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Comment Re:"Flaw"? (Score 5, Informative) 269

This is simply not true. Stupid as it may seem, Google has set up the Play store so that they are merely the "card processor". I agree that it seems a bit of a stretch, but that's the way it is. As such, the app developer really is the merchant. That's why you get receipts (via google checkout) from Joe Bloggs LLC rather than from Google itself.

Comment root causes (Score 1) 592

The right of first sale has always been very frustrating to game developers/publishers. Since in theory a whole line of people can play (and temporarily own) the same physical copy of the game, getting the same, full, "as new" experience, while only one payment ever goes to the publisher. As a game developer myself i can totally see this frustration myself, but can't really argue with a customers right to sell something they have purchased.

To me there are two major issues that cause resale to be a problem.

A. Most games are designed as consumable experiences - maybe they shouldn't be. Once you have have played through, there is a little to make you want to keep the game, other than the occasional tacked-on multiplayer mode, or the geek-centric urge to collect a "library" of games. On slashdot, car-analogies are popular, but from most points of view, a car is not a consumable purchase. When you sell your car, you lose something very tangible: ie. the ability to get around. Once you sell your (completed) game, you pretty much lose nothing - a closer analogy for many games would be a bowl of ice cream. You buy it, you eat it, and then... wait... it reappears, un-eaten, and you can sell it on too? Awesome!

B. Games are too f***ing expensive. Does no one at MS, wondering why used-games are so popular, stop to think $60 is crazy expensive? I'm positive that sales would more than double at $30, just from the increased impulse buys.There are a lot of people who currently just don't buy *any* games because of the cost. In addition used-game margins would plummet, causing retailers to see them less as an easy revenue stream, and consequently push them less.

So in summary. Give consumers a reason to not want to not sell the game they bought. Also give them less incentive to choose a used copy.

ps. another analogy for a consumable experience is obviously a buying a movie ticket. How does this compare with what MS are (maybe) proposing? And why is it different? (I'm honestly asking.) You buy a ticket, you see the latest, greatest, Fast & Furious movie at the local theater. Right of first sale says you can sell your ticket to someone else, but those f**kers at the door ripped your ticket in half! Is this really any different from an activation code?

Submission + - Google aims to outthink Apple with new DARPA-like research team (

redkemper writes: Google on Monday stated in a regulatory filing that it will be cutting approximately 20% of Motorola Mobility’s workforce, eliminating 4,000 jobs and closing about one-third of Motorola’s offices around the world. It’s tough news for Motorola workers, but it came alongside the formation of a new division within Motorola that may help create a brighter future for the struggling smartphone maker...

Comment Re:This has been fixed (Score 1) 596

Since android's apis are java, it would be trivial to decompile and circumvent the code that initiates the online check. Code obfuscation helps but only to slow down the process marginally.

Really, java makes things very easy for hackers - at least with a "real" compiled language a little bit of effort would be necessary!

Comment Re:I'm glad I switch carriers (Score 1) 307

My wife just switched to Virgin mobile too (I don't have a data plan at all , lol) .
A high, initially off-putting, cost up front, but works out way cheaper in the long run. ($30/month if you set up automatic pay) Shame their choice of phones is pretty poor (though they have iphone now too), and that they're locked to the Sprint network, but i can get over that.

Hopefully a lot of people will switch and the big 4 providers will wake up and get their act together. I too liked the idea of the verizon/at&t shared plans, naively thinking it would save money. But even with 4 lines its *still* $55 a month each (what a bargain!) and that gives you a measely 250mb/month each (if shared equally)

Submission + - Judge Rules iPod/iPhone Speaker Docks Don't Infringe on Bose Patent; Apple Sighs (

CIStud writes: "U.S. District Court in Massachusetts has ruled that iPod, iPad and iPhone speakers docks do not infringe on a patent owned by Bose Corp. for digital audio conversion. The ruling in the case of Bose vs. small dock speaker makers SDI, DPI, Imation and others reportedly was a test case that would have set precedent for potential patent infringement by other manufacturers... and even Apple... according to the defendant's legal team. At issue: Is an iPhone, iPad or iPod a "computer." The judge says they aren't."

Submission + - Why Ouya isn't going to work (

thetechblock writes: "So there has been a lot of buzz on the Internet about a Kickstarter project called OUYA. For the uninitiated who have been living under a rock for the past week, OUYA is an open-source game console based on the Android operating system. It plugs into your TV and allows you to play games on your big screen (rather than on your phone or tablet screen, which has been the recent trend). And the overall mission is for this to be an open platform, unlike Xbox and PlayStation, so anyone can develop games for it (most independent developers can’t afford the fees required to publish their games on the big consoles). And one more thing: it only costs $99 if you donate to Kickstarter right now. Unsurprisingly, Ouya was the fastest project to ever hit $1 million in funding on Kickstarter, and it crossed the $4 million threshold in just a few days."

Submission + - Can 50-core Xeon Phi's x86 Architecture Best Nvidia's Massive GPUs? (

An anonymous reader writes: Nvidia's massively parallel GPUs are being harnessed by an increasing number of supercomputer makers to boost their performance, but at the cost of using a proprietary instruction set that was not designed for general-purpose computing. Now that Intel is releasing its own x86-based massively parallel processor--the Xeon Phi--the supercomputer community will have a choice to make: use Intel's x86 parallel processing tools to create their supercomputer applications or rewrite their applications to make use of Nvidia's GPU's and proprietary instructions. The verdict won't be in on which is best for several years, but I'm hoping to stimulate the programming community to start debating the pros and cons now, so that by the time Intel starts shipping its 50-core Xeon Phi this fall we can have enough data points to make an informed decision. What's your take on Intel's versus Nvidia's approach to supercomputing?

Comment Re:Native code (Score 1) 414

Yeah, WP7 was a write-off as far as cross platform apps were concerned for this reason (games in particular). They're still (unsurprisingly) pushing DirectX when everyone else is using OpenGL, but its better than nothing, and won't generally require a whole app rewrite.

Comment Re:This isn't a troll just an observation (Score 2) 288

This is all very well as a business strategy if they could actually pull it off. Unless you count windows itself, I'm not sure if any of their me-too products have been profitable at all. Even XBox, which many view as successful, is only starting to turn a profit 10 years later, and must surely constitute a huge net loss overall.

This strategy (if it is a strategy at all, and not just a general lack of direction/ideas) *should* avoid "high risk flailing about" but in practice, MS seem to do a lot of flailing anyway.

It boggles my mind that a company with so many resources, and willingness to throw its money about, consistently fails to produce successful new products.

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