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Google

Google Re-Refunds Video Purchases 129

holymodal writes "In a new post to the Google blog Bindu Reddy, the Google Video product manager, admits that only offering refunds via Google Checkout was a bad idea: 'We should have anticipated that some users would see a Checkout credit as nothing more than an extra step of a different (and annoyingly self-serving) kind. Our bad.' Google now plans to issue customers a full credit card refund, while allowing them to keep the Checkout credit and extending the life of purchased videos another six months."
Supercomputing

Submission + - DDR4 RAM released by Hynix

nithinraju writes: "The Technology is developing daily and it causes great changes in our daily life. A Real proof for the above statement is the DDR4 RAM released by Hynix . HynixSemiconductor has developed a 512Mb graphic DDR4 memory that can process DVD-quality movies of 12 hours in a single second. Running at a voltage as low as 1.5V,the graphic chip of Hynix Semiconductor is suitable for next-generation notebook PCs.It also supports all interfaces required by next-generation graphic memories.Certainly, this is a good news for those who are expecting better performance from their computers."
Privacy

TiVo Selling Data on Users' Watching Habits 244

Gyppo writes "The San Francisco Chronicle reports that TiVo is collecting and selling data on what parts of broadcasts people are rewinding for review and what commercials they are skipping. The data collection is part of a service the company provides to advertisers and television networks, collecting anonymous data on their users' commercial-watching habits. The data they provide is a random subset of their overall userbase, detailing which commercials are skipped and which are actually watched. The article mentions the possibility for privacy abuse, but with this application of technology Tivo is not providing access to what any one individual user watches via the service."
Media

RIAA Members Sue Allofmp3.com Over Infringement 323

fair_n_hite_451 writes "To the surprise of no one, several members of the RIAA have filed suit against MediaServices, the operators of Allofmp3.com. The suit was filed for Wednesday, primarily by Arista Records LLC, Warner Bros. Records Inc., Capitol Records Inc. and UMG Recordings. The language of the litigation was very confrontational; The companies claim the site sells millions of songs without paying them 'a dime'. 'The defendant's entire business ... amounts to nothing more than a massive infringement of plaintiffs' exclusive rights under the Copyright Act and New York law.' AllofMp3 has always maintained that a Russian licensing group makes their business legitimate, while the RIAA here claims the organization has no authority to make such a deal."
Microsoft

Get on the 'Gates for President' Bandwagon 654

netbuzz writes "Dilbert's Scott Adams kicked off the idea in his November 19th blog post, saying there isn't anything wrong with this country that President Bill Gates couldn't cure in less time than it takes to get a new operating system out the door. Today, the idea is moving forward with a brand-new 'Bill Gates for President' Web site. Adams is also back on the campaign trail, flogging the site and Gates' candidacy." A blog post at Network World includes a lot of eye-rolling about this idea, but neither Adams nor the folks at the 'Gates for President' website seem to be taking this lightly.

Video of Fedora On PS3 331

klippoth writes, "I just thought I would let you guys know, not only do I have Fedora Core 5 for PPC installed on my Playstation 3, but I video-captured running through the boot loader to demonstrate how it works. And yes, I am selling the PS3 on Ebay, although that was not my original intention. But hearing about people making ten grand... well, let's just say my love for my PS3 is NOT unconditional. Metal Gear Solid 4 doesn't come out for another year anyway! (Although it seems that sales of PS3s are starting to slow down... oh well, I can think of worse things to be stuck with!!)"

Leopard Vs. Vista 420

Rockgod writes to point us to an ongoing series of articles, "Leopard vs. Vista," by Daniel Eran. The latest is part 4, Naked Sales, and it's a meditation on hardware without Windows, Apple's strategy of hardware-software integration, and the dissatisfactions that arise from the creative tension between Microsoft and hardware manufacturers. (The earlier articles in the series are linked form this one.) From the article: "The vast majority of PCs come with Windows pre-installed, and actually can't be sold without it. Leading PC hardware makers can't freely advertise PCs sold without Windows, or with an alternative OS such as Linux, without having to pay Microsoft significantly more for every other OEM license they ship. That's why all name brand PCs prominently repeat their own version of the cult-like phrase 'Dell recommends Windows XP Professional,' as if there were a choice in the matter and they thought it would be helpful to provide some guidance... Apple's current Get a Mac advertising campaign doesn't compare Mac OS X to Windows, it compares the complete experience of a Mac with that of a PC. After all, Windows is only half of what's wrong with the PC as a product."

Voting Machine Glitches Already Being Reported 742

Neovanglist writes "CNN, FOX, and MSNBC are reporting that voting machines in three states (Ohio, Indiana, and Florida) have already been showing issues, both in the machines themselves and in the training of poll attendants, causing many districts to switch to paper ballots." From the article: "Voters put the Republican congressional majority and a multitude of new voting equipment to the test Tuesday in an election that defined the balance of power for the rest of George W. Bush's presidency. Both parties hustled to get their supporters out in high-stakes contests across the country, Democrats appealing one more time for change, and appearing confident the mood was on their side. Republicans conceded nothing as their vaunted get-out-the-vote machine swung into motion." If you're in the U.S., and you haven't voted already, go do it!

Republican Robocall Pretexting Campaign 674

WCityMike writes, "In 53 Congressional campaigns across the country, including the Pennsylvania 6th, the Connecticut 4th, the North Carolina 11th, the New Hampshire 2nd, and the Illinois 6th and 8th (and possibly all races), the National Republican Congressional Committee is conducting a $2.1 million campaign to make it appear as if Democrats are spamming callers with telemarketing calls. The NRCC hired Conquest Communications Group to conduct a massive nationwide robocalling campaign with calls specifically scripted to appear as if they're coming from the Democratic candidate — in violation of FCC regulations on such 'robocalls,' which requires the identity of the caller to be stated at the beginning of the message [47 CFR 64.1200(b)(1)]. The call begins with 'Hello. I'm calling with information about,' and then says the name of the Democratic candidate. There is then a pause; if the recipient hangs up here, they will receive repeated calls back with the same message, potentially up to 18 times or more (according to one callee). If the callee doesn't hang up, they hear a smear message from the machine about the Democratic candidate. The NRCC thinks the legality of the calls is, conveniently, a 'complicated legal question that's not going to get adjudicated this weekend.'" Update 20:47 GMT by SM: Thankfully we all learned how to deal with these folks last week.
User Journal

Journal Journal: In case you're wondering what that rejected submission is: 3

I posted a journal entry asking anyone to help me figure out what it takes to get moderation ability. Silly me checked the Submit checkbox, thinking it would post to my journal only if I checked that. I should have read the sidebar *below* that more carefully. ;-)

Anyway, I figure I post too much or refresh the front page too many times to be selected as moderator or something. :-(

Let me know if there is a trick I'm not aware of.

MySpace Predator Caught By Code 374

An anonymous reader writes, "Wired News editor and former hacker Kevin Poulsen wrote a 1,000-line Perl script that checked MySpace for registered sex offenders. Sifting through the results, he manually confirmed over 700 offenders, including a serial child molester in New York actively trying to hook up with underage boys on the site, and who has now been arrested as a result. MySpace told Congress last June that it didn't have this capability." Wired News says they will publish Poulsen's code under an open-source license later this week.

MySpace Organizes Sudan Fundraiser 164

tanman writes to tell us CNN is reporting that MySpace is sponsoring a series of 20 concerts as an effort to raise awareness about the humanitarian relief efforts in Sudan. From the article: "The concerts will take place October 21. Artists include TV on the Radio in Philadelphia, Alice in Chains in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Ziggy Marley in Medford, Oregon, Citizen Cope in Seattle, Gov't Mule in Spokane, Washington, and Insane Clown Posse in St. Petersburg, Florida."

A Gaming War Between Islam and the West? 321

The Washington Post has up an article looking at a burgeoning venue for political expression: gaming. Between 'The Quest for Bush', Counter-Strike mods, and more serious titles with a political slant, the political arena is quickly claiming gamers for their own. It's not just politics either; there are some excellent titles being released that attempt some truly insightful social commentary. From the article: "'UnderAsh,' released by Afkar Media in 2002, views the first intifada from the eyes of Ahmad, a Palestinian teenager resisting the Israeli occupation. Last year a sequel was released. A teaser to 'UnderSiege,' which tells the stories of five Palestinian families during the second intifada, shows a Palestinian teenager being shot on the street; an Israeli soldier appears to pound him with a concrete block seconds later. 'Our games are not propaganda,' Kasmiya says. 'Our games are a reflection of our history -- past or present. The fact is, most movies, most TV shows, most video games put Muslims in a bad light, so we have to try to tell our side of the story.'" Commentary from GamePolitics is also available.

Administration Ignored Bin Laden Intel 800

gettin-bored noted a nice article running in very high priority on the Washington Post, right up there on page 17 of the print edition, where it's revealed that the CIA Director warned Rice about Bin Laden two months before 9/11. And strangely, the meeting was never mentioned during all the 9/11 commission reports making you really question what exactly they were actually hearing that was more important than the CIA director telling the National Security Advisor that Bin Laden was going to attack Americans.

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