Ask Slashdot: How To Find Expertise For Amateur Game Development?
Free to try, not too pricey for the full version either. They have some demos to get you started, there are also a few books to help you dive deeper.
Haystack and the Myth of the Boy Wizard
The Slate write-up was much better:
Internet-Based Realtors Win Monster Settlement
Unless you've gone through the hassle of buying (or attempted to buy) a house this wouldn't be very clear.
Right now it is almost impossible to purchase a house using internet based tools. Every housing market is controlled by the local realtors and they are VERY territorial. This means extra calls to look at houses if you aren't using a local realtor, extra time spent researching because tools are intentionally crippled for non-local agents, houses that aren't "keyed" properly for non-local agents (meaning even if you've done your research, then had someone call on the house, you still might not be able to get in and see it).
This makes it harder to find (and buy) a house if you aren't working with a local agent. Knowledge is power, and with current tools & rules the local agents wield a lot of power over non-local (internet) based ones.
Time will tell if this ruling bears fruit, but it is definitely good news for any nerd looking to buy a house in the future.