Latest Front Page News

Google drops support for "Wave"

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 07:59 AM | Thursday, August 5, 2010 | (url: http://googleblog...)


We were equally jazzed about Google Wave internally, even though we werent quite sure how users would respond to this radically different kind of communication. The use cases weve seen show the power of this technology: sharing images and other media in real time; improving spell-checking by understanding not just an individual word, but also the context of each word; and enabling third-party developers to build new tools like consumer gadgets for travel, or robots to check code.

But despite these wins, and numerous loyal fans, Wave has not seen the user adoption we would have liked. We dont plan to continue developing Wave as a standalone product, but we will maintain the site at least through the end of the year and extend the technology for use in other Google projects. The central parts of the code, as well as the protocols that have driven many of Waves innovations, like drag-and-drop and character-by-character live typing, are already available as open source, so customers and partners can continue the innovation we began. In addition, we will work on tools so that users can easily liberate their content from Wave.

Category: Technology | 23 Comments
Tags: google lol wave

Leaked Duke Nukem Forever Gameplay Video

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 09:17 AM | Monday, February 1, 2010 | (url: http://www.videog...)

The site is in german but that is where the video is embedded.


How Success Killed Duke Nukem

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 11:00 AM | Tuesday, December 22, 2009 | (url: http://www.wired....)

On the last day, they gathered for a group photo. They were videogame programmers, artists, level builders, artificial-intelligence experts. Their team was finally giving up, declaring defeat, and disbanding. So they headed down to the lobby of their building in Garland, Texas, to smile for the camera. They arranged themselves on top of their logo: a 10-foot-wide nuclear-radiation sign, inlaid in the marble floor.

To videogame fans, that logo is instantly recognizable. Its the insignia of Duke Nukem 3D, a computer game that revolutionized shoot-em-up virtual violence in 1996. Featuring a swaggering, steroidal, wisecracking hero, Duke Nukem 3D became one of the top-selling videogames ever, making its creators very wealthy and leaving fans absolutely delirious for a sequel. The team quickly began work on that sequel, Duke Nukem Forever, and it became one of the most hotly anticipated games of all time.

It was never completed. Screenshots and video snippets would leak out every few years, each time whipping fans into a lather and each time, the game would recede from view. Normally, videogames take two to four years to build; five years is considered worryingly long. But the Duke Nukem Forever team worked for 12 years straight. As one patient fan pointed out, when development on Duke Nukem Forever started, most computers were still using Windows 95, Pixar had made only one movie Toy Story and Xbox did not yet exist.

On May 6, 2009, everything ended. Drained of funds after so many years of work, the games developer, 3D Realms, told its employees to collect their stuff and put it in boxes. The next week, the company was sued for millions by its publisher for failing to finish the sequel.


Pirate Bay closure sparked file-sharing boom

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 03:25 PM | Monday, November 2, 2009 | (url: http://www.pcpro....)

The temporary closure of the Pirate Bay had the unforeseen side effect of forcing torrent sharers underground and causing a 300% increase in sites providing access to copyright files, according to McAfee.

In August, Swedish courts ordered that all traffic be blocked from Pirate Bay, but any hope of scotching the piracy of music, software and films over the web vanished as copycat sites sprung up and the content took on a life of its own.

This was a true 'cloud computing' effort, the company said in its Threats Report for the third quarter. The masses stepped up to make this database of torrents available to others.

Pirate Bay is just a redirect site to lead people to sources where they can get media and other files, McAfee security analyst Greg Day told PC Pro. Once it was temporarily shut down, those people still wanted the torrents so they went elsewhere, and that meant lots of other sites popped up to take advantage we saw a 300% increase in sites hosting and distributing movies and software."

According to Day, in the days prior to the shutdown, treasure-hunters used anonymising software to gain access and copy the indexes that Pirate Bay used to redirect users to other computers hosting torrents.

Once the indexed data was in the public domain, open-source code was available to anyone who wanted to help with redistribution of torrents. While the Pirate Bay was offline there were four times as many sites offering access to the torrents.

The Pirate Bay example shows how difficult it is to 'stop' data once it is on the web, the report says. A website can be shut down, but anyone who has accessed the content may still be able to redistribute it.


Console Gaming = Lag

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 10:22 AM | Monday, September 7, 2009 | (url: http://www.euroga...)

In basic terms, controller latency is very easy to define. It's the time, usually measured in frames or milliseconds, between pressing the button on your controller and the appropriate action kicking in on-screen during gameplay. The longer the delay, the less responsive the controls, and the more unsatisfying the game can feel.

In-game latency, or the level of response in our controls, is one of the most crucial elements in game-making, not just in the here and now, but for the future too. It's fair to say that players today have become conditioned to what the truly hardcore PC gamers would consider to be almost unacceptably high levels of latency to the point where cloud gaming services such as OnLive and Gaikai rely heavily upon it.

The average videogame runs at 30FPS, and appears to have an average lag in the region of 133ms. On top of that is additional delay from the display itself, bringing the overall latency to around 166ms. Assuming that the most ultra-PC gaming set-up has a latency less than one third of that, this is good news for cloud gaming in that there's a good 80ms or so window for game video to be transmitted from client to server.

Category: Console Gaming | 40 Comments
Tags: lag lol

Man hurt by 'exploding iPhone'

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 01:33 PM | Tuesday, August 25, 2009 | (url: http://tech.yahoo...)

A French security guard said Tuesday he had received a faceful of glass when the screen of his iPhone exploded, the second such reported incident in France.

Yassine Bouhadi, a 26-year-old supermarket watchman from the southeastern town of Villevieille, said he was typing a text message on Monday afternoon when the screen exploded.

Bouhadi, who says he was hit in the eye with a glass shard, said he was "very angry" and planned to consult a doctor and file suit for damages.


Xbox 360 at 54.2 percent failure rate

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 10:44 AM | Tuesday, August 18, 2009 | (url: http://www.joysti...)

The latest issue of Game Informer contains a surprising statistic for anyone who's ever loved and lost their Microsoft-branded home console according to their survey, in which over 5,000 console owners participated, the Xbox 360's current failure rate due to the Red Ring of Death, E74 or other hardware failure is 54.2 percent. They also calculated the relative death toll for PS3s due to the Yellow Light of Death (10.3 percent) and Wiis, due to ... well, we're not actually sure what color the Wii's light turns to upon its demise (6.8 percent).


Apple Downplays Fiery iPod Incidents

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 09:57 AM | Wednesday, July 22, 2009 | (url: http://www.kirotv...)

An exclusive KIRO 7 Investigation reveals an alarming number of Apple brand iPod MP3 players have suddenly burst into flames and smoke, injuring people and damaging property.

Its an investigation that Apple has apparently been trying to keep out of the public eye.

It took more than 7-months for KIRO 7 Consumer Investigator Amy Clancy to get her hands on documents concerning Apples iPods from the Consumer Product Safety Commission because Apples lawyers filed exemption after exemption. In the end, the CPSC released more than 800 pages which reveal, for the very first time, a comprehensive look that shows, on a number of occasions, iPods have suddenly burst into flames, started to smoke, and even burned their owners.

Category: Technology | 3 Comments
Tags: apple ipod lol

Pirated Windows 7 Builds Botnet with Trojan

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 08:33 AM | Thursday, May 14, 2009 | (url: http://www.eweek....)

Security researchers at Damballa report shutting down the command and control server of a botnet built by a Trojan bundled with pirated copies of Windows 7 RC. The Trojan is believed to have infected thousands of users.

Attackers pushing pirated, malware-laced copies of Microsoft's upcoming Windows 7 operating system have been actively trying to build a botnet.

According to researchers at Damballa, attackers hid a Trojan inside of pirated copies of the operating system and began circulating them on BitTorrent sites. Damballa reported that it shut down the botnet's command and control server May 10, but by that time infection rates had risen as high as 552 users per hour.


Apple Patch Day: 67 Vulnerabilities Fixed

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 03:41 PM | Wednesday, May 13, 2009 | (url: http://blogs.zdne...)

On the same day Microsoft shipped a bundle of patches for gaping holes in its PowerPoint software, Apple followed suit, dropping a monster Mac OS X update to correct 67 security vulnerabilities.

The sudden Apple Patch Day also included a patch to cover a trio of flaws in the Safari Web browser (Mac OS X and Windows).


3D Realms to Shut Down

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 07:19 PM | Wednesday, May 6, 2009 | (url: http://www.shackn...)

A very reliable source close to Duke Nukem Forever developer 3D Realms today confirmed to Shacknews that the company has been shut down.

The closure came about as a result of funding issues, our source explained, with the shut down said to affect both 3D Realms and the recently resurrected Apogee name. Employees of both entities have already been let go.

Phone calls and e-mails to various 3D Realms veterans have thus far gone unanswered, with publishing partner Take-Two likewise unavailable for comment.


iBotnet: Researchers find signs of zombie Macs

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 09:03 PM | Thursday, April 16, 2009 | (url: http://blogs.zdne...)

Malware hunters at Symantec have discovered a direct link between a malicious file embedded in pirated copies of Apples iWork 09 software and what appears to be the first Mac OS X botnet launching denial-of-service attacks.

Writing in the current issue of Virus Bulletin (subscription required), researchers Mario Ballano Barcena and Alfredo Pesoli found two malware variants OSX.Iservice and OSX.Iservice.B using different techniques to obtain the users password and take control of the infected Mac machine.


Microsoft owns up to "E74" 360 errors, expands warranty

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 03:26 PM | Tuesday, April 14, 2009 | (url: http://arstechnic...)

A popular gaming blog tracked a new kind of Xbox 360 error, the E74, and Microsoft has finally owned up and added the issue to the three-year "Red Ring of Death" warranty. This is a win for consumers, but it's yet another black eye for Microsoft's hardware.

While Xbox 360 systems may be known more for the dreaded "red ring of death" than any other hardware failure, one gaming blog has been tracking the rise of the "E74" error, an issue that causes the console to crash and show a multi-language kill screen. You'll also get a single red section on your system's power button. Microsoft is aware of the problem, and has since amended it's three-year warranty to cover the error.


Google Losing up to $1.65M a Day on YouTube

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 12:51 PM | Tuesday, April 14, 2009 | (url: http://www.intern...)

Google is spending more than $2 million a day on YouTube -- and it is nowhere near seeing a return on that investment. Indeed, it may be losing up to $1.65 million daily on the video site.

According to financial firm Credit Suisse and Internet measurement provider comScore Inc. , YouTube Inc. is on track to serve 75 billion video streams to 375 million unique visitors in 2009.

That's the good news. The bad? To support those visitors, Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) will spend more than $2 million dollars daily -- to be exact, up to $2,064,054 a day, or $753 million annualized, according to Internet Evolution calculations of YouTube's costs derived from a range of sources, including Bear Stearns & Co. Inc. , comScore, Credit Suisse, and Google itself.


Macbook gets Hacked in Seconds

Submitted by: KnightMare @ 10:34 AM | Friday, March 20, 2009 | (url: http://blogs.zdne...)

Charlie Miller has done it again. For the second consecutive year, the security researcher hacked into a fully patched MacBook computer by exploiting a security vulnerability in Apples Safari browser.

It took a couple of seconds. They clicked on the link and I took control of the machine, Miller said moments after his accomplishment.

The contest kicked off at exactly 3:15 PM and, within seconds, Miller launched his drive-by attack and claimed the $10,000 top prize. He also got to keep the MacBook machine.