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Role Playing (Games)

Submission + - WoW Addiction Results in Death of Toddler

Henry V .009 writes: The Albuquerque Journal reports that Federal authorities have just charged Rebecca Wulf for allowing her 3-year-old daughter to starve to death, surrounded by "cat feces, moldy food and unwashed dishes" while Rebecca played World of Warcraft. I thought Slashdoters might want an early heads up on what is likely to become a big news story. Having worked with abused children in the past, I can say that the stories I hear of WoW addiction cases are on the level of hard drug addiction stories — in my opinion at least, this can no longer be dismissed as a 'you can be addicted to anything' issue anymore.

Submission + - Experiment Confirms Relativity Claims

scubamage writes: "On the 14th of April, Stanford University scientists announced the completion of the experimental phase of Gravity Probe B, a test of Einstein's theory of relativity and gravity. To quote, "One way to think about space-time is as a large fishing net. Left unperturbed and stretched out flat, it is straight and regular. But the minute one puts a weight into the net, everything bends to support that weight. A weight that was spinning would wreak even more havoc with the net, twisting it as it spun. The mass-energy of the planet earth represents a "weight" in our net of space-time, and the daily revolutions of the earth, according to Einstein's theory, represent a twisting of local space-time. GP-B will search for this twisting effect, which has never before been measured." The tests so far have shown that Einstein was correct at least in the fact that there is a distortion. The actual drag created on time space is still being calculated. The stanford article can be found here. The official press release in PDF format can be found here."

Submission + - M$ Vista DRM lock-in and who to blame

An anonymous reader writes: Charlie Demerjian over at The Inquirer has a brilliant and impassioned rant about DRM infections, who causes them, who wants them and why hardware vendors don't have the spines to stand up for their rights and for the rights of users. From the article: "THE RECENT BILE directed at DAMMIT [ATI+AMD] over the framebuffer lockout is entirely misdirected. Or, at least, the reason to blame the firm is wrong. The hardware providers may be guilty as hell here, but not for this — the real evil here is Microsoft with its DRM fetish. The loser? You, once again". Read the article here.

Submission + - Physicists figure math needed for invisibility

An anonymous reader writes: A group of engineers at Purdue University in Indiana have now used mathematical equations figured out last year, to bend light around objects, to design a relatively simple device that ought to be able to — one day soon — make objects as big as an airplane simply disappear. From the article: "It looks pretty much like fiction, I do realize, but it's completely in agreement with the laws of physics," said lead researcher Vladimir Shalaev, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Purdue. The design calls for tiny metal needles to be fitted into a hairbrush-shaped cone at angles and lengths that would force light to pass around the cloak. This would make everything inside the cone appear to vanish because the light would no longer reflect off it. The major limitation is that the current design can only bend the light of a single wave-length at a time, and does not work with the entire frequency range of the visible spectrum. "How to create a design that works for all colors of visible light at the same time will be a big technical challenge, but we believe it's possible," Shalaev said. "In principal it's doable."

Submission + - Unintended Consequences of Rogers' Packet Shaping

knorthern knight writes: "To counter P2P programs that encrypt their traffic to evade detection, Rogers Cable in Canada has apparently started throttling ALL ENCRYPTED IP TRAFFIC, according to this article on Michael Geist's blog. How many of you log in to work over a VPN or ssh-tunnel? How many get usenet news, or email over an encrypted connection. This could be a problem for Rogers Cable customers. Michael Geist, who happens to be the "Canada Research Chair of Internet and E-commerce Law" at U of Ottawa, has "been advised that the University computer help desk has received a steady stream of complaints from Rogers customers about off-campus email service.""

Submission + - Kansas refutes Evolution... in Pokemon

RyoShin writes: "Even after the conservative members lost control of the old Kansas school board, evolution still remains a large issue for the Board of Education in Kansas. Well, in video games. Specifically, one video game: Pokemon. On Monday, the Kansas Board of Education approved a measure to ban most content related to Pokemon, including the games themselves and trading cards "because of the franchise's blatant promotion of evolution". Furthermore, they instructed teachers to "search their students at the beginning of the school day to make sure that they aren't carrying any copies of the game". The article is sparse on further details, but states that the ACLU will challenge the decision."

Submission + - Vista "Protected Processes" Compromised

An anonymous reader writes: Protected processes, which were introduced in Windows Vista to allow DRM software to be hidden from the prying eyes of reverse engineers, have today had their security called into question by the release of D-Pin Purr ( by Alex Ionescu of ReactOS ( fame. His tool allows protection to be added and removed to or from arbitrary processes, circumventing the usual security checks. This could enable malware to hide itself from bona-fide scanning / removal software by hiding inside a secured process, and opens the door to some inventive attacks on the DRM pathways of Vista.

Submission + - User-Privilege Flaw Hits Vista

IT071872 writes: "According to PC world, A security firm has discovered one of the first security flaws to directly affect Windows Vista, a bug that it claims allows local users to escalate their privileges.

The flaw involves Windows' system for managing user security levels, User Account Control (UAC), which was introduced with Vista. UAC is designed to limit the damage that can be caused by mass attacks such as worms by giving standard users limited privileges, a practice common with other operating systems."

Submission + - Anti-Matter's Potential in Treating Cancer

eldavojohn writes: "The BBC is taking a look at how atomic physicists are developing cancer treatments. A step past radiotherapy, the CERN institute is publishing interesting results: "Cancer cells were successfully targeted with anti-matter subatomic particles, causing intense biological damage leading to cell death." The press release from last year is finally sparking interest in the medical community."

Submission + - Hacker builds tracking system for Tor pedophiles

Anonymouse writes: Hacker HD Moore has devised a series of "countermeasures" for pedophiles using public Tor servers to search for and download child pornography. Moore's system, which will be released as an open source project, uses patched Tor servers and a decloaking engine to pinpoint the exact location of a pedophile within an organization or residence. From the article: "At this point, my server is able to determine the internal address of the user, the external address from which they access the internet, and the ISP they use to provide DNS resolution, as well as the IP address they come from through the TOR network. This information, along with the unique tracking ID, allows me to identify a specific workstation within an organization or residence."

Submission + - Saudi oil production in trouble

IamTheRealMike writes: As one of the worlds most prolific producers of oil, Saudi Arabian production is of vital importance to maintaining our standard of living in the west. A new analysis from Stuart Staniford appears to show large, fast declines in production throughout 2006 that are uncorrelated with price, world events or OPECs own announced production cuts (in fact, no evidence for those cuts occurring is found at all). Given that the apparent steep decline (8%/year) matches the rates seen in other areas where horizontal drilling and water injection were used, and high prices give the Kingdom every incentive to produce, is this the beginning of the end for Saudi oil?

Submission + - Microsoft kills off J# language

twofish writes: "Microsoft have announced that J#, its Java clone for .NET, and the Java Language Conversion Assistant will be discontinued and will not appear in the next version of Visual Studio. At the same time they have announced pans for a 64-bit version of the J# Redistributable this year."

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