Preinstalled crapware on new Dell PCs just became optional. CNET News blog reports that Dell now offers a “no software preinstalled” option for consumers. Even better would be if this was opt IN instead of OUT.LifeHacker]
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Corporate critics feel the stinging lash of DMCA misuse -
Two recent cases show that companies aren't always fans of criticism, and some will file misguided DMCA notices and defamation cases to scrub it from the Internet.
Writers Write “B-Logs,” Get Money -
USA Today, that bastion of hard news, is covering a new fad popular with the kids called “B-logging.” They talk about two “b-loggers,” Om Malley and Mike Orvington, who used to work at real jobs and now eat ice cream and write about computers.
Now I don’t know who these people are or what they think they’re doing, but I think it’s bad to show people that you can make “real money” — how much, Om Malley? $5? HA! — doing this. There are jobs that Americans should be doing — car repair, HVAC installation, dance instruction — that are going empty while these two jokers sit around all day pretending to work. For shame. “B-logging,” like stamp collecting and religious observance, should be considered a hobby and nothing more. Let’s not encourage these bozos.
Tech blogs go from hobbies to businesses [USAToday]CrunchGear]
NASA funded robots to search for life under Arctic ice -
Filed under: RobotsIn a mission that is apparently similar to searching for life under the ice of Jupiter's moon Europa (sans the space travel part), three robots are set to start a mission to explore the underwater hot springs under the ice of the Arctic: because someone else did the Antarctic last year. On a 40 day expedition in July, researchers from Cape Cod hope to use three new robotic vehicles -- two that can operate without cables under ice -- to find life that resides in the hot streams along the techtonic boundary between Eurasia and North America. Although the robots can descend over 3 miles under the water working just meters from the bottom to photograph objects and collect samples, the task of the NASA-funded $450,000 Puma and Jaguar robots will be hindered by the rough terrain and their inability to surface through the ice. Sounds like NASA's got quite a while to go until it can submarine around Europa -- they probably won't be able to surface there at all. [EnGadget]
In the wake of the discovery that Comcast is blocking some peer-to-peer traffic (and even blocking some Lotus Notes e-mails), the company is attempting to keep the PR machine well-oiled by giving customer tech support reps some talking points. And if they deviate from the script and admit that Comcast has been using Sandvine to send forged TCP reset packets, they're likely to lose their jobs.
Flock 0.9 lands gracefully -
The Flock project has been building a "social Web browser" since 2005. The upcoming Flock 0.9 release adds new blogging features, integrates media streams into the browser, and includes an overhaul of the Flock bookmark system. It's not perfect yet, but Flock 0.9 is a big leap forward.[Linux.com]