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Comment Your tears, they taste delicious. (Score 3, Interesting) 634

What everyone predicted has happened.
The servers fail just after the game is released, tens (hundreds?) of thousands of customers are highly unsatisfied, not to say irate.
This is already a PR disaster, should the servers keep failing (whatever the reasons - the people don't care if your servers are to weak to handle the load or if some /b/tards decide to DDOS them for "pool's closed" - they only care that they cannot play the game they BOUGHT) it will become a massive one.
Oh, and since Silent Hunter 5 was already cracked I suspect a crack for Assassin's Creed 2 won't be long.
So in a way, Ubisoft, you decided to ignore the warnings, now your tears, they taste delicious.

Comment In Winter? 27 Degrees Celsius... In Summer? 30+ (Score 1) 676

I have the dubious joy of working in a medium sized (I'd say 40 to 50 square meters) office with 5 more coworkers. Not only do we three south-side windows (along the south side wall of the building) but also the pipes for heating the 20+ other offices in the building run through ours along two walls. Add to that the body-heat of 6 humans, 12 PCs (two for each of us) 18 monitors (three for each of us - LCDs fortunately) - no air-conditioning of course. And now, to keep really comfy, put the guy who feels cold at 15 degrees celsius right next to the windows... Joy...

Comment Decisions, decisions... (Score 1) 631

Pay big bucks to legally play a game that puts me at the publisher's fickle mercy and demands constant internet access - and bandwith - responding with draconian punishment if I fail to provide this.


Pay nothing and get an illegal copy that works fine from the word "GO"

Decisions, decisions...

Comment DRM, three Evils in One (Score 1) 372

DRM, that is Digital Right Management, is actually three evils in one.
First of all, many publishers view DRM as a way to manage (read increase) their rights while reducing the rights of the consumers, i.e. restrict the resale, activation limits, remote killswitches etc.
Secondly, many legitimate consumers find DRM annoying - they purchased a product but cannot use it as they see fit - be it that cannot transfer their music CD to their MP3 player, or play that game without contacting the publisher's master server.
And thirdly DRM is an excellent excuse NOT purchase something, but rather obtain it illegally. After all, stealing from a "nice company" does feel wrong. Screwing some corporate morloch that does its best to screw you feels much less wrong.

Comment I used to not-mind ads... (Score 5, Insightful) 615

Long ago I did not mind ads. Sure, I did not click any significant number of them, but I did neither mind those banners and whatnot being displayed. This changed as they became more and more intrusive and obnoxious. Blinking in bright colors; pop-up; pop-under; pop-in-front-of-the-actual-webpage; punch-the-monkey; you-are-the-100000000st-visitor; *brrrring**brrriiing*-now-with-sound. So I decided to to what I had to do; these "guests" had outstayed their welcome, and now I showed them the door.

Comment So Pirates are bad, mkay, and DRM is good, mkay... (Score 2, Interesting) 504

The article is quite biased anti-piracy, pro DRM.
Instead of taking a balanced close look at the causes of piracy the same old (pro-piracy) arguments are assembled into strawmen and then quickly ripped apart. When the focus turns to DRM there is a lot of handwaving and chanting "if I don't want it to be true it will not be".
A shame really.

Submission + - Court rules playlist customization not interactive

prostoalex writes: "Is music played via customized playlist delivered interactively (i.e., via user participation) or non-interactive (i.e., decisions are made on the server side)? The question does seem metaphysical, but it took Sony BMG Music Entertainment and Yahoo! six years to figure it out. User-driven playlists are bucketed with on-demand music services, while server-driven playlists are equaled to broadcasts, thereby causing different licensing mechanisms to take place. Yahoo! inherited the legal wrangle when it purchased a music startup Launch, which built a music recommendation feature. Court decision determined that recommendation algorithms that rely on usage data to build playlists server-side are still eligible for broadcast license, thereby substantially lowering the costs of operating a music recommendation site."

Show Office 2007 Who's the Boss 267

jcatcw writes "Microsoft knows how you like your Office Suite. You like Ribbons ... they're a given, right? Well, if not, Computerworld reviews some third-party packages that allow you to customize the software's interface. Classic Menu gives you an Office-2003-like set of menus. It'll help you navigate old menu structures to find favorite commands, but don't expect to use all the familiar keyboard shortcuts. ToolbarToggle lets you customize the menus. However, Classic Menu has two advantages over ToolbarToggle: It's available for PowerPoint today, and it includes Office 2007 commands on its menus, a modification you can't make to ToolbarToggle menus. RibbonCustomizer works within the Ribbon's own constraints to let you change the display of icons and commands on existing tabs or any new ones you create."

Feed Stem Cells Fill In When Smell-related Cells Fail (sciencedaily.com)

Scientists have identified a backup supply of stem cells that can repair the most severe damage to the nerves responsible for our sense of smell. These reservists normally lie around and do nothing, but when neighboring cells die, the scientists say, the stem cells jump into action.

Feed Real Diet Pill? New 'Exercise Pill' Tells Cells To Burn Fat; Works in Mice (sciencedaily.com)

A new pill makes normal mice resistant to weight gain even when they are fed a high-fat diet. The synthetic drug is designed to mimic fat, and allows scientists to chemically switch on PPAR-d, the master regulator that controls the ability of cells to burn fat. Even when the mice are not active, turning on the chemical switch activates the same fat-burning process that occurs during exercise. The resulting shift in energy balance (calories in, calories burned) makes the mice resistant to weight gain on a high fat diet.

Feed Memory Restored In Mice Through Enriched Environment: New Hope For Alzheimer's (sciencedaily.com)

Mice whose brains had lost a large number of neurons due to neurodegeneration regained long-term memories and the ability to learn after their surroundings were enriched with toys and other sensory stimuli, new studies have shown. The scientists were able to achieve the same results when they treated the mice with a specific type of drug that encourages neuronal growth. The studies suggest two promising avenues for treatments for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease.

Kaleidescape Triumphant in Court Case, DVD Ripping Ruled Legal 213

Jim Buzbee writes "Ever wanted to rip all your DVDs to a big network server so that you could select and play them back to your TV? Up until now, manufacturers have been wary of building a device to allow this type of usage because they've been afraid a lawsuit. The DVD Copy Control Association had claimed this was contractually forbidden, but now a judge says otherwise stating, 'nothing in the agreement prevents you from making copies of DVDs. Nothing requires that a DVD be present during playback.' Kaleidescape has finally won their long-standing lawsuit, a case we first talked about early in 2005."

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