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Slashback: Regionalism, Rivalry, Zensur 261

Slashback with more (below) on: censorship in germany, Xbox gushing, *nix-ish Window managers on That Darn Operating System, and more. Enjoy!

Even the Gates family probably hates being ripped off by region coding. jmcmurry writes: "I just tried out my daughters Winnie The Pooh from Poland, which can only be played (until today) on my Mac Cube running OS X (I did the region free crack when running OS 9). I own an Xbox with DVD player and thought, hey wouldnt hurt to try it out, since I was in the market to buy a Region Free DVD player (which can cost $400 an up) I plugged everything in, put the DVD in, and lo and behold, it plays the DVD from Poland (region code 2) This makes up for the cost of the Xbox ..."

Nein! Nein! Speaking of things that do (or don't) work by region, several readers submitted information which indicates the pooh-poohing of alleged censorship-by-DNS manipulation in Germany's state of Nordrhein-Westfalen was premature. It turns out that some interesting redirects which seemed to be a technical error or a misguided proof-of-concept, and which were quickly turned off, were reinstated shortly thereafter.

Thorsten Hornung was among the several to write on this topic. "Meanwhile ISIS has reblocked the sites, as Heise online reported (German!) due to pressure from the president of the local Government Mr. Büssow.

The local government of Düsseldorf which is responible for media services in North Rhine-Westphalia has posted a statement on its site (German) about the initial lift of the blockade saying that it believes the censoring meassures have been lifted due to complaints by users. Much worse is that furthermore public accuse people complaining about the censorship to be Right Extremists: 'The local government believes, due to the content of many emails it received today, that they [People Complaining] are users of Right Extremist Internet Content.'

The German Constitution (Grundgesetz) does not allow censorship however there are some restrictions on free speech especially regarding Nazi propaganda."

Winners sometimes use Gnomes. Prashant writes: "Cygwin is turning out to be a breeze of fresh air for people stuck on windows for one reason or another. I can use the familiar bash shell on any platform(win, *nix) I am on, and don't have to deal with the DOS prompt. I use all the gnu tools from cygwin distro. rcs, cvs, vim, perl, python, ruby, apache the list goes on. Not only that, I successfully ran postgresql on Cygwin. The XFree86 port of Cygwin itself can be huge cost saving over commercial X-servers for Windows. I have tried KDE on Cygwin version 1.1.2. I was impressed with it. Here is something new: GNOME ported to Cygwin as well. Let the rivalry ontinue on Windows.

It's all about having options. I would love be 100% Linux user but again sometimes it's not you who decides what os runs on your machine. So till Windows gets replaced by Linux by the authorities, happy cygwining."

This addition brought to you by ... Solar Power! basfromasd writes "The winner of the 3000 km World Solar Challenge race from Darwin to Adelaide has reached the finish in a record breaking time. The winning car, Nuna, was built by the Alpha Centauri team, consisting of 10 university students of TU Delft and University of Amsterdam. Some technical details can be found at their site and at ESA. Results and pictures of the race are at the Centre for Photovoltaic Engineering of UNSW website. Well done for a first time contestant, showing that skill and intelligence can match the resources of factory sponsored teams. They found some good sponsors though: GaAs solar cells are not cheap. Neither are Li-Ion batteries. Some of the solar cells were used in the Hubble Space Telescope before and brought back to earth in 1993. The other cars did not make it before today's curfew. The runner up, Aurora, stopped just outside of Adelaide for the night and is expected to finish tomorrow morning."

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Slashback: Regionalism, Rivalry, Zensur

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  • Linux on Xbox (Score:1, Redundant)

    by Hoonis ( 20223 )
    So how long now until some intrepid soul gets
    linux working on the xbox?
    • Re:Linux on Xbox (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I've got it working already :-) (It's all x86, so it wasn't any big hassle)

      I'm taking screenshots this evening with my brand-spanking-new digital camera. After I upload the pics I'll submit an article to /.

      Vive le Resistance!
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Thought Nazis unleashed to quash real Nazis. Sounds like a scheme that'll work into perpetuity.
  • I remember almost a year ago when GNOME was ported to Windows, running on top of AT&T's POSIX.DLL.

    Enough about that. Imagine an entire kernel running as a process in Windows--Imagine an X server that interfaced with the Windows kernel to gain hardware access. Wouldn't life be great?

    • by Anonymous Coward
      I remember the when Windows 3.1 ran on top of DOS
    • That would be like putting a brick on top of a house of cards.
      Cute, but don't trust it any longer than you can hold your breath...
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Imagine an entire kernel running as a process in Windows Isn't that called VMWare? (
    • This is a very classic story I heard ...

      A brand new programmer, fresh out of certification (MCSE's and the like) comes to look at a company he's interested in working for. The gurus at the company show him where they work, and show him a terminal on one of their *nix boxen. A guru logs in on the command line and starts up X, shows the new programmer some tools they use. The new programmer is impressed by what he sees and asks about the *nix system: "Does this run as a thread on NT?"

      (Apparently NT is the only server platform, right? ;)
    • Great Idea! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by sterno ( 16320 )
      WOW! That would be .... SLOOOOOOOW

      And as others have pointed out, VMWare essentially accomplishes this task. It is also an amazing resource hog.

      Now what would be really cool is a way to do rapid dual boot. Something where you could have both OS's resident in some sort of temporary memory. So I can hit a key stroke, and like 10 seconds later be in to the other operating system ready to roll. Basically I'm thinking something like souped up version of laptop hibernation where it stores state.
      • Re:Great Idea! (Score:2, Informative)

        by scanman857 ( 46863 )
        Actually, it's not slow, for the same reason Wine isn't slow. It's not an emulator, it's an API translation layer. Cygwin just copied the APIs from Unix, then modified them so instead of actually doing things, they call the relevant Windows APIs. The non-API parts of the program run unmodified, therefore, programs (at least the majority of them that don't spend much time in API calls) run very close to native speed. Your idea about the laptop hibernation is a good one, I have thought about something like that too.
      • Hmmm... How about 2 PCs and a KVM switch?
  • It certainly seems strange that cygwin is getting so much publicity recently. Anyhow. It certainly seems like a great way for running linux software on win32...

    Microsoft includes a similar (but far inferior) package with Windows 2000 that (hypocrtically) uses GPLed software...

    Cygwin is basically the same concept as WINE (windows on unix) and Executor (macos 7ish(68k) on win32 and unix). Isn't it much easier to write this sort of thing for an open source operating system :).

    An intresting concept would be if I could play my Loki ports on win32.... i get the best of both worlds, and don't have to deal with WINE...
    • Re:All the sudden? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DeadMeat (TM) ( 233768 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:36PM (#2622366) Homepage
      Cygwin is basically the same concept as WINE (windows on unix) and Executor (macos 7ish(68k) on win32 and unix). Isn't it much easier to write this sort of thing for an open source operating system :).
      Err, no. Cygwin does not make Windows binary-compatible with *NIX software the same way Wine makes *NIX binary-compatible with Win32 software. It still requires a recompilation into native Win32 executables.

      Cygwin is a little more akin to WineLib -- it's a reimplimentation of the *NIX API. (Plus they throw in a lot of precompiled libs and helper programs like bash, which is nice.) For this, yes, having open-source software makes it a hell of a lot easier, since you know exactly what the hell the API you're trying to target is.

  • OK, this may be flamebait since it is all but subtile, but..

    When the government of Germany is blocking sites so that Germans cannot view the oppinions of others, then, in the end, when things go all bad, they can say, with right, "Ich hab es nicht gewuBt" (OK, spelling is completely off, I had only one year of german education, but you'll get my drift).

    Deny-ing access to site's that propagate things you don't like, doen't make them go away. Better to know that they are there, and be able to take actions against them, then to suffer in ignorance.
    • I think that's over for now. But publicly accepted ignorance and intentional false-education by media is now a MAJOR problem.
    • It's kind of like my belief that before I was born nothing existed. Because before I was born [in my mind] nothing _did_ exist. It's a very egocentric way of looking at the world around you...

      ...but hell, it works for me.

    • When the government of Germany is blocking sites so that Germans cannot view the oppinions of others, then, in the end, when things go all bad, they can say, with right, "Ich hab es nicht gewuBt"

      It was not the German Government who blocked those sites, it was the Government of the State of Nordrhein-Westfahlen which is only one state of 16 in the Federal Republic of Germany. (It would be similar if, maybe, Iowa started to block websites, which is only 1/51th of the whole US).

      Also those censoring requests were only limited to two local ISPs which are resident in Nordrhein-Westfalen. Apart from the apparent impracticality of such a request (It would suffice to use another ISP based in one of the other states to still access those sites) from a legal standpoint it is forbidden to publish certain Material related to National Socialism in germany.

      This includes but is not restricted to: Adolf Hitlers "Mein Kampf", certain Nazi Symbols like the swastika or the regalia of the SS or the Gestapo (but only when they are not used for educational purposes), Promotion of the Nazi Ideology (the legal term is "Volksverhetzung" which is a federal offesne) and the denial of the Holocaust. (Which is also a federal offense).

      It might seem quite strange to American people to actually restrict something like that, especially since "Freedom of speech" is one of their prime directives (which leaves room to discussion) but especially when it comes to anything concerned with National Socialism, german politicians get extremely cautious and PC.

      One cause for this policy is that we fear that something like WW2 or the Holocaust might actually happen again if we are not very careful. (Which is to some extend simply paranoia).

      But we do have a Nazi Problem in Germany. Those right wing groups are very well organized. (Quite similar to those in the US) Some studies say that there are about 500.000 People in Germany who actually support this Ideology. (But the radicals are still only a minority)

      Almost the only way to actually arrest the leaders of this movement is to outlaw the Use of National socialistic Symbols and propaganda. Would we handle it like the US then we could never get hold of them and actually could only watch impassively as the would gather more followers.

      Something which no right thinking German could easily allow.

      It is not a policy of "looking the other way" quite the contrary. I leave it to you to evaluate if this is the right way (tm), but actually suggesting that germany does this so it can calm its conscience is not only wrong but also very offensive to me.


  • Wow, Cygwin! (Score:2, Informative)

    by Otter ( 3800 )
    Here is something new: GNOME ported to cygwin as well. Let the rivalry ontinue on windows.

    You mean KDE? That's run on Cygwin for a while (as has Gnome) and 2.2.1 was ported [] a few days ago. It was mentioned here by the way, although I can't link to it as Search is down.

    The tone of this submission struck me as funny -- Timothy, and certainly the writer, seem to be under the impression Cygwin isn't ages old. It reminds me of the NewsRadio episode where Matthew discovers Dilbert and insists on doing a story on it.

    • It's just like their "If you haven't seen it before, it's new to you" ad campaign during rerun season.
    • to always include a grammatical error, mistake, flawed reasoning, or some other foible in the article. They always include at least one.

      Why? Because somebody will always say something about it, and it will generate more page views and hits and stuff, and sometimes they might even get modded up, generating yet more page views and hits and stuff.

      Now, you might just think that the editors have no English skills. This might very well be true. I always picture this meeting taking place, where somebody mentions that they need to improve their skills. Then somebody mentions all the page views and hits and stuff.

      The real genius here is that not only do they get to be lazy, they actually benefit from the laziness. It's actually a cool hack, and I almost hate to point this out because I might spoil it.

  • Region Free? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by moosesocks ( 264553 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:17PM (#2622264) Homepage
    I find this feature particularly strange... Perhaps this was a "forgotten feature" in the DVD pack. After all, based upon reputation, Microsoft should be close allies with the MPAA and RIAA. But, i'm not complaining. Only if the xbox supported progressive scan dvd playing, I would be a happy man... (seems strange that it doesnt. It's more then capable of such a feat).

    Of course, i havent owned a console since the Sega Genesis... That system was technically impressive, but alas, not many good games were made for it, and i've never brought a console since. I'm highly considering buying the dreamcast... what a steal for $50!!!!! Of course, that's 50 bucks i could be spending on a geforce3, an xbox, a gamecube, a dual processor motherboard, a car, the ability to press the 'submit comment' button... Wait i can press the............
    • That system was technically impressive, but alas, not many good games were made for it,

      Are you insane? Eco was the shit. And EA hockey around '94,'95? De focken bomb, mang!

    • Re:Region Free? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by geekoid ( 135745 )
      can you think of a better way for MS to get on the "good side" of this community? Plus they want to be THE home entertainment box.
      This is a vry good move for MS.
      they can always "fix" it later.
    • Maybe MS would make a service pack installing progressive scan?
    • Re:Region Free? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Tofuhead ( 40727 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @11:12PM (#2622971)
      I find this feature particularly strange... Perhaps this was a "forgotten feature" in the DVD pack. After all, based upon reputation, Microsoft should be close allies with the MPAA and RIAA. [snip]

      <conspiracytheory>For such a feature to have gone "unnoticed" proves either the incompetence of MS' designers, or their savvy marketing practices. Just ask Sony how gravely this same leaked "feature" on first-generation Japanese PS2s affected their sales...I'm sure it did nothing but boost initial sales. Just watch, sometime in the next year, all of Microsoft's own released games will install a service pack on the HD which will also permanently and completely fix this "recently-discovered bug." Won't happen till after the holiday season though. ^_-</conspiracytheory>

      Of course, i havent owned a console since the Sega Genesis... That system was technically impressive, but alas, not many good games were made for it, and i've never brought a console since.

      May I recommend Sonic 1, Sonic CD Japanese version, Gunstar Heroes, Phantasy Star 2-4, Herzog Zwei, Shining Force (1, 2, and Sega CD version), Landstalker, and Thunder Force 2 & 3, just off the top of my head? They were all at least pretty good games. Installments of Street Fighter, Castlevania, Dragon Ball Z, and other X-plat game series also graced this system.

      I'm highly considering buying the dreamcast... what a steal for $50!!!!! Of course, that's 50 bucks i could be spending on a geforce3, an xbox, a gamecube, a dual processor motherboard, a car, the ability to press the 'submit comment' button... Wait i can press the............

      Well, now's a pretty good time to be in the market for consoles, especially if you're mainly a gaming enthusiast, and not just some convergence maniac who also plays games. As of today in the U.S., approximately $300 plus tax will nab you a Nintendo Gamecube, a Sega Dreamcast, AND either 1-3 good games for the DC, or one game for the 'Cube (plus the bundled DC game demo disc). Or, for that price, you can get one PS2 (with no bundled games, HD, or modem/ethernet), or one xbox that won't play DVDs right out of the box and no games. $330 plus tax should get you a PS2 with Gran Turismo 3, or an xbox w/DVD pack (but still no games).

      I don't mean to advocate my admiration of both Nintendo and Sega, but GC+DC+games is a killer combo for this holiday season IMO, especially if you already have a DVD player (even a reliable old cheapie). A $300 xbox that requires an additional DVD pack to play movies isn't in my short- or long-term budget, and a PS2 will only start to make sense to me at $250 in its current state, or $300 with a bundled hard drive, modem, and/or DVD remote control...and even then only after a reliable import mod has been implemented on such systems (for Guilty Gear X Plus and Metal Gear Solid 2 Japanese version). PSOnes will look fairly-priced at $200, when bundled with Sony-branded 5" LCD screens early next year, but are overpriced right now considering its limited capabilties vs. Dreamcast, and the current $129 price tag on the official Sony LCD (which is expected to drop).

      < tofuhead >

  • Düsseldorf (Score:2, Interesting)

    by jezreel ( 261337 )
    So what is the best thing for us Germans to do now??? We could write complains and be marked as nazis... naahh. What else can we do?

    This is such a great example of how easy the gov't can turn protestants againt censorship into a raging nazi crowd. And guess what 99% will read in their newspaper? Yes: Sites blocked, nazis angry, thus censorship is great....

    So tell me what to do!
    • We could write complains and be marked as nazis

      I suggest to you that it would require even more effort than that. To achieve such your goal, imho, would require that you, as a ordinary citizen who is not a nazi, publish information that a nazi would publish, for example. Then, you must be willing to fight, publically for your right to do this, as long as you are not harming anyone else.

      This liberty, which still exists in the US, but is under attack, is the most delicate and fragile that we have. It was not easily won. We mock and point when it does not extend to the internet, but we forget sometimes how precious it really is.

      Your fight will probably mean nothing, if you do decide to fight. You've got to believe in, and want, the liberty to have the information, AND the right of the nazi organization to display it, more than your reputation, your job, and possibly even your life.

      Consider the cost, but dont forget the children.

    • Can you spell Reichstagsbrand? Shout it, if shouting doesn't work, make one (cyber version) of your own, by accusing Buessow of i-dont-know-what, saying he is intentionally attracting the public to these blocked sites. Should be legally possible....
    • This just smacks of irony seeing how the third reich routinely used censorship and "information manipulation" to maintain popular support.
    • Accessing the data is easy - there are lots of web proxy servers, operated for different reasons, that make effective censorship difficult.

      The hard part is to find creative ways to get the public, and maybe the politicans, to understand what evil things the politicians are doing. I don't understand the local attitudes in your areas well enough to say what are the best ways to present your case. Some ideas I can think of:

      • You are trying to research the evils that the Nazis did during the War, and you are trying to research the evils that remaining Nazis are doing today, and these internet censors are making it hard to locate the evildoers. Or you help organizations that watch Nazis to find them on the web, but the censorship makes it difficult.
      • The censorship tools are forcing the current Nazis to use higher technology - bad enough that those partially-literate thugs are using the Internet, but now the censors are giving them a reason to learn more technology which they will use to organize their evil groups in secrecy, instead of more public locations where they can be found.
      • Perhaps you have Internet services that you want to prevent Nazis from using, but it is difficult to identify the Nazis because of the censorship.
      • Perhaps the censorship is hiding other things, not just Nazis - Former Stasi? Corruption? Lazy Police? The only way to know is to permit transparency.
      Some of these approaches require you to be actively working on Nazi-hunting to be credible; some of them only require you to care about censorship or about making it easy for other people to fight Nazis. You will have to find your own path here.
  • I was looking for an X server on windows platform to connect to several lower grade machines that run linux and openbsd. Until now I've only found commercial X-servers, didn't know about the cygwin Xfree86 port.
    Why do I want to do this? My fastest machine, with the best monitor runs windows, for gaming mainly. And running X on your oldest VGA monitor is not something I would recommend :)

    [karma saving statement:] I promise I'll switch to linux on the main machine Real Soon Now. I am running mozilla already :)
    • If you need a Windows X server, get WeirdX []. It's fast,stable and free (GPL).

      Still, if you have to use Windows, get the Cygwin command line tools too; they make your life much easier.

  • p?threadid=24 []

    Laws made by Software companies and Hollywood demand that a software company formats there dvd products with an region code.

    So I can't really answer your question, you should go for this to MS, but I'm almost certain that MS and other game developers will put region codes on there software...

    • by sulli ( 195030 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:39PM (#2622375) Journal
      It's not the law per se, IIRC it's the DVD Forum's license that requires region coding. Of course you can buy a region-free player (modified by hand?), but it costs more, so you pay one way or another.

      I still don't understand why region coding isn't ruled illegal as a per se violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act. Oh yeah, Hollywood owns both parties, lock stock and barrel - I forgot.

      • I could be wrong but I believe that in some parts of the world they only sell region free players. You can buy region-free players, from most major brands, in both Hong Kong and Japan.

        Does anyone else know anything about this?
        • Both Japan and Hong Kong are region 2. I live in Japan, and aside from those shady stores in the electronics district, I don't see any region free DVD players for sale in the major retailers here.
          • Whoops, my mistake, Hong Kong is actually in a different region than Japan, it's in region 3. Seems like they didn't consider Japan a piracy threat when they designed the regions or something, so they lumped Japan in with Europe in region 2, while they put bad-boy Hong Kong in region 3 with all the other trouble maker Asian countries (besides China) that pirate movies.....
  • Didn't the original Japanese PS2 also ignore the region code? (The Japanese PS2 required a special memory card to play DVDs) Then Sony recalled all those memory cards and replaced it with ones that honored the region code (at least the people that would bring the memory cards back).

    I'm sure MS will attempt to fix this 'problem' too.

  • by Satai ( 111172 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:25PM (#2622302)
    In my experience, Postgre was really easy to get running, as (IIRC) it comes in the Cygwin package - you can choose to install it from the get-go.

    As far as Bash goes, I definitely agree - it was wonderful to finally get it running, but even more so was using rxvt right in the Windows environment. Now on my Win95 box (at work we shunned the auto-upgrade policy) I could get a scrolling command prompt! I could finally collect all those wxPython tracebacks... ;-)

    ...but as for XFree86, I definitely don't think it's as easy as the other two. Cygwin runs under an internet "stub" installer, whereas with XF you download about eighty packages, then navigate through the directory structure... blah blah. It runs very well - that's not in question - it's just the installation that isn't quite so easy.

    • ...but as for XFree86, I definitely don't think it's as easy as the other two. Cygwin runs under an internet "stub" installer, whereas ith XF you download about eighty packages, then navigate through the directory structure...... blah blah.

      I think Xfree has changed since you last looked at it. I installed 4.1 the other day and it was about fifteen or so binary packages, many of which were unecessary. Installation involved launching Cygwin's shell and running ./ This was extremely easy to do, and the defaults were all fine, albeit nongraphical.

      If you're interested, check out the []
      screenshot of my Linux box accessing my Windows box via RDP, accessing my Linux box via Xfree86.

      Yes it's true - now you can have all the power of Linux, on Linux!

  • I was able to play a region "PAL 2-6" DVD I purchased from an eBay seller from the UK.

    However, the DVD skipped a frame every second or so, making the video look a bit jerky. The DVD does not do this on my PC DVD drive or my standalone region-free DVD player. Region 1 DVDs look fine.
    • Probably the different framerate. IIRC, PAL DVDs are 30fps, and NTSC DVDs are 29.97fps. I don't have my info right here, but it has something to do with the way PAL DVDs are encoded.
      • Actually, PAL is 25 "frames per second", or more precisely running at 50Hz interlaced (50 half-frames per second, where three half frames make up two complete frames). NTSC runs at roughly 60Hz interlaced (roughly, because as you pointed out it's just slightly less than 30 "frames per second", and so it would be just slightly less than 60 Hz interlaced), meaning 50 half-frames per second. Now munge those numbers around, and I'm sure you can find some reason why a video in PAL format is dropping frames on an NTSC machine (and since the XBox has not had a European release yet, and the rest of the world uses various forms of NTSC, it's not so surprising the US XBoxes don't have correction for 50Hz->60Hz conversion).

        • Most of the world uses PAL. NTSC is a small minority of countries.
        • PAL - Phase Alternation by Line, 1967
          625 vertical lines, 50 half frames (sets of odd or even lines) displayed per second
          Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina (PAL-N), Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brunei, Cameroon, Canary Islands, China, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ghana, Gibralter, Greece (also SECAM), Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, North Korea, Kuwait, Liberia, Luxembourg (also SECAM), Madeira, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Paraguay (PAL-N), Portugal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia (also SECAM), Siera Leone, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Uruguay (PAL-N), Yeman (the former Yeman Arab Republic was PAL, and the former People's Democratic Republic of Yeman was NTSC ), Yugoslavia, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

          PAL-M -
          525 lines, 60 half frames per second.
          Brazil only

          NTSC - National Television System Committee, 1953
          525 vertical lines, 59.94 half frames displayed per second.
          USA, Antigua, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Burma, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Greenland, Guam, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Netherlands Antilles, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, St. Kitts, Saipan, Samoa, Surinam, Taiwan, Tobago, Trinidad, Venezuela, Virgin Islands.

          SECAM - Systeme Electronique Couleur Avec Memoire, 1967
          625 lines, 50 half frames per second.
          Albania, Benin, Bulgaria, Congo, former Czechosolvakia, Djibouti, Egypt, France, French Guiana, Gabon, Greece (also PAL), Guadeloupe, Haiti, Hungary, Iran, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Lebanon, Libya, Luxembourg (also PAL), Madagascar, Martinique, Mauritius, Monaco (also PAL), Mongolia, Morocco, New Caledonia, Niger, Poland, Reunion, Romania, Saudi Arabia (also PAL), Senegal, Syria, Tahiti, Togo, Tunisia, former USSR, Viet Nam, Zaire.
        • Right you are, but I would say it's the TV that's at fault rather than the XBox. TV's aren't designed with flexible refresh rates in mind, whereas I would be pretty shocked if NVidia locked the XBox to NTSC's 60Hz.

  • It has a hard drive for exactly that purpose, patches, etc. I'm willing to bet that the next "upgrade" that people get for their XBoxen will fix that oversight.

  • by forgoil ( 104808 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:43PM (#2622393) Homepage
    You can get a region free DVD players in most stores here in Sweden. The quality if region 2 DVDs is low, and they have quite annoying "features" and lack what I usually want, i.e. the region 1 with the goodies, no translations (since I translate better myself and knows English better than the translators) and sometimes even DTS sound.

    The zones were a terrible misstake according to me. I was happy, at last a cheap (well, kinda) medium which can hold movies at a resonable quality. All of a sudden I wanted to buy movies, but the whole region thing really made me feel screwed over. I even have my computer DVD set to region 1 and I refuse to buy region 2 DVDs now. When I think about it, why did I actually get a region free DVD player (it's an american player, cost me roughly $350 here in Sweden) to begin with?

    When they stop trying to screw us over, we'll think about not screwing them over. But until then, happy hacking everyone.
    • "I...knows English better than the translators"


      • *laughs* I have to admit myself that the irony is very amusing in this case;) But shit happens and what can you say, it was almost two in the morning and I didn't compile it, ehm, spell check it before I posted it.

        Now I want you to spot all the spelling misstakes native English speakers make ^_~

        Till alla mina landsmän, hur fan kan de vara så kaxiga när de bara kan ett språk, jag skulle vilja se dem behöva använda sitt andra språk;)
  • by Basset ( 6083 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:44PM (#2622397) Homepage

    In case you were curious about the final rankings, you can find them here []
  • by Ted Cabeen ( 4119 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:51PM (#2622421) Homepage
    Watch out. Most computer DVD drives (which the X-Box uses) come without the region set. It's possible that the X-Box comes this way, and if the first dvd you put into a X-Box is region 2, then you could get a region 2 X-Box forever. Alternately, you could get 4-5 changes of the DVD Region before it locks. It's possible that the X-Box coders let the DVD drive handle the region settings and you'll be locked out after 4-5 region changes.
    • On the other hand, if that were to happen, you should return the X-Box and get a replacement that isn't “faulty.” It would be very poor of a manufacturer to have a device make a perminant change to itself, limiting functionality, without even warning the user.
      • It would be very poor of a manufacturer to have a device make a perminant change to itself, limiting functionality, without even warning the user.

        Yeah, that wouldn't be at all like Microsoft, would it? They would no more sell a DVD drive that locked itself into a region without user input that they would make email client after email client that would run attachments or scripts with full access to system-level files without user input.
  • i thought ALL dvd players had to have regions in them? are there some that dont? are the legal? are they blackmarket? can i buy them online? i never heard of this before??? can some one post a store they know or somthing of this?
  • by motherhead ( 344331 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @08:56PM (#2622440)
    I use windows to boot my windows games. thats pretty much it. Why would i want to run gnome on a windows box? Other then having to do some cross-platform testing and tweaking, Arcanum and Empire Earth, that is why i have a high-end windows game system, if that stuff came out on the Mac (yes i know, or Linux) at the same time, I wouldn't even need it to be high end.

    someone mentioned earlier, if you work for a company that insists you run a Windows OS, then they are sure as shit not going to be pleased with you installing cygwin-gnome. I mean really, i laud the efforts of cyg, god bless those guys. But really now. why should i bother to jack gnome onto windows when i have five *nix boxes all around me that can do it better?

    i went through this with OS10.1 on the Mac. Loved interleaving X-Darwin and OSX and running gimp next to photoshop... but once i stopped showing off to friends i had to ask myself this question, "what exactly is this doing to make me more productive or happy?" Yes i realize the difference is that OSX is far more natively *nix friendly since well, it's pretty much FreeBSD, which is why i stopped messing with XFree-Darwin and can launch gimp from a nice terminal shortcut. But my desire to do the same on a 2K box is well... non-existant.

    Linux/FreeBSD is my preferred work environment, Macintosh is my preferred design/client support environment... Windows 2000 Professional is one hell of a robust game launcher.

    If Halo and Metropol, etc.. etc.. are ported to PC in a timely fashion then I will have vindicated myself by preordering the Game Cube instead of the X-Box. It will sit nicely next to the PS2 and the Dreamcast (which also does not run linux since... well... i have linux boxes). If i am in error, well Microsoft says it's goal is to drive the price of the X-Box down to about $100US, so if I pick one up in a couple of months for twice that, i will have still saved about 55% off what i see it going for now.

    I do not see the great functionality replacing my microwave's interface with a ba$h prompt. i don't want to logon to my car audio system.
    • Obviously if you're a developer you have to be supporting the development environment your company uses, and if that's Windows, it's Windows, and Cygwin/X/GNOME on top of that is a major architectural decision - so run Unix on separate boxes, or at least use those removable disk drive drawers.

      But many of us aren't PC developers - we're network hackers, or consultants, or router developers, and that PC on our desk is a communication tool maintained by some IT department that wants to make sure we can word-process, print, email, surf, dial up from the road, and fill out forms in a compatible fashion, so to them we're just Users. In that environment, most of them don't care what extra tools you use as long as you don't ask them for support and don't mess up the tools they do support in confusing ways. So sure, if you've got the disk space, install Cygwin and X and GNOME and EMACS, and just make sure that when you send the HR folks the Excel spreadsheet that says what projects you worked on this month and which customers to charge for it, you're using their favorite macros and column headings. And use that other removable disk drive tray to run Linux with WINE on top :-)

  • If your interested in a real good Windows desktop thats like FVWM for Windows then check out EVWM [].Not only is it simple like FVWM, and have graphical configuration, but it is written in ANSI C/WinAPI so it is fast. I've been using it at work for a couple of years now and like it a lot.

    EU: How many continents can I fit in my recycle bin? ME: All seven.
  • by jesser ( 77961 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @09:22PM (#2622523) Homepage Journal
    The winning car, Nuna, was built by the Alpha Centauri team

    They can't be from centauri. Everyone knows the game ends the first time humans reach it!
    • to let folks from a civilization that has mastered space flight, just to get here and enter, to compete in a atmospheric competition . . .


  • The German Constitution (Grundgesetz) does not allow censorship however there are some restrictions on free speech..

    Hmm... "does not allow censorship" ... "there are some restrictions on free speech"

    Glad to see that America isn't the only country where people sometimes have difficulty reading the constitution! :-)

    (I know, I know, the constitution isn't black and white like that.. save your flames.)

  • Do we really need penis comments? _____________________________ On the X-Box, I had some questions: 1. can you yank out the 8gig and put in, say, an IBM 40? 2. anyone stuck *nix on one yet? 3. Microsoft is selling the games in their company store for $10, are those the full retail box version? 4. The games are on DVD, and when DVDs first came out some of the authors stuck stuff on the discs just to fill them up (because they could)- anyone know if something like that has happened on one of the game discs? -CH
  • by Billly Gates ( 198444 ) on Tuesday November 27, 2001 @09:38PM (#2622597) Journal
    "Cygwin is turning out to be a breeze of fresh air for people stuck on windows for one reason or another. I can use the familiar bash shell on any platform(win, *nix) I am on, and don't have to deal with the DOS prompt. I use all the gnu tools from cygwin distro. rcs, cvs, vim, perl, python, ruby, apache the list goes on.

    As I am typing this on WindowsXP, I have vim6.0 in the background as well as Apache 1.3.2. I also have perl 5.6, python, php4, and Mysql installed. There is also a port of Xemacs for Windows for VI haters.

    I would not recommend running native unix apps with cygwin on win32 if there is a native version for the platform. The native win32 port of vim for example can integrate with visual studio so you can replace the visual c++ editor with VIM. Very cool stuff! Also according to the documentation of VIM 6, you an also integrate it with Visual Basic applications! I haven't tried this though. Also I have com+ and ole support with the win32 port of perl and python. The win32 version of apache can run ASP. Not optimized yet but its diffenitely possible and will be there soon.

    Running the compilied unix versions of these apps with cygwin can introduce compadibility problems as well as integration limitations. E.g. I can't integrate VIM with Visual Studio. I heard strange things happening on postgresSql with cygwin. Also according to the apache documentation, the threading model of Windows is a problem because its optimized for Unix style threads. The win32 version has its own more windows friendly threading which would not be there under cygwin. Remember that cygwin is close to Unix but tts not a %100 unix environment. PostgresSQL may be fixed but you need a particular source just for cygwin so it won't crash or exhibit bugs. This is the problem since most opensource apps will either not compile at all under cygwin or will compile but be buggy. I prefer a native win32 port of gnu apps on Windows and I will run Linux for the Unix ports.

    • Microsoft Interix [] - a UNIX-compatible subsystem and tools for NT/2000. $99. (Bonus: Includes Microsoft GCC!)

      While it doesn't solve the integration problems (com, VS), it might solve the threading issues (as well as the security issues) because it operates on kernel level (native?) instead of in user space as with cygwin and other solutions.

      I'm curious if anyone has any firsthand experience porting/using the typical OSS software with Interix. There's not much 3rd party information on the web (that I can find), and MS seems to sell it as a migration solution only.

      (There was a /. interview with the Interix developer, but it unfortunately turned into a flamewar and Interix wasn't discussed much.)
      • This was proposed to me by a windows-centric administrator last year, rather than real unix. I looked over what he provided, thought, and several components were *way* out of date--including X, iirc (I think it was R5, not 6)


  • I don't see how censorship-by-DNS could actually work. The user could point their machine at any DNS server in the world that will take them. Surely there is at least one such server, and it will have accurate DNS records for the banned sites. Why aren't Germans doing this if they want access to the banned sites?
    • If you set a transparent proxy on the dial-in lines, you can redirect any tcp port (read 53) to or et voila.

      You have to use a DNS server listening on a different port. But how do you make you OS use it then (O.K. by proxying yourself). But that is not a Joe User solution.

      And they can still block everyting except port 53,21,80,443 propably IMAP/POP.
  • Be sure to go to Sam and Andy's for a Vol burger after you pick up some lawn ornaments at the Big Lots, Tim.
  • by juju2112 ( 215107 )
    I managed to get Windowmaker up and running on Cygwin, under Window 98.

    Check it out. []

    I just had to comment out one line of code and change my username so that it didn't have any spaces in it. It might not have all the bells and whistles of KDE or Gnome, but at least it takes up less memory. Probably faster, too.

    -- juju
  • Doesn't work (Score:2, Interesting)

    by frohike ( 32045 )
    We've got a US X-Box here and we just tried playing the MGS2 trailer DVD from Japan. It came up with the message "Invalid DVD region" and wouldn't play it. (Me and my roomates == We) We are hypothesizing that perhaps the DVD dongle they make you buy actually has a region encoded into it? That way they can offload the cost of region coding onto you, the consumer. Would be a typical MS move. Anyone have multiple region dongles and want to try it?
  • Nice job using recycled Hubble parts!

  • quite interesting site: ;-)

    Note that i think DVD should die, this standard is
    way to bigbrotherish...
  • Actually this is old news (11/21/01), but I haven't seen this being mentioned before in this discussion about the German site banning. A member of the German government (SPD) responsible for new media has released a statement regarding the matter at his website, here [] (German)

    In short, he calls that local politican in NRW a "Schaumschlaeger", which is basically saying "that guy has no clue, acts like he has no clue and just wants to get some attention for the next election". He also says, that banning sites is very dubious in the eyes of the law, whereas DNS banning is not just dubious but technically impossible. Such action would only increase the popularity of the targeted sites, and would also create mirrors, which in turn would ridicule the action. He also states, that DNS banning can be circumvented by the easiest of methods by every user.

    He concludes, that instead more concern should be focused on teaching young kids how to cope with the medium in a responsible way, and that the state should focus on "fighting" the creators of such Nazi, child porn etc. sites - instead of fighting the internet as such.

    He also mentiones, that banning is generally unrealistic, as there is no way to decide in consent which sites should get banned and he mentiones something like a filter, which could be used by parents not by the state.. etc.. (Sorry, for my humble English, it's not my primary language and it's rather late over here. :P)
  • I'd like to plug UnxUtils [], which are native Win32 GNU utilities.
    Personally, I extract all the exes directly to my \WINNT directory.

"An open mind has but one disadvantage: it collects dirt." -- a saying at RPI