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Games

Whatever Happened To Second Life? 209

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-blame-ralph dept.
Barence writes "It's desolate, dirty, and sex is outcast to a separate island. In this article, PC Pro's Barry Collins returns to Second Life to find out what went wrong, and why it's raking in more cash than ever before. It's a follow-up to a feature written three years ago, in which Collins spent a week living inside Second Life to see what the huge fuss at the time was all about. The difference three years can make is eye-opening."
Software

Ryan Gordon Wants To Bring Universal Binaries To Linux 487

Posted by timothy
from the grossly-obese-binaries dept.
wisesifu writes "One of the interesting features of Mac OS X is its 'universal binaries' feature that allows a single binary file to run natively on both PowerPC and Intel x86 platforms. While this comes at a cost of a larger binary file, it's convenient on the end-user and on software vendors for distributing their applications. While Linux has lacked such support for fat binaries, Ryan Gordon has decided this should be changed."
The Courts

Russia Launches Anti-trust Probe of Microsoft 221

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the from-russia-with-love dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Russia's state anti-monopoly service said on Thursday it had launched a probe of Microsoft over cutbacks in supplies of its Windows XP operating system in Russia. The agency said it thought Microsoft had violated antimonopoly legislation by cutting delivery of Windows XP operating system to Russia both separately and pre-installed on personal computers, as well as in its pricing policy on the product. It said it would consider the case on July 24, 2009."
Censorship

+ - New CyberSecurity Bill Raises Questions of Privacy

Submitted by Nicolas Dawson
Nicolas Dawson (597301) writes "Steve Aquino of MotherJones asks: "Should President Obama have the power to shut down domestic Internet traffic during a state of emergency?"

A controversial new bill called The Cybersecurity Act of 2009 would give the president, "...the ability to 'declare a cybersecurity emergency' and shut down or limit Internet traffic in any 'critical' information network 'in the interest of national security.' The bill does not define a critical information network or a cybersecurity emergency. That definition would be left to the president."

Responses from several professional groups, including the EFF are included in the article."
Censorship

+ - Oklahoma State Lawmakers Silence Darwinian Speaker

Submitted by nizcolas
nizcolas (597301) writes "Notable evolutionary biologist, author and speaker Richard Dawkins, was recently invited to speak on the campus of the University of Oklahoma as part of the school's celebration of Charles Darwin. However, Oklahoma lawmakers are working to silence Dawkins with the passage of House Bill 1015 which reads in part: "...the University of Oklahoma, [...] has invited as a public speaker on campus, Richard Dawkins of Oxford University, whose published opinions, as represented in his 2006 book "The God Delusion", and public statements on the theory of evolution demonstrate an intolerance for cultural diversity and diversity of thinking and are views that are not shared and are not representative of the thinking of a majority of the citizens of Oklahoma..."
Pending legal action, Dawkins is set to speak tonight at 7 p.m."
Space

Future Astronauts May Survive On Eating Silkworms 384

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the still-better-than-tang dept.
sciencehabit writes "Science reports that silkworms may be an ideal food source for future space missions. They breed quickly, require little space and water, and generate smaller amounts of excrement than poultry or fish. They also contain twice as many essential amino acids as pork does and four times as much as eggs and milk. Even the insect's inedible silk, which makes up 50% of the weight of the dry cocoon, could provide nutrients: The material can be rendered edible through chemical processing and can be mixed with fruit juice, sugar, and food coloring to produce jam."
Security

Indiana Bans Driver's License Smiles, For Security 459

Posted by timothy
from the one-doozy-of-an-aha!-moment dept.
Smelly Jeffrey writes "According to a recent article, Indiana BMV Communications Director Dennis Rosebrough states that applicants for a new or renewed operator's license or state identification card will no longer be allowed to smile and say cheese. Apparently new facial recognition software being employed by the state fails to function when the face is distorted by something as innocuous as smiling. Also on the list of taboos are hats, eyeglasses, and hair that hangs down over the face. The article fails to mention, however, the legality of beards, mustaches, and bushy eyebrows." Similar restrictions are in place for the Enhanced Driver License (which serves as a sort of limited passport) implemented by the state of Washington, among others.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Study Shows Worm Grunters Imitate Moles 110

Posted by kdawson
from the queue-the-jaws-theme dept.
Science_afficionado writes "In the southeastern US, fisherman have an unusual way to collect earthworms for bait. The practice is called worm grunting, fiddling, snoring, or charming. It involves pounding a wooden stake into the ground and rubbing the top of the stake with a long piece of steel to produce a grunting sound that causes earthworms to come to the surface where they can be easily collected for bait. A study published today in the open access journal PLoS ONE shows that the technique works because the worm grunters are unknowingly imitating the sounds created by burrowing moles. Full text of the paper is available at PLoS ONE."
Image

Slashdot's Disagree Mail 167 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the crazy-is-as-crazy-does dept.
I get a lot of mail from obviously unbalanced people. Enough in fact, that I've often wondered if there was a institution that allowed their patients to only read Slashdot. We've even had a few visits from some questionable individuals. A man who tried to bribe me with a car if I let him "reverse engineer" Rob Malda's Life comes to mind. He insisted on Rob being present for the process and couldn't explain to me what it entailed, so I suggested he leave. The personal visits are rare, however, compared to the amount of mail I get. Here are a few of my favorites; let's hope these people have started to take their medication. Read below and don't be worried if you don't understand all of it.
Image

Verizon Tech Accused Of Making $220K In Sex Calls On User Lines 218 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the lots-of-lotion dept.
Joseph Vaccarelli, a former Verizon Technician, has been charged with racking up $220,000 in phone-sex calls by tapping into the land lines of nearly 950 customers. Authorities say that he made approximately 5,000 calls, resulting in 45,000 minutes of call time. Verizon estimated that out of a 40-week period, Vaccarelli spent 15 weeks talking on sex lines. How in the world do you have this much phone sex, period, but especially at work, and not have anyone notice?
Image

Slashdot's Disagree Mail 354 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the teach-me-something dept.
There is an old Japanese proverb that goes, "Better than a thousand days of diligent study is one day with a great teacher." This week's mail is all about teaching. Whether it is about the seriousness of psychic ability, a short history of trolls or explaining how much free time and malice your dad's attorney has, these people just want to impart information. If what they sent me is any indication, they had a lot of sick days. Click on the link below to become enlightened.
Image

Teens Arrested For Motorized Office Chair 338 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the crazyboy dept.
German police have confiscated the world's fastest office chair and arrested its 17-year-old inventors. The duo added a lawnmower engine, brakes and a metal frame to the office chair and were reported to be driving it all over the streets of Gross-Zimmern. Police did not comment on the chair's handling or acceleration but I look forward to it being profiled on Top Gear.

Prof: So the American government went to IBM to come up with a data encryption standard and they came up with ... Student: EBCDIC!"

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