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Comment Re:Everquest didn't have forums (Score 1) 833

I have a feeling this change will cause similar forums to rise in popularity and Blizzard will accomplish little other than losing control of the conversation and pissing off their users.

This is already largely the case with the min/max raiding crowd gravitating to a few non-Blizzard sites/forums for their information and discussion.

For example:

Interestingly, one reason the referenced site grew to popularity is the iron-handed approach to moderation - the slightest hint of trolling or asshatery is generally quickly stomped upon and/or mocked relentlessly by both the moderators and user population.

Submission + - ACTA draft to be made public next week (zdnet.co.uk)

Spitfirem1 writes: "Negotiators will on Wednesday publish the first officially-released draft of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, a new treaty designed to harmonise copyright enforcement around the world.

The decision to release the consolidated draft on 21 April was made at the eighth round of Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (Acta) negotiations, which took place this week in Wellington, New Zealand. So far, the only publicly available information on the negotiating countries' proposals and amendments have been leaked documents purporting to be drafts of the agreement."


Submission + - Stranded Prime Minister Runs Country by iPad (cnn.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Oh no... Steve Jobs is going to be (even more) insufferable now. When the Prime Minister of Norway, Jens Stoltenberg, was stranded in New York by the volcanic cloud that grounded flights in Europe, he stayed on top of the situation at home by working on his new iPad. The first sentence of TFA is, "Running a country? There's an app for that." *Shudder*

Comment Re:Is anyone surprised? (Score 2, Insightful) 130

Saying that the system of government best suited to corporate profits is a fascist-leaning dictatorship is like saying Bernie Madoff will get you the best return on your investment. It is sometimes true in the short term, but in the long term it is very, very false.

That would be relevant, if only people and corporations had the foresight to pay attention to anything more than the Next Big Thing. The lack of any sort of a long view and the attitude that what is best for right now is always the right choice are both almost ubiquitous in our culture and are detrimental to society in many cases.

Comment Re:Wonderful news (Score 1) 413


Cash depreciates over time relative to inflation, so almost no one holds significant amounts of cash but rather invest in securities, real estate, commodities, etc.

Here is Warren Buffett's portfolio, as an example.


In 2007 he was worth 60 billion, today he is worth 47 billion, which is a 'gain' of 10 billion over last year but is down from the 2007 number.

Comment Re:Wonderful news (Score 1) 413

We also keep in mind that large portions of these people's wealth is invested in various markets, so a year ago when the market was driven down by the panic-stricken masses, their wealth also plummeted. With the market correcting to more normal levels, they can't help but show massive gains in the past year.

If I had $20 invested in the stock market at the peak, which dropped to $10 in the market at the bottom, and now have $16, I would show a gain of 60% in the last year, but would have still lost money due to the recession.

Comment Re:Why are Bluetooth mouses so rare? (Score 1) 48

I think the big factors are the perceived lack of responsiveness for the gaming crowd and the lack of value it provides to most business-class desktop users. Speaking from experience, I would be vary cautious were I to decide to purchase another bluetooth mouse. I personally found Bluetooth to be far more trouble than it was worth. On the gaming side of things, the small but perceptible lag I experienced coupled with the connection dropping at inopportune times and requiring the pairing process to be completed again put a damper on things. For business applications it was less frustrating, but in that realm the added convenience doesn't seem to offset the increased price and support cost with the exception of mobile users. When 90% of calls regarding user input devices coming in to a help desk concern problems with wireless keyboards/mice, they quickly go away for most users. The Logitech Bluetooth mouse I was using was the top of the line offering at the time I purchased it. I picked up a comparatively inexpensive corded USB mouse and continue to enjoy using it years later, and haven't missed the cordless convenience one bit.

Submission + - Chameleon Liquid Could Replace LCDs (newscientisttech.com)

InvisblePinkUnicorn writes: "NewScientist reports on a color-changing liquid that could cheaply replace the color components of standard LCDs. According to researchers at UC Riverside, the liquid 'contains tiny iron oxide particles coated with plastic. It is cheap and easy to make, and could also be used in flexible, rewritable, electronic paper.' From the article: 'The opposing forces of electrostatic repulsion [in the plastic] and magnetic attraction [in the iron oxide] result in the particles arranging themselves into an ordered structure, known as a colloidal "photonic crystal". The colloidal crystal reflects light because the spacing between neighboring particles in the structure is equivalent to the wavelength of light. Also, tuning the spacing slightly alters the exact wavelength, or colour, of light that is reflected. This can easily be done by varying the strength of the magnetic field applied to the crystal.'"

Submission + - Six-Stroke Gasoline/Steam Hybrid Engine (autoweek.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Bruce Crower has made a fascinating modification to traditional internal combustion engines: a fifth and sixth stroke. His six-stroke engine injects water into the hot cylinder to achieve a second power stroke with the expanding steam. The engine "burns" equal amounts of gasoline and water, thereby reducing fuel consumption by a whopping 40%. Could this technology the future of petroleum powered vehicles? More information is available on Wikipedia.

Submission + - AA dumps Open Office in favour of MS Office

(Score.5, Interestin writes: The NZ Automobile Association has just announced that it's dropping Open Office and switching back to MS Office. According to their CIO, "Microsoft Office is not any cheaper, but it was almost impossible to work out what open-source was actually costing because of issues such as incompatibility and training". In addition "you have no idea where open-source products are going, whereas vendors like Microsoft provide a roadmap for the future".
United States

Submission + - U.S. has lost ability to build its own roads

michaelmalak writes: "The land famous for its love of the automobile and construction of Interstates and other highways, with high-elevation tunnels, viaducts snaking through canyons, and water crossings of up to 20 miles is now outsourcing design and construction of its roads to Asia — not because it's cheaper, but because the U.S. has lost the expertise. According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer regarding the newly opened span across the Tacoma Narrows, "the American steel industry had imploded, while steel-making — and the expertise needed to build suspension bridges — had moved to Asia" and "the detailed engineering and fieldwork and all the spinning and cable-wrapping equipment ... were provided by ... Japanese construction giants""

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