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Submission + - First AACS Blue-Ray/HD-DVD key revocation

Thomas Charron writes: "An update posted for Intervideo WinDVD 8 confirms that it's AACS key has been possibly revoked. WinDVD 8 is the software which had it's device key compromised, allowing unfettered access to Blue-Ray and HD-DVD content, resulting in HD movies being made available via many torrent sites online. This is possibly the first known key revocation which has taken place, and little is known of the actual process used for key revocation. According to the release, "Please be aware that failure to apply the update will result in AACS-protected HD DVD and BD playback being disabled. ", which pretty much confirms that the key revocation has already taken place for all newly released Blu-Ray and HD-DVD discs."

Submission + - Thunderbird 2 RC 1 Released

chip_whisperer writes: "So, folks, it looks like finally TBird 2 RC1 has just come out. The rumbling edge below has some of the latest bug fixes here. It still runs on the Gecko 1.8 Engine, but sports a host of improvements over the 1.5 series, including custom tags, automatic GMail and .Mac account sign-ups, conversation branching, and much more."

Submission + - Astronaut arrested for plotting murder

Tetris Ling writes: Captain Lisa Novak, an astronaut, was arrested in Florida for attempting to murder fellow astronaut Colleen Shipman. The motive? It seems that Shipman and Novak were competing for the affections of fellow astronaut Commander William Oefelein. The details are just as weird. Apparently, Novak drove all the way from Houston to Orlando wearing an adult diaper to eliminate bathroom breaks. Once there, Novak donned a disguise, confronted Shipman, and sprayed her with pepper spray.

Submission + - Jobs' thoughts on DRM: European groups unimpressed

philbert2.71828 writes: Steve Jobs' "Thoughts on Music", covered earlier this week on Slashdot, got a cool reception from some European consumer groups, regulators and legislators that insist that Jobs is mainly trying to pass the blame for the lack of interoperability between the iPod and iTunes with competitors. Jobs argued that interoperability was unworkable as long as DRM is still in use.

From the article:
John Kennedy, chief executive of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, a record-industry trade group based in London, said ... "He seems to have gotten frustrated with the various attacks over interoperability. He seems to be trying to take out that frustration on the music industry. The good news is that he seems to want to talk about interoperability, which in the past was a closed door."
The Internet

Woman Wins Right to Criticize Surgeon on Website 250

Scoopy writes "The website of a cosmetic surgery patient critical of her Sacramento surgeon's work is protected free speech, an appeals court said in an opinion that could have statewide implications. The website contains before and after photographs of 33-year-old Georgette Gilbert, who said the surgery left her with one eyebrow higher than the other and a surprised look permanently affixed to her face. The website was challenged in a defamation suit filed by surgeon Jonathan Sykes, a prominent professor and television commentator on the subject of cosmetic surgery. Although the Sacramento-based 3rd District Court of Appeal only mentions Sykes, the opinion suggests that others who use 'hot topics' of public interest in their advertisements and promotions may shed protections against defamation afforded to ordinary citizens."

Submission + - Immunity Releases Wi-Fi Hacking Tool

00*789*00 writes: ZDNet has a story about the public launch of Immunity's Silica, a portable hacking device that can search for and join 802.11 (Wi-Fi) access points, scan other connections for open ports, and automatically launch code execution exploits from a built-in exploit platform.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Genes Linked to Teen Delinquency

sporkme writes: "An Australian study has found a link between antisocial behavior and specific genes, independent of parents' emotional influence.

"Our data shows that marital conflict is not a major culprit," said epidemiologist Nick Martin, from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research. "Rows have often been blamed for ratbag behaviour but we've got no evidence to suggest that they are the problem." Researchers, including several from the US, studied 1,045 pairs of twins and their children to see whether the link between parental fighting and kids' conduct problems was genetic or environmental. They found that children of an identical twin had the same levels of behavioural problems regardless of whether it was their parent or their parent's identical sibling that had marital rows.
The study was published in the journal Child Development, which is available by subscription."

Submission + - RIAA to Apple: Spread the DRM!

Kalriath writes: Posted at The Register is the RIAA's official response to Steve Jobs open letter decrying DRM and asking the recording industry to seriously consider allowing DRM-free music. They have this to say about it:

The RIAA has seized on the weakest part of Steve Jobs' anti-DRM manifesto by banging on Apple to license its FairPlay technology to other companies.

"Apple's offer to license FairPlay to other technology companies is a welcome breakthrough and would be a real victory for fans, artists and labels," the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) said. "There have been many services seeking a licence to the Apple DRM. This would enable the interoperability that we have been urging for a very long time."
The section in question from Steves letter, which quite clearly states the problems with this approach reads:

The second alternative is for Apple to license its FairPlay DRM technology to current and future competitors with the goal of achieving interoperability between different company's players and music stores. On the surface, this seems like a good idea since it might offer customers increased choice now and in the future. And Apple might benefit by charging a small licensing fee for its FairPlay DRM.

However, when we look a bit deeper, problems begin to emerge. The most serious problem is that licensing a DRM involves disclosing some of its secrets to many people in many companies, and history tells us that inevitably these secrets will leak. The Internet has made such leaks far more damaging, since a single leak can be spread worldwide in less than a minute. Such leaks can rapidly result in software programs available as free downloads on the Internet which will disable the DRM protection so that formerly protected songs can be played on unauthorized players.
Jobs may be a smooth talker, but against such circular logic, even he can't win.

Microsoft Slugs Mac Users With Vista Tax 661

An anonymous reader writes "Mac users wanting to run Vista on their Macintosh, alongside Mac OS X programs, will have to buy an expensive version of Vista if they want to legally install it on their systems. The end-user license agreement for the cheaper versions of Vista (Home Basic and Home Premium) explicitly forbids the use of those versions on virtual machines (i.e., Macs pretending to be PCs)." Update: 02/08 17:50 GMT by KD : A number of readers have pointed out that the Vista EULA does not forbid installing it via Apple's Bootcamp; that is, the "tax" only applies to running Vista under virtualization.

Submission + - Gmail becomes more widely available

jay2000 writes: "Google Inc.'s e-mail service is almost ready to accept all comers, nearly three years after the online search leader shook up the Internet by offering users an unprecedented amount of free storage and displaying ads based on the content of the correspondence. Effective Wednesday, the Mountain View-based company removed the invitation-only restrictions on its Gmail service in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Brazil. Google opened up the service last year in several other parts of the world, including Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Russia and Egypt. ly-available/"

Submission + - iPhone or winPhone?

Candera writes: "I'm not good at writing so I'll clip from the article I'm linking too. "Technology and design are a funny combination. The truly unique ideas are few and far between and every couple of months one company will come up with a truly innovative design, concept or feature that everyone else will replicate, try to one-up and brand as their own. From the great Vista vs. OSX debate, to the never-ending iPhone and touchscreen debate, it is sometimes hard to decipher who came up with what first. TeamSugar user Sinsational contacted me about Meizu, a Chinese cell phone that she found on Gizmodo, which just happens to look a whole lot like the iPhone. "Could it be for real?" asks Sinsational. Apparently it is." Clipped from GeekSugar"

Comment Tokyo is an unfair example (Score 1) 659

I've been in many countries in Europe and also spent some time in the US and in Japan. My conclusion is that -- unless extremely wealthy -- a community can only support one primary mode of transportation. If most people drive to work then the road infrastructure will be pretty decent and public transportation horrible. If few people own cars it will be vice versa.

In Tokyo very few people drive, therefore they have plenty of cash to spend on subway and train tickets (which add up to a hefty sum by the end of the month). In most US cities people have cars and the market just isn't there for building a tram, or even for buying a fleet of buses (buses, btw, provide very little advantage over cars as they are subject to the same traffic and weather hindrances).

Some European cities get around this limitation by artificially injecting wads of taxpayer cash into the public transport infrastructure, so they can have functioning roads and public transport at the same time. But in the US very few communities would put up with this kind of "waste".

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