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Hardware Hacking

Submission + - Scientists discover potential Silicon replacement (yahoo.com)

Marnhinn writes: "McClatchy News has an interesting article on Graphene, a potential silicon replacement. Graphene is a pure carbon material that is one atom thick, stronger than diamond and can conduct electricity 100 times faster than silicon can in computer chips. While a replacement for silicon is a ways off still, heavy research into Graphene is being done (funded by DARPA)."

Comment Re:Aiding and abetting? (Score 2, Interesting) 199

So, normally I would agree with you hands down, however, I think the issue is that many people are unaware that their computers are being used for malicious purposes.

Case in point: recently I visited a friend of mine to take a look at his computer. He was complaining it was running slow. A quick check showed multiple viruses on his machine. I asked him how long it had been that way, and his response was, "a few months".

The thing is, by far and large a significant portion of the population is more than likely unaware of what a botnet is, let alone possess the ability to diagnose when their computer has been infected. This is quite different then say, a harboring a bomb maker, as most people (hopefully) would be aware that the guy building bombs in their garage is bad news.

Further, this issue is complicated that the attacks may be motivated politically but carried out by private individuals. If a connection is found, say possibly even a direct link, how is a government supposed to react. Does this qualify as an act of war, espionage, or state sponsored terror attack?

It becomes a sticky issue whenever states are involved, simply due to the politics behind it. If it was soley an attack on a private enterprise, by some general criminal, I would simply recommend getting the cooperation of the government that is harboring / serving as a base of operations for the person / people behind the botnet and having it resolved that way. (Now, I do realize that there are many rogue nations or places that are willing to harbor these types of people, so in reality, a different solution is more than likely needed.)

Comment Re:Battlenet Server Clones? (Score 2, Interesting) 737

While at the beginning Blizzard may not allow play without having connectivity to Battle.net, I am fairly sure that at some point in the future, functionality will be released that will either allow for multiplayer private servers or possibly LAN.

Remember, Blizzard did release a patch that allows you to play Starcraft 1 without having to insert the CD in. It's simply that eventually computer games reach end of life - and rather than have to continually support a base of players it is easier to simply let them play on their own. Blizzard knows this, it is simply a matter of time before they do it.

However, until then, I am fairly sure that someone will reverse engineer the software and figure out how to emulate a server on their own. Depending on the success or failure of that effort, Blizzard's stance on no LAN support may change. If the emulation / hax reaches critical mass, Blizzard may release a tool that does / has similar functionality simply to maintain that portion of the market.

I'd say at this time - it is far too early to tell though.


Blizzard Shows Off Diablo III Archivist Class, WoW Dance-Off 119

It's been a busy day for the folks at Blizzard, who have released major announcements for several different games. The next Diablo III class has arrived: the Archivist. Despite their frail appearance and hunched, labored movement, they are quite deft at launching Quest Bolts at nearby foes, or conjuring a whirling Lore-nado of spinning books. Loud monsters can be silenced with a devastating Shush attack. Blizzard also put Starcraft II's latest unit on display, the Terra-Tron, which is a giant, robot uber-weapon assembled from the buildings in your base. Finally, for World of Warcraft they announced two features that have been requested by players for years: a battle of dances, where you can show off your avatar's hippest moves, and the ability to 'p1mp' your mounts. (Not sure exactly what that means, since I don't speak elvish, but there's a Nightsaber with a cannon — holy crap!)

Comment There is more than that... (Score 1) 366

I'm going to respond to this with a tad more detail (since I have some).

The 747 and A380, while both are large jumbo's, are different classes of planes per international flying bodies (these classes are based on size, wheels, and other physical characteristics). The 747 is a whole class lower (a class V) while the A380 is a class (VI). What this means is that the A380 can land at far fewer airports that the 747 can (something like 300+ less). There are very few airports in the world (as far as I know of - only one airport in the USA that is specifically designed for class VI planes [Washington Dulles in the US]).

When an A380 lands at LAX, in order to accommodate it, a large portion of the taxi-way and surrounding area has to be cleared. This delays all other flights times by 10-15 minutes. Right now LAX can afford to accommodate 1-2 A380's a day, but more than that, and you have issues with all the smaller planes being delayed.

The 787 - the much delayed Boeing plane, is considerably smaller. It can land safely and be used at many more airports around the world. (And upgrading an airport to support a new class of plane, is in the millions of dollars - often as runways, terminals and other items will have to be moved and redone.)

Simply put, the A380 has a significantly smaller usage footprint (somewhere around 385 airfields worldwide can take one normally without interruptions), and as such will sell less, cause airlines are often not willing to pay for additional costs to accommodate the required upgrades to an airport.


Toshiba Making Funeral Plans for HD DVD 452

Blue Light Special writes "With HD DVD on life support, Toshiba is reportedly preparing to bow to the inevitable and allow HD DVD to expire quietly. 'While denying that a decision on the fate of HD DVD has been made, a Toshiba marketing exec left the door wide open. "Given the market developments in the past month, Toshiba will continue to study the market impact and the value proposition for consumers, particularly in light of our recent price reductions on all HD DVD players," Jodi Sally, VP of marketing for Toshiba America Consumer Products, said.'" A few folks have also noted that Wal-mart is joining the Blu-ray train, further lowering the stock of HD DVD.

Feed Xerox developing "natural language color editing" (engadget.com)

Filed under: Misc. Gadgets

Xerox's Geoffrey Woolfe seems to think he's found a way to make picking just the right color a bit easier, laying out his plans for so-called "natural language color editing" at the annual meeting of the Inter-Society Color Council (ISCC). While it's apparently still in the early stages, the system will supposedly let you adjust colors simply by describing them in natural langauge, using voice or typed commands like "make the sky a deeper blue" or "make the background carnation pink" -- the software then does all the rest of the work. Of course, Xerox isn't exactly giving any indication when that may happen, so you'll have to make do with the cumbersome point-and-click method of color-choosing we've somehow managed to get along with all these years for a little while longer.

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Office Depot Featured Gadget: Xbox 360 Platinum System Packs the power to bring games to life!


Submission + - Why Enterprise 2.0 Won't Transform Organizations

Julie writes: "Tom Davenport, Professor of Information Technology and Management at Babson College debates the merits of Enterprise 2.0 in his blog on Harvard Business Online. http://discussionleader.hbsp.com/davenport/2007/03 /21/ Some thought-leaders argue that blogs, wikis, tagging, and other participative tools will change the way organizations operate. But Davenport argues it will take more than Enterprise 2.0 to make more democratic organizations — and that these social media tools won't live up to the hype."

Verizon Rejected iPhone Deal 290

SnowDog74 writes "According to an article in USA Today, Verizon Wireless rejected an Apple deal over the iPhone. The article says that Verizon wasn't happy with the strict terms Apple demanded — a Verizon Wireless VP is quoted saying that Apple wanted a cut of monthly revenues and control of the customer relationship. What's perhaps equally interesting, however, is the implication from sources that say Cingular's exclusive 5-year deal with Apple applies within the United States only. If this is true, it undermines some of the criticism Apple has been receiving for their business strategy surrounding the iPhone, given the size of the cell-phone market outside the US."

Restrictions On Social Sites Proposed In Georgia 349

A state senator in Georgia, Cecil Staton, has introduced a bill that would require parents' permission before kids could sign up at a social networking site such as MySpace and Facebook, and mandate that the sites let parents see all material their kids generate there. Quoting: "[Senate Bill 59] would make it illegal for the owner or operator of a social networking Web site to allow minors to create or maintain a Web page without parental permission [and require] parents or guardians to have access to their children's Web pages at all times. If owners or operators of a company failed to comply with the proposed law, they would be guilty of a misdemeanor on the first offense. A second offense would be a felony and could lead to imprisonment for between one and five years and a fine up to $50,000 or both." The recently offered MySpace parental tools fall short of the bill's requirements. This coverage from the Athens Banner-Herald quotes Facebook's CPO saying that federal law forbids the company to allow anyone but the account creator to access it..


Submission + - New Air Force drones have payload of F-16s

An anonymous reader writes: Call them UAVs, drones, remote-controlled aircraft, or robotic air vehicles-it's clear that this new generation of weaponry increasingly is playing a key role in the U.S. arsenal. And what we've seen so far is nothing compared with what's in the pipeline. In early production today is a kind of Predator on steroids-the MQ-9 Reaper. Six times heavier than the current Predator, the Reaper is capable of holding a payload of missiles and bombs equal to that of an F-16 fighter-and can linger in the same area for as long as 24 hours. See story for photos: www.usnews.com/badguys
The Internet

Submission + - .um Domain Meets Demise

Dr. Eggman writes: The little used .um internet domain is no more. The domain was used, or rather unused, for US minor outlying islands and the University of Southern California's Information Sciences Institute had grown tired of maintaining it. This announcement comes as last month ICANN began taking comments on deletion of outdated suffixes. Among the top of the list? .su, the internet domain of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union's .su may prove harder to remove however, as Google still lists 3 million .su sites. Thought The Soviet Union had disbanded? That's what they wanted you to think.

Submission + - ScrabbleBot - New Leap in AI

weasel writes: "A new Scrabble AI engine has just been polished; it actively tries to steal your potential words instead of just scoring for itself. How long until shooters and other video games build up the same level of nefariousness? Or is it a bit too frustrating to be considered a good gaming concept?"

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