While I would never question the success of Steam, which is a wonderful tool through which I’ve made several PC game purchases, this is a terribly uninsightful article. Facts are facts: The PC game market is slowing, and the consoles are kicking ass. Game over, sorry.
Well, Paul, what are those five million subscribers to World of Warcraft playing their game on? Assume that they’re all paying around $5 a month to play, which is a low assumption, and that’s a grand total of $300 million a year in subscriptions alone. How many console games hit that level of revenue?
Until consoles have keyboards as standard, MMORPGs will be a poor experience on console.
Sunbelt Software blog has details of a rather horrible security exploit that’s already out in the wild. As Ed Bott puts it:
This is a zero-day exploit, the kind that give security researchers cold chills. It works by exploiting a weakness in the Windows engine that views graphics in the Windows Metafile (WMF) format. You can get infected by simply viewing an infected WMF image.
Ed also has details on a workaround fix that I’d advise everyone to use. Ironically, it appears that Firefox is safe – not because it’s better, but because there’s a bug in the way it handles Windows Metafiles!
According to F-Secure, so far it’s being exploited by a handful of sites, mostly in Russia. For the time being, steer clear of untrusted sites. There’s some reaction from Microsoft here.
Niall Kennedy has an exclusive on Google’s plans to open up the API to its news feed system:
Google plans to offer a feed reader API to allow third-party developers to build new views of feed data on top of Google’s backend. The new APIs will include synchronisation, feed-level and item-level tagging, per-item read and unread status, as well as rich media enclosure and metadata handling.
If correct, this will put Google in direct competition with NewsGator, which currently offers synchronisation for subscribers across several clients (one of which will be NetNewsWire, the most popular Mac client and one of the most popular on any platform). It’ll be interesting to see how NewsGator responds to this, although having three popular clients (NewsGator for Outlook, FeedDemon and NetNewsWire) will obviously help.
I’ve recently been experimenting with NewsGator for Outlook again, and it’s reminded me of what an outstanding client FeedDemon is – I’ll be switching back very soon.
The plan for this Christmas was simple. After heading to Kim’s parents for the day itself, we’d be embarking on a plane to visit my wonderful sister and her family in France for a week in a house in the middle of the country, as much cheap wine as you can drink, and tormenting my small nephew (last year, I “taught” him how to do a Chinese burn – by practising on him. Well, as a youngest child myself, I now have to get my turn at being an older bully. Hurrah!)
We caught the train from Canterbury to London with plenty of time to get the plane from Stansted, and started to get excited about the journey.
And promptly got no further than Ashford, a few miles up the track. Nothing was running out of Ashford – the snow had caused a power failure in one of the lines, which meant that nothing could go through it. And, despite the multiple lines, despite the overheard power cables (used only by Eurostar), the only option was to go back to Canterbury and hope to pick up a train later.
We ended up getting a coach that finally got us back into London at 5pm, some two hours after our flight had flown and a grand total of eight hours after we’d originally left Canterbury. Flights are now booked up until the new year, and the only other option – Eurostar – would cost us a grand total of nearly £400, which is a ludicrous amount to pay for a short break when you’ve already bought flights.
So we’re in London. If anyone fancies a consolationary drink, give me a call. Frankly, we need one (or two!)