Ars Technica

Valve co-opts L4D2 boycott by giving leaders free trip to HQ

Two leaders of a group boycotting Left 4 Dead 2 were flown to Valve's offices to see the game... and they returned with a very different take on the boycott. The community seems less than happy with the result, and accuse their leaders of being bought off with a little personal attention. How Valve got the boycotters on its side.

When Left 4 Dead 2 was announced at E3 this year, PC fans reacted with horror and many felt almost betrayed. A sequel, already? Where were all the updates to the first game? Where was the free content? The backlash began immediately, and Valve was forced to go into damage control mode, giving interviews and telling its side of the story. It may not have been enough, with a boycott group springing up in Steam and gamers promising not to buy the new game. It seems as if Valve has given the team behind the boycott the ultimate gift: a tour of Valve, and direct answers to their concerns.

Unlaunched Atom-smasher shows up in Samsung X series laptops

Samsung announced its new X series of laptops this morning, and the company let a detail slip about the X120 portable that's less trivial than it may initially sound: the thin portable eschews Intel's netbook-oriented Atom line in favor of a new ultra-low-voltage (ULV) processor from Intel. The SU4100 ULV processor and its siblings will formally launch later this month and have been getting press recently under the internal Intel acronym CULV (for consumer ULV).

Want to play the full game? Shop at GameStop

With the fall lineup of games looming on the horizon, players might be wondering where they should buy the titles they're looking forward to. GameStop, it seems, is set up to make a killing thanks to a huge amount of exclusive in-game content.

Antiferromagnetism could speed up your hard drive—eventually

Researchers show that antiferromagnetism has inertia. As a result, you can flip the magnetic field orientation by giving it a quick push and walking away while it does the rest itself. It may be a while before this tech shows up in your PC, however.

Addicted to the Internet?

A rehab center has opened in Washington state that aims to treat Internet Addiction Disorder with counseling, psychiatric help, and other activities geared toward getting patients back on track with normal life. If you believe in the disorder, then this is a great first step—but not everyone does.

FCC asks us all: what, exactly, is broadband?

You'd think they'd know this by now, but the Federal Communications Commission is always full of surprises. The FCC has put out a Public Notice asking the wise to help them define "broadband." Well, not exactly "define" it. Hold your breath...

Scientists make bendable, transparent LEDs

Organic light emitting diodes, or OLEDs, promise to bring a great deal of flexibility to where we can put a display—literally. Because of their organic components, it should be possible to create flexible and transparent displays, opening up a large number of potential uses. But now, just as OLEDs may finally be ready for the consumer market, some engineers have figured out a way to get many of the same properties using inorganic LEDs (ILEDs), using a method that's so simple, even a biologist could understand it.

Hackers set new high score for credit card theft at 130M

A Florida man may have busted the world record for consumer data theft after allegedly stealing 130 million credit and debit card numbers. The US Department of Justice announced Monday afternoon that 28-year-old Albert Gonzales and two co-conspirators had been indicted for conspiracy. If true, Gonzales and gang may have beaten the credit card theft high score of 45 million accounts nearly three times over.

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