It’s Friday! That means it’s time for another episode of All The [NERD] Rage, a lightning-round style review of the top nerd stories of the week. These are stories the Muggles may have missed. It’s time to catch up, so we’d better get started.
- Amazon Gets Fired Up Over New Kindle Announcement
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos took to the stage in New York this week to formally announce what had been rumored for some time: Amazon is selling a new tablet. The device is called the Kindle Fire, and it will sell for $199. It won’t have an e-ink display, so it won’t really replace an actual Kindle e-reader. Also, it won’t have all the functionality of a full tablet computer, so it won’t really replace the iPad. More of a media device, it does look like a great deal for someone who is more interested in surfing the Internet and watching and listening to media. There is also a line of new Kindle e-readers, the cheapest one going for $79, sans the keyboard. A touchscreen Kindle will go for $99 for the WiFi model. With the holidays just around the corner, it looks like Amazon is coming out swinging.
[Source: The Huffington Post]
- Lawmakers Up In Arms Over Undeletable Cookies
They’re called supercookies, and no, they’re not something for Cookie Monster to get excited about. “Supercookies are put on users’ computers when they visit websites by companies that want to collect personal data, but unlike regular cookies, they cannot be deleted. And they can recreate a user’s profile after less powerful cookies are deleted.” Two lawmakers from the House of Representatives, Joe Barton and Ed Markey, are asking the FTC to look into the use of these supercookies by companies like MSN.com and Hulu.com.
“We believe this new business practice raises serious privacy concerns and is unacceptable … We believe the usage of supercookies takes away consumer control over their own personal information, presents a greater opportunity for misuse of personal information, and provides another way for consumers to be tracked online.”
The lawmakers have urged the FTC to look into whether the practice of using supercookies is unfair or deceptive.
- TV & Movie News
New Line is planning a new Mortal Kombat film. Before you roll your eyes, let’s just say this won’t be your daddy’s no-blood PG-13 campy outing. Along with new video games from the last couple of years, the franchise has had a revival with a gritty and violent web series called Mortal Kombat: Legacy. The series received so much attention on YouTube that New Line has now tagged the director, Kevin Tancharoen, to make a full-length feature. So far none of the original actors from the web series are slated to return for the movie, however, Internet nerds have their fingers crossed that Michael Jai White can return as Jax.
Last week brought us one of the seasons most anticipated new TV shows. Terra Nova had it’s two-hour premier, and was met with mixed reviews. The Steven Spielberg produced series was considered to have the most expensive pilot filmed to date. So they’ve exceeded Lost in the expense department, but can they exceed Lost in interest and excitement? Only time will tell. What did you think?
The doctor from Firefly and Serenity, Sean Maher, made it official and came out as a gay man this week. The 36 year old actor, who also stars in the new NBC show The Playboy Club, opened up about his time in Hollywood to Entertainment Weekly. Though he has no regrets, he stated that there were some very difficult times. “It was so exhausting, and I was so miserable … I just kept going on and on painting this picture of somebody I wasn’t. I didn’t have time for a personal relationship anyway. And you just don’t realize that it’s eating away at your soul.”
- Gaming News
Yesterday DICE officially opened the public beta for Battlefield 3’s multiplayer portion of the game. The beta is available for the PC, PS3, and Xbox 360. How is it? One Game Rant writer tweeted yesterday: “If the Battlefield 3 beta is anything like the full game, Modern Warfare 3 has nothing to worry about.” I want to see for myself, but I’ll have to wait. When I tried to play, all I got was, “Connection with the servers was lost.” EA, you get my nerd rage for the day.
This holiday season will bring more than just the battle of the war shooters to the Xbox 360. Xbox LIVE will be getting a subscription TV service. It appears at this point that Comcast and Verizon will be taking part, but expect more details to be announced next week when everything is made official by Microsoft. Along with the paid TV subscription service, a new dashboard is rumored to be in the works for this fall as well.
CHARITY ALERT: Microsoft has announced a super cool charity event involving Extra Life:
“Don’t miss your chance to participate in the upcoming Gaming and Giving for Good (G3) Xbox LIVE charity event on October 1 to benefit Extra Life, a Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals fundraiser. Play your favorite Xbox 360 games and raise money for your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital. Sign up to participate and gather donations from friends and family—the more you play, the more they give. In support of G3, Xbox LIVE is offering a Free Gold Weekend to everyone on the weekend of October 1, 2011.”
- Apparently The “Chewbacca” Defense Wasn’t Good Enough
This week in Ain’t It NOT AT ALL Cool News: A teen connected to a homicide in Florida is apparently trying to use the “Twlight” defense.
“A Florida teenager is behind bars as an accessory to the brutal murder of 16-year-old Jacob Hendershot. But that may not be the most shocking part of the crime — Stephanie Pistey says she believes she’s part vampire and part werewolf. Florida police say that, in July, Pistey’s friends lured Hendershot to a house, killed him, and then left his body in a storm drain.”
According to Discovery News, Pistey claims she drank blood from her fiancé and co-defendant William Chase. She told a local TV station “I know this is going to be crazy, but I believe that I’m a vampire and part werewolf.” To me, this sounds more like Underworld than Twilight. Either way, this is indeed tragic, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims friends and family.
[Source: Discovery News]
- Stephen King Unveils Sequel To “The Shining”
Have you ever wondered what happened to that kid from “The Shining?” Well, Stephen King has, and soon we’re all going to find out. “Dr. Sleep,” King’s sequel to the horror classic, was introduced at the George Mason University’s 2011 Fall for the Book festival last Saturday. The Hollywood Reporter stated, “King read an excerpt from the work-in-progess, which reintroduces The Shining‘s protagonist Danny Torrance as an adult.” A release date has not been set. While you’re waiting, you can check out King’s new book, 11/22/63. This one, which is about the assassination of John F. Kennedy, will be released in November.
[Source: The Hollywood Reporter]