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Comment: But ultimately, what difference does it make? (Score 1) 36

by stevenm86 (#45869085) Attached to: The Math of Gamification
That's all well and good.. but we could do even better by abandoning the whole foursquare concept entirely and just going places for the hell of it. Not everything in life needs to be turned into a badge or achievement. I am surprised that the whole "checking in" concent limped on this long considering its clunkiness and "tacked on" factor.

Location Selected For $1 Billion Ghost Town 172

Posted by Soulskill
from the welfare-ghosts-and-their-anchor-ghouls dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Although a fully operation city with no people sounds like the setup for a dystopian sci-fi novel, the Boston Globe reports that the Center for Innovation, Testing and Evaluation will develop a $1 billion scientific ghost town near Hobbs, New Mexico to help researchers test everything from intelligent traffic systems and next-generation wireless networks to automated washing machines and self-flushing toilets on existing infrastructure without interfering in everyday life. Bob Brumley, senior managing director of Pegasus Holdings, says the town will be modeled after the real city of Rock Hill, South Carolina, complete with highways, houses and commercial buildings, old and new. Unlike traditional cities, City Labs will start with its underground 'backbone' infrastructure that will allow the lab to monitor activity throughout the 17-mile site. Since nobody lives in the Center's buildings, computerized systems will mimic human behavior such as turning thermostats up and down, switching lights off and on, or flushing toilets. The Center's test facilities and supporting infrastructure may require as much as 20 square miles of open, unimproved land where the controlled environment will permit evaluation of the positive and negative impacts of smart grid applications and integration of renewable energies for residential, commercial and industrial sectors of the economy. 'It's an amusement park for the scientists,' adds Brumley."

Pope Says Technology Causes Confusion Between Reality and Fiction 779

Posted by samzenpus
from the where's-the-reset-button dept.
Pope Benedict XVI has warned that people are in danger of being unable to discern reality from fiction because of new technologies, and not old books. "New technologies and the progress they bring can make it impossible to distinguish truth from illusion and can lead to confusion between reality and virtual reality. The image can also become independent from reality, it can give birth to a virtual world, with various consequences -- above all the risk of indifference towards real life," he said.

G2 Detects When Rooted and Reinstalls Stock OS 406

Posted by samzenpus
from the back-to-the-beginning dept.
RandyDownes writes "And you thought the Droid X's kill switch was bad. HTC and T-Mobile's new G2 can detect when it's been rooted and responds by reinstalling the factory OS. This seems like a violation of the Apache license Android is licensed under and is especially ironic given Eric Schmidt's recent statement about not requiring carriers to give consumers the option to install Google's own version of the OS. Schmidt called it a violation of the principles of open source." Update: 10/06 17:47 GMT by S : As readers have noted, the G2 is not from Motorola. Here's a better source, and here's the XDA Developers thread discussing the issue.

Google Nabs Patent To Monitor Your Cursor Movement 198

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i-see-what-you-did-there dept.
bool2 writes "Google has been awarded a patent for displaying search results based on how you move your mouse cursor on the screen... Google's plans are to monitor the movements of the cursor, such as when a user hovers over a certain ad or link to read a tooltip, and then provide relevant search results, and ads, based on that behaviour. It means that it does not require users to actually click a link to know that they were interested in it, opening a world of opportunity for even more focused ads."
The Military

Warships May Get Lasers For Close-In Defense 482

Posted by kdawson
from the hot-in-here-or-is-it-me dept.
King Louie writes "Raytheon and the US Navy have successfully tested a ship-borne laser capable of shooting down aircraft. Video at the link shows the 32-kilowatt solid-state laser shooting down an unmanned aerial vehicle. The technology is apparently mature enough to be deployed as part of ships' short-range missile defenses, a role currently filled by the Basic Point Defense Missile System (based on the Sea Sparrow missile) and the Close-In Weapons System (based on a 20mm Gatling gun)."

Facebook and the "Social Graph" 200

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the enough-with-the-farmville dept.
itwbennett writes "Peter Smith is blogging about day 1 of the Facebook F8 conference and Mark Zuckerberg's vision for Facebook, which, as it turns out, is somewhat confusing: 'Zuckerberg clearly sees Facebook as a service. Facebook Connect (the name) is going away and being replaced by the Facebook Platform. "Share on Facebook" buttons are being replaced with "Like on Facebook" buttons. And Comcast is now called Xfinity. ... What does it all mean to the end user? There's a new API to fetch data from Facebook more easily, which sounds great, if only I could figure out why I'd want to do that. The overall tone of the keynote was that Facebook was serious business and they were going to build the Social Graph, a vast network of connections between people and the things they like. Zuckerberg was a man with a mission.'"

Comment: Odd thing about the HW teardown - the rest of it (Score 1) 492

by stevenm86 (#31901176) Attached to: This Is Apple's Next iPhone
Shennanigans regarding Engadget vs Gizmodo (bar in Redwood City vs bar in Cupertino) aside, there is an interesting question left:
Where is the rest of the hardware teardown? All we are given is a single photo of a ribbon cable inside the phone, but none of
the shots of the chipset, PCBs, layout, etc.

More interesting still is the fact that the one (uninteresting) photo of the disassembly is named open13.jpg, implying that there
was an entire series of these shots, including juicy things like the processor, etc.

Why are these photos missing? Careless omission, or is something else going on here?

Just my $0.02.

Comment: Scam site is google-ranked higher than google's. (Score 1) 291

by stevenm86 (#30370034) Attached to: Google Chrome Extensions Are Now Available
Well... It appears that the first google hit for 'chrome add-ons' links to mychromeaddons.com
This site is made to look like google's, but is LITTERED WITH ADS. The whois information reveals it's a third-party site.
The OFFICIAL chrome add-on site also does list an AdBlock extension, but something is fishy about it. When trying to install it, Chrome warns that "this extension is trying to access your data on api.flickr.com." What the hell?

We'll see if and how Google will try to combat these issues...

Comment: Silver lining, or nuke it from orbit? (Score 1) 439

by stevenm86 (#30117954) Attached to: Apple Patents "Enforceable" Ad Viewing On Devices
Would apple seriously ever consider USING such a thing? It would be most terrible. But of course, apple is so obsessed with its image that I doubt they would ever employ this technology.
Of course, having a patent on this atrocious god-awful piece of work will effectively prevent other, less image-conscious vendors from doing similar things, which might mean (could it be?) less intrusive advertising on other platforms.

"I have not the slightest confidence in 'spiritual manifestations.'" -- Robert G. Ingersoll