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Comment: When the rot is entrenched at the highest levels (Score 2, Insightful) 446

by wheelema (#31382162) Attached to: Improving Education Through Better Teachers

of State Government there is no chance for improvement in the trenches. The whole system, from soup to nuts, needs to be dredged out and rebuilt and there is zero chance that will ever happen, specially in California with it's all-powerful teacher's union.

Schwarzenegger wasn't the first to try, and he won't be the last to fail.

Science

Why Time Flies By As You Get Older 252

Posted by kdawson
from the like-a-banana dept.
Ant notes a piece up on WBUR Boston addressing theories to explain the universal human experience that time seems to pass faster as you get older. Here's the 9-minute audio (MP3). Several explanations are tried out: that brains lay down more information for novel experiences; that the "clock" for nerve impulses in aging brains runs slower; and that each interval of time represents a diminishing fraction of life as we age.

Comment: Round and round the Mulberry bush (Score 4, Insightful) 116

by wheelema (#30869412) Attached to: Who's Controlling Our Vital Information Systems?

Budget strapped State/County/Municipal I.T. organizations do not employ the best and brightest and their budgeting process is simplified by off loading functionality at a constant fixed cost. It is with this in mind that outsourcing firms market services to them. Once that contract is signed... usually with language that gives the contractor significant leeway and discretion to torque their service model so as to maximize profitability... the problem is off of everyone's mind. I.T. management is free to focus elsewhere, the contractor is free to find new worlds to conquer, and no one gives a damn if the process delivers what was promised until it's too late.

Then it's off to Court you go where only the public loses. :(

Businesses

Failed Games That Damaged Or Killed Their Companies 397

Posted by Soulskill
from the cause-or-symptom dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Develop has an excellent piece up profiling a bunch of average to awful titles that flopped so hard they harmed or sunk their studio or publisher. The list includes Haze, Enter The Matrix, Hellgate: London, Daikatana, Tabula Rasa, and — of course — Duke Nukem Forever. 'Daikatana was finally released in June 2000, over two and a half years late. Gamers weren't convinced the wait was worth it. A buggy game with sidekicks (touted as an innovation) who more often caused you hindrance than helped ... achieved an average rating of 53. By this time, Eidos is believed to have invested over $25 million in the studio. And they called it a day. Eidos closed the Dallas Ion Storm office in 2001.'"
Image

Living In Tokyo's Capsule Hotels 269

Posted by samzenpus
from the living-in-the-hive dept.
afabbro writes "Capsule Hotel Shinjuku 510 once offered a night’s refuge to salarymen who had missed the last train home. Now with Japan enduring its worst recession since World War II, it is becoming an affordable option for people with nowhere else to go. The Hotel 510’s capsules are only 6 1/2 feet long by 5 feet wide. Guests must keep possessions, like shirts and shaving cream, in lockers outside of the capsules. Atsushi Nakanishi, jobless since Christmas says, 'It’s just a place to crawl into and sleep. You get used to it.'”
Games

EVE Online Battle Breaks Records (And Servers) 308

Posted by Soulskill
from the blame-it-on-the-torrents dept.
captainktainer writes "In one of the largest tests of EVE Online's new player sovereignty system in the Dominion expansion pack, a fleet of ships attempting to retake a lost star system was effectively annihilated amidst controversy. Defenders IT Alliance, a coalition succeeding the infamous Band of Brothers alliance (whose disbanding was covered in a previous story), effectively annihilated the enemy fleet, destroying thousands of dollars' worth of in-game assets. A representative of the alliance claimed to have destroyed a minimum of four, possibly five or more of the game's most expensive and powerful ship class, known as Titans. Both official and unofficial forums are filled with debate about whether the one-sided battle was due to difference in player skill or the well-known network failures after the release of the expansion. One of the attackers, a member of the GoonSwarm alliance, claims that because of bad coding, 'Only 5% of [the attackers] loaded,' meaning that lag prevented the attackers from using their ships, even as the defenders were able to destroy those ships unopposed. Even members of the victorious IT Alliance expressed disappointment at the outcome of the battle. CCP, EVE Online's publisher, has recently acknowledged poor network performance, especially in the advertised 'large fleet battles' that Dominion was supposed to encourage, and has asked players to help them stress test their code on Tuesday. Despite the admitted network failure, leaders of the attacking force do not expect CCP to replace lost ships, claiming that it was their own fault for not accounting for server failures. The incident raises questions about CCP's ability to cope with the increased network use associated with their rapid growth in subscriptions."
Idle

Hand Written Clock 86

Posted by samzenpus
from the up-to-the-minute dept.
a3buster writes "This clock does not actually have a man inside, but a flatscreen that plays a 24-hour loop of this video by the artist watching his own clock somewhere and painstakingly erasing and re-writing each minute. This video was taken at Design Miami during Art Basel Miami Beach 2009."
Input Devices

Brain-Control Gaming Headset Launching Dec. 21 112

Posted by Soulskill
from the oh-hey-it's-real dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Controlling computers with our minds may sound like science fiction, but one Australian company claims to be able to let you do just that. The Emotiv device has been garnering attention at trade shows and conferences for several years, and now the company says it is set to launch the Emotiv EPOC headset on December 21. PC Authority spoke to co-founder Nam Do about the Emotiv technology and its potential as a mainstream gaming interface." One wonders what kind of adoption they expect with a $299 price tag.
Role Playing (Games)

First Age of Conan Expansion On the Way 47

Posted by Soulskill
from the now-with-one-hundred-percent-more-age dept.
Funcom announced today that they are working on the first expansion to Age of Conan, titled Rise of the Godslayer. In addition to high-level content, it contains new objectives for lower levels as well, in an effort to fill out the leveling process. It also introduces new factions that are at war with each other: "Faction gameplay plays a large role in Rise of the Godslayer, presenting the player with choices that earn them both allies and enemies in Khitai. Through questing and adventure players can advance through faction ranks, rewarding them with treasures such as epic new armor and weapons. Players can choose to continue their adventures with existing characters, acquiring new combat abilities and spells through a robust alternate advancement system, or start over again as a Khitan — an all-new culture." A brief trailer has been posted, and Eurogamer has a more detailed preview of the new content.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein

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