E3 is Great; Web Site Isn’t

PlayStation: Picture of Sony's PlayStation 2
Sony’s PlayStation2 is the obvious hit at the E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo) show in Los Angeles. The Sony booth is mammoth, of course, but lots of companies are showing off their new titles that run on this powerful computer.

Gamer: Man playing video game
I don’t play computer games very much anymore, but I’ll be tempted when it comes to some of the stuff I’m seeing here.

Lego: Lego Robot with vision
Above is Anthony Fudd, one of the Lego Mindstorms people here. He’s hooked up a small video camera (Web-cam style, so it’s cheap) to the computerized Lego set that lets you build robots that can move around autonomously. The camera gives the robot “eyes” that can be programmed, too. Fudd showed me how he could make the robot turn left when it noticed the little ball from the side, but move forward when it saw the ball straight ahead. Nice.

In the not-so-cool category, here’s a pointer to the expo’s Web site, but I put in the pointer reluctantly. When I logged on the site this morning, it insisted that I install the latest version of Macromedia’s Flash software. I’m using a computer on the road, on a dialup connection, and don’t have time for this stuff.

The E3 Web design is a classic in what not to do. It flatly refuses to let me into the site unless I have this plugin (which I do have on another computer I use on a faster connection). Bogus.

Microsoft Versus Slashdot

Microsoft’s handling of Kerberos security in Windows 2000 has already raised the ire of everybody but our favorite monopolist. The company has done its usual “embrace and extend” routine by attempting to hijack the open Kerberos password authentication standards that have been used by the Unix crowd for years.

Now Microsoft is attacking Slashdot for readers’ comments on this topic, demanding the postings be removed because they violate copyright. Note Slashdot’s polite reply.

Even for Microsoft, this is slimy.

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