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Facebook Mafiosi Go To the Mattresses vs. Zynga 102

sympleko writes "Zynga has the lion's share of traffic in Facebook applications, and Mafia Wars is one of their most popular social games. Collapsing under the weight of over 26 million users, Zynga has been scrambling to thwart hard-core gamers who reverse-engineer URLs or script the game to optimize their enjoyment. Many of the workarounds have annoyed users who were accustomed to various game features, and even worse, the hastily-deployed changes have resulted in many players losing access to the game, in-game prizes, or statistics. Fed up with a software company seemingly bent on discouraging people from enjoying their product, a number of tagged players have organized a boycott of all Zynga games. The first 24-hour boycott on Sunday 12/13 resulted in an 11% decline in Daily Active Users, and an emergency thread on Zynga's forums (from which most of the flames were deleted). The current boycott, extending Wednesday through Sunday is being supported by a 428K strong Facebook group. At issue is the social contract between software companies and their devoted user base, as well as the nefarious tactics Zynga has used to raise cash."

Sharp Rise In Jailing of Online Journalists; Iran May Just Kill Them 233

bckspc writes "The Committee to Protect Journalists has published their annual census of journalists in prison. Of the 136 reporters in prison around the world on December 1, 'At least 68 bloggers, Web-based reporters, and online editors are imprisoned, constituting half of all journalists now in jail.' Print was next with 51 cases. Also, 'Freelancers now make up nearly 45 percent of all journalists jailed worldwide, a dramatic recent increase that reflects the evolution of the global news business.' China, Iran, Cuba, Eritrea, and Burma were the top 5 jailers of journalists." rmdstudio writes, too, with word that after the last few days' protest there, largely organized online, the government of Iran is considering the death penalty for bloggers and webmasters whose reports offend it.

Comment Nature of the beast (Score 1) 360

What is this motion capture stuff you mentioned? Is this a 3-D motion capture system? like the kind they use with 3-D skeletal animation in movies? I'm curious as to how you managed 1mm of resolution with standard RF frequencies. A tech guy I know said that Doppler techniques couldn't achieve that kind of resolution with standard frequency bands. On a related note, you mentioned that it could be put together by a skilled hobbyist; does that imply you HAVE instructions for the public? Since you've patented it I guess it would be safe to release these to instructibles or something, but I'm not really sure how all that works. Anyway, I'd love to see the design if it is a 3-D motion capture system, I find that stuff fascinating. I would think if you made a really good AND cheap one you should just move out to hollywood and get to know some special effects guys. The people they work for have government-sized budgets nowadays. Watch the special features on Beowulf, that crap was NOT CHEAP. Best of luck to you!

Comment Re:If you're downloading music at work... (Score 1) 451

I have a similar situation now and I can say it's the only way to truly get things done. People like us can only hope that as time goes on, company's like ours with results-oriented attitudes will thrive and the one's with office-drone mentalities will suffer and go out of business. Given the amount of stupidity and randomness in commerce, I doubt it, but here's hoping.

Comment It basically just welfare at this point (Score 1) 451

I don't know about you guys, but I just LOVE the way my tax dollars are being put to good use here. The next time they ask for more money because they 'absolutely can't keep going on our current budget' I'm going to remember this, laugh, vote no, and if it passes anyway I'm leaving America.

Comment Re:To be more specific (Score 1) 673

...which is what the last version of Firefox added with "Private Browsing".

actually, that doesn't seem to solve this particular problem. When I turn on private browsing it gives me a new set of tabs and tells me that it wont remember anything I do until I turn it off. But it still remembers everything from BEFORE i turned it ON. So the location bar still pops up all my matching bookmarks and such. Am I just using it wrong, or this correct?

Comment Multivac! (Score 1) 115

Turns out asimov was right! pretty soon it'll be to the point where the transistors cant get any smaller and we'll have to turn to a pattern just like this. When the cpu cant get any stronger you just need more of them. Personally I'd like to be able to go out and keep buying cheap 1GB ram modules over and over, but i can't because everything is so integrated that I have to buy a new board, which means a new chip and GPU etc etc. The all in one design is always superior right at the moment, but I think modular is better in the long run considering the impact n the rest of your system.

Comment ha! (Score 2, Insightful) 169

The best thing about blind censorship is that if they just equate one site with illegal downloads then it gets pretty easy for people to just keep changing sites, client software, protocols, etc. Laws that only deal with the surface symptoms of a problem never really solve anything and they actually just distract people, allowing pirates pretty much free roam.

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