elfhec writes: Just another way Japanese culture sneaks into the USA. Katamari Damacy is a fascinating game but the following it has gotten is more amazing to me... Commercials inspired by it, new lingo 'Katamari' for roll-up, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katamari_Damacy Most interesting to me is the costumes and products it has inspired, star trek and star wars style, see http://lionboogy.livejournal.com/219774.html As far as products go, there are cell phone holders or ball like beanie hats, and more. http://www.etsy.com/shop_sold.php?user_id=26471
tpoker writes to tell us NASA is reporting that the two biggest storms in the solar system are about to collide on Jupiter. From the article: "Storm #1 is the Great Red Spot, twice as wide as Earth itself, with winds blowing 350 mph. The behemoth has been spinning around Jupiter for hundreds of years. Storm #2 is Oval BA, also known as 'Red Jr.,' a youngster of a storm only six years old. Compared to the Great Red Spot, Red Jr. is half-sized, able to swallow Earth merely once, but it blows just as hard as its older cousin."
Andy Updegrove writes "Recently, spokespersons for Microsoft's standards group have been promoting 'design, collaboration and licensing' as alternatives, rather than supplements to, open standards. There's an important difference between an open standard and any of these ad hoc arrangements among companies, however, and that is the fact that with a standard, everybody knows that they can get what everybody else can get, and on substantially the same terms. With a de facto standard, that's not the case - as Microsoft itself found out last week when Adobe refused to offer the same deal on saving files in PDF form that Apple and OpenOffice enjoy."
Shantyman writes "ZDNet has a counterpoint to the negative impressions of Vista's Beta 2 going around. Entitled Vista Beta 2, up close and personal, Ed Bott writes: 'I've spent the last three months running beta versions of Windows Vista on the PCs I use for everyday work. February and March were exasperating. April's release was noticeably better, and the Beta 2 preview - Build 5381, released to testers in early May - has been running flawlessly on my notebook for nearly three weeks.'"
navalynt writes "New Scientist reports that the Department of Energy has filed a patent for hydrogen fuel balls. From the article 'The proposed glass microspheres would each be a few millionths of a metre (microns) wide with a hollow center containing specks of palladium. The walls of each sphere would also have pores just a few ten-billionths of a metre in diameter.' They are supposedly safe and small enough to be pumped into a fuel tank in the same manner as gasoline."
E. Vigilant writes "The new Trojan/Erazor-A has an interesting twist. In addition to deleting or disabling various security products and competing malware, it deletes any porn, warez and music in your P2P directories. While some opine that this trojan might have good intentions, remarkably few things infect the text files this trojan also deletes. No one yet knows who wrote this or why."
Carl Bialik from WSJ writes "Mark Golden, a reporter for Dow Jones Newswires, tried to switch from Windows to Linux, and found it too complex for his liking. He writes: 'For me, though, using the Linux systems didn't make sense. I often send documents and spreadsheets between my home PC and the one at work, which uses Microsoft Office. And the files are sometimes complex. Meanwhile, for both personal and professional computer use, I want access to all multimedia functions. While solutions may exist to almost every problem I encountered, I was willing to invest only a limited amount of time as a system administrator. Claims by some Linux publishers that anybody can easily switch to Linux from Windows seem totally oversold.'"
Snap E Tom writes "According to a Washington Post poll, a majority (63%) of Americans 'said they found the NSA program to be an acceptable way to investigate terrorism.' A slightly higher majority would not be bothered if the NSA collected personal calls that they made. Even though the program has received bi-partisan criticism from Congress, it appears that the public values security over privacy."
Jeremy Allison - Sam writes "The IHT is running the best write-up I've seen on the Microsoft vs EU Anti-Trust case, featuring quotes from tridge (Creator of Samba) and Carlo Piana (the FSFE lawyer). Nicely contrasts the difference between the Microsoft legal Team and the resources the FSFE has to work with. I was the FSFE witness for the initial hearing and the first trial, and this article nicely explains what it's like to be there." From the article: "The settlements left a group of computer programmers and activists, united under the banner of the Free Software Foundation Europe, with a bigger-than-expected role in supporting the EU's goal of loosening Microsoft's grip over the software industry. Only half-joking, one observer at the court this past week called some members FSFE and allies 'the hairy guys' - in contrast to the well- groomed legal teams fielded by Microsoft."
Baronvaile writes "ArsTechnica is running a story about RealNetworks VP Jeff Ayars at LinuxWorld Boston discussing the future of Linux for the consumer, if it does not support DRM." From the article: "Ayers has a few supporters in this issue from the Linux camp, as Novell, Linspire, and Red Hat spokespeople reportedly said they would be happy to add DRM to their distributions, but with some caveats. Novell, for example, is "currently in discussions with vendors who control proprietary formats" with the goal of supporting these formats in SuSE Linux. One can only surmise exactly which formats that would be, but recent rumblings from Redmond make it likely that Microsoft DRM solutions such as PlaysForSure could be among them."
Moby Cock writes "Jason O'Grady has posted a story on his ZDNet blog detailing the state of the current legal trouble he is embroiled in with Apple. He views it as another salvo in Apple's efforts to stamp out rumour sites posting 'trade secrets' prior to the official announcements. The discussion becomes rather pointed and goes as far as to suggest that the case is really a case in support of freedom of the press." From the article: "At issue was a series of stories that I ran in October 2004 about an upcoming product that was in development. Was it the next great PowerBook? Maybe the a red hot iPod? Maybe a killer new version of the OS? Nah. The stories about a FireWire breakout box for GarageBand, code-named 'Asteroid.' Yawn."
Robert writes to tell us CBROnline is reporting that almost two years after discussing the possibility, Xandros has finally named a date for their first Linux server product. From the article: "While there are plenty of Linux server distributions on the market, the market is undoubtedly dominated by Red Hat, Novell's SUSE Linux a distant second. In order to find a gap in the market with Xandros Server, due May 1, the company will have to differentiate it from the pack."
Don Church writes "DesktopBSD is reporting that the 1.0 Final of DesktopBSD was released today for both 32-bit and 64-bit x86 architectures. This cutting edge FreeBSD derivative now includes KDE 3.5.1 and a host of tools designed to make the BSD experience more palatable to novices. The DVD release even includes Amarok, Firefox and other popular software ready to go. They are offering downloads via several mirrors or the official torrent."
Long have Slashdot Editors made known the fact that we'll review pretty much any interesting gadget shipped our way. This week we have the OWC "Mercury On-The-Go", a 2.5" external hard drive featuring FW800 and USB2 ports and available in 40 to 160gb flavors. Read on for my review of the drive.