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Submission + - SPAM: Can Letting Clients "Have it Their Way" Be Your Worst Mistake?

PowerofPartnership writes: "It’s one of the oldest maxims in the book: “The customer is always right”. It may be true in the world of retail business, but in consulting it can be the kiss of death.

Every client wants what they want–and that’s their right. But a “Powerful Partner” knows how to set boundaries to stop “scope creep” in its tracks.
Scope creep is the phenomenon of projects growing beyond what an original agreement states, and in the process a once tightly bounded engagement can begin to suck up time, money and resources.

Worst of all, consultants are all too likely to just let scope creep happen without a word. Why? Are they so wrapped up in technical issues that they’re not paying attention? Are they perhaps simply too busy? Or, were the clients so aggressive or manipulative that consultants fear and avoid the tough conversations they need to have? Whatever the cause, the cure will always be the same: skillful, frequent communication with the client."

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Vector vengeance: British claim they can kill the pixel within five years (extremetech.com)

MrSeb writes: "The humble pixel — the 2D picture element that has formed the foundation of just about every kind of digital media for the last 50 years — may soon meet its maker. Believe it or not, if a team of British are to be believed, the pixel, within five short years, will be replaced with vectors. If you know about computer graphics, or if you’ve ever edited or drawn an image on your computer, you know that there are two primary ways of storing image data: As a bitmap, or as vectors. A bitmap is quite simply a giant grid of pixels, with the arrangement and color of the pixels dictating what the image looks like. Vectors are an entirely different beast: In vector graphics, the image is described as a series of mathematical equations. To draw a bitmap shape you just color in a block of pixels; with vector graphics, you would describe the shape in terms of height, width, radius, and so on. At the moment, bitmaps are used almost exclusively in the realm of digital media — but that isn't to say they don't have their flaws. As display (and camera and cinema) resolution increases, so does the number of pixels. The obvious problem with this is that larger bitmaps are computationally more expensive to process, resulting in a slower (or more expensive) workflow. Pixel bitmaps don’t scale very gracefully; reduction is okay, but enlargement is a no-no. There is always the issue of a master format, too: With pixel bitmaps, conversions from one format to another, or changing frame rates, is messy, lossy business. Which finally leads us back to the innovation at hand: Philip Willis and John Patterson of the University of Bath in England have devised a video codec that replaces pixel bitmaps with vectors."

Submission + - Presidential campaigns leaking supporters' identities to online tracking firms? (webpolicy.org)

Peter Eckersley writes: "Stanford privacy researcher Jonathan Mayer has published new research showing that websites of both the Obama and Romney presidential campaigns, which are used to communicate with and coordinate their volunteers, leak large amounts of private information to third-party online tracking firms. The Obama campaign site leaked names, usernames, zip codes and street addresses to up to ten companies. The Romney campaign site leaked names, zip codes and partial email addresses to up to thirteen firms."

Submission + - Open Source is insecure says Disney (theregister.co.uk) 1

dgharmon writes: 'A Disney sitcom .. has slipped in an insult to open source software .. In the offending episode .. a squeaky-voiced, glasses-and-argyle-jumper-wearing kid who is clearly meant to be a nerd, is asked to fix another character's stricken computer. His diagnostic repartee sees him ask':

“Did you use open source code to save time, and the virus was hidden in it?”


Submission + - The Lengthening Arm of Uncle Sam's 'Pirate' Justice (torrentfreak.com)

TheGift73 writes: "Figures....

File-sharing was firmly on the agenda when the head of the US Department of Homeland Security touched down in the Australian capital last week. The four new agreements – promptly signed before Secretary Janet Napolitano flew back out of Canberra – were less about sharing season two of Game of Thrones and more about sharing the private, government held information of Australian citizens with US authorities."


Submission + - Powerful PlayStation 4 'Orbis' Runs Super HD but Hates Used Games (gamenguide.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Sony's next PlayStation, cod name Orbis, is planned for a 2013 holiday season release.

According to video game blog Kotaku, the next-gen Orbis is capable of handling super high definition resolutions of 4096x2160. Unfortunately the new console is rumored to have no backward compatibility for PlayStation 3 titles, meaning no support for used games. Kotaku also revealed some powerful specs for the new console.

"The PS4's GPU in particular, we're told, will be capable of displaying Orbis games at a resolution of up to 4096x2160, which is far in excess of the needs of most current HDTV sets. It'll also be capable of playing 3D games in 1080p (the PS3 could only safely manage 3D at 720p)," wrote Kotaku.

"The specs were very, very vague, but developers are being told to work on a AMD x64 CPU and a AMD Southern Islands GPU."

It also locks games onto PlayStation Network accounts and is only accessible when players are online. Players will have to connect to the PSN in order to bootup the game. Users who try to use a used game will only be able to play a trial version and is given the option of buying a full registered copy.

Sony's new anti-used games concept does not float well with both consumers and retailers. The controversy has already sparked threats from popular video game retailer GameStop. The video game retail chain plan on refusing to sell the next-gen console at stores if Orbis contains the anti-used game system.

All of this are rumors and the Kotaku blog warns that Sony has not confirmed any information and changes could be made.

Submission + - Apple vs. Nokia, RIM and Motorola on nano-SIM standard (techworld.com.au)

angry tapir writes: "Next week, two proposals for a new, smaller SIM card, dubbed nano-SIM — one backed by Apple and the other by Nokia, Research In Motion and Motorola Mobility — will go head-to-head as ETSI (the European Telecommunications Standards Institute) decides which card future smartphones and tablets will use. Measuring approximately 12 millimeters by 9 millimeters, the new SIM will be about 30 percent smaller than the micro-SIM. The thickness of the cards has been reduced by about 15 percent, according to Giesecke & Devrient. The nano-SIM is also approximately 60 percent smaller than traditional-size SIM cards"

Submission + - NJ gives man 7 years for legally having guns (reason.com)

cypherdtraitor writes: New Jersey Gun laws have reached a new level of insanity. In the state that is trying to ban firearms without the outright banning of firearms, a judge would not permit a defendant to inform the jury of when it is legal to transfer a firearm. The judge did not even inform the jury himself. Now, an innocent man may face 7 years in prison for following the written law, and violating New Jersey's draconian intent.

"Aitken and his friend Michael Torries had found an apartment in Hoboken, and Torries accompanied Aitken to Colorado to help with the last leg of the move. According to testimony Torries later gave at Aitken's trial, before leaving Colorado Aitken researched and printed out New Jersey and federal gun laws to be sure he moved his firearms legally. Richard Gilbert, Aitken's trial attorney, says Aitken also called the New Jersey State Police to get advice on how to legally transport his guns, although Burlington County Superior Court Judge James Morley didn't allow testimony about that phone call at Aitken's trial [...] The exemptions allow New Jersey residents to have guns[...]when traveling between residences. [...] Yet Judge Morley wouldn't allow Aitken to claim the exemption for transporting guns between residences. He wouldn't even let the jury know about it."


Submission + - OEMs charged less for Office 2010 if they preload

An anonymous reader writes: If an OEM wants to bundle Office Starter 2010 with a Windows computer they are selling, Microsoft plans to charge $5 per copy. If, however, the PC maker wants to save some dough, there's a way to pay just $2 per copy, but there's a catch. It also needs to bundle something called "PC Essentials," which includes Windows Live Essentials (Messenger, Mail, Writer, Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Family Safety, and Sync) and the Bing Bar (which will be included in Essentials as of Wave 4). It will also need to set Bing as the default search engine and MSN as the homepage in the PC's browser.


Submission + - Microsoft vs Google: Pot, Kettle, Black (stuff.co.nz) 1

Master Moose writes: So it would appear that Microsoft is funding an Anti-Google lobby group because they feel that Google's practices are anti-competitive and they are looking to grow in the Asia-Pacific region

Is this vindication for the Microsoft haters? Is Google that bad? Is there a lesser of the two evils?

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