links for 2008-09-13

Passionato Over 18,000 (classical) recordings in high-quality (320Kbps) DRM-FREE MP3 files. Seems to work out about $15 for an album, so not sure it’s a huge saving (tags: mp3 music download drm classical) Oblique Strategies Edition 3 (1979) Brian Eno’s inspiration pack (tags: strategies creativity brianeno inspiration) Kleptomania Kleptomania lets you select text anywhere on …

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Loose Bits, Nov 28 2006

From my PR intray, some surprisingly interesting little odds and ends: LocalCooling is a 100% Free power management tool from Uniblue Labs that allows users to optimize their energy savings in minutes and as a result reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions. The software “automatically optimizes your PC’s power consumption by using a more effective power save …

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On News Visualization, Part II

This week’s Loose Wire column in WSJ is about visualizing news. Researching the column I had a chance to interview Craig Mod, the guy behind the excellent Buzztracker. Here’s an edited transcript of our chat: Craig Mod: We have over 550,000 articles in the DB now, spanning back to Jan 1st 2004. “Buzztracker” went from …

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The Sims 2 – A Reality Show For Your PC

The Sims, Maxis’ game in which you guide a virtual version of yourself through life on your PC, holds something of a mirror up to our own existence. Not that it’s particularly pretty. The second version of The Sims, due in stores by September 17th, has some new features, including genetics and the ability to …

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Alternatives For SimCity Addicts

For anyone who is a SimCity addict, looking for an alternative, check out Mobility 2. It looks a lot like SimCity, without some of the bells and whistles of later versions, but it focuses on public transportation, and was, until recently, available for free. Now it’s into version 2.11, includes a land editor and available …

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Is Online Gaming A Free For All, Or Orwellian Despotism?

More on the story about The Sims Online and the seedy goings on in Alphaville. The Independent’s Andrew Gumbel writes about the case, saying the expulsion of academic Peter Ludlow from the game “was only the beginning of a fascinating new phase”. Since then, he says, “Electronic Arts, through its online game controller, Maxis, has …

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Update: SimCity Expansion Pack Hits Stores Shock

As predicted a month or two back, EA has issued an expansion pack for SimCity 4, called Rush Hour. allowing players to “take charge of vehicles in their cities to drive or solve missions that earn reward buildings and vehicles. Players have the ultimate level of control over their city’s transportation network by completely taking …

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News: The Sim Franchise Rolls On

 I don’t know whether to be excited or appalled at how Electronic Arts have turned the Sim thing into such a money-making business. Purists weren’t that enamored of Sim City 4, and my computer is not really powerful enough for it to be fun, and The Sims Online has not been the great follow-up to …

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Software: Footballers Ahoy

 Electronic Arts Inc. has launched the 2004 version of NCAA Football 2004, the number two selling football game behind Madden NFL. It has 20 new mascots, over 150 new teams, new pre-game tunnel presentations, and an online competition for the PlayStation 2 version something called a “Talk in-game chat”. I have no idea how that …

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Update: Sims Online gets serious

The Sims Online takes an unexpected turn       Interesting article from Wired about The Sims Online, reviewed by Loose Wire a few months back. The Sims Online takes Will Wright’s vision of artificial folk being guided by their creators to the Internet world, in what was supposed to be a huge money-making operation for …

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