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Links of interest for October 29th 2008:
- New chapter for Google Book Search [Official Google Blog] – Google Book Search settles the lawsuit, makes a whole lot of things more accessible (especially if you’re a library or a university) and generally makes books searchable! 🙂 (Read Siva Vaidhyanathan’s excellent summary and initial reponse to the settlement.)
- Warfare game throws down gauntlet to Iran [The Age] – “A Sydney-based Jewish businessman bankrolling a shoot-’em-up warfare game pitting Israeli troops against Iranians says the aim is to “throw out a challenge to Iran” after its President vowed to wipe Israel off the map.
But Kevin Bermeister, world renowned for being sued by the music industry in a multimillion-dollar lawsuit over the Kazaa file-sharing program, said his intention was also to take the war between Jews and Muslims out of the real world and into cyber space. The online multiplayer game, Rising Eagle – Gaza, was officially released as a free download less than a week ago. It earns revenue through advertising billboards peppered throughout the game environment. The game, which contrary to its setting does not include any Palestinian fighters, is an update to earlier versions of the game set in Paris and China. It pits the Iranian Revolutionary Guard against Israel’s elite Golani Brigade in a first-person shooter setting.”
- A history lesson in video games [BBC NEWS | Technology] – “The UK’s first official national video game archive has been launched in a bid to preserve the history of gaming. The archive has been set up in partnership between Nottingham Trent University and the National Media Museum in Bradford in the north of England. The gaming industry is now worth an estimated £22bn globally and steps are needed in order to record its development. The archive will be housed at the National Media Museum in Bradford and will include consoles, cartridges and advertising campaigns. “We are going to be archiving video games but it’s not just about the games themselves, it’s also about gaming culture,” said James Newman, from Nottingham Trent University’s Centre for Contemporary Play, a research group dedicated to video games.”
- Editor furious over Bishop plagiarism explanation [ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)] – “A plagiarism row between deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop and the editor of a book on the party, Peter Van Onselen, has flared again. Ms Bishop’s chief of staff has taken responsibility for plagiarising a speech by a New Zealand businessman when he wrote a chapter for the book, called Liberals and Power; The Road Ahead, on Ms Bishop’s behalf. Now Mr Van Onselen says he is angry with Ms Bishop for saying that the footnote crediting the businessman was forgotten. “It’s not just a matter of them having forgotten to send through footnotes,” he said.
“Even once they belatedly sent those footnotes through they didn’t cover the plagiarism. “Footnoting doesn’t cover the fact that there weren’t quotation marks around exact lifting of words without attribution that came from this New Zealand businessman’s speech.”” (It seems no one’s buying the Bishop defense!)
Links of interest for September 9th 2008 through September 10th 2008:
- Pirates become canon keepers [The Australian] – “Some commentators have suggested that it’s simply easier for studios to replace the entire score than to investigate music rights. In any case, an unannounced modern alteration is cultural vandalism, even if you don’t think the original work was any good. As a result the DVD is useless as a piece of cultural history and as a representation of an original work. With the internet full of sellers (often fans themselves) willing to provide the copies of this and other series taken from unedited broadcasts, the studio has taken a huge step towards legitimising piracy as a means of cultural preservation.” (A fantastic, if rather sarcastic, article by Kit MacFarlane arguing that piracy may be the only course open to preserve tv texts in the face of minor – and major – alterations made by studios and distributors on the way to dvd releases and more. )
- BATTLESTAR GALACTICA returns to iTunes…in HD [GALACTICA SITREP] – Battlestar Galactica and other NBC shows return to iTunes (US). If you’re logged into the US store right now you can get 4×03 (He That Believeth in Me) in HD for free (logged in to the US store, I say, not necessarily in the US!).
- Australia rated foot of developed world on school funding [PerthNow] – “Australia’s government spending on public education is the second lowest among developed nations, a new report has found. Turkey, Portugal, Mexico and Iceland all spend more money on public education institutions than Australia. … Federal Education Minister Julia Gillard says the new OECD Education at a Glance report highlights the need for the Rudd Government’s much-hyped “education revolution”.” (Yes, but WHEN is this much-vaunted education revolution actually going to start? It’s close to unforgivable that the once ‘clever country’ is so far behind in global terms.)
- Google Turns 20 (fiction) – “This month, September 2018, marks the 20th anniversary of Google as a business…” A provocative little piece of speculation fiction looking back from 2018 at the rise, and fall, of Google. A few ideas are a bit far-fetched (Windows Free?) but most are plausible; all beg interesting questions about current trends, from software design, to monopolistic practices, to (really) participatory culture!
- John McCain Gets BarackRoll’d [YouTube] – John McCain gets rickrolled by the all-singing, all-dancing Barack Obama show! LMAO!
Interesting links for July 23rd 2008:
- WarGames: A Look Back at the Film That Turned Geeks and Phreaks Into Stars [Wired Magazine 16.08] – To celebrate it’s twenty-fifth anniversary, Wired has a good overview of the place of WarGames in videogame and geek history.
- What’s In It For Doogie Howser? [Jeffrey McManus] – McManus takes an educated stab at the economics of Joss Whedon’s Dr Horrible web experiment. (Joss himself notes that these figures aren’t that far off.)
- Xbox 360 users to build and sell own games [The Age] – It’ll be interesting to see how well the coming “Xbox Live Community Games” take off and, most importantly, what terms and conditions Microsoft force game creators to accept in order to sell their work to other Xboxers.
Interesting links for June 21st 2008 through June 27th 2008:
- Simpsons Map for Quake III Arena [YouTube] – A fantastically detailed mashup, bringing 3D textures from the Simpsons into Quake III. [Via Waxy]
- Is YouTube truly the future? [SMH] – Henry Jenkins and John Hartley give their take on the “pre-history” of YouTube, looking at DIY culture more broadly, including punk, zines and fandom, arguing for a deeper conception of participatory culture than just YouTube.
- Monster mash gives ad boss nightmares [The Age] – “More than 6000 spoof ads made by viewers have been uploaded to the website for an ABC television series about the advertising industry, delivering the state broadcaster the kind of viewer participation that would be the envy of the commercial world.”
- Half UK web videos are from YouTube [WatchingTV Online] – Comscore:”During March, 48% of the 3.5 billion web videos watched in the UK came from Google sites, of which 99% were from YouTube…. The BBC only has 1.2% share of the video viewing market despite the launch of the BBC’s iPlayer catch-up service. “
- Spore Creature Creator Trial – Download the first tool from Will Wright’s next gaming masterpiece … Spore! Make your creatures now and be ready to unleash them! (Check the specs – this one’s resources hungry!)
- Star Wars Crawl – Make a custom Star Wars Intro – Make you own opening crawl, Star Wars style. Come on, who hasn’t thought about doing this at some point in their (geeky) life? 🙂
- NASA spacecraft finds ice on Mars [ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)] – “The Mars Phoenix Lander has found ice on the surface of the Red Planet, NASA scientists say, in a key discovery for the spacecraft as it searches for water and signs of life on Earth’s closet planetary neighbour.”