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PC Gamers Too Good For Consoles Gamers? 324

thsoundman sends in a blog post from Rahul Sood, CTO of HP's gaming business, who claims there was once a project in development at Microsoft to let Xbox users compete against PC users playing the same game. According to Sood, the project was killed because the console players kept getting destroyed by their PC counterparts. He wrote, "Those of us who have been in the gaming business for over a decade know the real deal. You simply don't get the same level of detail or control as you do with a PC over a console. It's a real shame that Microsoft killed this — because had they kept it alive it might have actually increased the desire of game developers and gamers alike to continue developing and playing rich experiences on the PC, which would trickle down to the console as it has in the past."
The Media

Police Stop Journalists From Photographing Metrorail System 601

schwit1 writes with this excerpt from Reason.com: "Carlos Miller, who runs the Photography Is Not a Crime blog, and veteran photojournalist Stretch Leford decided to test the photography rules in Miami-Dade's metrorail system. Before embarking on their test, they obtained written assurance from Metro Safety and Security Chief Eric Muntan that there's no law against non-commercial photography on the system. The two didn't make it past the first station before they were stopped. Employees of 50 State Security, the private firm contracted to provide the metro's security, stopped the pair first. They then called in local police. The private firm and the police then threatened the two with arrest, demanded their identification (to check them against a terrorist watch list), demanded multiple times that they stop filming, and eventually 'banned' Miller and Ledford from the metro system 'for life' (though it's doubtful they had the authority to do so)."

Why Windows 7 "Slate" Tablets Won't Happen 467

snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Galen Gruman questions the viability of Windows 7 on tablets in the wake of the news that HP will use Palm's WebOS as the foundation for iPad rivals, rather than follow through with the previously hyped Windows 7-based Slate. 'The iPad proved a tablet shouldn't be a portable computer that happened to have its screen always exposed. Even though technical components are shared between the Mac OS and the iPhone OS, the irrelevant Mac OS functions aren't gumming up the iPhone OS, and Apple's development environment doesn't let you pull through desktop approaches into your mobile applications. You're forced to go touch-native,' Gruman writes, adding that, when it comes to touch capabilities, Windows 7 leaves much to be desired. 'Sure, a few Windows 7 slate-style tablets will ship — Asus and MSI are said to have models shipping later this year. But those products will go nowhere, because Windows 7 is simply not the right operating system for a slate.'"
User Journal

Journal Journal: www.mektek.net asplode 3

Looks like mektek.net either exploded or was attacked, and now that Mechwarrior IV has just come out for free, you can't download it. Sigh. Conspiracy theory factor five!


New Russian Botnet Tries To Kill Rivals 136

alphadogg writes "An upstart Trojan horse program has decided to take on its much-larger rival by stealing data and then removing the malicious program from infected computers. Security researchers say that the relatively unknown Spy Eye toolkit added this functionality just a few days ago in a bid to displace its larger rival, known as Zeus. The feature, called "Kill Zeus," apparently removes the Zeus software from the victim's PC, giving Spy Eye exclusive access to usernames and passwords. Zeus and Spy Eye are both Trojan-making toolkits, designed to give criminals an easy way to set up their own "botnet" networks of password-stealing programs. These programs emerged as a major problem in 2009, with the FBI estimating last October that they have caused $100 million in losses."

Security Firms Can't Protect iPhone From Threats 137

nk497 writes "F-Secure researchers are calling attention to the fact that it's impossible to run third-party anti-virus on iPhones, because the SDK doesn't allow for it. It's a problem, as they claim malware will start to target the phone. 'None of the existing anti-virus vendors can make one, without help from Apple,' chief research officer Mikko Hypponen said. 'Apple hasn't been too interested in developing antivirus solutions for the iPhone, because there are no viruses, which of course, isn't exactly true.' At the moment, the only worms faced by the iPhone have targeted unlocked, jailbroken devices — so Apple's not too bothered protecting users of such phones." While Apple claims that the iPhone's closed nature offers protection to its users, and security vendors maneuver for a piece of a market now closed to them, clearly both sides are pushing their own self-interest.

Test of 16 Anti-Virus Products Says None Rates "Very Good" 344

An anonymous reader writes "AV-Comparative recently released the results of a malware removal test in which they evaluated 16 anti-virus software solutions. The test focused only on the malware removal/cleaning capabilities, therefore all the samples used were ones that the tested anti-virus products were able to detect. The main question was if the products were able to successfully remove malware from an already infected/compromised system. None of the products performed at a level of 'very good' in malware removal or removal of leftovers, based on those 10 samples."

After 1 Year, Conficker Infects 7M Computers 95

alphadogg writes "The Conficker worm has passed a dubious milestone. It has now infected more than 7 million computers, security experts estimate. On Thursday, researchers at the volunteer-run Shadowserver Foundation logged computers from more than 7 million unique IP addresses, all infected by the known variants of Conficker. They have been able to keep track of Conficker infections by cracking the algorithm the worm uses to look for instructions on the Internet and placing their own 'sinkhole' servers on the Internet domains it is programmed to visit. Conficker has several ways of receiving instructions, so the bad guys have still been able to control PCs, but the sinkhole servers give researchers a good idea how many machines are infected."

Ford's New Radar Technology Based On Open Source 259

zakkie writes "Ford is releasing new safety-enhancing radar equipment for its 2010 Taurus sedan. The radar itself is based on F22 fighter radar, but interestingly, it's claimed that the software is built from open source. What that may mean, in the vague, waffling context of the article, is unclear, but it's interesting simply because they've gone to the effort of stating it in those words. Clearly, 'open source' is being thought of outside the IT world as a good thing, and that surely is itself a good thing. The purpose of the radar device is to help 'avoid crashes by sounding an alarm and flashing red lights when the driver gets too close to another car.'"

Scientists Clone Oldest Living Organism 141

goran72 sends along the story of the world's oldest living organism, a shrub that grows in Tasmania and reproduces only by cloning. Tasmanian scientists have cloned Lomatia tasmanica as part of a battle to save it from a deadly fungus. From the RTBG's press release (which seems to load slowly in the US):"The Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens [RTBG] is working towards securing the future of a rare and ancient Tasmanian native plant... Lomatia tasmanica, commonly known as King's Lomatia, is critically endangered with less than 500 plants growing in the wild in a tiny pocket of Tasmania's isolated south west. The RTBG has been propagating the plant from cuttings since 1994... 'Fossil leaves of the plant found in the south west were dated at 43,600 years old and given that the species is a clone, it is possibly the oldest living plant in the world,' [Botanist Natalie Tapson] said."

Russia's New Official Holiday — Programmer's Day 306

Glyn Moody writes "Russia's president, Dmitry Medvedev, has decreed a new holiday for his country: Programmer's Day. Appropriately enough, it will be celebrated on the 256th day of the year: September 13th (September 12th for a leap year). Do programmers deserve their own holiday ahead of other professions? Should the rest of the world follow suit?"

Submission + - South Park Studios releases "The Unaired Pilot

ma1wrbu5tr writes: "South Park Studios has released what they are titling as "The Unaired Pilot".
It is free to watch, contained no ads when I watched it, and can be seen at southparkstudios.com.
I do recommend watching it; though it may be a bit rough around the edges.
It answers some questions, and has a few alternate veins in the story.
I refuse to insert spoilers. Go watch it! It also has a version with commentary from the crew."

Poor Passwords A Worse Problem Than Poor Antivirus 247

dasButcher writes "Viruses and worms get all the headlines, but poor password management is a worse problem according to a new study by Channel Insider and CompTIA. As Larry Walsh writes in his Security Channel blog, VARs and security service providers say they find more problems with password management than antivirus applications when they do security assessments. While password problems are nothing new, Walsh and those posting on his blog correctly assert that users remain cavalier about passwords and businesses are doing too little to address this serious vulnerability."

Intel Doubles Capacity of Likely Flash Successor 91

Intel has announced a new technique that allows them to effectively double the storage capacity of a single phase-change memory cell without adding cost to the current fabrication process. "Phase-change memory differs from other solid-state memory technologies such as flash and random-access memory because it doesn't use electrons to store data. Instead, it relies on the material's own arrangement of atoms, known as its physical state. Previously, phase-change memory was designed to take advantage of only two states: one in which atoms are loosely organized (amorphous), and another where they are rigidly structured (crystalline). But in a paper presented at the International Solid State Circuits Conference in San Francisco, researchers illustrated that there are two more distinct states that fall between amorphous and crystalline, and that these states can be used to store data."

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