(Above: Warcraft: Dragon Hunt, Volume 1: Kaplan SAT/ACT Vocabulary-Building Manga)

Comic books, once considered junk literature, may finally be helping American teenagers get into college.

Washington Post Co.’s Kaplan Inc. unit has added vocabulary words such as “sanctimonious” and “exculpate” to increasingly popular Japanese-style graphic novels known as manga. The 150- to 200-page paperbacks are designed to help teens prepare for the SAT Reasoning and ACT tests, for college screening.

Kaplan is seeking a chunk of the $330 million in annual U.S. and Canadian sales of graphic novels. Other publishers including Scholastic Corp. already supply such books to school libraries and classrooms. “Manga,” Japanese for comics, help visually stimulate students to learn and remember, educators say.

Game ain’t even out yet, and already they’ve released a new feature. As you know by now, Tabula Rasa is set to breech the MMORPG realm with a November 2 release date. If it wasn’t enough that Lord British is behind the title and that it involves an alien race bent on destroying the universe, then you can bask in this pretty sweet new feature: It uses a Player vs. Player ranking system and puts them into a slick package on their web site so everyone can see which clan and which individual players are fighting the best good fight.

[Editor's Note: If today was April 1st I might think this is a joke. But today is Halloween and its no joke. So you PC users may want to go out, buy yourself a MacBook Pro, and dress it up in a PC costume so no one knows.]

PC World has done a new set of benchmarks and they have concluded that the MacBook Pro is the fastest Windows Vista laptop available.

Second place goes to Gateway’s E-265M.

So if you’re looking for a gaming laptop, apparently you should go get a MacBook Pro!

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Upcoming movie tie-in Beowulf will feature a virtual naked representation of Hollywood superstar Angelina Jolie.

Beowulf the game, which is set to arrive on European shores some time in November, is based on the fully computer generated movie of the same name, starring CGI versions of Ray Winstone as Beowulf and Angelina Jolie as Grendel’s temptress mother.

In an interview with Pro-G, Beowulf’s narrative designer Gabrielle Shrager revealed that there was “no way around” including nudity in the game, which has been awarded a 15 rating by the BBFC.

Apple on Tuesday announced that it has sold more than two million copies of Mac OS X v10.5 “Leopard” since it shipped on Friday, Oct. 26th.

That rate outpaces the first-weekend sales of Mac OS X v10.4 “Tiger,” Leopard’s predecessor, which up until now has held the record for being the most successful OS release in Apple’s history.

Those figures include copies of Leopard sold at Apple retail stores, Apple authorized resellers, the online Apple Store, under maintenance agreements and those copies bundled with newly shipping Macs.

(Source: variety.com) The studios have spent the better part of the last year trying to protect themselves from possible strike effects.

There are as many as 50 studio movies ready to go into production now if writers walk, and most of the majors have managed to muster together at least five pictures with scripts and plots strong enough to overcome the potential lack of a WGA member on set to execute revisions.

If there’s a strike, studios also can get out of producing deals under the force majeure clause included in almost all such pacts. Agencies, too, can shed agents under force majeure. Companies used that “out” plenty during the writers strike in 1988.

(Source: mercurynews.com)  Really, does it get any cooler than testing out the classic cartoon joke involving a trail of gunpowder and a big explosion?

Not for “Mythbuster” Adam Savage, who deems this blow-up one of his favorites. You can’t swing a comatose Sylvester without hitting a rerun of “Mythbusters” on Discovery Channel, but finding fresh episodes can be a challenge since the network rolls out a few at a time throughout the year. The good news is that fans can look forward to seven new episodes beginning Wednesday.

On Monday, ComingSoon.net got a chance to talk to Will Ferrell about Universal’s upcoming Land of the Lost. Based on Sid & Marty Krofft’s 1970s TV series of the same name, the adventure-comedy will be directed by Brad Silberling (Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events).

The movie revolves around a disgraced paleontologist, his assistant and a macho tour guide who find themselves in a strange world inhabited by dinosaurs, monkey people and reptilian Sleestaks.

DreamWorks Animation’s revenue nearly tripled in the fiscal third quarter ended Sept. 30, to $160 million, about $92 million of which derived from “Shrek the Third.”

Net income in the period hit $47 million, up from $10.5 million a year earlier.

Results came after the close of trading Tuesday, with shares up a bit more than 1% in light trading, to $32.53

Company also announced it has slated what it calls a “superhero sendup” called “Master Mind” for release in fall 2010. The film tells the story of a supervillain who, after accidentally killing his archrival in the film’s opening sequence, has to find a way to reclaim what made his life meaningful.

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