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Spong is reporting that the X06 Korea event gave details on a 100Gb hard drive unit for the Xbox 360. No official confirmation, or word on pricing or availability. Not sure why such news would surface first in Korea, so take this with the usual helping of salt you reserve for Spong stories.

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Cinema Blend and CanMag have two completely different takes on the same event. Apparently, just before making an initial payment, Universal and Fox asked Microsoft and the producers to lower their profit-sharing on the Halo movie. Microsoft refused, and now Fox and Universal are out of the picture.

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Stuff has a story by Gerard Campbell on how the formation of Wingnut Interactive, working on a future series of digital entertainment products in Bungie's Halo universe, is bringing New Zealand into the heart of the next-generation gaming industry.

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Penny Arcade today doesn't mention Bungie or Halo, but it did mention Senator Brownback's Truth in Video Game Rating Act. 1Up posted a news story late last month, and GamePolitics did as well.

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Supernostro pointed out an article at IGN suggesting that in Q1 of 2007, the CPU in the Xbox 360 will get an upgrade that will make the console more reliable:

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Hey everyone. My dad is coming back from Iraq on Sunday and I wanted to be able to play the airforce theme for him on the piano. Could anyone transpose it for me or tell me a site with the sheet music?

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A lot of sources today are spreading news that details of revelations to be made at Microsoft's X06 event in Barcelona, Spain today.

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KP's latest piece at Bungie.net is for all the fans who wish they could work at Bungie like he does. It's probably fair to say that Bungie has hired more than its share of its own fans over the years, so while it's certainly a long shot, it isn't impossible, if you've got education, determination, and skills Bungie needs. Check out the article for tips from other Bungie staffers on how to get in the door, how to get noticed, and how to get hired to work at Bungie.

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Although two panelists-- Al Lowe, Leisure Suit Larry creator and Erik Wolpaw, better known as Old Man Murray and a writer on Psychonauts were no-shows, attendees at the Game Writers Conference were treated to a few laughs by Wideload Games' Matt Soell and Tom Abernathy of Pandemic, makers of Destroy All Humans!

Making gamers laugh is a serious business, made more serious by the fact that comedy is not as well established a subgenre of games as it is of film. Still, said Soell, comedy has its place:

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Halogen, an unofficial fan project to create a real-time strategy game in the Halo universe, is shutting down due to a request from Microsoft. From their homepage:

Hours ago, we finally recieved the words we've been dreading since the mod started to get noticed. Microsoft has decided that we are infringing on the intellectual property of Bungie Studios and has asked us to stop development on Halogen.

The site notes that the forum and other areas will be shut down within a week.

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Since an announcement at Xbox.com appeared and was just as quickly removed, the Halo community has been awash in discussion about the apparent appointment of Neill Blomkamp as director of the silver screen adaptation of Halo. Neither Microsoft Game Studios nor Bungie Studios have chosen to comment on the announcement, although Blomkamp himself has granted two interviews on the subject: one to Ain't It Cool News, and the other a gracious response to two questions submitted by the Red vs Blue fan community, which was keen to know whether the movie would draw from the games or the novels (and from which of each) and also if there could possibly be any easter eggs in the movie for RvB fans.

Official Secrets And Common Knowledge
The withdrawal of the official notice as well as refusal to comment by Microsoft and Bungie would seem to smack of a premature announcement, rather than an erroneous one. If the later, Blomkamp would seem to be just going along with the joke, and having us on until such time as an official announcement is made. If the former, one wonders why Microsoft simply doesn't ask Peter Jackson and Blomkamp from refraining from giving interviews until there is an official announcement.

Click "read more" from the front page for the entire text.

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Yesterday I responded to Ozymandias' reasons why he couldn't endorse modchipping for adding new functionality, such as that supported by the excellent Xbox Media Center software, because it would harm Microsoft's business model, in which they subsidize the hardware and depend on you buying software and accessories. The assumption here is that every hacker who uses his Xbox for running Linux and XBMC spends less time gaming and buys fewer games. The real allegation there, of course, is that all hackers are really interested in is pirating games.

Ozymandias listed one other reason he thought someone might want to modchip an Xbox, and, not surprisingly, he doesn't condone this one, either.

Click "read more" below from the front page for the entire article.

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Yesterday I mentioned Ozymandias' blog entry where he lists several reasons why an Xbox owner might want to modchip his console, as well as why he, in his own personal opinion, apart from being a Microsoft employee, could not approve of such actions.

The first was fairly clean-cut: because it enables piracy. Fair enough. Ozymandias then went a bit off the deep end on the piracy issue, which I commented on yesterday.

Another reason he says an owner might want to install a modchip would be to run other kinds of non-piracy related code on the Xbox. Some people just want to run Linux on an Xbox for the heck of it. Far more people are interested in the free Xbox Media Center software, which makes the media center features of even the newer Xbox 360, coupled with Windows Media Center edition, look like a black and white television with rabbit aerials.

Ozymandias' objection to the homebrew crowd is that it breaks Microsoft's business model. Poor Microsoft!

Click "read more" below from the front page for the entire article.

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A lot of things about the console that would become the Xbox 360 were not clear before it was released.

Would it be backwards compatible-- yes or no? The answer ended up being... sort of.

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Microsoft doesn't want you to modify your Xbox or Xbox 360. It voids your warranty. It might let you pirate games, meaning less revenue for Microsoft and its partners. You might use it to run Linux. Or you might use it to cheat on Xbox Live.

Is it possible for Microsoft to stop modding? Should they try? Or is there a way to engage with the modding community in a way that makes sense for everyone?

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