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Piracy

Call of Duty: Black Ops the Most Pirated Game of the Year 5

Torrentfreak reports that after calculating download frequency for pirated copies of popular video games, Call of Duty: Black Ops has won the dubious honor of being the most pirated game of 2010. The PC version of the game was torrented roughly 4,270,000 times, and the Xbox 360 version was downloaded an additional 930,000 times. (The most pirated Wii game was Super Mario Galaxy 2, and Dante's Inferno somehow managed to accrue the most downloads of Xbox 360 games.) Fortunately for Activision, the game has still made over $1 billion in sales, and its 20,000,000+ players have racked up over 600,000,000 man-hours of play time since the game's launch in early November.

Comment no due process for Pfc Bradley Manning... (Score 2) 381

The jury can then weigh Lamo's credibility

To what jury are you referring? Manning isn't going to see a typical court proceeding. The Fifth Ammendment to the Constitution negates his right to due process, trial by jury, etc. I certainly would like to see his case go to a public trial, but that's not in the cards here.

Seth

Comment This shows how great optimized code is (Score 1) 203

... when he says that one of the reasons the iPhone won't run Flash is because it doesn't have the processing power.

You're telling me it can have the power needed to do something like this - analyze an image for text, decode it, put sentences together, translate, match the most appropriate font and colours, scrub the original text, render the new text at the appropriate angle and position - but not to play Flash movies. I call bullshit.

No, this demonstrates what can be done when people write code using libraries that are compiled for a very specific hardware spec. Whereas Flash performs in a very un-optimized hardware-abstracted manner, it requires a lot of extra CPU to perform even the most rudimentary tasks.

You get back to me when this is implemented via Flash on Android and let's just see how long the battery lasts on your phone.

Comment Re:Overkill? (Score 1) 90

I think that's why this is a "TEST."

Google wants to effectively identify the bottlenecks and provide an incentive for companies to proactively address them with new solutions. Such as Netflix locating regional servers to distribute their content such that it doesn't travel over a backbone.

Seth

Comment referral payments (Score 1) 85

I am betting the spammer has opened up referral accounts with companies that sell pharma, etc. and will pay a percentage of sales that come routed from the ads the spammer sends. So, it's not like someone approaches the spammer saying, "I want these ads sent out. Here's some money." The spammer approaches third-party vendors who have referral programs and opens accounts for that yield a commission on every sale that comes to the site with referral ID XYZ.

As an example, the viagra referral program:

Now-a-days, affiliate marketing is becoming one of the most popular forms of advertising on the web. It provides low cost way to market the products and services. Web masters or Internet Marketers have a huge opportunity to monetize their web sites more efficiently. So if you are a web master, web site owner, or associated with email marketing, you can make a fortune through online pharmacy affiliate program at eMedOutlet.com

Seth

Comment Re:Owner? (Score 1) 424

You know, I have this computer at work that has all these "Visual Studio" things installed. I frequently wonder what it's like for people who don't have the "Visual Studio." You know, those who just have a studio to work in. Is the screen dark? Is it braille?

Maybe the journalist meant the guy had a "Visual Bomb-Making Studio" in his house.

Seth

Comment this shit wasn't invented in two years (Score 4, Informative) 712

Perhaps you're too young to remember or just trying to bash Obama, but I seem to recall during the Bush administration that the telcos were all coerced to enable illegal blanket wiretaps on US citizens without warrants. These airport x-ray devices weren't invented, developed, and deployed in just two years. The rollout was initiated during the Bush administration. It was he who authorized the creation of an entire additional government department, the Department of Homeland Security. Talk about increasing government spending unnecessarily by duplicating efforts... Why won't the tea-partiers call it like it is?

Seth

Comment Re:I continue to be amazed (Score 1) 858

That ain't necessarily so. 35 miles offshore, depending on the bearing, could very well put it within 12 miles of Catalina or one of the other channel islands... which would be US territorial waters. Unless you have the actual lat & long of the launch and have plotted it on a chart, you're talking out your ass here.

I only have the information provided by the linked article which describes the launch zone as 35 miles 'out to sea'. I did not look at the graphic in the article that clearly shows Catalina and other islands in close proximity to the launch. It is very plausible that the launch occurred from within US Territorial Waters.

Also, you get to destroy submarines that don't identify themselves? I wish I had known that when I was in the Navy, because we would have destroyed several! Unfortunately, most of them would have turned out to be our own. Submarines don't go around identifying themselves, and even if they don't, it doesn't mean you can shoot them. Seriously.

I was really just referring to the protection afforded by the 'Law of Nations'...

The Law of Nations does not include any rules regarding the claim of vessels to sail under certain maritime flag, but imposes the duty upon every State having a maritime flag to stipulate by its own Municipal Laws the conditions to be fulfilled by those vessels which wish to sail under its flag. In the interest of order on the open sea, a vessel not sailing under the maritime flag of a State enjoys no protection whatever, for the freedom of navigation on the open sea is freedom for such vessels only as sail under the flag of a State. But a State is absolutely independent in framing the rules concerning the claim of vessels to its flag. It can in particular authorise such vessels to sail under its flag as are the property of foreign subjects; but such foreign vessels sailing under its flag fall thereby under its jurisdiction.

Just because you didn't fire on unknown watercraft while you were in the NAVY doesn't mean that it was illegal to do so. I hate that our country has decided that if a person is captured without a formal uniform of a recognized state, that person can be tortured and held indefinitely as an 'Enemy Combatant.' The same interpretation would apply to any unmarked watercraft in international waters.

Maybe your mates didn't sink unmarked subs, but that was probably because you really had a good idea that they belonged to one of several entities (including the US) that we don't want to start a fight with. Now we've got a situation where an unknown submarine has done something uncharacteristic of subs belonging to every single aforementioned entity. It's a bit of a different playing field to be sure.

Seth

Comment foreign subs free to sail near calif. coast (Score 3, Insightful) 858

A 'hostile' sub 35 miles away from US Coast wouldn't be met with a slap on the knee and a response of "you totally got us!". It would be destroyed with impunity. Subs are expensive, you don't risk losing them on a mission that amounts to showing off.

I'm not so certain that maritime law would allow the US to respond with violence for firing a missile from outside US territorial waters and the trajectory of the weapon never crosses US water or soil. According to wikipedia, foreign nuclear subs are even allowed passage within US territorial waters and are not "destroyed with impunity" on sight. In this case, however, the missile was launched from 35 nautical miles offshore, which would put it in international waters.

From Wikipedia:

The territorial sea is regarded as the sovereign territory of the state, although foreign ships (both military and civilian) are allowed innocent passage through it; this sovereignty also extends to the airspace over and seabed below.

I suspect this was the act of a foreign entity demonstrating a newly-developed capability to the United States. If the submarine doesn't identify its country of origin, then the US would be allowed to destroy it with impunity in international waters.

I also suspect the US knows exactly who did this and knew prior to the incident and was able to discretely provide advance warning to the other superpowers. There are probably a mixture of reasons the US is playing dumb on the identity of the launcher.

  • As soon as an American official would say who it is, then the method used to secure the information will be revealed to the perpetrators and that intelligence source will be silenced.
  • The US would rather the perpetrator step up and claim credit. It plays better on the world stage than unsubstantiated accusations leading to military action. Think WMD's in Iraq.
  • The act was meant to intimidate. The response the US is taking is refusing to play the game.

Seth

Comment Re:So? (Score 1) 386

....made easier due to the rapid churn of handset specs as they get steadily faster and cheaper.

I think you misspelled the words 'more complicated' as 'easier' in the above sentence.

What app developer is really confident that their app is going to drive the spec of the handset?!? This tweeting app developer understands that the offerings are already competitive in the space for twapps, so widespread availability is critical to get a foothold in the market. Those guys aren't thinking, "Oh screw all these colorful versions of Android phones and OS's. Let's release a baseline version of our tweeting app and let the phone plan subscribers come back to us in a year or two when their phones get replaced with a version that can run it. We'll drive the phones to match our chosen spec with our twapp."

Seth

Comment Re:"They Still Use Windows XP?!" (Score 1) 260

Sadly, Windows 7 appears to maintain consistency with previous interface releases; the dos window still won't let you highlight-copy text without a visit to the top-left dropdown menu and over to the sub-menu two times. (edit>>mark and then edit>>copy). It's important not to confuse people with contextual menus and dynamic highlighting if they started in the dos 3 world.

Seth

Comment ! good against signature spam & low traffic si (Score 1) 245

Your comment is well-thought-out here, but I have to say your recommended approach is flawed when dealing with a vast quantity of comment spam. It certainly will work on high-traffic sites like slashdot. The problem is with lower-traffic sites with a lot of scattered content. In high-traffic forums, your approach will generally work.

Sites with articles and photo albums, will need to additionally disable comments on older content because it won't be seen by visitors, but the indexing bots will pick up the thousands of links. Another problem is with signature spam, and that can hit forums hard. A spam bot can post a bunch of innocuous forum posts for months, then after the threads have sunk out of sight, the spam bot changes the signature to include a bunch of spam links, and no notification is given to the admin or other users that new content (posts) have been added to the forums, but the spam links are all over the place in the signature of the spam bot's posts. Users can mark the specific posts as spam, but they will be scattered through thousands of old threads. The users will need to be able to mark the user as spam to notify the admin to delete all posts by the spam bot.

Seth

Comment Re:d3ac0n - The Stupidity Is Sickening (Score 1) 390

Denying the holocaust is a crime in many countries

Fortunately, there is Iran, who hosted a recent Holocaust denier's conference attended by former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard, David Duke, among other revisionist-history luminaries. And in Iran, denying the Holocaust is not only legal, but popular.

Seth

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