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Engadget: The Barbie iPod dock: yes, it's pink and flowery->

From feed by engfeed

Filed under: Portable Audio

One man's idea of hell is another 10 year old girl's idea of heaven: in this case the difference of opinion is a Barbie iPod dock / FM radio / alarm clock so pink we could puke. We gotta say though, the flowery speaker enclosures are pretty well done, and the extremely out of place model number -- officially, this is the BAR710 -- is worth a few chuckles. Desperate parents everywhere will no doubt be shelling out for one of these very soon as the empty wallet season rapidly approaches: even if there was information about pricing, you wouldn't want to know, right?

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The Almighty Buck

+ - United Makes Plans to Drop 'Baggage Neutrality'

Submitted by
theodp
theodp writes "If you need a clue as to how creative ISP execs might get in the absence of network neutrality, look no further than United Airlines CEO Glenn Tilton, who is wowing Wall Street with his willingness to examine new ways to wring money out of the carrier, including making economy passengers pay a fee unless they want their luggage to come last off the plane."
PC Games (Games)

Valve Reevaluates Episodic Gaming 142

Posted by Zonk
from the loose-definition-of-working dept.
Dr. Eggman writes "CVG has a recent article on Valve's future plans for episodic gaming. After the third episode of Half-Life 2 is out, Valve plans to sit down with the community and figure out what is working and what's not. Gabe Newell also wants to spend time with Telltale Games and Blizzard, both developers of episodic and episodic-like game content. It it worth it to try to release content on an episodic basis? 'We just want to sit down with three examples in front of us and talk it over with gamers to find out what they would like us to do next.'"
Censorship

+ - Verizon bans pro choice texting

Submitted by fermion
fermion (181285) writes "The NYT is reporting that Verizon has banned text ads based on controversial content. While many would agree that, as a private carrier, Verizon have every right to so do, there are other concerns. For instance, from the article, "The dispute over the Naral messages is a skirmish in the larger battle over the question of "net neutrality" — whether carriers or Internet service providers should have a voice in the content they provide to customers." What makes this more interesting is these are not push messages, but messages requested for one time delivery by the customer. If Verizon is going to play Big Brother and censor customers content, perhaps that is one more reason to move to AT&T, even if it does not provide equal service."
Portables

+ - Samsug announces look-alike iphone killer

Submitted by goombah99
goombah99 (560566) writes "Samsung unveiled a prototype of their touchscreen phone. It's look, single button front, full-face touchscreen are the essentially identical to the iphone. The screen resolution is sufficiently worse that video viewing will be less of a pleasure, it's thicker, and it lacks Wi-Fi. But it has a slide-out full thumb-board, a 5 mega pixel camera, supports 3G (High-Speed Downlink Packet Access). Web connectivity however lacks the elegant full screen approach with a gestural interface of the iphone. Price, battery life and availability are not known. Read Here and here for first impressions. My impression is that hardware wise it's at the same level as the iphone so, as always, it's the apple polish of the interface that will be the deciding factor. Simultaneously, Microsoft revealed a workmanlike update of it's mobile version."
Mandriva

+ - Is Mandriva Near Financial Demise?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A Distrowatch editorial poses the question, "Is Mandriva near financial demise?" From the editorial: "However, due to extraordinary items, the net loss for the 4th quarter 2006 at Mandriva has more than doubled from 400 thousand to 840 thousand, and the full year net result has gone from essentially break-even to a 2.84 million loss." It is fairly clear that Mandriva is in trouble. Can they manage to save themselves again from the financial hemorrhaging?"
Role Playing (Games)

Student Makes a Million Online, Gets Deported 309

Posted by Zonk
from the probably-should-have-thought-this-through dept.
Via Kotaku, a story at the Mainichi daily news about an enterprising exchange student that got himself deported. Wang Yue Si, a Chinese student who went to Japan on a student visa, found himself in need of some spending money. Since he was a gamer, he decided to make some cash by selling virtual items online. He was so successful, the cops noticed. From the article: "He started selling items such as weapons and currency for online games through an Internet auction site in April this year, without obtaining the appropriate residency status. Wang, living in Kumamoto, has admitted that he sold the virtual goods for about 6 million yen ($US 1.3 Million), in violation of the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law. A bank worker became suspicious when Wang regularly sent money back home to China and alerted police in August, prompting Kumamoto police officers to investigate the student."
Encryption

British "Secure" Passports Cracked 305

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the trust-us dept.
hard-to-get-a-nickna writes "The Guardian has cracked the so-trumpeted secure British passports after 48 hours of work: 'Three million Britons have been issued with the new hi-tech passport, designed to frustrate terrorists and fraudsters. So why did Steve Boggan and a friendly computer expert find it so easy to break the security codes?'"

Corporate Propaganda Still On the News 275

Posted by kdawson
from the corporate-speech dept.
mofomojo writes, "Democracy Now! reports that a new study by the Center for Media and Democracy says Americans are still being shown corporate public relations videos disguised as news reports on newscasts across the country. In April, the Center identified 77 stations using Video News Releases in their newscasts; the findings led to an investigation by the Federal Communications Commission. A followup study has found that 10 of those stations are still airing VNRs today, for a new total of 46 stations in 22 states." From the article: "Most of the VNRs have aired on stations owned by large media conglomerates such as News Corp., Tribune, and Disney. They've also been sponsored by some of the country's biggest corporations including General Motors, GlaxoSmithKline, and Allstate Insurance."
Biotech

Scientists Find New Painkiller From Saliva 398

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the hard-to-swallow dept.
dptalia writes "Scientists have found a new pain killer based on human saliva. Apparently 1 gram of the new drug provides as much pain blocking as 3 grams of morphine. The drug blocks the breakdown of the body's natural pain killing mechanism. Scientists say the molecule is simple and synthesis is expected to be simple."

Login Code of Conduct Found Not Binding 276

Posted by Hemos
from the click-EULAs-ftl dept.
SurturZ writes "The Industrial Relations Commission of New South Wales, Australia, has ordered a company to reinstate an employee who downloaded porn onto a work laptop, even though it was in contravention of his workplace's code of conduct. From the article: the IRC said there was an 'air of automatically' about the annual signing off of employees on NCR's code of conduct, 'a degree of mechanical, unthinking routine in employees making a commitment to abide by the code.'" So, I think most of us can agree, porn at work == bad, but recognition that Click EULAs/other agreements are not binding is probably good. The question is — what replaces them?

Google Winning By Losing? 226

Posted by kdawson
from the brilliant-if-deliberate dept.
eldavojohn writes "The CEO of a small search company wrote an interesting piece for Search Insider about Google's unique strategy. It notes that Google has yet to become a leader in any technology other than search — but that its mostly unsuccessful attempts to branch out all end up bolstering its brand, and thus its search ad revenue. Is the new recipe for success to do one thing unbelievably well and several other things indifferently? Does this remind you of strategies from any other companies?" From the article, "Some of Google's non-search projects are really extensions of its search monetization, and are likely to succeed. But others projects mean entering areas where Google doesn't have much experience, and is taking a risk. With regard to those riskier areas, the key question for Google's future is whether it can realize that losing is really one of the best assets the company has."

GPS Phone Tells Others Where You Are 161

Posted by kdawson
from the twig-me dept.
An anonymous reader writes, "According to CNet, a company called Benefon has launched a cell phone with a built in GPS receiver — nothing new there. However, this particular GPS cell phone, called the Twig, does something extra. It can send your GPS coordinates to another Twig owner and then that person can navigate directly to you using the preloaded navigation software. Sounds like this could save a lot of time and effort when trying to explain to the in-laws where your new apartment is." The article says that the phone will cost £330 in the UK, or about $625.

New Mac-o-Lantern 76

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the overclock-after-the-holiday-for-an-easy-pie dept.
An anonymous reader writes to tell us that it is that time of year again, time for a new pumpkin computer. This time it can see via webcam eyes (thanks logitech), breathe through its nose using a case fan, and talk out its mouth with a speaker system. The insides are made of a custom power supply and mac-mini Core Duo system. The lighting is made of neon wiring thanks to Startech.com mutant mods. Check out the last page with a video of the pumpkin in action."

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