Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Review Scores the "Least Important Factor" When Buying Games 169

A recent report from a games industry analyst suggests that among a number of factors leading to the purchase of a video game — such as price, graphics and word of mouth — the game's aggregated review score is the least important measure. Analyst Doug Creutz said, "We believe that while Metacritic scores may be correlated to game quality and word of mouth, and thus somewhat predictive of title performance, they are unlikely in and of themselves to drive or undermine the success of a game. We note this, in part, because of persistent rumors that some game developers have been jawboning game reviewers into giving their games higher critical review scores. We believe the publishers are better served by spending their time on the development process than by 'grade-grubbing' after the fact."

Comment An Asterisk setup seems to be what you want (Score 1) 405

What I would like is a phone system that I could sync to my computer so I could update the phone book over all the units (if not sync with Address Book or Outlook)
My trixbox Asterisk system at home does this halfway ( For my Cisco phones, I generate an XML phone directory from my Emacs BBDB contacts database which is then served to the phones over HTTP. Unforunately my Hitachi Wi-Fi phones have to have the directory synced via USB, even though all other settings can be set via a web server. Certainly there other other options for Wi-Fi VoIP handsets that probably won't have this problem.

keep a log of caller IDs
Asterisk keeps a CDR (Call Details Record) database with that information

or even forward me new voicemail notifications.
I haven't bothered setting it up, but Asterisk systems can forward voice mail as email. I do have web access to the sound files, but largely just access via the phone handsets.

Does anyone know if such a system exists?
I believe that you can have what you want from an Asterisk based system, but the hardware isn't cheap. The computer to power it doesn't have to be anything special though, I use an old discarded 450MHz Dell box.

I'll note that I am strange and use my Asterisk system with a POTS connection, just using VoIP inside the house. My wife insists on it for emergency power-outage 911 reasons

Comment Currently setting up MisterHouse to talk to my poo (Score 2, Informative) 409

I recently discovered MisterHouse because it has a module to talk to my Pentair Compool pool controller. I'm documenting my experience here:

I've found MisterHouse documentation to be frustrating but I've gotten it to do what I need so far for my pool project (allow remote control and to log temperature information over time). I will say that it could use some serious rearchitecture to go along with some better documentation. If I were going to do some more serious HA I would consider trying to improve things, but its good enough for my needs, so I'll just be submitting some minor bug fix / corrections...


Should Computer Games Adapt To the Way You Play? 404

jtogel writes "Many games use 'rubberbanding' to adapt to your skill level, making the game harder if you're a better player and easier if you're not. Just think of Mario Kart and the obvious ways it punishes you for driving too well by giving the people who are hopelessly behind you super-weapons to smack you with. It's also very common to just increase the skill of the NPCs as you get better — see Oblivion. In my research group, we are working on slightly more sophisticated ways to adapt the game to you, including generating new level elements (PDF) based on your playing style (PDF). Now, the question becomes: is this a good thing at all? Some people would claim that adapting the game to you just rewards mediocrity (i.e. you don't get rewarded for playing well). Others would say that it restricts the freedom of expression for the game designer. But still, game players have very different skill levels and skill sets when they come to a game, and we would like to cater to them all. And if you don't see playing skill as one-dimensional, maybe it's possible to do meaningful adaptation. What sort of game adaptation would you like to see?"

Submission + - Google buys reCAPTCHA for better book scanning (

TimmyC writes: This story may interest the Slashdot folk, many of whom use the reCAPTCHA anti-spam service. Well, reCAPTCHA is now owned by Google. Apparently, what attracted Google to ReCAPTCHA is that the company has linked its core authentication service with efforts to digitize print books and periodicals. The search giant has a massive (and controversial) effort underway in that area for its Google Books and Google News Archive services. Every time people solve a CAPTCHA from the company, they are also, as a byproduct, helping to turn scanned words into plain text that can be indexed and made searchable by search engines. Interesting times indeed.

Comment HP with HPLIP (Score 1) 188

I've been happy using my old HP OfficeJet printers under Ubuntu with HPLIP. It is nice to see a mainstream vendor actually support their hardware under Linux. I had thinking of ditching HP for Canon until this. I've been using it more for bulk scanning with the automatic document feeder that industrial printing, but I thought it was worth mentioning.


HP Linux Imaging and Printing
Print, Scan and Fax Drivers for Linux


Online Banking Customers Migrating To Lynx 220

Jibbler writes "Following the recent Pwn2Own competition, in which Firefox, IE8 and Safari all fell quickly to exploits, Netcraft has observed a surge in popularity of the text-based Lynx browser. Netcraft points out that Lynx supports the latest cryptographic ciphers, and at least one online banking site has seen Lynx usage overtake that of Internet Explorer and Firefox. To boost Lynx's excellent security history, Netcraft has even developed a version of its anti-phishing toolbar for Lynx."

Microsoft Office 2007 In Linux With WINE 224

Kenneth Reitz writes "Wouldn't it be lovely to have a nice, clean installation of Microsoft's Office 2007 Suite to run on your Ubuntu Linux Distribution? For some people, this is the only thing that truly holds them back from an all-Linux environment ... But not anymore! We have compiled a nice, concise set of instructions to help guide you along."

Submission + - Best Geek Phone?

Reality Master 101 writes: "Recently we had an Ask Slashdot about simple cell phones, now I'd like to ask the opposite question. I'm thinking of replacing my phone, and I'd like to replace it with the best "geek" phone. What are Slashdotters using these days? It should have a great browser and have good third party applications, especially ssh (and an RDP client?) for remote access. The iPhone is out, of course. What deals did you get from the US carriers?"

Slashdot Top Deals

Contemptuous lights flashed flashed across the computer's console. -- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy