Yahoo, take notes.
MySpace has quietly licensed a new series of original programming called QuarterLife from Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz, the Hollywood duo behind such films as "Blood Diamond," according to a source familiar with the deal. The social network, which recently launched MySpace TV for original Web video from The New York Times and others, is expected to broadcast the series online by early next year, according to the source who asked to remain anonymous.
The deal could still fall through and has yet to be confirmed by either party. But if it happens, it would … Read more
I came across this surprising piece of news in ars technica (I always feel a little dirty saying that :-). Surprising, because it's such a good idea. Most surprising?
It happened at Novell.
What idea? Why, to set the Linux engineering team loose for a week to do work on whatever they wanted. Full freedom to hack at will on the open source projects of their choice. Appropriately, they called it "Novell Hack Week."
I like this quote from one of the participants:… Read more
A group of computer scientists from Canada said Thursday that they've managed to crack the "code" of the checkers board game so that a computer program can win or draw against any opponent, according to a story from the BBC.
Even though a computer program by the name of Chinook won the World's Checkers Championship in 1994, that software would lose the game occasionally.
The Canadian team, which was led by Jonathan Schaeffer, chair of the department of computer science at the University of Alberta, said that checkers has been the most challenging game to beat … Read more
I grew up with computers in the home, almost. I think I was just eight years old when my father brought home a teletype machine (with integral 110 baud modem) connected to the GE600 mainframe computer. My mother could type up a storm on her IBM selectric, but I was strictly hunt-and-peck on that noisy, strange-smelling teletype. But that teletype really inspired my newfound passion for writing stories, for when I told it to print -- BANGA-BANGA-BANGA-BANGA-KERCHUNK-BANGA-BANGA-BANG -- it printed at a full 110 baud, or almost half as fast as my mom's finger-sprints. Incredible!… Read more
Some rockin' San Francisco geeks have taken Guitar Hero, and heroically programmed the system to produce live, concert-ready music. With due humility the quartet calls themselves "The Guitar Zeros." Take a listen, we think they're at least a seven on a scale of one to ten.
As programmers, these guys are definitely a ten.
When we want children to grasp structures and shapes, we let them play with Legos. When we want them to understand programming, we'll let them play with Scratch, the latest child-oriented program to poke its beak from MIT's prolific Media Lab.
Scratch is a free animation-development program for kids that converts the main elements of programming--like objects, actions, rules, and conditions--into simple blocks you can drag from the menu list and drop into the scripting area. Snap a few of these together, "like Lego bricks," says Scratch mastermind Mitchel Resnick, and you create a script that makes your "sprite" speak, play music, move across the screen, or interact with other sprites.… Read more
CollabNet said on Tuesday that it has acquired code management software SourceForge Enterprise Edition from VA Software for an undisclosed amount.
VA Software will continue to own and operate the SourceForge.net Web site which hosts thousands of open-source projects. In exchange for selling its source code management software, VA Software will get an equity stake in CollabNet.
CollabNet offers a hosted service for collaborative software development based on software that's similar to SourceForge Enterprise Edition. But the majority companies who use Sourceforge software have an on-site installation, said CollabNet CEO Bill Portelli.
This summer, the combined companies plan … Read more
Recently, the San Francisco Chronicle ran a story about how Yelp had empowered local restaurant-goers and helped them improve several local eating establishments with their constructive reviews. One thing that caught my eye was the mention of Yelp's sponsorship program, where local businesses can pay for premier placement in Yelp's search results and "sponsor" favorable user reviews so they appear at the top of the list.
The sponsorship program has been around since early 2006, and many businesses have participated in it as a way to enhance their identity on the service. The sponsorship package includes … Read more