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China's Nine-Day Traffic Jam Tops 62 Miles 198

A traffic jam on the Beijing-Tibet expressway has now entered its ninth day and has grown to over 62 miles in length. This mother-of-all delays has even spawned its own micro-economy of local merchants selling water and food at inflated prices to stranded drivers. Can you imagine how infuriating it must be to see someone leave their blinker on for 9 days?

Churchill Accused of Sealing UFO Files, Fearing Public Panic 615

Newly released secret files show that Winston Churchill ordered a cover-up of an alleged encounter between a UFO and a RAF bomber because he feared public panic. From the article: "Mr Churchill is reported to have made a declaration to the effect of the following: 'This event should be immediately classified since it would create mass panic among the general population and destroy one's belief in the Church.'"

Comment Just ordered mine on Monday (Score 1) 366

I've been an avid iPhone user for the past few years. Was just about to grab the iPhone 4 up in Canada when it's release next week but I already had iOS 4 (mildly jailbroken) on my 3g and in all honesty, I wasn't overly impressed. While it did implement the much need multi-tasking I always felt locked and when I did fiddle with other jailbroken apps (OS 3 + 4) I found the performance went to hell.

So a few weeks back I saw the Nexus One won't be offered anymore and I did a bit of investigating and realized just how open Android really is. So I ordered the phone on Monday after hearing the last shipment is abound and when I went to check the status this morning it appears they're already all gone.

That being said, I am not hating on the iPhone at all, and I will miss my iPhone. But I'm willing to forgo the well thought out "eco system" with Apple to something a bit more robust and open. I like to fiddle, jailbreaking allowed me that, but I still felt locked in.

Also our phone plans in Canada absolutely suck, I'm locked into my contract with Rogers until mid next year so I could buy the iPhone at $300 and I'm certain they'll say I can't get an early upgrade (couldn't do it with the 3GS!!). So 300 vs 550 unlocked and I can leave Rogers whenever I want(after my damn contract is up :) ) is money well spent.


How the Internet Didn't Fail As Predicted 259

Lord Byron Eee PC writes "Newsweek is carrying a navel-gazing piece on how wrong they were when in 1995 they published a story about how the Internet would fail. The original article states, 'Nicholas Negroponte, director of the MIT Media Lab, predicts that we'll soon buy books and newspapers straight over the Intenet. Uh, sure.' The article continues to say that online shopping will never happen, that airline tickets won't be purchased over the web, and that newspapers have nothing to fear. It's an interesting look back at a time when the Internet was still a novelty and not yet a necessity."
XBox (Games)

An Early Look At Halo: Reach 107

KatanAlpha writes "Based on all the information coming out about Halo: Reach, it seems that Bungie's basic philosophy has been: 'The sequels to the first Halo sucked. Let's fix that.' We've already seen a little bit of this with Halo: ODST, wherein Bungie returned to some of the core elements of Halo gameplay and ditched many of the changes introduced in Halo 2 and 3. Reach seems to continue this idea while trying to invigorate the franchise by introducing greatly improved graphics and additional gameplay mechanics."

Man Fined $1.5 Million For Leaked Mario Game 287

An anonymous reader writes "A Queensland man will have to pay Nintendo $1.5 million in damages after illegally copying and uploading one of its recent games to the internet ahead of its release, the gaming giant says. Nintendo said the loss was caused when James Burt made New Super Mario Bros Wii available for illegal download a week ahead of its official Australian release in November of last year. Nintendo applied for and was granted a search order by the Federal Court, forcing Burt to disclose the whereabouts of all his computers, disks and electronic storage devices in November. He was also ordered to allow access, including passwords, to his social networking sites, email accounts and websites."
PlayStation (Games)

PS3 Hacked? 296

Several readers have sent word that George Hotz (a.k.a. geohot), the hacker best known for unlocking Apple's iPhone, says he has now hacked the PlayStation 3. From his blog post: "I have read/write access to the entire system memory, and HV level access to the processor. In other words, I have hacked the PS3. The rest is just software. And reversing. I have a lot of reversing ahead of me, as I now have dumps of LV0 and LV1. I've also dumped the NAND without removing it or a modchip. 3 years, 2 months, 11 days...that's a pretty secure system. ... As far as the exploit goes, I'm not revealing it yet. The theory isn't really patchable, but they can make implementations much harder. Also, for obvious reasons I can't post dumps. I'm hoping to find the decryption keys and post them, but they may be embedded in hardware. Hopefully keys are setup like the iPhone's KBAG."

Former Exec Says Electronic Arts "Is In the Wrong Business" 180

Mitch Lasky was the executive vice president of Mobile and Online at Electronic Arts until leaving the publisher to work at an investment firm. He now has some harsh things to say about how EA has been run over the past several years, in particular criticizing the decisions of CEO John Riccitiello. Quoting: "EA is in the wrong business, with the wrong cost structure and the wrong team, but somehow they seem to think that it is going to be a smooth, two-year transition from packaged goods to digital. Think again. ... by far the greatest failure of Riccitiello's strategy has been the EA Games division. JR bet his tenure on EA's ability to 'grow their way through the transition' to digital/online with hit packaged goods titles. They honestly believed that they had a decade to make this transition (I think it's more like 2-3 years). Since the recurring-revenue sports titles were already 'booked' (i.e., fully accounted for in the Wall Street estimates) it fell to EA Games to make hits that could move the needle. It's been a very ugly scene, indeed. From Spore, to Dead Space, to Mirror's Edge, to Need for Speed: Undercover, it's been one expensive commercial disappointment for EA Games after another. Not to mention the shut-down of Pandemic, half of the justification for EA's $850MM acquisition of Bioware-Pandemic. And don't think that Dante's Inferno, or Knights of the Old Republic, is going to make it all better. It's a bankrupt strategy."

Comment Macbook Air Tablet? (Score 1) 596

I haven't seen any comments referencing the Macbook Air. Everyone keeps stating the new tablet could, if it even exists be an oversized iphone/itouch. But has anyone given any real serious thought into the macbook air, possibly reconfigred to have a touch screen on a swivel or something similar? This could provide both a laptop with a keyboard, and possibly a touch tablet similar to other competing offerings, just built on OSX instead of the iphoneOS. Meh, just a thought.


NASA Tests Flying Airbag 118

coondoggie writes "NASA is looking to reduce the deadly impact of helicopter crashes on their pilots and passengers with what the agency calls a high-tech honeycomb airbag known as a deployable energy absorber. So in order to test out its technology NASA dropped a small helicopter from a height of 35 feet to see whether its deployable energy absorber, made up of an expandable honeycomb cushion, could handle the stress. The test crash hit the ground at about 54MPH at a 33 degree angle, what NASA called a relatively severe helicopter crash."

Sharp Rise In Jailing of Online Journalists; Iran May Just Kill Them 233

bckspc writes "The Committee to Protect Journalists has published their annual census of journalists in prison. Of the 136 reporters in prison around the world on December 1, 'At least 68 bloggers, Web-based reporters, and online editors are imprisoned, constituting half of all journalists now in jail.' Print was next with 51 cases. Also, 'Freelancers now make up nearly 45 percent of all journalists jailed worldwide, a dramatic recent increase that reflects the evolution of the global news business.' China, Iran, Cuba, Eritrea, and Burma were the top 5 jailers of journalists." rmdstudio writes, too, with word that after the last few days' protest there, largely organized online, the government of Iran is considering the death penalty for bloggers and webmasters whose reports offend it.

Jetman Attempts Intercontinental Flight 140

Last year we ran the story of Yves Rossy and his DIY jetwings. Yves spent $190,000 and countless hours building a set of jet-powered wings which he used to cross the English Channel. Rossy's next goal is to cross the Strait of Gibraltar, from Tangier in Morocco and Tarifa on the southwestern tip of Spain. From the article: "Using a four-cylinder jet pack and carbon fibre wings spanning over 8ft, he will jump out of a plane at 6,500 ft and cruise at 130 mph until he reaches the Spanish coast, when he will parachute to earth." Update 18:57 GMT: mytrip writes: "Yves Rossy took off from Tangiers but five minutes into an expected 15-minute flight he was obliged to ditch into the wind-swept waters."

Comment It's all about money! (Score 1) 429

Hmmm, there's an issue with the "we wont' be deploying in 2010" argument. While most are saying they want to do a "shakedown" of the windows7 OS and get all of the bugs out, what most do not realize is the release date is at the end of most companies fiscal year. All of the budgets for 2010 have already been allocated and there is no way any company would approve a budget for an OS that will be deployed as soon as it's released as the app guys haven't had a chance to test their apps in a full production build.

However, if you are a large corporation I can guarentee the desktop engineers already have a working build and would be ready to deploy if it was necessary, but it all comes down to money and dev time!

While XP is still a HUGE force in the corporate world it isn't free to maintain the MS support. It will eventually come down to minor deployments here and there within a firm but full adoption will not happen until 2011 at a minimum.

The real looser here is Vista. I know of maybe a handful of companies that actually did the Vista thing. Everyone else will leap frog it and adopt Windows 7.

Comment Re:What the hell was wrong with DOOM3? (Score 1) 425

Yea I definitley agree, startled is not the same as scared!

But this reminds me of a game back in the late 90's, Alien Vs. Predator for the PC. Now THAT game was scary. Wandering around as a marine hearing the motion sensor blip, then beep when something was around and you not having any idea where the hell the thing was. That was the only game that actually made me afraid of what it was going to do next, and when the encounter did happen it usually started with a scream, shooting wildly into the dark, and then a "Did I actually just scream? WTF"

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