Archive for January 12th, 2008

Sony and Nintendo pegged with lawsuit from vague controller patent

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Technology

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Copper Innovations Group has a bone to pick with Sony and Nintendo, and has filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania seeking after some monies and an injunction against further infringement. The patent in question? Copper has a patent dating back to 1996 that "covers a method for connecting devices to a system and sorting their inputs by means of hardware identification numbers tied to each transmission." Sounds like it would cover just about any sort of controller ever, but the lawsuit apparently is referring to Bluetooth -- Microsoft, which uses a proprietary wireless standard for the 360, isn't being named in the suit. No official word from Sony or Nintendo yet, but Sony lawyers could be heard crying softly into a pillow somewhere.

 

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Nobody Knows What This Pillow Is Made Of [Labels]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Consumer Interest

UNKNOWN.jpgI had a pillow that says 'contains textiles of 100% unknown kind' on that tag that says 'Do not remove under penalty of law'. Kind of defeats the purpose of the tag, and I'm wondering what is in my pillow. Used underpants? Human hair? It does say 'all new materials' but that might just be 'new to me.'

Superman III taught us the danger of unknown materials. They are unknown for a reason. Humanity may not be ready to comprehend the awesomeness of the materials powering your, um, pillow.

Tags were the early 20th century's answer to scurrilous merchants who stuffed pillows and mattresses with an unsavory potpourri of disease carrying things—horse hair, fur, and rags. Now they are used to ensure that the bedding on sale is new, not used. Whatever that pillow is stuffed with, rest assured that you are its first puzzled owner.Oh%20Its%20Terrible.jpg

(Photo: Blitzcat)


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Get Your P2P on with FrostWire [Featured Download]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Uncategorized

frostwire.pngAll platforms: Free, open source application FrostWire is a peer-to-peer file sharing program built from the popular LimeWire client that handles both Gnutella (one of the pre-BitTorrent standards) and BitTorrent protocols—makes it sort of a P2P fusion application. Granted, FrostWire isn't the best BitTorrent app you'll run across, but if you are the type who just can't cut the strings form those pre-BitTorrent days, FrostWire may be the perfect app to get you up to date with file sharing. If you are ready to dive head first into BitTorrent, this guide should help you get started. Otherwise, FrostWire is free, works on Windows, Mac, and Linux, requires Java.

FrostWire


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Ceramic microneedles to make injections painless

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Technology

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Rest assured, we've "seen" methods of delivering injections sans pain, but we've yet to actually experience this phenomenon ourselves. If Dr. Roger Narayan has anything to do about it, however, we may not feel even a pinch the next time the blood drive comes calling. A team of researchers led by the aforementioned individual has reportedly been able to use "two-photon polymerization of organically modified ceramic (Ormocer) hybrid materials to create microneedles resistant to breakage," and they can also be made in a wider range of sizes than metal counterparts. It's said that these very needles would be "so fine that patients wouldn't feel them piercing their skin," and while that sure sounds delightful, we've no idea how many more visits we'll make before finding one of these in the nurse's hand.

[Via medGadget, image courtesy of Rice]

 

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Staples Packages Five Small Notepads In Five Separate Boxes [Stupid Shipping Gang]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Consumer Interest

Top.jpgDear Staples:

Thanks for your recent delivery of the items we ordered. Your drivers must know how to drive fast because it always arrives very fast and we think that's swell. However, your shipping department might be drinking on the job or something because the amount of packaging used for our most recent order was ridiculous. You might want to go down there and check.

Here is the major malfunction:

The shipment was prepared such that each of the...

Item Number: 708146 -
Ampad Gold Fibre® Designer Series Top Wirebound Writing Pad, Brown, Wide Ruled, 8 1/2″ x 11 3/4″
Quantity: 5 Price: $3.58

..that I ordered was packaged and shipped in a separate box. Are you kidding me? Its just too much for me to bear! In addition to being very un-environmental, shipping one NOTEBOOK in a box that measures 2 feet by 1 foot 2 inches is costly, perhaps costing US more money and YOU for certain. We dont pay you for shipping, so it's not like it was a clever ruse to squeeze more money from this cash cow.

I am speechless! SEE attached photos of the carnage from ALL the packaging from the delivery. I ordered 41, no wait, 38 items from you and they were shipped in 8 different boxes, most of which I could fit in! And I am not a dwarf OR a child. Actually, 1 item is backordered so 37 items shipped. The other 3 items were catalogs that I have requested NOT to have delivered since I do all my ordering ONLINE. That's 4.625 items per box. And the "items" were things like "pens" and "highlighters" not "Hummer engines" or "flat screen tv's." Is this some kind of joke? If so, it's not funny Staples, not funny. Most of the items could have fit in one box. Didn't YOU see An Inconvenient Truth like the rest of America?Mid.jpgAbove: Large mess cleaned up by ME, not staples.

My Account Manager has been the most helpful and enthusiastic customer representative I have ever had the pleasure to interact with, but the firestorm-a-brewing right now may be enough to have cost you a customer. Silly Staples.

The amount of time I spent breaking down boxes and properly discarding those "plastic bubbles" used to cushion each individually boxed notebook was ridiculous. You have wasted my time Staples.

And I am very, very upset.

The stupid shipping gang is a menace to the environment. Bubblewrap makers gaze dreamily as Walmart, Crate & Barrel, and Staples strike fear into the hearts of forests everywhere. Does an insider want to let us know how these packaging nightmares, which are a waste to everyone but the shipping companies, make it out the door?


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Hone Your Rock Band Chops [Fun]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Uncategorized

rockband.pngWired rounds up series of tips from Harminox, the creators of Rock Band, covering how to up your skills as a Rock Band (and regular) drummer. If you've played the game much, you know there's a big jump between medium and hard settings, but Wired's various tips for the kick pedal and sticks should help you make that jump. If you consider yourself a Rock Band master, let's hear your best tips in the comments.

Harmonix's Top Tips For Drummers [Wired]


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SkullCandy Double Agent Headphones Have Built-in SD Slot, Bypass the MP3 Player [Headphones]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Technology

Skullcandy-SD-headset-468.jpgThese new SkullCandy Double Agent headphones are awesome because they directly read from an SD card, without the price of Bluetooth headphones or the need for an MP3 player. They hold any size SD card, feature a rechargable battery, come in three colors, and have side controls. How or why these were kept so low profile during CES, I do not know. But this is a neat piece of tech that makes good use of a simple idea. The Double Agent headphones are expected to ship in Spring 2008. [Ubergizmo]

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Please tell the FTC that credit freezes help … [Identity Theft]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Consumer Interest

moneysmall.pngPlease tell the FTC that credit freezes help prevent identity theft. [Comment Form via All Consuming]


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We’re on the ground at Macworld 2008

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Technology

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Apple's a bit short on banners this year -- just that "There's something in the air" teaser we saw yesterday in a couple of forms -- but we've arrived in San Francisco to prep for the show, and thought we'd snap a few shots of the convention center before the Macworld 2008 attendees descend upon this place en masse.

Gallery: We're on the ground at Macworld 2008

 

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Create a Home Management Binder with Household Notebook [Organization]

Posted by Ry on Jan 12 2008 | Uncategorized

calendar_thumb.jpgDownload personalizable household planners, including calendars, checklists, to-do lists, phone message stationery, and more at Household Notebook, a web gallery which stores nearly 100 different types of forms that make task management easier. Tackle time management with a weekly planner and goal setting with a diet tracker. The site also showcases a pantry and freezer inventory for keeping track of your wares, a packing checklist for the occasional trip, address lists to pin on the fridge door, and birthday calendars, among numerous other forms. Don't create a template in your favorite word processor for your to-do list; the Household Notebook already has one created for you. Simply navigate to the page, print, and start organizing.

Household Notebook


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