Posts Tagged 'new'

New Xbox controller hawt, price not hot

Have you seen the upcoming Xbox controller? It looks hawt. Press shots show it in a silver finish, shiny D-pad (with improved functionality). Minor tweaking to the shape to allow for easier manipulation of the D-pad and analog thumb sticks should improve overall gaming experience. Price? Not hot. $65 compared to the $40 you can spend now on a plain old wireless Xbox controller. Get your credit card ready for a November 9 launch. Major Nelson

Also for the throngs of you who make my life miserable in Modern Warfare I have bad news for you. Your favorite pastime will become more expensive in the coming months. Xbox Live is set to raise prices in November. The price for month to month will be $2 more, three months $5 more, and the annual subscription will cost you $10 more. A small price to pay to dish out virtual head shots and verbal abuse about one’s mother. Ars Technica

New MacBooks enough to get you switch?

Apple’s rolled out a new Macbook lineup sure to get fanboys drooling. Is it enough to get you to switch? Coming from a PC background it’s a step in the right direction. I’m liking the move to the nvidia graphics card and the movement on the price point (still a bit pricey but more attractive). In terms of features, nothing stands out. It’s an updated looking new shell. The touchpad seems to be a little funky buttonless gadget. It will be interesting how that plays out. At first glance the keyboard on the Macbook pro seems small but perhaps that just relative compared to the overall width of the laptop. Honestly it looks like a Toshiba notebook. The Macbook air has gotten some minor changes to appease the user. The 24″ cinema displays look absolutely beautiful. Nothing groundbreaking here but judging by the number of Apple posts you’d be fooled. I think I’ll hold out a bit longer until my 2G iPod dies before I visit the Apple store.

Game legislation, government wasting your tax money

Trying to pass legislation that impacts how games can be sold or what has to be put on them is a popular and expensive way of sending the message that you’re concerned about the issues that affect the youth of today. Although every law attempted has gone down in flames, and has cost taxpayers at least $1 million through the years, politicians continue to line up to give it a go. The newest bill is A11717, proposed by Assemblyman Joseph Lentol, and it has already passed through the New York State Assembly. Now it’s on to the State Senate. It’s a familiar story, but in this case the New York government is asking for things the industry is already doing.

The legislation would require game consoles to include parental locks for mature content but, while this sounds good on paper, every current-generation console already has parental controls. Not only that, but the ESRB has done a great job of getting the word out on how to use said controls. The bill also wants to force games to show their ESRB ratings on the cover of the title, which is also something that is done industry-wide. Every game sold at retail has the ESRB rating on the front cover, with more detailed information on what content the game includes on the back of the box. Given that industry compliance on showing the ratings on games is already at 100 percent, it’s unclear what the law would achieve. (link)

Greenhouse claims fastest SSD

The new drives read at up to 130MB/s with write speeds of 67MB/s, with capacities that range from 16GB up to 128GB. Drive size is a standard 2.5-inches, with a 9.5mm height. Greenhouse says the SATA-compatible boxes will be available in late May (in Japan at least), no word on pricing. (engadget)

New Brunswick loses tapes containing personal data

The files, including patient names and medicare numbers, were being transferred from New Brunswick to British Columbia under a reciprocal billing agreement for residents of one province who use the health system of another.

The tapes have never been found and the information wasn’t protected by encryption.

In one of two reports released concurrently, New Brunswick ombudsman Bernard Richard said the provincial Health Department failed to ensure the information was protected.

“I’m satisfied, however, that the department has taken proper steps to ensure this doesn’t happen again,” he said.

David Loukidelis, B.C.’s information and privacy commissioner, also released his report into the incident.

“B.C.’s Health Ministry should not have been couriering around unprotected tapes of personal health information like this,” he said. “It doesn’t matter that the tapes can only be read using technology that’s not commonly available.

“Proper encryption is the basic standard for portable data storage like this.” (link)

Yahoo knows about those dirty sites you visited

The New York Times and Internet metrics firm comScore have partnered on a new study that shows what savvy web surfers have known for some time: we’re all being tracked on the web. In this case, though, comScore names names, and it turns out that Yahoo, MySpace, AOL, and Google collect the most average data about online browsing habits in any given month.

The Times partnered with comScore to develop a new metric that looks at how many “data collection events” many top web sites use to grab data from visitors. The events include the URL of requested pages, search query strings, videos played, advertising displayed, and ads served on ad networks owned by the companies (but appearing on other sites). The events chosen for tracking mean that each page may feature multiple events. The methodology is explained in more detail in a Times blog posting.

What comScore found, using this new metric, is that visitors to the top sites on the ‘Net get tracked. A lot. (link)

Yet another XP security hack

A security consultant based in New Zealand has released a tool that can unlock Windows computers in seconds without the need for a password.

Adam Boileau first demonstrated the hack, which affects Windows XP computers but has not yet been tested with Windows Vista, at a security conference in Sydney in 2006, but Microsoft has yet to develop a fix.

Interviewed in ITRadio’s Risky Business podcast, Boileau said the tool, released to the public today, could “unlock locked Windows machines or login without a password … merely by plugging in your Firewire cable and running a command”.

Boileau, a consultant with Immunity Inc., said he did not release the tool publicly in 2006 because “Microsoft was a little cagey about exactly whether Firewire memory access was a real security issue or not and we didn’t want to cause any real trouble”. (link)

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