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Comment: Article is a little misleading... (Score 3) 113

by zaytar (#40800727) Attached to: 6 IT Projects, $8 Billion Over Budget At Dept. of Defense

The Navy's ERP system has already been "deployed" at certain commands such as NAVAIR and SPAWAR, so it isn't like they have spent this money and not produced a product. The system has issues, some of which are outright bugs (e.g. losing employee time sheets), some are poor design choices (e.g. the purchase request part of the system had issues with $0 line items on orders, previously we had to put in $0.01 to make it work), and some are dumb policy choices by the DoN or the local command (e.g. we are not allowed to use the built in leave request system, we still pass around e-mails or signed PDF documents).

    Overall it is an improvement over the systems it replaced - for me that was a series of in house systems that essentially emulated the original WANG environment and re-used COBOL code. It does make it more difficult to fix things and I still believe the system has a hard time working with the DoD's "accounting" system i.e. different colors of money, lines of accounting, money that expires, etc.

Role Playing (Games)

Why BioWare's Star Wars MMO May Already Be Too Late 328

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-find-your-lack-of-faith-disturbing dept.
Since the announcement of Star Wars: The Old Republic, many gamers have been hopeful that its high budget, respected development team and rich universe will be enough to provide a real challenge to the WoW juggernaut. An opinion piece at 1Up makes the case that BioWare's opportunity to do so may have already passed. Quoting: "While EA and BioWare Austin have the horsepower needed to at least draw even with World of Warcraft though, what we've seen so far has been worryingly conventional — even generic — given the millions being poured into development. Take the opening areas around Tython, which Mike Nelson describes in his most recent preview as being 'rudimentary,' owing to their somewhat generic, grind-driven quest design. Running around killing a set number of 'Flesh Raiders' in a relatively quiet village doesn't seem particularly epic, but that's the route BioWare Austin seems to be taking with the opening areas for the Jedi — what will surely be the most popular classes when The Old Republic is released. ... the real concern, though, is not so much in the quest design as in BioWare Austin's apparent willingness to play follow the leader. Whenever something becomes a big hit — be it a movie, game or book — there's always a mad scramble to replicate the formula; in World of Warcraft's case, that mad scramble has been going for six years now. "
NASA

Dying Man Shares Unseen Challenger Video 266

Posted by Soulskill
from the new-perspective-on-an-old-tragedy dept.
longacre writes "An amateur video of the 1986 Space Shuttle Challenger explosion has been made public for the first time. The Florida man who filmed it from his front yard on his new Betamax camcorder turned the tape over to an educational organization a week before he died this past December. The Space Exploration Archive has since published the video into the public domain in time for the 24th anniversary of the catastrophe. Despite being shot from about 70 miles from Cape Canaveral, the shuttle and the explosion can be seen quite clearly. It is unclear why he never shared the footage with NASA or the media. NASA officials say they were not aware of the video, but are interested in examining it now that it has been made available."
Role Playing (Games)

Looking Back At Dungeons & Dragons 189

Posted by Soulskill
from the lightning-bolt dept.
An anonymous reader sends in a nostalgic piece about Dungeons & Dragons and the influence it's had on games and gamers for the past 36 years. Quoting: "Maybe there was something in the air during the early '70s. Maybe it was historically inevitable. But it seems way more than convenient coincidence that Gygax and Arneson got their first packet of rules for D&D out the door in 1974, the same year Nolan Bushnell managed to cobble together a little arcade machine called Pong. We've never had fun quite the same way since. Looking back, these two events set today's world of gaming into motion — the Romulus and Remus of modern game civilization. For the rest of forever, we would sit around and argue whether games should let us do more or tell us better stories."
Image

Tower Switch-Off Embarrasses Electrosensitives 292

Posted by samzenpus
from the radiation-placebo dept.
Sockatume writes "Residents in Craigavon, South Africa complained of '[h]eadaches, nausea, tinnitus, dry burning itchy skins, gastric imbalances and totally disrupted sleep patterns' after an iBurst communications tower was put up in a local park. Symptoms subsided when the residents left the area, often to stay with family and thus evade their suffering. At a public meeting with the afflicted locals, the tower's owners pledged to switch off the mast immediately to assess whether it was responsible for their ailments. One problem: the mast had already been switched off for six weeks. Lawyers representing the locals say their case against iBurst will continue on other grounds."
Image

Man Sues Neighbor For Not Turning Off His Wi-Fi 428

Posted by samzenpus
from the have-you-never-wondered-why-I-drink-only-distilled-water-or-rain-water-and-only-pure-grain-alcohol dept.
Scyth3 writes "A man is suing his neighbor for not turning off his cell phone or wireless router. He claims it affects his 'electromagnetic allergies,' and has resorted to being homeless. So, why doesn't he check into a hotel? Because hotels typically have wireless internet for free. I wonder if a tinfoil hat would help his cause?"
First Person Shooters (Games)

Duke Nukem Forever Not Dead? (Yes, This Again) 195

Posted by Soulskill
from the you-didn't-think-it-was-over-did-you? dept.
kaychoro writes "There may be hope for Duke Nukem Forever (again). 'Jon St. John, better known as the voice of Duke Nukem, said some interesting words during a panel discussion at the Music and Games Festival (MAGFest) that took place January 1 – 4 in Alexandria, Virginia, according to Pixel Enemy. Answering a question from the crowd regarding DNF, St. John said: "... let me go ahead and tell you right now that I'm not allowed to talk about Duke Nukem Forever. No, no, don't be disappointed, read between the lines — why am I not allowed to talk about it?"'"
Portables (Apple)

Apple Issues Firmware Upgrade For MacBook Pro 52

Posted by timothy
from the there-there-here-you-go dept.
Lucas123 writes "After declining comment on an apparent downgrade to the serial ATA hard drive interface in its new MacBook Pros, from 3Gbps to 1.5Gbps, Apple today issued a firmware upgrade to fix a problem reported by 'a small number of customers' using drives based on the latest SATA specification. Apple warned that it has not shipped drives operating at the higher-speed specification, saying, 'While this update allows drives to use transfer rates greater than 1.5Gbit/sec, Apple has not qualified or offered these drives for Mac notebooks and their use is unsupported.'"
Space

Possible Extra-Galactic Planet Detected 83

Posted by Soulskill
from the needle-in-a-needle-stack dept.
Nancy Atkinson writes "Using a technique called pixel-lensing, a group of astronomers in Italy may have detected a planet orbiting another star. But this planet is unique among the 300-plus exoplanets discovered so far, as it and its parent star are in another galaxy. The Andromeda Galaxy, to be exact. Technically, the star in M31 was found to have a companion about 6 times the mass of Jupiter, so it could be either a brown dwarf or a planet. But either way, this is a remarkable feat, to find an object of that size in another galaxy."

"Why can't we ever attempt to solve a problem in this country without having a 'War' on it?" -- Rich Thomson, talk.politics.misc

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