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Comment That would be a Casio game watch (Score 1) 232

But they don't make them anymore. Here are some of these awe inspiring pieces of technological achievement:


Seriosly, Casio, if you are reading this: Please, please, please produce another batch of stainless steel game watches. People are already paying $500 for a second hand watch like this one:

Comment A lice little country you have there (Score 3, Funny) 170

Liu: Well suppose some of your power plants was to get broken and power lines start getting cut, er, power outages could occur during general inspection, like.
Xi: It wouldn't be good for business would it, Ma'am?
May: Are you threatening me?
Xi: Oh, no, no, no.
Liu: Whatever made you think that, Ma'am?
Xi: The Prime Minister doesn't think we're nice people, Liu.
Liu: We're your buddies, Ma'am.
Xi: We want to look after you.
May: Look after me?

Comment Useless without thrust (Score 1) 102

Well, its nice to have levitation (although it requires a very specific environment to work), but riding a hoverboard without thrust is as much fun as wind surfing without wind.
Actually thinking about it, why not equip the rider with a fire extinguisher? It worked for WALL-E!

Comment Seems like cancer is not so "man made" after all (Score 0) 46

Just recently there was a "scientific study" that claimed that cancer was caused by the excesses of modern life. They claimed this only on the fact that they could not find any cancer in egyptian mummies.

Well, those pseudo scientists certainly got their well deserved "Grog's Revenge".

Comment Our idea that never took off (Score 1) 536

We create software icons mainly for Windows (from XP to WIndows 8) and always need to follow the latest Microsoft style guidelines. When we started working on the Windows 8 icons we immediately saw that Microsoft was doing something awefully wrong by mixing two totally different UI styles in one single operating system.

So we came up with the idea that there should be a transition or "fading" between both styles in order to make it easier for Windows Vista/7 users to get used to the new style. So we took the old Vista/7 icons and converted them to monochrome versions, while keeping the overall shape. With some Javascript this could be used for a very cool transition between the old Vista/Windows 7 and the new Windows 8 style.

Unfortunately this idea never really took off (we never saw anybody use this), but I still think it could make the new style much more acceptable for users of Windows Vista/7.

If you are interested here is our technical page demonstrating how the transition works (some animated samples, lots of technical details):

Comment This does not come as a surprise (Score 1) 786

We create software icons and always need to follow the latest trends in UI design. When it became clear that Windows 8 would have the tiles UI we decided this was a mistake and came up with an idea to at least make the transition to the new UI more comfortable for Windows users.

What we did was to take the old Vista/Windows 7 icons and create a monochrome version of each icon. With some Javascript this could have been used for a very cool transition between the old Vista/Windows 7 desktop and the new Windows 8 style.

Unfortunately this idea never really took off (we never saw anybody use this), but used correctly it could actually come in really handy for Microsoft in handling this difficult situation.

If you are interested here is our technical page demonstrating how the transition works (some animated samples, lots of technical details):

Comment It was unusable for one simple reason (Score 5, Interesting) 89

When applying a gradient fill to an object it was not possible to adjust a gradient after applying. As a professional graphics designer I can say that a gradient never looks perfect the first time and always needs adjustment. Instead with Expression Design you had to apply the whole gradient again, hoping that this time it would look perfect (which never happened). This made the whole software the least productive tool ever for our job. We really tried, but Expression was simply unusable for us, I even suspect that the totally useless gradient tool is the reason why Microsoft developers decided to make the Windows 8 icons monochrome.

Comment Wise decision (Score 1) 228

Metro may be or may not be the future for Windows, but you can be sure that Aero and earlier Windows styles will be around for a while. New applications may be developed in Metro design, but if you extend existing apps, simply switching to Metro is not an option. Therefore I think Microsoft made the right decision to include support for earlier Windows versions in their VS Express editions. Limiting support to Metro would force many developers to stick with older versions, which cannot be what Microsoft intends to do. Since Metro and Aero are so fundametally different concepts, I suggest that Microsoft should offer a transition path that builds a bridge to Metro and allows developers to gradually adapt the Metro design. Maybe they could start with looking how the guys at have done this for their icons.

Submission + - FBI's operation against Bot Masters

Aditi.Tuteja writes: "FBI have put charges against three people for violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Under cybercrime initiative, called Operation Bot Roast, which has identified more than a million PCs infected with bot software.

Securityfocus reported that the U.S. Department of Justice have joined hands with Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) Coordination Center at Carnegie Mellon University and the Botnet Task Force, their aim is to disrupt the operations of bot masters that compromise their victims machines to use for sending spam or attacking other computers."

Submission + - software bug killed MGS

kto writes: "NASA officials said a bug in software uploaded to the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft may have led to the permanent loss of communications the spacecraft suffered in November. The software uploaded to MGS in June overwrote two memory addresses, eventually causing the gimbals that move the spacecraft's solar arrays to hit a hard stop."

Submission + - UK schools at risk of Microsoft lock-in

Robert writes: UK schools and colleges that have signed up to Microsoft Corp's academic licensing programs face the 'significant potential' of being locked in to the company's software, according to an interim review by the UK government agency responsible for technology in education. The British Educational Communications and Technology Agency report also states that most establishments surveyed do not believe that Microsoft's licensing agreements provide value for money.

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