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Big Mother Is Watching 533

theodp writes "Newsweek reports that high-schoolers are being denied the joy of ordering unhealthy lunches thanks to their schools' adoption of services like MealpayPlus. New web-based services allow moms to prepay for cafeteria food, specify what their kid can and can't buy, and go online to track his purchases." From the article: "If the child tries to buy a prohibited item, an alert flashes on the cashier's computer. Of course, the system isn't foolproof. According to a KRC Research survey, 73 percent of 8- to 12-year-olds are throwing out part of their lunches at least once a week; 36 percent are trading them." All I ever got was PB&J.

What's In Your Inbox? 185

kenoa writes "In a recent blog entry, Gabor Cselle wrote about How Researchers are Reinventing the Mail Client. He highlights some ideas taken from research papers that will probably make it into the real world someday. From the article ' "[TaskMaster] All your emails, drafts, attachments, and bookmarks are mapped to "thrasks". Emails in the same thread are grouped automatically, but the user still has to assign other mails, links, and deadlines manually. [Bifrost] The idea here is that the people are the main indicators of whether an email is important. (...) Bifrost then reorganizes your inbox and displays your email in a number of predefined categories: Timely, VIP Platinum, VIP Gold, Personal, Small/Large distribution lists. [ReMail] Thread Arcs visualize relationships between email messages. Instead of wasting lots of space with a tree view that Thunderbird has, it displays the thread structure in a little image. (...) Contact Maps offer a different view of the address book: Senders from which you have received email are grouped by domain. Each person's name is shown with a different background color, depending on the time of the last email exchange." ' " Given that most of us probably read email essentially the same way as elm/pine did for us a decade ago, it sure would be swell to see updates to these metaphors.

New Eternal Darkness Titles Promised 66

1up reports that Silicon Knights, maker of the Too Human and Eternal Darkness games, have promised they plan to return to Eternal Darkness at some point in the future. I wouldn't hold your breath for it, though. Any sequel to the Lovecraft-inspired horror title will be some time in coming. From the article: "'Although this [Eternal Darkness 1] is just one story we had in mind for the Eternal Darkness universe, there are even more manipulations, great ancients, and numerous other stories to tell...' The outspoken developer continues on by describing how their plans for Eternal Darkness tie into Too Human, as well; the upcoming trilogy represents an evolution of the studio's concept for Eternal Darkness. Instead of holding off on sequel treatments, however, they've instead decided to plan an overarching three-part story from day one. "

ABC Wants DVR Fast Forwarding Disabled 718

Anonymous CE Worker writes "The television network ABC is looking to develop technology that would disable the fast-forward button on DVRs, and allow commercials to run as intended on their channel." From the article: "Some research executives — even at networks with sales departments that acted differently — had argued before the upfront that ads viewed in fast-forward mode generated value for advertisers, since consumers were at least partly exposed to their messages. But Shaw said ABC was only interested in finding a way to receive compensation for un-skipped ads."

Gangs on the Internet 402

mikesd81 writes "Apparently street gangs have gotten Web-savvy. Web Bangers are posting potentially incriminating photos and taunts on their websites. Police departments suddenly faced with gangs are looking for help on the gangs' own easy-to-find Web sites. The director of the National Gang Crime Research Center has stated "In order to understand any subculture, be it al-Qaida, witches, devil worshippers or gangs, you have to be able to know their own language.' Knox said it's important for police to learn how to read between the lines on gang Web sites and blogs. Just as time on the streets has given gang investigators the ability to read the hieroglyphics of wall graffiti, time on the Web helps them understand arcane Web clues. Gang identifiers, such as tattoos, graffiti tags, colors and clothing often are embedded in each site."

Cell Users As Bad As Drunk Drivers 738

An anonymous reader writes "News.com reports on a cell-phone use study which confirms that talking on your cell is as bad as being drunk, when it comes to driving skill. The researchers studied 40 volunteers in a driving simulator." From the article: "[The subjects were observed] while undistracted, using a handheld cell phone, using a hands-free cell phone and while intoxicated to a 0.08 percent blood-alcohol level--the average legal level of impairment in the United States--after drinking vodka and orange juice. Three study participants rear-ended the simulated car in front of them. All were talking on cell phones and none was drunk, the researchers said."

French Lawmakers Approve 'iTunes Law' 423

An anonymous reader writes "Lawmakers in the French government have passed a controversial iTunes law, which has the stated intention of forcing Apple to allow purchased music to be universally useable." From the article: "In a statement issued after lawmakers hashed out the final compromise text last week, Apple said it hoped the market would be left to decide 'which music players and online music stores are offered to consumers.' The final compromise asserts that companies should share the required technical data with any rival that wants to offer compatible music players and online stores, but it toned down many of the tougher measures backed by lower-house lawmakers early on."

Xbox 360 Wins Through 2009? 306

simoniker writes "As part of a recent MI6 Conference presentation, IDG's Jason Anderson made predictions on the North American installed base of the next-gen consoles through 2008. He predicts that the Xbox 360 will continue to hold a lead into 2009, with the PS3 just behind and the Wii trailing significantly. In particular: 'In 2008, Anderson suggests 15.5 million units in homes for the Xbox 360, 13.5 million for PS3, and 6.8 million for Wii.' Is the Wii really going to trail by so much, or do the analysts not 'get it'?"

Congress May Add Record Requirements to MySpace 343

An anonymous reader writes "CNet is reporting that Congress may be working to extend the record retention requirements they're already working on for ISPs to social networking sites. Sites such as MySpace or FaceBook would be required to hold onto content access records for an unspecified length of time." From the article: "In those meetings, Justice Department representatives went beyond the argument that data retention was necessary to protect children--and claimed it would aid in terrorism investigations as well. During Wednesday's hearing, politicians also claimed that social-networking sites were not doing enough to verify that their users who claimed to be a certain age were telling the truth. (Recent news reports have said that sex predators are using MySpace and similar sites to meet up with teens.)"

Speeding up Firewire File Transfers? 187

Milo_Mindbender asks: "I've got a pretty common problem: copying a ton of files from an old Windows XP computer to a new one. After noticing how long transfers were taking over my 100mbps Ethernet, I hooked up a IEEE1394/Firewire cable and things were much faster. Strangely though, Windows is still only using about 10% of the cable's 400mbps bandwidth. Does anyone know any tips/tricks for speeding this up or any Shareware mass-file-copy tools that would be faster than Explorer/file sharing? Right now, the older machine is setup with Windows file sharing and the new machine is copying from it, neither machine is using much CPU and the disks are nowhere near their max speed. The number and size of the files might be what's slowing it down, since it's gigabytes of files in the 100-200k size range."

Kingdom Hearts II Sells A Million 61

Opposable Thumbs reports that Kingdom Hearts 2 has sold a million copies here in the states. From the article: "Squeenix deserved this home run, and it'll be interesting to see how well Final Fantasy XII does in America after its perfect score in Japan, but lukewarm reception of the demo in North America. Even with Final Fantasy there are no guarantees, and Squeenix has to be glad they have another high-performing franchise under their belt so that the big-haired emo kids of FF don't have the burden of the entire company on their shoulders." It really does get better after the first two hours.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Coining a phrase: "Net Nixon"

I'd like to try to coin a phrase. I figure that Slashdot might be a good place to do it, since my comment here will be timestamped by a third party.

A "net Nixon" is someone who logs/records all of their Internet communications.

Example: "John is a complete net Nixon. He has IRC and AIM logs going back to 1995."

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