News Of The Day 12/1/2011

A new month, but plenty of news!  Plus some format experimentations!


A Chase banker describes the Predatory Lending that went on.  Normally I'd be concerned this'd get missed, but as people are more aware of the problem it may increase awareness.  His statements pretty much confirm what most people knew – the system was corrupt, predatory, profit-driven, and had nothing to do with anything but filtering money upward.  Hopefully his story will get more people to come forward about these issues – and as we move into election season, we may see more play about them.  Have I mentioned working at the big banks is probably a bad idea?

Law (Geek Law?):

The Senate is apparently the place really bad bills go, including one that may (or may not) gut the 6th Amendment.  It is probably going to be vetoed by the Predisdent anyway, and it's a legal mess, but it's one to be aware of considering the recent spate of bad policy (SOPA/PROTECT-IP being prominent right now).  I'm almost surprised there's not more uproar over this, but then again that'd go into our pathetic reality-show politics.  I'm thinking any of us with a law/geek law interest need to pay attention here – along with everyone else.


AT&T may shed half the customers it'd get if the T-mobile deal ever goes through, just to keep the dea going.  Apparnelty they want that bandwidth/infrastructure bad and will do anything to get it (considering how they're constantly lambasted, it makes sense).  AT&T is clearly feeling the heat from the competition, and this move might be bad for current T-Mobile/AT&T employees as they shed and reorg.  It may also change things in the mobile market as services (hopefully) improve.


What an incredibly mixed bag of news for Barnes and Noble.  Nook is doing better, they had a loss, but not as bad as expected.  B&N seems to have the strength to endure its hardships – and has something of a strategy – but it's also clear they have problems.  I'm still positive on them for employment – and want to see what they do with their business plans since they'll challenge amazon and may just push the envelope.  But right now, not exactly that great (and no, I don't expect this will lull competitors into a false sense of security).


Kill your cable?  How about drop your television?  For the first time ever, according to Neilsen, television ownership declined even if time watching is up.  This is getting a lot of attention but the increase in descrease (or whatever) is kind of small, so I don't think we can predict any trend yet (I want to see how this goes over the next 2 years).  This story may get a lot of play and a lot of hysteria, so here it is for the sake of rationality.

Video Games:

OK let's put it simple – Skyrim development tools are going to come out for the PC.  It will be available through Steam and have mod management.  You can also damn well bet that this is something to watch because it's a very public case of mod support for a massive hit (that apparently has a rough map of the entire continent of the setting which suggests planned mod-friendliness).  This is something everyone in gaming has to observe to see what happens, how it's supported, how it's abused, and how it plays on success.

Steven Savage