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Microsoft

Submission + - Windows 8 Sells 40 Million Licenses In Just One Month 2 2

mystikkman writes: After selling 4 million copies in just three days, Microsoft announced today that it sold 40 million copies of Windows in the first month of general availability. Also, the upgrade sales of Windows 8 are higher than with Windows 7 in the month since launch. Microsoft says there are already some developers who have made more than $25,000 on their Windows 8 apps. That number is significant because Microsoft gives developers an 80 percent cut on all app sales over that figure, as compared to the industry-standard 70 percent on competing app stores. Other notable milestones include reaching 25 million users of the new Outlook.com and beating the entire multi-hundred million strong Android devices' web usage in just 10 days after launch. What does this mean for the much vaunted post-PC era? Combined with the much awaited Surface Pro coming out in January, will 2013 be the year of Windows 8 desktop and tablet?
Google

Submission + - Google: Add Your Voice in Support of the Free and Open Internet

mc10 writes: Google is asking its users to take action to support a "free and open web", before the meeting of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) begins on December 3. From the company's Google+ post: "Some governments want to use this meeting in Dubai to increase censorship and regulate the Internet. ... A free and open world depends on a free and open Internet."
Games

Submission + - The all-TIME List of 100 Best In PC and Console Gaming->

westlake writes: It's the season for lists and Time's Matt Peckham looks back on forty years PC and console gaming. There are some odd choices and missing pieces, of course. You can't hope to please everyone. Grim Fandango, for example, must stand for all the Lucas Arts games. The geek will find the inclusion of Net Hack cheering and a nod to the Indie gaming community.

For those who are finding the net a little slow this long holiday weekend, here is a dirrect link to the full list and Index page: All-TIME 100 greatest video games. [Index]

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Iphone

Submission + - 1 million apps, 25 billion downloads, but is the App Store destroying Apple?->

dstates writes: Apple built tremendous customer loyalty based on a simple pact, “Buy our stuff, and it will do what you want it to without invading your life”. I.e., we won’t push advertising at you, we won’t push buggy half-baked illogical software at you, and we won’t use our stuff to invade your privacy or sell your data to the highest bidder. Increasingly, the user experience is dominated by third party apps, but these apps do not live up to the quality and design standards Apple has traditionally set for its own products. Apple just passed 1 million app approvals and 25 billion app downloads. Assuming 200 million iPhones have been sold, that comes to something like 125 app downloads per phone. The result of this deluge is a user experience fail. Free downloads dominate paid apps, but more and more freeware is laden with advertising and pushes to upgrade to paid versions. "In app purchases" has become a closely followed metric. I.e. the “without invading your life” part of the deal never really made it to the apps where users now spend the vast majority of their time. Reliability is also suffering. Many apps are buggy, including Apple’s, and even iCloud has crashed repeatedly in recent days. Bottom line, the App Store is destroying Apple’s core value proposition.
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Earth

Submission + - Climate Change Could Drive Coffee to Extinction by 2080 1 1

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Coffee is the world's favorite beverage and the second-most traded commodity after oil. Now Nick Collins reports that rising global temperatures and subtle changes in seasonal conditions could make 99.7 per cent of Arabica-growing areas unsuitable for the plant before the end of the century and in some areas as soon as 2020. Even if the beans do not disappear completely from the wild, climate change is highly likely to impact on yields and the taste of coffee, a beverage of choice among slashdot readers, will change in future decades. "The worst case scenario, as drawn from our analyses, is that wild Arabica could be extinct by 2080," says Justin Moat. "This should alert decision makers to the fragility of the species." Arabica is one of only two species of bean used to make coffee and is by far the most popular, accounting for 70 per cent of the global market including almost all fresh coffee sold in high street chains and supermarkets in the US and most of Europe. A different bean known as Robusta is used in freeze-dried coffee and is commonly drunk in Greece and Turkey, but Robusta's high caffeine content makes it much less pleasant to most palates. In some areas, such as the Boma Plateau in South Sudan, the demise could come as early as 2020, based on the low flowering rate and poor health of current crops. The researchers used field study and 'museum' data (including herbarium specimens) to run bioclimatic models for wild Arabica coffee, in order to deduce the actual (recorded) and predicted geographical distribution for the species. "Arabica can only exist in a very specific pace with a very specific number of other variables," says Aaron Davis, head of coffee research at the Royal Botanic Gardens. "It is mainly temperature but also the relationship between temperature and seasonality – the average temperature during the wet season for example.""
Java

Submission + - Twitter Survives Election after Ruby-to-Java Move

mc10 writes: As the results of the 2012 US Presidential election were being announced Tuesday night, Twitter experienced record traffic to its website, but the service never faltered despite the increased load – something Twitter engineers credit to the company's move from Ruby to Java for its backend software. Unlike in the past, Twitter did not experience service outages, even as the website generated 874,560 posts in a single minute at its peak in traffic.
Supercomputing

Submission + - Cray Unveils 100 Petaflops XC30 Supercomputer->

hypnosec writes: Cray has unveiled its supercomputing beast – the XC30, which is capable of achieving over 100 petaflops performance thereby putting not only the Titan but, also China’s Tianhe-2 in the shade. Previously codenamed “Cascade” and based on the new Aries interconnect architecture, the XC30 has been developed in conjunction with DARPA. The supercomputer can scale up to a million cores and uses Intel Xeon E5-2600 processors for now. Cray has revealed that it will equip the future version of the XC30 with Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors along with NVIDIA Tesla GPUs.
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Submission + - Finding Work Over 60

Hatfield56 writes: "I've been in IT since the mid-1980s, mainly working for financial institutions. After 16 years at a company, as a programmer (Java, C#, PL/SQL, some Unix scripting) and technical lead, my job was outsourced. That was in 2009 when the job market was basically dead. After many false starts, here I am 3 years later wondering what to do. I'm sure if I were 40 I'd be working already but over 60 you might as well be dead. SO, I'm wondering about A+. Does anyone think that this will make me more employable? Or should I being a greeter at Walmart?"
Government

Submission + - Bradley Manning offers partial guilty plea to military court->

concealment writes: "During a pre-trial hearing in military court today, Manning's attorney, David Coombs, proposed a partial guilty plea covering a subset of the slew of criminal charges that the U.S. Army has lodged against him.

"Manning is attempting to accept responsibility for offenses that are encapsulated within, or are a subset of, the charged offenses," Coombs wrote on his blog this evening. "The court will consider whether this is a permissible plea.""

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Iphone

Submission + - Samsung's Galaxy S III steals smartphone crown from iPhone->

zacharye writes: The best-selling smartphone in the world is no longer an iPhone. New data released on Thursday by market research firm Strategy Analytics finds that Samsung’s Galaxy S III was the world’s top-selling smartphone model in the third quarter this year, displacing Apple’s iPhone for the first time in years. Samsung announced earlier this week that cumulative Galaxy S III channel sales reached the 30 million unit milestone and according to Strategy Analytics, 18 million of those were shipped in Q3 2012. During the same period, Apple shipped an estimated 16.2 million iPhone 4S handsets, slipping into the No.2 spot for the quarter...
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Politics

Submission + - How will we vote on Election Day -- 2020?-> 1 1

Velcroman1 writes: With its telephone-based polls of homemakers, politicians stumping on the campaign trail, and the looming threat of hanging chads from paper ballots, the 2012 rumble between Romney and Obama felt almost archaic. That’s all about to change, however. Futurists, technology visionaries and science fiction authors posit some tremendous change, such that the election of 2020 — just eight short years off — will be largely unlike today’s. From campaigning to polling to the process of voting itself, the election 2020 will be different. No, we won’t have mind-controlled ballots or eyeball scanners for security. But we could have Facebook. “Everyday, cheap technologies—digital cameras—could form the basis for a relatively inexpensive system of voter identification,” wrote Charles Stewart III, a political scientist with MIT and a member of the Caltech / MIT Voting Technology Project. A Facebook of sorts, in other words, with the actual faces of voters and maintained by individual states to verify a person’s identity.
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Google

Submission + - Why Google Went Offline Today and a Bit about How the Internet Works

mc10 writes: Google went temporarily offline for about 27 minutes at around 6:24pm PST / 02:24 UTC (5 Nov. 2012 PST / 6 Nov. 2012 UTC), when CloudFlare realized that Google's services went offline. CloudFlare explains how the Internet is glued together by the Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), and how Moratel, an Indonesian ISP, was announcing a network that wasn't actually behind them.
The Internet

Submission + - EU Parliament Debates their own DMCA 2 2

bs0d3 writes: Right now, what is lacking across Europe, is a standard law to handle notice-and-take down's of illegal sites like the US' DMCA. Right now illegal content across Europe is subject to non-standard take down letters, some of which include no mention of what was allegedly infringed, nor in which jurisdiction in Europe it's infringed, or who to contact in your jurisdiction to challenge the claim, or even which company it is that is being represented by the law firm that gets in touch with he project. They need a system so that the notices would have to include information that makes them verifiable as correct. EU is holding a public consultation discussing notice-and-take down laws, which can be found here.

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