Australia is the only developed country without an R18+ classification for games, meaning any titles that do not meet the MA15+ standard - such as those with excessive violence or sexual content - are simply banned from sale by the Classification Board, unless they are modified to remove the offending content.
So far, this has only applied to local bricks-and-mortar stores selling physical copies of games, but a spokesman for Senator Conroy confirmed that under the filtering plan, it will be extended to downloadable games, flash-based web games and sites which sell physical copies of games that do not meet the MA15+ standard.
This means that even Australians who are aged above 15 and want to obtain the adult-level games online will be unable to do so. . It will undoubtedly raise the ire of gamers, the average age of which is 30 in Australia, according to research commissioned by the Interactive Entertainment Association of Australia.
Colin Jacobs, spokesman for the online users' lobby group Electronic Frontiers Australia, said the Government clearly went far beyond any mandate it had from the public to help parents deal with cyber-safety.
Pirate Bay founders launch beta of "The Video Bay" - Boing Boing
The developers behind the Pirate Bay team have been developing a video streaming site for the past two years, and they've just opened up an "extreme beta" version of the project (meaning, in their words, "Don't expect anything to work at all"). Users can share video clips here without having to fear concerns they may be removed over copyright claims, as with the current dominant video-sharing service, YouTube.Microsoft to charge Europeans double for Windows 7
Update: Boing Boing team member Dean Putney points out:I highly discourage people from signing up on this site just yet. Not because of the content, but for a technical reason:
I just registered with a username and password that I don't use very often, really just for beta sites like this that I'm just looking at. I'm very glad that I did. The site sent me an email response containing both my username and the password I just typed into the site. This is really bad news. Getting emails with passwords for sites in them, unless they're temporary passwords, is bad for security. It also implies that they're storing their passwords in plain text, which means that if anyone got a hold of their databases all of their users' passwords and usernames are compromised. The Pirate Bay does some really great and interesting stuff, but I won't use their site seriously until I can be reasonably sure that they're hashing and salting my password. Obviously they're still working on it, so hopefully this will be repaired soon.
European customers will pay up to twice as much for Windows 7 compared to U.S. users, even though the new operating system will ship without a browser in Europe, according to Microsoft.Official: Windows 7 Australian pricing announced, see how it compares to Vista - News - PC Authority
When the company launches Windows 7 on Oct. 22, it will price Windows 7 Home Premium, likely the most popular of the three editions available at retail, at €119.99 in the European Union (EU) and charge £79.99 in the U.K., an EU member that has retained its own currency. Those prices are the equivalent to $168.66 and $132.14 U.S., respectively, at Saturday's exchange rates.
U.S. consumers will pay only $119 for the same software after a two-week pre-order sales discount expires July 11. That means EU residents will pay 41% more, and U.K. consumers 10% more, than U.S. buyers for Home Premium Upgrade.
The good news is that the costs are pretty similar to buying Windows Vista. Windows 7 Ultimate's RRP is $30 more (Upgrade) or $20 more (Full version) than the equivalent Vista product, but a full version of Windows 7 Home Premium works out $50 cheaper than Vista Home Premium.HTC Hero Android phone launches - News - PC Authority
Windows 7 pricing nitty gritty
* Home Premium $199
* Professional $399
* Ultimate $429
Full Version pricing
* Home Premium $299
* Professional $449
* Ultimate $469
Windows 7 Upgrade Promotion
If you buy a new computer with Vista Home Premium, Business or Ultimate any time between now and 31 January 2010, you can upgrade to Windows 7 for nothing, or for a small cost, thanks to a special Microsoft promotion.
The upgrade can be redeemed from October 22, when Windows 7 is released, until 28 February 2010.
Take care though: only certain PCs are eligible for the promotion.Check in-store stickers on PCs before you purchase and visiting www.windows.com/upgradeoffer to check if the system you are planning to buy . You can also asking in-store if a system is eligible for the Windows 7 Upgrade.
HTC has launched a brand spanking Android handset overseas, in the G1-esque shape of the Hero.HTML 5: Could it kill Flash and Silverlight? - LinuxWorld
However, although it picks up the love-it-or-hate-it angled bottom of its predecessor, it boasts a much more slimline body due to no slide out keyboard.
The phone comes packing a full 3.2-inch anti-fingerprint touchscreen, a 5 megapixel autofocus camera, AGPS, digital compass and that all important 3.5mm headset jack.
It is also features 512MB on-board memory (expandable up to 16GB via microSD) and a dedicated search button that will allow you to look for things thorough out your whole phone, including emails and on Twitter.
The Hero will also debut HTC's new UI called HTC Sense, boasting intuitive features like the ability to view all your communication channels – Facebook, emails, texts, photos and phone calls – in one view.
HTML 5, a groundbreaking upgrade to the prominent Web presentation specification, could become a game-changer in Web application development, one that might even make obsolete such plug-in-based rich Internet application (RIA) technologies as Adobe Flash, Microsoft Silverlight, and Sun JavaFX.Apple agrees to industry standard mobile phone charger - Technology - News - iTnews.com.au
HTML 5 technologies such as Canvas, for 2-D drawing on a Web page, are being promoted by heavyweights in the Internet space such as Apple, Google, and Mozilla. (Although Microsoft itself has given a thumbs-up to certain aspects of HTML 5, it has not backed Canvas.)
"HTML 5 features like Canvas, local storage, and Web Workers let us do more in the browser than ever before," says Ben Galbraith, also co-founder of the Ajaxian Web site and co-director of developer tools at Mozilla. Local storage enables users to work in a browser when a connection drops and Web Workers makes "next generation" applications incredibly responsive by pushing long-running tasks to the background, he says.
Web applications will become more fun, says Ian Fette, project manager at Google for the Chrome browser: "They're going to be faster and they're just going to provide overall a better user experience and make the distinction between online apps and desktop apps blurred."
10 mobile phone manufacturers and chip producers, including Apple, have signed up to an initiative to produce standard mobile phone chargers.Linux first to support usb 3.0 - The Inquirer
Companies signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will harmonise chargers in Europe on the basis of the micro-USB connector, in order to cut down on electronics manufacturing and waste.
Apple's involvement in the scheme comes as a surprise. When plans for a standard mobile phone charger were announced at the Mobile World Congress show in Barcelona earlier this year, Apple was noticeably absent from the list revealed by the GSM Association (GSMA), the trade body that represents the mobile phone industry.
However, some companies that were on the initial list, such as 3, Orange, T-Mobile, AT&T and Vodafone, now appear to be absent.
Apart from Apple, the companies that have signed the MoU are LG, Motorola, NEC, Nokia, Qualcomm, Research in Motion, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Texas Instruments.
USB 3.0 is supposed to be the next big thing for wires out the back of PCs and hardware manufactures are falling all over themselves to make stuff for them. However so far there has been no operating system that supports the new standard.Why social media is like punk - mUmBRELLA
The Vole and Apple are not including the new standard in the Windows 7 or Snow Leopard operating systems. But it looks like Intel's open sauce community is rushing to fill the gap.
Sarah Sharp, a self-styled "geekess" and Linux developer at Intel's Open Source Technology Centre has been working on the Linux USB subsystem.
Writing in her bog, Sharp writes that the xHCI (USB 3.0) host controller driver and initial support for USB 3.0 devices is now publicly available on her kernel.org git tree.
She said that this means that Linux will be the first operating system with official USB 3.0 support and she is working with Keve Gabbert, who is the OSV bloke at Intel, to make sure that Linux distributions like Ubuntu and Red Hat pick up the xHCI driver.
Why social media is like punk
Melbourne-based PR consultant Gerry McCusker - author of the PR Disasters blog, presented at the International Association of Business Communicators conference in San Francisco last week.
His topic was Why Are CEOs Scared of Social Media? As part of the presentation he created this two minute presentation on the similarities of social media to punk rock
WARNING: Twittersblogs is Another Twitter Phishing Scam
A new week, and a new scam to attempt to steal our social networking passwords is underway. Today, the target is TwitterTwitterTwitter, and the scam involves fake Twitter blogs.
Over the past hour, hundreds of tweets have gone out with the message “omg!! is it true what they wrote about you in their twit blog?” and linking to a subdomain of the site twittersblogs.com. When clicked, the linked site looks exactly like Twitter’s homepage. However, if you provide it with your username and password, it tweets out the message, and hence, the scam spreads.
The Pirate Bay Goes Legit -- InformationWeek
Swedish tech company Global Gaming Factory X said Tuesday that it has reached an agreement to acquire controversial file sharing outfit The Pirate Bay for about $7.7 million.
Global Gaming said it would introduce legitimate business models to Pirate Bay's Web site, which had become a haven for illegal file sharing. Pirate Bay's Swedish founders in April were ordered jailed for one year and fined $3.6 million.
"We would like to introduce models which entail that content providers and copyright owners get paid for content that is downloaded via the site," said Global Gaming CEO Hans Pandeya, in a statement.
Padeya said Pirate Bay draws enormous amounts of Internet traffic but added that it needs to adopt legitimate business models to stay in operation.
"The Pirate Bay site is among the top 100 most visited Internet sites in the world. However, in order to live on, The Pirate Bay requires a new business model, which satisfies that requirements and needs of all parties, content providers, broadband operators, end users, and the judiciary," said Pandeya.
"Content creators and providers need to control their content and get paid for it. File sharers need faster downloads and better quality," he added.
The deal could see The Pirate Bay evolve in a manner similar to that followed by Napster. A nexus for illegal peer-to-peer swapping several years ago, Napster was acquired by a string of legitimate vendors that instituted pay-to-play business models on the site.
Also Tuesday, Global Gaming said it agreed to acquire Peerialism, a Swedish company that specializes in the development of p2p file sharing technology. The move is not unrelated to Global Gaming's buyout of The Pirate Bay.
"Peerialism has developed a new data distribution technology which now can be introduced on the best known file sharing site—The Pirate Bay," said Peerialism CEO Johan Ljunberg, in a statement.