Vice-President Dick Cheney’s vision of completely redrawing the map of the Middle East following the 9/11 attacks is “not stupid,” and is “possible over time,” former British Prime Minister Tony Blair says.
In his new book, A Journey, the former Labour Party leader wrote that Cheney wanted a wholesale reorganization of the political map of the Middle East after 9/11. The vice president “would have worked through the whole lot, Iraq, Syria, Iran, dealing with all their surrogates in the course of it — Hezbollah, Hamas, etc,” Blair wrote.
Every once in a while, when it comes to data mining or stuff like net neutrality people will say stuff like “Banks aren’t interested in data mining and knowing all about you!” or that “ISPs aren’t interested in doing special deals for content companies”. Or whatever.
TELECOMS operators naturally prize mobile-phone subscribers who spend a lot, but some thriftier customers, it turns out, are actually more valuable. Known as “influencers”, these subscribers frequently persuade their friends, family and colleagues to follow them when they switch to a rival operator. The trick, then, is to identify such trendsetting subscribers and keep them on board with special discounts and promotions. People at the top of the office or social pecking order often receive quick callbacks, do not worry about calling other people late at night and tend to get more calls at times when social events are most often organised, such as Friday afternoons. Influential customers also reveal their clout by making long calls, while the calls they receive are generally short.
Companies can spot these influencers, and work out all sorts of other things about their customers, by crunching vast quantities of calling data with sophisticated “network analysis” software.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens when people start to game this system – some of that is already visible in the email behavior in companies where employees know they’re monitored a lot.
Due out Oct. 12, "Medal of Honor" has drawn accolades from gamers and has been defended even by some U.S. soldiers. But it has unleashed howls of protest from families who have lost loved ones and even from Great Britain’s Secretary of State for Defence Liam Fox, who urged retailers to "ban this tasteless product.”
Electronic Arts spokesman Jeff Brown on Friday issued a statement that said in part: "The criticism
of ‘Medal of Honor’ is disappointing because I can’t think of another interactive game that has gone to such lengths to convey respect for soldiers. From the very first day of development, the ‘Medal of Honor’ development team has been dedicated to creating an homage to the soldiers who fight the Taliban in Afghanistan.”
Meredith and her fellow military moms don’t buy it, saying that by allowing participants to assume the role of Taliban and kill American soldiers like her son, EA has crossed the line. And while she’s heartened by the AAFES decision, she’s still not satisfied.
Forget for a moment that the US Army create and gives away for free just such a game as a recruiting tool. Forget that the US Army heavily invests in “games” like this as a training tool. Also forget that Return to Castle Wolfenstein lets you play the Nazi part. Do not talk about how uncaring, and in incredibly bad taste it is – there’s this first amendment thing that protects that.
Either this game doesn’t depict reality at all, and then it’s just entertainment for the people on those US bases. Or it does depict reality, and is as accurate as the lady claims. Don’t you think American soldiers might profit by this, learning the tactics of a guerrilla insurgent force attempting to overthrow an occupying force? Or maybe do they fight better with their heads in the sand, like they did in Vietnam?
This is stupid on so many levels…