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Comment: Re:It's OK. (Score 1) 352

by lab16 (#34868482) Attached to: Balancing Choice With Irreversible Consequences In Games

Are you sure those blast doors shutting were permanent? I explicitly remember reopening them by using the switch that had its glass broken and them opening back up. Sure, if you were on the other side of the switch you wouldn't be able to open them again, but then you would just proceed with the game from that point.

Government

Careful What You Post, the FBI Has More of These 761

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the do-you-see-what-i-see dept.
jamie writes "A comment posted to a website got its author's *friend's* car an unwanted aftermarket addon. The Orion Guardian ST820, a GPS tracking device, was attached to the underside of the car by the FBI. No warrant required. The bugged friend, a college student studying marketing, was apparently under suspicion because he's half-Egyptian. As Bruce Schneier says, 'If they're doing this to someone so tangentially connected to a vaguely bothersome post on an obscure blog, just how many of us have tracking devices on our cars right now ...' The ACLU is investigating." This follows up on our earlier mention of the same student, who turned the tracking device over to the FBI.
Image

Boomer the Dog-Man 18

Posted by samzenpus
from the chasing-your-fail dept.
BigSes writes "A judge will take a few days to decide upon approving the name change of a Pittsburgh area man. The man would like to change his name to 'Boomer the Dog' after the short lived television series. He is also a strong supporter of the anthropomorphic movement. Should a name change be such an issue?"
Image

Indian Police Using Facebook to Catch Scofflaw Drivers 130

Posted by samzenpus
from the check-your-status dept.
New Delhi police have a new weapon in the battle against bad drivers, Facebook. Two months ago the police created a Facebook page that allowed people to inform on others breaking traffic laws, and upload pictures of the violations. The page has more than 17,000 fans, and 3,000 pictures currently. From the article: "The online rap sheet was impressive. There are photos of people on motorcycles without helmets, cars stopped in crosswalks, drivers on cellphones, drivers in the middle of illegal turns and improperly parked vehicles. Using the pictures, the Delhi Traffic Police have issued 665 tickets, using the license plate numbers shown in the photos to track vehicle owners, said the city’s joint commissioner of traffic, Satyendra Garg."
Input Devices

Equatorial Mounts For Budget Astrophotography? 85

Posted by timothy
from the rubber-band-and-hope dept.
Timoris writes "With the Perseids approaching rapidly, I am looking for a good beginner's motorized equatorial mount for astrophotography. I have seen a few for $150 to $200, but apparently the motor vibrations make for poor photographs. Orion makes good mounts, but are out of my price range ($350) and the motor is sold separately, adding to the price half over again. Does anyone have any good experience with any low- or mid-priced mounts?"
Games

Too Much Multiplayer In Today's Games? 362

Posted by Soulskill
from the nobody-needed-to-frag-each-other-while-stomping-koopas dept.
hornedrat writes "Gamepro discusses the idea that modern games put too much emphasis on multiplayer, and that players aren't as concerned about it as developers think. 'The current environment encourages developers to unnecessarily toss multiplayer into their games without caring about it — or even considering whether anyone will bother playing it. It’s like they're checking an invisible quota box that demands multiplayer's inclusion.' Personally I agree that too much emphasis is placed on competitive multiplayer. I play online, but only with my brother in games that allow co-operative modes, like Rainbow Six: Vegas and ARMA 2. 'My point isn't that developers shouldn't try and conquer Halo or Call of Duty. We'd never have any progress in this industry if developers didn't compete. Game companies, however, should think carefully about what they want their games to be, and more important, gamers should consider what they want. If a developer wants to eclipse Halo, then by all means, pour that effort into a multiplayer mode that's different.' I would be interested to know how many gamers really care about the multiplayer components of the games they buy."
HP

PC Gamers Too Good For Consoles Gamers? 324

Posted by Soulskill
from the commence-flame-war-now dept.
thsoundman sends in a blog post from Rahul Sood, CTO of HP's gaming business, who claims there was once a project in development at Microsoft to let Xbox users compete against PC users playing the same game. According to Sood, the project was killed because the console players kept getting destroyed by their PC counterparts. He wrote, "Those of us who have been in the gaming business for over a decade know the real deal. You simply don't get the same level of detail or control as you do with a PC over a console. It's a real shame that Microsoft killed this — because had they kept it alive it might have actually increased the desire of game developers and gamers alike to continue developing and playing rich experiences on the PC, which would trickle down to the console as it has in the past."

Comment: Re:OK, so when can we buy one? (Score 1) 445

by lab16 (#32646480) Attached to: New Air Conditioner Process Cuts Energy Use 50-90%

It isn't the heat waves that matter, it is when the storm fronts move in and raise the humidity. Swamps can cool better in even the hottest low humidity days than in the normal heat, high humidity days in Alb. The clouds associated with the storm fronts also block the heat in really well, meaning that if you are using a swamp cooler, it will stay hot inside throughout the night. If cheap enough, this new AC can be put in alongside the swamp coolers so that it can be used in place of them when it is just too humid for them to do their job properly. The swamp coolers can still be used on normal dry days if they are still more energy efficient than the new AC.

Communications

BlackBerry Predicted a Century Ago By Nikola Tesla 253

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the and-he-looks-like-david-bowie dept.
andylim writes "According to the Telegraph, the BlackBerry was first predicted more than a century ago, by Nikola Tesla, the electrical engineer. Seth Porges, Popular Mechanics' current technology editor, disclosed Tesla's prediction at a presentation, titled '108 Years of Futurism,' to industry figures recently in New York. Recombu.com has published the original Popular Mechanics article in which Tesla predicts a mobile phone revolution."
The Courts

Writer Peter Watts Sentenced; No Jail Time 299

Posted by timothy
from the new-spirit-of-openness dept.
shadowbearer writes "SF writer Peter Watts, a Canadian citizen, whose story we have read about before in these pages, was sentenced three days ago in a Port Huron, MI court. There's not a lot of detail in the story, and although he is still being treated like a terrorist (cannot enter or pass through the US, DNA samples) he was not ordered to do any time in jail, was freed, and has returned home to his family. The judge in the case was, I believe, as sympathetic as the legal system would allow him to be."
Iphone

Apple Just Says Yes To iPhone Smoking Game 192

Posted by kdawson
from the thought-they-were-banning-e-cigs dept.
ZosX sends along a puff piece from Wired's Brian X. Chen: "Apple on Monday approved Puff Puff Pass, a $2 game whose objective is to pass a cigarette or pipe around and puff it as many times as you can within a set duration. So much for taking the high road, Apple. The game allows you to choose between smoking a cigarette, a cigar, and a pipe. Then you select the number of people you'd like to light up with (up to five), the amount of time, and a place to smoke (outdoors or indoors). And you're ready to get right on puffing."
Media

Ogg Format Accusations Refuted 248

Posted by kdawson
from the horse's-mouth dept.
SergeyKurdakov sends in a followup to our discussion a couple of months ago on purported shortcomings to the Ogg format. The inventor of the format, Monty "xiphmont" Montgomery of the Xiph Foundation, now refutes those objections in detail, with the introduction: "Earnest falsehoods left unchallenged risk being accepted as fact." The refutation has another advantage besides authoritativeness: it's far better written than the attack.
DRM

Ubisoft's DRM Cracked — For Real This Time 443

Posted by Soulskill
from the see-you-next-scheme dept.
therufus writes "A few days after the release of Assassin's Creed 2, naughty piracy sites were announcing they had cracked Ubisoft's Online Services Platform. Turns out, that wasn't entirely true. While it was possible to load into the game, players were unable to advance past a certain memory block. But now, it seems Ubisoft will need to draft a new response. A new crack has begun circulating that removes the DRM entirely."

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