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GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - Beards of FOSS (wordpress.com)

kriegs writes: Too good to pass up — The beards of FOSS reviewed. Who's got the best facial hair in the open source community?

Submission + - IOC claims Olympians' name as Intellectual Propert (uvexsports.com)

gehrehmee writes: As usual, the International Olympic Committee is coming down on hard on people mentioning things related to the Olympics without permission. This time it's UVEX sporting supplies, who is sponsering Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn. Without explaination, their front page was today updated to include a tounge-in-cheek poem about UVEX's interaction with the IOC. Can the IOC really claim an Olypmian's name as their own intellectual property?
Idle

Submission + - Free Netbook From Microsoft, Then Things Got Weird (wordpress.com) 2

paiute writes: Matt Karolian, a Marketing Communications major at Emerson College in Boston "won" a netbook in a Microsoft re-tweet competition (whatever that is). Then the prize arrived, and it was not exactly the high-quality major award he had expected from a Microsoft:

"A few months back I entered a re-tweet contest that Microsoft was holding. I know, I know, as a marketer I should cringe at the thought of a re-tweet contest but one of the prizes for this re-tweet contest was an xbox 360, so I caved and took part. Time passed and I heard nothing about anyone winning, and I eventually forgot about it..."

Sci-Fi

Submission + - 'Riddick 3' is Somehow Being Made 1

Hugh Pickens writes: "Scott Harris writes on Moviefone that the economics of Hollywood are often baffling, as DVD sales, broadcast fees and merchandising tie-ins balance against advertising costs and pay-or-play deals to form an accounting maze. The latest example is the untitled sequel to the sci-fi stinkbomb 'Chronicles of Riddick' which as you may recall, was released back in 2004 to a slew of negative reviews and general viewer indifference. Despite its hefty $105 million budget, most of which was spent on special effects, the film topped out at a paltry $57 million domestically. So how can a sequel be made if the original lost money? The answer has to do with ancillary profits from revenue streams outside the box office. While the combined $116 million worldwide probably still didn't cover distribution and advertising costs, it likely brought the film close to even, meaning DVD sales and profits from the tie-in video game franchise may have put the movie in the black. In addition, 'Riddick' itself was a sequel to 'Pitch Black,' a modestly budgeted ($23 million) success back in 2000. Extending the franchise to a third film may help boost ancillary profits by introducing the 'Pitch Black' and 'Chronicles of Riddick' DVDs and merchandise to new audiences, meaning that the new film may not even need to break even to eventually turn a profit for the studio giving new hope to beleaguered fans of 'Howard the Duck' and 'The Island.'"

Submission + - Altered Copies of Origin of Species Distributed (huffingtonpost.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Kirk Cameron and Ray Comfort have organized a nationwide effort to distribute altered copies of Darwin's 'Origin of Species' with a special 50 page introduction that provides a "balanced view of Creationism" to students and major US universities.
Government

City Laws Only Available Via $200 License 411

MrLint writes "The City of Schenectady has decided that their laws are copyrighted, and that you cannot know them without paying for an 'exclusive license' for $200. This is not a first — Oregon has claimed publishing of laws online is a copyright violation." This case is nuanced. The city has contracted with a private company to convert and encode its laws so they can be made available on the Web for free. While the company works on this project, it considers the electronic versions of the laws its property and offers a CD version, bundled with its software, for $200. The man who requested a copy of the laws plans to appeal.

Submission + - BBC: 'reducing bit rate has no impact on picture' (cnet.co.uk)

CNETNate writes: Erm. No. The BBC recently reduced the bit rate of BBC HD, leading to outraged complaints about the picture quality. The BBC has admitted that it has reduced the bit rate, but it also claims that its new, more efficient encoders make up the difference with increased efficiency. But in an interview, Danielle Nagler, the head of BBC HD, said that there's "no evidence that reducing the bit rate has had an impact on picture quality". Which strikes us as absurd.

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