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Scott Adams Suggests Bill Gates For President 1224

Posted by kdawson
from the not-in-it-for-the-money dept.
gerrysteele writes to point out a recent post to the Dilbert blog, in which Scott Adams discusses the atheist ascendancy in America and rationalizes the need for an atheist leader. From the article: "Ask a deeply religious Christian if he'd rather live next to a bearded Muslim that may or may not be plotting a terror attack, or an atheist that may or may not show him how to set up a wireless network in his house. On the scale of prejudice, atheists don't seem so bad lately. I think that in an election cycle or two you will see an atheist business leader emerge as a legitimate candidate for president. And his name will be Bill Gates."

Life Without Traffic Signs 604

Posted by kdawson
from the sign-language dept.
zuikaku writes, "Der Spiegel has an article titled European Cities Do Away with Traffic Signs reporting that seven cities and regions in Europe are doing away with traffic signs, signals, painted lines, and even sidewalks. With the motto 'Unsafe is Safe,' the idea is that, when faced with an uncertain, unregulated situation, drivers will be naturally cautious and courteous. Then again, they may end up with streets jammed with pedestrians, bicyclists, and cars like some places in India and China." I can't see this idea getting traction in the U.S.

Thai IT Minister Slams Open Source 520

Posted by samzenpus
from the not-good-enough dept.
patiwat writes "Thailand's newly appointed Information and Communications Technology Minister has slammed open source software as useless and full of bugs: 'With open source, there is no intellectual property. Anyone can use it and all your ideas become public domain. If nobody can make money from it, there will be no development and open source software quickly becomes outdated... As a programmer, if I can write good code, why should I give it away? Thailand can do good source code without open source.' This marks a sharp u-turn in policy from that of the previous government."

Comment: Re:NWN 1 right now has it right (Score 2, Insightful) 112

by dfloyd888 (#16027429) Attached to: Inside The Game Copy Protection Racket
Of course, copy-protection and DRM assume the buyer is a potential thief. However, a serial number system like the one present in NWN is by far the least of the evils for commercial software protection.

Game companies have to answer to the suits at the publishers whose first, second, and third concerns are how the fast the game will recoup them money with very little thought to the long haul, and likely no thought to user's systems. So, if a game publisher can get a release out that doesn't install some Draconian copy-protection system, its almost a miracle.

The NWN serial number and connection to the Gamespy servers offers a lot more than just running the game. It allows you to connect with persistant worlds, provides updates and a way of communication, and the ability to download hundreds of very high quality NWN modules, modules which are commercial quality.

Microsoft Confirms New Music Player 415

Posted by Zonk
from the it's-on dept.
Udo Schmitz writes "It's official now. Reuters confirms the rumors that Microsoft wants to take on Apple's iPod and iTunes. From the article: 'Microsoft Corp. said on Friday it plans to release a new music and entertainment player and accompanying software under the "Zune" brand this year, in a belated attempt to challenge the dominance of Apple Computer Inc.'s iPod player ... Microsoft sources said Robbie Bach, president of Microsoft's entertainment and devices division, is working with J. Allard, vice president of its Xbox team, on the digital media player/software project.'"

A Closed Off System? 177

Posted by Cliff
from the would-this-appeal-to-you dept.
AnarkiNet wonders: "In an age of malware which installs itself via browsers, rootkits installing themselves from audio cds, and loads of other shady things happening on your computer, would a 'Closed OS' be successful? The idea is an operating system (open or closed source), which allows no third party software to be installed, ever. Yes, not even your own coded programs would run unless they existed in the OS-maker-managed database of programs that could be installed. Some people might be aghast at this idea but I feel that it could be highly useful for example in the corporate setting where there would be no need for a secretary to have anything on his/her computer other than the programs available from the OS-maker. For now, let's not worry if people can 'get around' the system. If each program that made up the collection of allowed programs was 'up to scratch' and had 'everything you need', would you really have an issue with being unable to install a different program that did the same thing?"

Back to the Bunker 404

Posted by CmdrTaco
Oldsmobile writes "On Monday, June 19, about 4,000 government workers representing more than 50 federal agencies will say goodbye to their families and set off for dozens of classified emergency facilities stretching from the Maryland and Virginia suburbs to the foothills of the Alleghenies. They will take to the bunkers in an "evacuation" that sources describe as the largest "continuity of government" exercise ever conducted, a drill intended to prepare the U.S. government for an event even more catastrophic than the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The vast secret operation has updated the duck-and-cover scenarios of the 1950s with state-of-the-art technology -- alerts and updates delivered by pager and PDA, wireless priority service, video teleconferencing, remote backups -- to ensure that "essential" government functions continue undisrupted in an emergency."

Apple Sues Creative 340

Posted by Zonk
from the tit-for-litigious-tat dept.
boarder8925 writes "Apple is counter-suing Creative, claiming it has infringed 'four patents in its handheld digital players.' The suit was filed the same day that Creative filed suit against Apple. 'Creative proactively held discussions with Apple in our efforts to explore amicable solutions,' a spokesman for Creative said. 'At no time during these discussions or at any other time did Apple mention to us the patents it raised in its lawsuit.'"

Network Management Outsourced to India 310

Posted by Zonk
from the not-my-favorite-trend dept.
Carl Bialik from WSJ writes "The latest wrinkle for outsourcing companies in India is long-distance monitoring of corporate computer networks in U.S. and Europe -- services that could be worth tens of billions of dollars, the Wall Street Journal reports. From the article: 'Growth is expected as factories become more computerized and remote services expand to include controlling plant temperatures from afar and even monitoring who enters and exits the premises. 'Theoretically,' says Azim Premji, chairman and founder of India outsourcing company Wipro Ltd., 'anything on a network can be managed remotely from India.'"

Too Soon For A Columbine Videogame? 319

Posted by Zonk
from the touchy-subject dept.
neutralino writes "Rocky Mountain News has a story about a computer game based on the Columbine massacre. From the article: 'Called Super Columbine Massacre RPG, the game mixes cartoonish scenes with photographs of Harris and Klebold, pictures taken from newspapers and television stations and excerpts from their writings... [The game's creator] said he wanted to create something profoundly unique and confrontational that would promote a real dialogue on the subject of school shootings.'"

FOSS Is Not Free if It's Not Free From Complexity 523

Posted by Hemos
from the pomp-and-circumstance dept.
A reader writes:"This article argues that freedom from complexity is an essential part of the first FOSS freedom - the freedom to run a program. Freedom to run means nothing if the exercise of such right excludes people who do not possess high technical knowledge or advanced skills sets. Without the guarantee of "ease of use", the freedom to run FOSS for most users is a hollow promise. " (My own bias ensues here): I think that there are some valuable points in here; what good is a good if it cannot be used, but OTOH this argument seems simplistic.

Does Open Source Encourage Rootkits? 200

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the no-ulterior-motives dept.
An anonymous reader writes "NetworkWorld reports that security vendor McAfee places the blame for increased numbers of rootkits squarely on the shoulders of the open source community. Others, however, do not agree. From the article: ''s 41,533 members do post rootkit source code anonymously, then discuss and share the open source code. But it's naïve to say the Web site exists for malicious purposes, contends Greg Hoglund, CEO of security firm HBGary and operator of Rootkit. "It's there to educate people," says Hoglund [...] It's a great resource for anti-virus companies and others. Without it, they'd be far behind in their understanding of rootkits."'"

Support for U.S. Mandatory Data Retention Laws 264

Posted by Zonk
from the mandatory-whatnow dept.
chill wrote to mention a C|Net article about an upswell in support for a mandatory data retention policy here in the U.S. From the article: "Top Bush administration officials have endorsed the concept, and some members of the U.S. Congress have said federal legislation is needed to aid law enforcement investigations into child pornography. A bill is already pending in the Colorado State Senate. Mandatory data retention requirements worry privacy advocates because they permit police to obtain records of e-mail chatter, Web browsing or chat-room activity that normally would have been discarded after a few months."

Mass Microsoft Defections to Apple Possible 722

Posted by Zonk
from the viva-la-revolution dept.
An anonymous reader writes to mention a MacWorld article covering research by the Forrester group. Their report shows that mass dissatisfaction with Microsoft and its products could lead to defections from the company. From the article: "Over all, only Apple and Tivo saw their brand trust rise in the last two years, according to the report. The final tally saw Bose, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Panasonic and Sony earn the highest marks, while Microsoft, Gateway and LG ranked lowest. The low scores for Microsoft could mean good news for Apple as consumers showed their distrust of the Redmond-based software-giant."

"A car is just a big purse on wheels." -- Johanna Reynolds