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    The Black Rider

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    Monday, April 27, 2009

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    From 'Wrestler' to 'Warrior': Bethesda lands Mickey Rourke for 'Rogue Warrior'

    Oscar-nominated actor Mickey Rourke will lend his vocal talents to Bethesda Softworks as the lead character in upcoming first-person shooter Rogue Warrior, says the publisher in a statement.

    The game -- based on a series of books by former Navy SEAL Richard "Demo Dick" Marcinko -- is slated for release this fall.

    Rourke will voice the role of Marcinko, the leader of an elite Navy SEAL unit who must disrupt a suspected ballistic missile program in North Korea.

    On the game's official Web page, Bethesda says Rogue Warrior will differentiate itself in the crowded FPS arena by introducing a freeform battlefield, where players can freely complete missions any way they choose, " rather than heavily scripted events and tightly contained spaces traditionally used in this genre."  Bethesda also says the game will include a Brutal Kill system with 25 fatal attacks.

    The game will be available on PC, PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360.  Readers, what's your take on Rogue Warrior?

    By Brett Molina

    Photo: Rourke at this year's Academy Awards (By Dan MacMedan, USA TODAY)

    Reuters - Bloomberg to expand even as terminal numbers fall: report

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    Bloomberg to expand even as terminal numbers fall: report

    Monday, Apr 27, 2009 5:47AM UTC

    (Reuters) - Bloomberg LP plans to expand its investment in its technology and news operations, even as net monthly installations of terminals is down 13 percent from a year-ago, its chairman Peter Grauer told the Financial Times.

    The company has seen a fall of just over 2.5 percent in terminal numbers since they peaked in November, implying about 7,500 net cancellations from a subscriber base of about 300,000, Grauer told the paper in an interview.

    Bloomberg expects to add 950 staff this year, including about 100 in its news operations, and will open offices in Abu Dhabi, Angola, Belgrade, Doha, Riyadh and Tallinn.

    Bloomberg's sales were up 9.2 percent in the fourth quarter, Grauer told the paper.

    (Reporting by Jennifer Robin Raj in Bangalore, Editing by Ian Geoghegan)

    Reuters - Facebook seeks to export its network across the Web

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    Facebook seeks to export its network across the Web

    Monday, Apr 27, 2009 5:39PM UTC

    SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Facebook regularly attracts more than 200 million people to its website, but the company is now looking for ways to permeate the lives of its users without the need to check-in to the Facebook site.

    The Palo Alto, California company unveiled tools on Monday that allow third-party Web developers to harness the wealth of content generated by Facebook users and to build new online products and services.

    Facebook said in a blog post announcing the so-called Open Stream API that Facebook's user-generated content could ultimately be available in a variety of places, from new online services that do not require a Web browser to specialized cell phone applications.

    "In the coming months, you'll be able to interact with your stream on even more websites and through more applications, in ways we're only beginning to imagine," Facebook engineer Justin Bishop wrote on the Facebook blog.

    The latest move represents Facebook's most significant effort to export its content across the Web and comes as Facebook continues to struggle to parlay the massive traffic on its website into meaningful revenue.

    "The overall goal for Facebook is to be the platform for connecting, whether it be on Facebook or outside Facebook. So I think having both strategies is pretty smart," said IDC analyst Caroline Dangson.

    Dangson says Facebook could eventually create an advertising network by forging revenue-sharing agreements with companies that build products based on content from Facebook users.

    As a private company, Facebook does not disclose its financial information. Some media reports have projected that Facebook's revenue could range between $400 million and $500 million this year.

    The two most popular U.S. online properties, Google Inc and Yahoo Inc, generated $5.5 billion and $1.6 billion, respectively, in the first quarter alone.

    Facebook has increasingly positioned the news stream -- the barrage of status messages, photos and videos that users post for viewing by their network of friends -- as the centerpiece of its service. Last month, the company redesigned its homepage, giving the news stream much greater prominence.

    Allowing other companies to leverage the news stream takes a page from the playbook of microblogging start-up Twitter, which has fostered a growing network of innovative websites and services based on the content generated by Twitter users.

    Facebook will be hosting a small event for developers at its headquarters later on Monday to brief them on the Open Stream API.

    (Reporting by Alexei Oreskovic; Editing by Andre Grenon)

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    If you know me then you know my name. I am The Black Rider and the world is my Flame. The rider writes, observes, creates, produces, and learns the world around him. Ride on. Ride on!

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