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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 22 declined, 2 accepted (24 total, 8.33% accepted)

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Submission + - SCOTUS to hear appeal of CA Game Violance Ban (theeca.com)

powerlord writes: "For nearly two decades, elected officials have tried to regulate which video games you can buy, rent and play. Every single time they’ve passed a law, the federal courts have struck it down as unconstitutional. But this may change this fall.

The Supreme Court of the United States has agreed to hear the State of California’s infamous ‘violent video game case,’ Schwarzenegger v. EMA. That means that this year, or early next, the Court is going to decide whether to agree with the lower federal courts or not. Agreeing would mean that they believe that video games are, and should continue to be, First Amendment protected speech; just like books, movies and music. The court disagreeing would mean that they think video games should be treated differently. This could lead to new bills and laws curtailing video game access in states across the country."

Social Networks

Submission + - Reddit Mob Strikes Back at Auto-Warranty Calls (wsj.com)

powerlord writes: Most of us have gotten those annoying telemarketing calls that "The warranty on your car is about to expire!". This was even more annoying for Michael Silveira, a 22 year old who doesn't even own a car. He, along with a flash mob on Reddit, proceeded to perform a real world DDoS on Auto One, an Irvine, CA company that hired one or more of the telemarketing firms. According to the Wall Street Journal article, "The Reddit user posted two phone numbers for Auto One. "Please call them 20, 30, hell, 50 times a day," this person wrote. "It's what I did and finally the guy said, 'Look, we will take your number off our list just please stop calling here!'" The Reddit user didn't respond to an interview request. ... campaigners eventually figured out how to gain access to Auto One's voice-mail system. They began work on a virtual map to extensions 300 through 490 on the system, and digging through saved messages for more information on the company." Mr. Silveira's contribution? He left voice-mail messages that contained nothing but a recording of Rick Astley's 1987 hit song "Never Gonna Give You Up."

Submission + - Workers Losing Personal Info Along With Their Job (wsj.com)

powerlord writes: We are often so dependent on our computers that we forget that sometimes, they are not ours. How many of us store personal information on our work computer/blackberry/cellphone? According to an article in the WSJ"As layoffs sweep across industries, employees' personal information is winding up in the dustbin, as well. ... Michele Wallace had worked for Medialink Worldwide Inc. for 18 years when the New York video-distribution company laid her off last May. When the company's information-technology staff quickly shut down her computer and her BlackBerry, the senior vice president of client services lost family photos and every personal and business contact on her cellphone and computer." Time to back up your info BEFORE you are laid-off or quite.
PlayStation (Games)

Submission + - HOME Open Beta starts tomorrow

powerlord writes: According to an entry on Sony's PlayStation blog: "Today we announced that PlayStation Home will enter into open beta, and will be available to everyone tomorrow. This milestone represents the very beginning of a long journey together, as PlayStation Home is an ever evolving, always changing, organic experience — full of new friends to meet, new events to enjoy, and new content to explore. ... Many of you will have already seen the news regarding participation in PlayStation Home from your favorite game publishers and brands, including Activision, Disney, Eidos, Electronic Arts, Lucas Arts, THQ and UBISOFT as well as Sony Pictures, Paramount, Red Bull, Ligne Roset, and Diesel." Nice to see its about to finally open the doors, and that so many studios are involved to help make it a success.
Sun Microsystems

Submission + - Sun to cut up to 6,000 Jobs

no-more-HB1s-needed writes: Looks like the IT jobs market might be getting harder real soon. According to an article over at Bloomberg:

Sun plans to cut as many as 6,000 jobs as the company tries to cope with plunging sales of server computers to financial firms, market-share losses to bigger competitors and a spiraling stock price. ... Sun is the third company in Santa Clara, at the heart of California's Silicon Valley, to cut jobs this week as technology companies cope with the worst sales slump since the dot-com bubble burst in 2000. Applied Materials Inc., the largest maker of chip-production machinery, announced plans to cut 1,800 jobs, and mobile-phone chip builder National Semiconductor Corp. said it will shed about 5 percent of the staff.


Submission + - Wii Brawl Leaves Some Users Hopping Mad (joystiq.com) 1

just-blow-lightly-into-the-slot writes: Early reports are that Wii users better make sure they're taking good care of their system. According to the Nintendo Repair FAQ: "Super Smash Bros. Brawl utilizes a double-layer disc which has a large memory capacity. A percentage of Wii consoles may have trouble consistently reading data off this large capacity disc if there is some contamination on the lens of the disc drive."

2PStart asks the question on all older gamer's minds, "Why does this seem so familiar?"


Submission + - Toshiba Expected to Announced Death of HD-DVD

powerlord writes: According to the Hollywood Reporter although no official announcement has yet been made, "Toshiba is widely expected to pull the plug on its HD DVD format sometime in the coming weeks, reliable industry sources say, after a rash of retail defections that followed Warner Home Video's announcement in early January that it would support only the rival Blu-ray Disc format after May." The end of this format war may be much quicker than the long drawn out war of attrition some were expecting.
XBox (Games)

Submission + - DVD size limiting Unreal Tournament 3 on Xbox 360 (gamepro.com)

powerlord writes: DVD's size may be starting to show its limits. Mark Rein, President of Epic (creators of "Gears of War"), was quoted as saying, "We'll compress some things. But you know, we may have fewer maps on the 360 version... Blu-Ray has definitely given us a lot of legroom," while speaking at the Edinburgh Interactive Festival.
XBox (Games)

Submission + - MS Says: 360 MMOs Can Require Hard Drive (1up.com)

powerlord writes: MS Unveils new rules for MMOs on Live! Changes included are allowing Server based games to require hard-drives, and requiring that Silver XBL members don't have to pay "twice" to play an MMO (upgrade to Gold + pay subscription). On the other side, all games must submit their total disc requirements, and if the requirements go up over the life of a MMO (such as World of Warcraft)? "... Companies are allowed to expand the required size, but the game should always run on the original requirement — users have to approve the change. If the requirement goes up, Microsoft is playing with the idea of allowing the ability to degrade — those are Microsoft's words — the experience. Their ideas, straight from their presentation: Lo-res models/textures, Place certain areas off-limits, Stream assests from server (slower loading)"
XBox (Games)

Submission + - GamePro: 8 Reasons XBox 360 Elite, isn't so Elite

powerlord writes: GamePro took a look at 8 reasons why they don't think the XBox 360 Elite should be considered all that "elite", including "The current 10 million 360 owners are getting the shaft. Microsoft says the Elite isn't aimed at existing customers but for niche HD enthusiasts who still don't own an Xbox 360. Fair enough, but didn't Microsoft just get done telling existing 360 owners that bigger hard drives and HDMI video were unnecessary?"
XBox (Games)

Submission + - XBox Live! Accounts Hijacked

powerlord writes: According to an article at Security Focus the XBox Live! system has been the subject of an organized social engineering attack: "Rather than hacking computer servers, the clan's account stealers claim to rely on social engineering to convince support personnel at Microsoft — and its subsidiary Bungie Studios, the creator of the Halo game series — to help the attackers take control of the accounts. To do so, the players spin a story about something going wrong with their account — from a crashed box to a sibling changing the password — and ask for help "recovering" the data."

Microsoft's response: "After initially denying that the service had been hacked, Microsoft said the company is now investigating the issue, but stressed that the problems seem more to do with pretexting than with a security breach of its systems."
PlayStation (Games)

Submission + - PS3 community launches Sunday Night Foldathon

powerlord writes: From the PS3 Forum: "Sunday Night Foldathon (S.N.F) is a great way to help Stanford University's with there new Playstation 3 Folding@Home program.
The S.N.F event is simple. On Sunday Night (March. 25th 2007) everyone who wants to participate in the S.N.F event simply turn there PS3 on and start the folding program, could be anytime you want or when you goto bed, you may let the program run as long as you want but would be great if it could atleast last till 7am Monday morning, its all up to you since anything helps. This is to see how much help we (the playstation community) can be for this program and to show them that the feature is being widely used and maybe saving lives in the process.

Folding@Home To be Released on Thursday (Mar. 22nd 2007) for PLAYSTATION®3 and available after downloading the latest 1.6 Firmware update."

From the Standford FAQ: "... This advance utilizes the new Cell processor in Sony's PLAYSTATION 3 (PS3) to achieve performance previously only possible on supercomputers. With this new technology (as well as new advances with GPUs), we will likely be able to attain performance on the 100 gigaflop scale per computer. With about 10,000 such machines, we would be able to achieve performance on the petaflop scale. ... Our goal is to apply this new technology to push Folding@Home into a new level of capabilities, applying our simulations to further study of protein folding and related diseases, including Alzheimer's Disease, Huntington's Disease, and certain forms of cancer. ..."

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