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ATMs In Antarctica 26

Widgett writes "After hearing about the ATMs in Antarctica, I got curious. So I pinged Wells Fargo and got an interview with one of their VPs. The end result is a story about how one services machines at the end of the world, plus — and most importantly — what are the service fees like?"

Game Endings Going Out of Style? 190

An article in the Guardian asks whether the focus of modern games has shifted away from having a clear-cut ending and toward indefinite entertainment instead. With the rise of achievements, frequent content updates and open-ended worlds, it seems like publishers and developers are doing everything they can to help this trend. Quoting: "Particularly before the advent of 'saving,' the completion of even a simple game could take huge amounts of patience, effort and time. The ending, like those last pages of a book, was a key reason why we started playing in the first place. Sure, multiplayer and arcade style games still had their place, but fond 8, 16 and 32-bit memories consist more of completion and satisfaction than particular levels or tricky moments. Over the past few years, however, the idea of a game as simply something to 'finish' has shifted somewhat. For starters, the availability of downloadable content means no story need ever end, as long as the makers think there's a paying audience. Also, the ubiquity of broadband means multiplayer gaming is now the standard, not the exception it once was. There is no real 'finish' to most MMORPGs."

Comment Re:Chromosomes? (Score 2, Interesting) 449

"People with a particular gene variant performed more than 20 percent worse on a driving test" You mean the double-X chromosome?

Although I'm a man, I'd have to admit I've seen some pretty bad driving from people with a Y chromosome too. In fact, very smart people can be very bad drivers (e.g. von Neumann's corner was named after a notoriously bad driver, John von Neumann who you might have heard about).

Comment Re:Just confused? (Score 1) 517

Yes. That is also why jurors are not supposed to reach decisions on matters of law, only matters of fact. If the jury members need to understand the legalese someone is doing something wrong.

Actually, Juries CAN decide the matters of law, it is just frowned upon. It is called Jury Nullification, where a jury, despite of the facts, simply ignores the law.

Honestly, a lot of our really bad laws can be and should be nullified by juries, and until we get widespread informed juries, bad laws will continue to be enforced.

Jury Nullification is powerful, however it isn't always a good thing when it was used, consider for example the Emmet Till case where a (presumably) racist jury acquitted obviously guilty murderers for a racially motivated killing.


Submission + - Librarians express concern over Google Books (

angry tapir writes: "Many libraries routinely delete borrower information, and organizations such as the American Library Association have fought hard to preserve the privacy of their patrons in the face of laws such as the U.S. Patriot Act. But now, as more and more titles become available in Google Book Search, it's not clear whether digital readers will enjoy the same privacy protections they have at the library."

Comment Re:Been done by computer scientists already (Score 2) 121

Perhaps the parent comment should have been rated funny, the zombie simulator at is a model of a city where humans are getting infected. However, the work by Kephart and White is prior art which wasn't cited. However, the models used in this paper are pretty standard fare for population dynamics and epidemiological modeling, and use the classical simplifying modeling by treating the population as continuous (i.e. they aren't using a discrete individual based modeling approach). Additionally, these are homogeneous mixing models (every host can reach every other host with equal intensity). I'll need to look closer, they did ask an interesting question about how to model a system where some of the infected machines are repaired, I'm not sure that this is truly novel (Bilogists have Susceptible Infective, Susceptible Infective Removed models and Susceptible Infective Removed Susceptible models) so this may be old hat.

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 1142

The parent states:

The majority of the US income (taxes) *comes* from these "evil" corporations. How d you plan to support the welfare needs that are already over0burdening our tax system if these corporations no longer operate in the US?

I'm not sure that is true, if we look at the U.S. government's budget we could see that in Fiscal Year 2008, the income from Corporate Income Taxes was $304B, but individual income taxes were $1146B so individuals paid 3.76 times what corporations paid in income tax. Please present your numbers and analysis for consideration, thanks.


More Fake Journals From Elsevier 249

daemonburrito writes "Last week, we learned about Elsevier publishing a bogus journal for Merck. Now, several librarians say that they have uncovered an entire imprint of 'advertorial' publications. Excerpta Medica, a 'strategic medical communications agency,' is an Elsevier division. Along with the now infamous Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine, it published a number of other 'journals.' Elsevier CEO Michael Hansen now admits that at least six fake journals were published for pharmaceutical companies."
Sun Microsystems

Sun Microsystems May Have Violated Bribery Law 111

Afforess writes "In a new file submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Sun Microsystems admitted that 'we have identified potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the resolution of which could possibly have a material effect on our business.' The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act makes it 'unlawful to make a payment to a foreign official for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business for or with, or directing business to, any person.' Yet, Sun would not release further details, only that it 'took remedial action.' Oracle, the new owner of Sun Microsystems, also said that they had prior knowledge of the infraction, yet also refused to release any details."

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