,000 player maker, marking it as one of the oldest, most successful MMOs of all time. Businessweek went to Iceland to get the inside story on CCP, the company behind Eve, and how it helped create this insanely devoted following. The story bills Eve as one of the purest studies in economics and human nature. “It’s part game and part soap opera and part shadow economy,” says Ted Brown, a video game designer and Eve aficionado. “There’s basically a whole virtual society that has emerged inside of Eve.”
Earth

Submission + - High School Students Take Global Warming to Court

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Katherine Ellison reports in the Atlantic that a group of high school students is suing the federal government in US District Court claiming the risks of climate change — dangerous storms, heat waves, rising sea levels, and food-supply disruptions — will threaten their generation absent a major turnabout in global energy policy. "I think a lot of young people realize that this is an urgent time, and that we're not going to solve this problem just by riding our bikes more," says 18-year-old Alec Loorz, one of the plaintiffs represented, pro bono, by the Burlingame, California, law firm of former US Republican congressman Paul "Pete" McCloskey. While skeptics may view the case as little more than a publicity stunt, its implications have been serious enough to attract the time and resources of major industry leaders. Last month, Judge Wilkins granted a motion to intervene in the case by the National Association of Manufacturers who says the plaintiffs lack standing because their injuries are too speculative and not likely to be reduced by the relief sought. "At issue is whether a small group of individuals and environmental organizations can dictate through private tort litigation the economic, energy, and environmental policies of the entire nation," wrote NAM spokesman Jeff Ostermeyer. The plaintiffs contend that they have standing to sue under the "public trust doctrine," a legal theory that in past years has helped protect waterways and wildlife. While the adults continue their argument, Loorz says kids his age are much more worried about climate change than many of their parents might imagine. "I used to play a lot of video games, and goof off, and get sent to the office at school," says Loonz. "But once I realized it was my generation that was going to be the first to really be affected by climate change, I made up my mind to do something about it.""

Submission + - Planned Post-ACTA Repression In European Union: The Documents (falkvinge.net)

petval writes: Rick Falkvinge, the Swedish Pirate Party MEP, discovered two interesting European Commission documentsProposal for a Revision of the Directive of Intellectual Property Rights and Notice and Takedown procedures that give a glimpse of the planned crackdown on online freedoms of speech post-ACTA. Falkvinge informs about some of the most blatant parts like references to eroding the common carrier status of the ISPs, fast-track lowcost civil procedures which should we read as "Fast-track, low-cost civil procedures: Civil procedures means “lawsuits against ordinary people”. Fast-track means “without delays caused by due process of law and exercising of rights”. Low-cost means “preferably in bulk”.. Continuing with other cases he also mentions some similarites with Transpacific Partnership Agreement (TPP).
His closing really sums it well: All in all, this is a completely horrible document that shows how the European Commission prepares to legislate post-ACTA. The proposals above have already entered the legislative process and will result in a real legislative proposal. We need to stay more vigilant than ever.

The Internet

Submission + - Thumbdrive-sized Streaming Media Players Coming So (deviceguru.com)

DeviceGuru writes: Roku is building its streaming media player technology into a thumbdrive-style device that will plug directly into a TV's HDMI port. The Roku Streaming Stick, to be priced in the $50-$100 range, will convert ordinary TVs into smart TVs, according to CEO Anthony Wood. One catch is that it will depend on the TV having at least one Mobile High-Definition Link (MHDL) compliant HDMI port. The new standard is not widely supported yet, with only Nokia, Samsung, Silicon Image, Sony, and Toshiba listed as members on the MHDL Consortium's web page.
Science

Submission + - Short but sweet meteor shower arrives Jan. 4 (summitcountyvoice.com)

PolygamousRanchKid writes: Sky watchers are in for their first treat of 2012, as the short but intense Quadrantid meteor shower will light up the northern sky in the early morning of Jan. 4. According to a NASA web page on the Quadrantids, there could be as many as 200 meteors per hour, though the average rate is about 60 to 100 per hour. According to NASA, the shower originates from an asteroid, that may be a piece of a comet which broke apart several centuries ago, and that the meteors you will see before dawn on Jan. 4 are the small debris from this fragmentation. The Quadrantids have not been studied as extensively as some of the better-known meteor showers like the Perseids and Geminids, possibly because it's best visible in far northern latitudes, where its appearance coincides with cold weather. Another factor may be the short peak of the shower, which means some observers may miss it if they're not watching at just the right time if they're not in the right spot. According to meteorshowersonline.com, the shower can be hard to see because some of the meteors are faint, requiring exceptional observation conditions.
Security

Submission + - The Computer Science of Insecurity (i-programmer.info)

mikejuk writes: After security by obscurity we now have security by computer science! The idea explained at this year's 28th Chaos Computer Congress (28C3) by Meredith Patterson was simply that, if you build input languages and protocols that are too powerful, from the point of view of grammar, then you deserve all you get. If a protocol is Turing-complete then recognizing valid input is formally undecidable. Only by reducing the sophistication to context free or regular grammars can we protect against "creative" uses of software. See the video of the presentation — you wont be bored.
China

Submission + - China reveals its space plans up to 2016 (google.com)

PolygamousRanchKid writes: China plans to launch space labs and manned ships and prepare to build space stations over the next five years, according to a plan released Thursday that shows the country's space program is gathering momentum. China's space program has already made major breakthroughs in a relatively short time, although it lags far behind the United States and Russia in space technology and experience. The country will continue exploring the moon using probes, start gathering samples of the moon's surface, and "push forward its exploration of planets, asteroids and the sun."

Some elements of China's program, notably the firing of a ground-based missile into one of its dead satellites four years ago, have alarmed American officials and others who say such moves could set off a race to militarize space. That the program is run by the military has made the U.S. reluctant to cooperate with China in space, even though the latter insists its program is purely for peaceful ends.

Science

Submission + - A 40-year-old puzzle of superstring theory solved (physorg.com) 1

astronasty writes: "This pretty much seems too good to be true. The potential breakthroughs that they say this could lead to wraps up a HELL of a lot of longstanding problems in physics and cosmology. I'm suspicious that this is found thus far only on PhysOrg. Then again PhysOrg is pretty quick with their news."
Power

Submission + - Apple Files Patent for Fuel Cell Laptops (appleinsider.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Apple Insider reports that Apple recently filed two patents for a new breed of fuel cell-powered laptop computers. The devices would eschew lithium ion batteries in favor of fuel cells that are capable of running for weeks without requiring a recharge. The patents are entitled “Fuel Cell System to Power a Portable Computing Device” and oeFuel Cell System Coupled to a Portable Computing Device.
Science

Submission + - Scientists Model Brain to Teach Computers to Recog (fellowgeek.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Researchers from Los Alamos National Laboratory, Chatham University, and Emory University created a neural network with a slightly different structure than what is usually used in research. You can think of neural networks as being separated into layers. Most neural network research involves wiring artificial neurons from one layer to others in another layer. This gives the network some ability to recognize patterns, but they haven’t been truly successful with vision, yet.

In this case, the researchers decided to wire some neurons to other neurons in the same layer, creating lateral connections. while it might seem a little counter-intuitive, doing so gave the neural network a greater ability to recognize things than other neural networks.

GNOME

Submission + - Linux Mint developer forks Gnome 3 (webupd8.org)

An anonymous reader writes: Clement Lefebvre, the Linux Mint founder, has forked Gnome 3 and named it Cinnamon. Mint has experimented with extensions to gnome in the latest release of their operating system but in order to make the experience they are aiming for really work, they needed an actual fork. The goal of this fork is to use the improved Gnome 3 internals and put a more familiar Gnome 2 interface on it.
Microsoft

Submission + - New Remote Flaw in Windows 7 x64 Found (threatpost.com) 2

Trailrunner7 writes: Researchers are warning about a new remotely exploitable vulnerability in 64-bit Windows 7 that can be used by an attacker to run arbitrary code on a vulnerable machine. The bug was first reported a couple of days ago by an independent researcher and confirmed by Secunia.

In a message on Twitter, a researcher named w3bd3vil said that he had found a method for exploiting the vulnerability by simply feeding an iframe with an overly large height to Safari. The exploit gives the attacker the ability to run arbitrary code on the victim's machine.

Space

Submission + - Is Jupiter Eating Its Own Heart? (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Jupiter is the victim of its own success. Sophisticated new calculations indicate that our solar system's largest planet, which weighs more than twice as much as all of the others put together, has destroyed part of its central core. Ironically, the culprit is the very hydrogen and helium that made Jupiter a gas giant, when the core's gravity attracted these elements as the planet formed. The finding suggests that the most massive extrasolar planets have no cores at all.
Games

Submission + - Square Enix Possibly Compromised (square-enix-europe.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Just received this alarming email from Square Enix. It appears that they recently were compromised. Preliminary reports state that there was no compromised user data. They are now allowed to join the list that includes the PSN and Steam. Lets hope they don't shut down servers.

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