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Comment 52" LCD, XBox 360, Mac Mini, HD OTA, Internet (Score 1) 502

Seriously, who would seriously want to pay monthly for service you can just as easily get otherwise. TV + HD OTA Mac Mini + Internet (either streaming or download) XBox 360 + Netflix Mac Mini + Hulu Mac Mini + iTunes Best part is, it's wife-proof! We watch all the TV we want with substantially fewer commercials. I mean, a 30 second commercial interruption is far better than 5 minutes of commercial interruptions.

EA Shuts Down Pandemic Studios, Cuts 200 Jobs 161

lbalbalba writes "Electronic Arts is shutting down its Westwood-based game developer Pandemic Studios just two years after acquiring it, putting nearly 200 people out of work. 'The struggling video game publisher informed employees Tuesday morning that it was closing the studio as part of a recently announced plan to eliminate 1,500 jobs, or 16% of its global workforce. Pandemic has about 220 employees, but an EA spokesman said that a core team, estimated by two people close to the studio to be about 25, will be integrated into the publisher's other Los Angeles studio, in Playa Vista.' An ex-developer for Pandemic attributed the studio's struggles to poor decisions from the management."

Comment Works Great! (Score 1) 1055

My father-in-law does this for the Seattle Parks Department. He still winds up taking a few crisis phone calls. But, he manages to do all the coordination via cell phone and only in an extremely rare occasion does he have to go in himself. The way I see it, and him, it's very hard to just put in 8 hrs a day. And since you probably aren't paid overtime, being rewarded with a day off for putting in 9 - 9's is pretty nice.

Comment DigiPen -- (Score 5, Interesting) 178

As a game developer myself, Drawn to Life (2007) Lock's Quest (2008), and a student from a 'video game college', I can offer perspective to interested parties.

Any prospective student should know that it is very difficult to break into the gaming industry. Further, they need to ask themselves why they are attending generic college XYZ for video games. Specifically, what does this college offer and what are their job placement statistics? DigiPen regularly has job placement percentages in the high 90s within 6 months of graduation. Might I add that many of our professors have worked in the industry extensively? Who better to lecture on game networking, audio, physics, etc. than someone who has developed on triple A titles on all of the major consoles? I could spend ample time explaining how the first 2 years at DigiPen covers more than most Master's programs elsewhere in the country, but I digress.

The sad fact of the matter is that most collegiate programs do not have the expertise on the bench to be able to ACTUALLY help students get ready for the real world of video game programming. DigiPen graduates are more-often-than-not able to hit the ground running on most any platform or console.

To compound matters worse, real-time interactive simulations (aka video games or other simulators) are some of the most advanced computing that a developer can strive to code. Everything from memory management to networking has to be properly written for games. You are, in a sense, writing an entire OS on top of the underlying console dashboards. Quite a daunting task.

And to add just a bit more, what is it with Computer Science students who believe they can leave a typical college and hit the ground running with that perfect development job? I've spent a decade of internships, part-time jobs, multiple college degrees, etc. to get to the point where I can competently compete for a development job 'fresh out of college'. And yes, that means I was interning back in high school in development-type jobs.

Real video game colleges spend more time on advanced math (the stuff beyond calculus) and physics than discussing the best attack combo for the latest fighting game. Don't get me wrong, we play video games, but that is typically after an 80-120 hour work week writing code until we actually dream out our coding assignments to only wake up at 4 am to rewrite a memory manager, network engine, sound engine, shader, 3d model file format, etc.

FBI Lied To Support Need For PATRIOT Act Expansion 396

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "It probably won't surprise you, but in 2005, the FBI manufactured evidence to get the power to issue National Security Letters under the PATRIOT Act. Unlike normal subpoenas, NSLs do not require probable cause and you're never allowed to talk about having received one, leading to a lack of accountability that caused them to be widely abused. The EFF has discovered via FOIA requests that an FBI field agent was forced by superiors to return papers he got via a lawful subpoena, then demand them again via an NSL (which was rejected for being unlawful at the time), and re-file the original subpoena to get them back. This delay in a supposedly critical anti-terror investigation then became a talking point used by FBI Director Robert Mueller when the FBI wanted to justify their need for the power to issue National Security Letters."

For CS Majors, How Important Is the "Where?" 991

An anonymous reader writes "I'm a high school senior who is trying to pick a college to attend. I've been accepted by two comparably selective schools. One is a highly regarded tech school, and the other is a highly regarded liberal arts institution. I prefer the liberal arts college, but the computer science program is small, graduating about a dozen students a year. The course load is heavily theory based; programming languages are taught in later years. How much would the tech school vs. non tech school matter? Are CS majors from non-tech school considered inferior? What would an HR department think? What would you think if you were hiring?"

Submission + - Stanford helps RIAA and MPAA with DMCA complaints

esthetic writes: "I am a current Stanford student and 2 days ago I received an email from the dean warning us of new financial penalties for DMCA complaints. Stanford is backed by and made famous by companies such as Google and Yahoo who depend on net neutrality to freely dispense information to the public. For actively promoting a censorship law, Stanford demonstrates that they are not ready to embrace the idea that information should be freely distributed online. I worry for our freedom online when an institution known for its creativity and involvement in constructing the internet enforces such a nebulous and morally ambiguous policy. I would like to hear from the Slashdot community on how I could effectively complain to the university and what type of arguments I should be using? here's the original email: "Dear Stanford student, Illegal use of file-sharing technology continues to be a critical problem at Stanford. In spite of our efforts to advise students about the serious consequences that can result from illegal distribution of copyrighted materials there is clear evidence that this is a growing phenomenon that is not going away. As a result, the university is announcing a change in the policy governing DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) complaints. The new policy involves an Internet reconnect fee and represents a significant change in actions the university will take in addressing violations. For information on the new policy please see: nnectfee5-11-07.Web.pdf. If you have questions about the DMCA Reconnect Fee policy, please contact Lauren Schoenthaler (at:, Senior University Counsel. Regards, Greg Boardman Vice Provost for Student Affairs" here's the policy: nnectfee5-11-07.Web.pdf"
United States

Submission + - Bill Gates for President?

dukeluke writes: "So, Scott Adams posted a while ago (11/19) about an atheist business leader running for US presidency. He also updated that today (11/30) on his blog. Turns out there is also a website already devoted to garnering support to get him to run link. What do you guys think? With all of his charities, he is already the largest philanthropist in the world. Would he make a good president? After all, he is currently the richest man on earth."

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