Daily News Brief: Sad Day for D&D Fans

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D&D Fans in Mourning

Dungeon & Dragons co-creator Gary Gygax passed away yesterday morning at the age of 69. Gary's wife said he had been suffering from health problems for several years, including an abdominal aneurysm. Gygax along with Daver Arneson developed Dungeons & Dragons in 1974, and nearly 35 years later, the fantasy roll playing game lives on in several forms, including computer game adaptations and other mediums. Gary is survived by his wife and six children.

High Tech Free Agency

It's not quite the equivalent of Kevin Garnett signing with the Boston Celtics, but a top level executive at Google has switched teams and now plays for Facebook. Sheryl Sandberg served as Google's vice president of global online sales and operations, and during her tenure she built and managed advertising programs AdWords and AdSense, which accounted for 99 percent of Google's $16.5 billion revenues in 2007. News of Sandberg's impending departure caused Google shares to fall $12. Sandberg will serve as COO at Facebook, but so far is remaining guarded about future goals for the social networking site. More here .

Office Online

Perhaps feeling the pressure from similar products offered by Google and Zoho, Microsoft has opened up their Office Live Workspace Beta to the general public. The free extension to Microsoft Office brings content online, allowing users to save over 1000 Office documents in a single location with easy access through a web browser. You can opt to share your documents with others, optionally giving them the ability to edit or add comments. Sign up is free, and watching the cheesy video is optional.

What's Next for Toshiba?

The high definition format war looked as though it would wage on for years, but a late avalanche of support for Blu-ray quickly sealed HD -DVD's fate. Atsutoshi Nishida, CEO of Toshiba Corp., spoke with the Wall Street Journal about those final weeks and the decision to pull out of the race. Nishida marked Warner's announcement to back Blu-ray just prior to CES as the turning point, noting the importance of pulling out quickly once it became clear HD-DVD was going to lose. Much more on the decision and future plans here .

Thermal Compound Round-Up

Does your choice of thermal paste really matter, or are they all essentially the same? Is Arctic Silver 5 still the go-to compound? And how does Innovation Cooling's Diamond 7 Carat stack up against the competition? All valid questions, and they're all answered in HardwareLogic's extensive thermal compound round-up . More than 20 different pastes are tested, ranging from generic to name-brands.

Catalyst 8.3

Sporting an ATI videocard? Be on the lookout for the new Catalyst 8.3 driver package today. In a press release , AMD described the new drivers as a " milestone software update " based on the CrossFireX support and ATI Hybrid Graphics Technology. The new driver package also brings with it DirectX 10.1 support, AA enhancements, and other graphical goodies.

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