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Businesses

World of Goo Dev Wants Big Publishers To Build Indie Teams 74

Posted by Soulskill
from the and-a-pony dept.
Ron Carmel, co-founder of game developer 2D Boy, which created the indie hit World of Goo, gave a speech at Montreal International Games Summit in which he encourages large game publishers to put more time and money into smaller, indie-like teams. Quoting GameSetWatch: "'We need a medium-sized design studio. Something that is larger than a typical indie, but has the same propensity for of talent density, focus, and risk-taking,' said Carmel, formerly an employee of major publisher Electronic Arts prior to going independent. Notably, a focus on profit must be eliminated from the equation. 'Creating this within a major developer doesn't present a problem,' said Carmel. With a budget of $1-$2 million dollars, 10 staffers could be hired to work on 'creatively ambitious and forward-thinking projects.' He likened it to the automobile industry, which alongside its mainstream consumer products works on concept cars — few of which enter production as regular models. The concept car is, said Carmel, 'a marketing expense to build your brand, and say, "Look at all the amazing things we're creating."' It also helps with recruitment. Said Carmel, 'there's no reason the larger game companies can't do that.' He also said that developers must move away from the notion that a team comprised primarily of programmers and artists can create a great work. Why do Valve's games have such amazing environments? Because, said Carmel, 'Valve has architects on staff.'"
Music

LEGO Rock Band Confirmed 98

Posted by Soulskill
from the how-does-that-even-work dept.
SailorSpork writes to tell us that the rumored LEGO Rock Band has been confirmed, and it's set to be released later this year. The game is being developed for the Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, and DS. The press release lists the first five songs selected for the game, and says players will "work their way through local venues, stadiums and fantasy locations on Earth and beyond, that mimic the imaginative settings that the LEGO world offers. Also continuing the LEGO 'build-and-play' gaming experience, players will be able to create their own LEGO Rock Band style as they customize their minifigure avatars, band and entourage, including roadies, managers and crew." A new page on the Xbox website provides more (slightly odd) details: "Play killer riffs to destroy a giant robot, summon a storm, and demolish a skyscraper using the power of rock!"
Media

F-Secure Suggests Ditching Adobe Reader For Free PDF Viewers 249

Posted by timothy
from the jane-the-sex-was-good-but-I've-had-enough-circus dept.
hweimer writes "Yesterday at RSA security conference, F-Secure's chief research officer recommended dropping Adobe Reader for viewing PDF files because of the huge amount of targeted attacks against it. Instead, he pointed to PDFreaders.org, a website maintaining a list of free and open source PDF viewers."
Google

2.0 Beta Chrome On Windows, Chromium On Linux 258

Posted by kdawson
from the ooh-shiny dept.
AlienRancher writes "Google launched this morning a new beta version of Chrome 2.0: 'The best thing about this new beta is speed — it's 25% faster on our V8 benchmark and 35% faster on the Sunspider benchmark than the current stable channel version and almost twice as fast when compared to our original beta version.' Other enhancements include user script support (greasemonkey-like) and form auto-fill." And reader Lee Mathews adds news of the open source version, Chromium, on Linux: "Not only has Chromium gotten easier to take for a test drive thanks to the personal package archive for Ubuntu Chrome daily build team, but development on the browser is also progressing nicely. Despite being a very early build, Chromium on Linux feels solid and boasts the same blazing speed the Windows users have been enjoying for months."
Media (Apple)

Update — No DRM In New iPod Shuffle 264

Posted by kdawson
from the nothing-to-see-here dept.
An anonymous reader writes "BoingBoing Gadgets has updated their story from yesterday on DRM contained in the new iPod Shuffle. (We also discussed this rumor last week.) It's a false alarm. There is a chip in the headphone controls but it is just an encoder chip. There is no DRM and no reason to believe that third party headphones wouldn't work with the new Shuffle. (Apple would still prefer you to license the encoder under the Made for iPod program, but with no DRM, there is no DMCA risk to a manufacturer reverse engineering it.) The money quote: 'For the record, we do not believe that the new iPod headphones with in-line remote use DRM that affects audio playback in any way.'"
Microsoft

Windows 7 Benchmarks Show Little Improvement On Vista 369

Posted by kdawson
from the second-verse-same-as-the-first dept.
snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Randall Kennedy examines Windows 7 from the kernel up, subjecting the 'pre-beta' to a battery of benchmarks to find any signs that the OS will be faster, more responsive, and less resource-intensive than the bloated Vista, as Microsoft suggests. Identical thread counts at the kernel level suggest to Kennedy that Windows 7 is a 'minor point-type of release, as opposed to a major update or rewrite.' Memory footprint for the kernel proved eerily similar to that of Vista as well. 'In fact, as I worked my way through the process lists of the two operating systems, I was struck by the extent of the similarities,' Kennedy writes, before discussing the results of a nine-way workload test scenario he performed on Windows 7 — the same scenario that showed Vista was 40 percent slower than Windows XP. 'In a nutshell, Windows 7 M3 is a virtual twin of Vista when it comes to performance,' Kennedy concludes. 'In other words, Microsoft's follow-up to its most unpopular OS release since Windows Me threatens to deliver zero measurable performance benefits while introducing new and potentially crippling compatibility issues.'"
Earth

Research Finds Carbon Dating Flawed 625

Posted by samzenpus
from the kinda-old dept.
eldavojohn writes "New research funded by the National Science Foundation at the University of Miami is showing that carbon dating (the 13C/12C ratio used to infer age) in the ocean can only be trusted up to 150 million years ago. From the primary researcher, 'This study is a major step in terms of rethinking how geologists interpret variations in the 13C/12C ratio throughout Earth's history. If the approach does not work over the past 10 million years, then why would it work during older time periods? As a consequence of our findings, changes in 13C/12C records need to be reevaluated, conclusions regarding changes in the reservoirs of carbon will have to be reassessed, and some of the widely-held ideas regarding the elevation of CO2 during specific periods of the Earth's geological history will have to be adjusted.' While this research doesn't necessarily throw carbon dating out the window, it should cause people to rethink so many theories about early life that revolved around ages of sediment in the oceans."

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