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British Pizza Chain To Install Cones of Silence 122

itwbennett writes "British pizza chain Pizza Express is installing iPod docks and soundproof domes in booths of their new iPizzeria stores. 'The idea is that you can plug in your iPod and play whatever music you like without disturbing other diners,' says blogger Peter Smith. 'But I'm sure it'd work for talking about government secrets and other spy stuff, too.'"

The Science of Caddyshack 55

astroengine writes "Thirty years after the release of the cult classic comedy Caddyshack, Discovery News has geeked out and gone on the hunt for any trace amount of science they can find in the movie (video). From gopher territoriality to seismic deformation, from pool poop bacteria to the color of lightning, it turns out there's quite a lot of science to talk about..."

Comment Re:They also left out a good deal of context (Score 1) 973

You're ignoring the very valid point that you watched that video sitting in your leather office chair, on your 27" LCD, without the fear that someone is shooting at you, as probably happens every day to these crews. They are FLYING A HELICOPTER and watching a grainy b&w video on a small display, and forced to make judgments that may cost them or others their lives. In your full-time role as router-jockey (or whatever you do), can you claim to understand even a fraction of the fear, danger, and difficulty these men deal with daily? The answer to that is NO, in case you were thinking anything else.

Have someone try to kill you every day for a year, THEN look at a grainy video while you fly through the air, and if you haven't shit your pants by then, well you *might* have the cred to start judging. Until then, STFU.

(And yes, I know Apache's have two pilots, one to fly and the other to handle the weapons. Doesn't change the point. And no, I don't support the slaughter of innocents; I was horrified to watch it unfold, but I KNEW WHAT WAS GOING ON IN ADVANCE. These guys have to make a judgment unlike anything you've ever had to do.)

Son Sues Mother Over Facebook Posts 428

Most kids hate having their parents join in on a discussion on Facebook, but one 16-year-old in Arkansas hates it so much he has filed suit against his mother, charging her with harassment. From the article: "An Arkadelphia mother is charged with harassment for making entries on her son's Facebook page. Denise New's 16-year-old son filed charges against her last month and requested a no-contact order after he claims she posted slanderous entries about him on the social networking site. New says she was just trying to monitor what he was posting." Seems like he could just unfriend her.

Multimodal, Multitouch Gaming Gaining Traction 94

andylim writes "Several universities and commercial entities are developing multimodal, multitouch games, such as a card game using iPhones for individual hands and an iPad for public information, and an iPad Scrabble game that lets you use your iPhone to see your letter tiles. Of course, it's an extremely expensive setup right now, but over time it will become cheaper. It's also pretty cool, so why wouldn't you want to play board/card/strategy games like this?"

Raleigh Councilman Offers Child Naming Rights To Google 121

Anonymous Meoward writes "In what may be the weirdest perk proposed by a municipal authority to entice business, city councilman Bonner Gaylord has offered to name his unborn children Sergey and Larry, after the founders of Google. All he wants in return is the search giant to build its proposed high-speed fiber-optic network in Raleigh."

Comment Only one vendor can do this right... (Score 3, Informative) 178

Wow, that's a string of misguided replies, with the occasional person that actually knows what they're talking about. Full disclosure: I'm an engineer for Aruba Networks, and this is exactly the kind of thing I/we do regularly. I've personally done the Interop shows in Javitts Center in NYC, the All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium, and various other conferences with 1,000 or more people. As a company, we've done the wireless network at Black Hat for years (without one failure or hack), the HoPe conference, as well as most of the hotels and conference centers in Vegas. Oh yeah, and every US Air Force base in the world. If you want this to work, here are the unique features that ONLY Aruba Networks provides for high density deployments (all without needing software on the clients or CCX extensions in the NIC card)...

- Band Steering: Use dual-radio access points. The Aruba gear detects if a client supports both 2.4g and 5g, and moves the client automatically to the 5g band, which is cleaner and has more channels available.
- Spectrum Load Balancing: Every vendor offers load balancing: there are 10 users on AP-1/Channel 1, and 20 on AP-2/Channel 6, so put the next user on AP-1. This ignores the fact that the only resource you're really constrained by is the amount of spectrum in use, not the number of users on an AP. If those 10 users are using most of the spectrum of Channel 1, while Channel 6 isn't being used as heavily by the 20 users, you'll get better performance by balancing the user to the less-utilized spectrum, rather than the lowest user-count AP.
- Co-Channel Interference: The Aruba architecture knows when a client is within range of two APs on the same channel, and schedules transmissions out of the APs so they don't collide in the air.
- Adjacent channel interference: Aruba ecognizes that there *will* be some bleed between transmissions on adjacent channels, and manages transmissions to avoid that.
- Airtime Fairness: Aruba recognizes the different client phy types (802.11a, b, g, and n-2.4/n-5) and allocates certain amounts of airtime to each client, so those old 11b clients don't drag your 11n clients to a screeching halt.
- Channel Reuse: modifying the collision threshold on the channel to allow you to reuse channels in much closer proximity to one another than normally possible.
- Dynamic Multicast Optimization: The APs can detect a multicast stream and determine if it's better to send the stream to all multicast clients at one, but at the normal lowest data rate, or convert the stream to a series of unicast transmissions that can be sent to each client at a much higher rate.
- Mode-aware Adaptive Radio Management: Deploy as many APs as you want. The Aruba architecture will automatically turn on (or off!) individual radios based upon RF needs; too much RF is worse than not enough, in most cases.
- Client bandwidth contracts: Set a rate limit for each user, so one person can't use half your bandwidth.
- Policy Enforcement Firewall: Allow your users to only do what protocols you want (http, https, dhcp, dns), and block all the others. iTunes/Bonjour/MulticastDNS from Apple products will KILL your network otherwise.

If you want more information on the physics of these methods, check out this white paper which has more info than you'll want to read:

Now, all of that said, here are some BAD ideas that people have suggested:

- Use all 14 channels!
------ Not only is this illegal almost everywhere, but most clients will use the operating system's country code and only use the channels that are supposed to be available. In the U.S. for example, only channels 1-11 are valid; client devices won't try to use channels 12-14.

- Use channels 1, 4, 7, 10 on one group of APs, then 2, 5, 8, 11 on the next set....
------ TERRIBLE idea. Because 802.11a/b/g transmission are roughly 22mHz wide, you can't transmit on channel 6 without affecting channels 4, 5, 7, and 8. That model will bring the entire network to a screeching halt.

- Use the 3.6gHz band too
------ This is not spectrum that is available for your use; the AP radios can't physically use it, and neither can your clients. This one is borderline crazy...

- Set up one AP on 11b, another on 11g, another on 11n/2.4, etc.
------ Again, just silly. It ignores the fact that they will all contend for the same frequency; that's the one and only resource you don't have enough of! Putting more APs in here won't help.

In the end, you left too many questions unanswered for me to get much more specific. What country is this in? How big is the space? Why can you only use 3 spots? Where are the three spots? How many *simultaneous* users will you have? What will they try to access? What do you WANT them to access? And what's your budget for all of this?

Good luck... reach out to me or your local Aruba rep if you want more info or assistance...


Microsoft Sends Flowers To Internet Explorer 6 Funeral 151

Several readers have written with a fun followup to yesterday's IE6 funeral. Apparently Microsoft, in a rare moment of self-jest, took the time to send flowers, condolences, and a promise to meet at MIX. The card reads: "Thanks for the good times IE6, see you all @ MIX when we show a little piece of IE Heaven. The Internet Explorer Team @ Microsoft."

New Call of Duty Titles Announced, Fired Devs Sue For Name 134

eldavojohn writes "Activision has announced new Call of Duty titles while fired Infinity Ward Developer leads Jason West and Vince Zampella sue them for the rights to the name. According to Activision, 'The company intends to expand the Call of Duty brand with the same focus seen in its Blizzard Entertainment business unit. This will include a focus on high-margin digital online content and further[ing] the brand as the leading action entertainment franchise in new geographies, new genres and with new digital business models.' Ars opines that Activision is set to over-saturate the market with tons of CoD titles similar to how it expertly brought down Guitar Hero."

Failed Games That Damaged Or Killed Their Companies 397

An anonymous reader writes "Develop has an excellent piece up profiling a bunch of average to awful titles that flopped so hard they harmed or sunk their studio or publisher. The list includes Haze, Enter The Matrix, Hellgate: London, Daikatana, Tabula Rasa, and — of course — Duke Nukem Forever. 'Daikatana was finally released in June 2000, over two and a half years late. Gamers weren't convinced the wait was worth it. A buggy game with sidekicks (touted as an innovation) who more often caused you hindrance than helped ... achieved an average rating of 53. By this time, Eidos is believed to have invested over $25 million in the studio. And they called it a day. Eidos closed the Dallas Ion Storm office in 2001.'"

Revisiting the "Holy Trinity" of MMORPG Classes 362

A feature at Gamasutra examines one of the foundations of many MMORPGs — the idea that class roles within such a game fall into three basic categories: tank, healer, and damage dealer. The article evaluates the pros and cons of such an arrangement and takes a look at some alternatives. "Eliminating specialized roles means that we do away with boxing a class into a single role. Without Tanks, each class would have features that would help them participate in and survive many different encounters like heavy armor, strong avoidance, or some class or magical abilities that allow them to disengage from direct combat. Without specialized DPS, all classes should be able to do damage in order to defeat enemies. Some classes might specialize in damage type, like area of effect (AoE) damage; others might be able to exploit enemy weaknesses, and some might just be good at swinging a sharpened bit of metal in the right direction at a rapid rate. This design isn't just about having each class able to fill any trinity role. MMO combat would feel more dynamic in this system. Every player would have to react to combat events and defend against attacks."

Submission + - CVS Photo svc takes ownership of your copyright (cvsphoto.com) 2

kidMike writes: The "License and Warranties" section of CVS Pharmacy's photo printing service has a scary rights-ownership clause. It appears to state that if you upload photos to CVS for printing, they have the right to:
"... use, copy, reproduce, distribute, transmit, display, perform, communicate to the public ... and otherwise use such Materials (in whole or in part) in connection with the Service, using any form, media or technology ... without providing compensation to you or any other person, without any liability to you or any other person...."

Even stranger, a follow-on clause appears to give ANY user of the printing service the right to view and reproduce any of your photos:
"You grant to all members and other Service users permission to access, view, store, copy, reproduce, distribute, transmit, display, perform, and reproduce such Materials...."

Is this just a case of boilerplate legalese being applied? Help petition CVS to change their terms of service to something that respects copyright law! Email them at customercare@cvs.com or call (888) 607-4287!

Wireless Networking

Submission + - Duke's iPhone issues caused by Cisco architecture (yahoo.com)

kidMike writes: The well-publicized "iPhone" problems at Duke University and other institutions have been resolved. Few details are available so far, but it appears the problem is not Apple's, or Duke's for that matter, but Cisco's. Cisco is quoted in the article:

"Cisco has provided a fix that has been applied to Duke's network and the problem has not occurred since," the company said in a written statement.

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