The Week in Review

The Week in Review

This week we learn that Australia is allowing adults to play adult themed games, NASA's Voyager takes another step towards becoming V'Ger and Netflix is taking streaming into its own hands.

Australian Parliament Passes R18+ Legislation

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Another day, another step closer to a seat at the big table for Australian gamers thanks to yesterday's passage of legislation allowing for the creation of an R18+ videogame rating in the country. You probably already know this but in case you've somehow missed out, Australia has R18+ ratings for movies - hence the amusing cornucopia of hardcore porn titles on the Australian Government's Classification website - but videogames, since they're just for kids, top out at MA15+. (Link)




Voyager 1 Spacecraft About to Leave Solar System

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Launched in 1977, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft was charged with several space-tasks prior to leaving Earth. It was to pass by Jupiter and Saturn, for instance, and send back information on what it saw. It was to keep safe its golden record, an audiovisual introduction to humanity compiled under the guidance of Dr. Carl Sagan, unless it was able to pass the record to any friendly space aliens. Now, 33 years on, Voyager 1 has excelled at first two tasks; just as well, too, since it's about to leave the solar system. (Link)




"Flame" Spy Virus May Be of U.S./Israeli Origin

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When the sneaky spy virus nicknamed "Flame" was first discovered by security experts at Kaspersky Labs, nobody seemed entirely sure which nation state was responsible for creating and distributing the malware. Suspicion fell immediately on the United States and Israel after researchers discovered a raft of similarities between Flame and Stuxnet, a different spy-virus known to be of American origin. Now, in a new twist, the finger of blame has been squarely pointed at the U.S. and Israel by anonymous "Western officials with knowledge of the effort." (Link)




Sony Suspending the PS Store in Korea

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The PlayStation Store and all related services for the PS3 will be suspended in South Korea from June 29th onward in order to comply with the nation's new "Game Industry Promotion Act". The new law is to go into effect on July 1st and states that people under the age of 18 cannot be required to give their real name or age in order to sign up for online services. PSN currently requires a name and age from all users who sign up, and as Sony doesn't have enough time to alter the sign up process before the end of the month, it's elected to shut down the service entirely until it can be changed to comply with the new law. (Link)




Netflix Takes Charge of Data Delivery

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Think back to 2007. Think really hard. A lot of things we take for granted weren't around. Demon's Souls was still two years off, The Dark Knight wouldn't emerge until the following summer, and a Netflix subscriber could access only DVDs. Everything changed in 2008 when Netflix introduced streaming content, and proceeded to expand its service so rapidly over the next four years that many people canceled their cable subscriptions outright. However, Netflix's success came at a cost, namely that of transmitting ever-increasing amounts of data through third parties. (Link)

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