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Classic Games (Games)

Super Mario Bros. 3 Level Design Lessons 95

Posted by Soulskill
from the double-whistle-to-victory dept.
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Significant Bits about how the early level design in Super Mario Bros. 3 gradually introduced players to the game without needing something as blatant and obtrusive as a tutorial: "Super Mario Bros. 3 contains many obvious design lessons that are also present in other games, e.g., the gradual layering of complexity that allows players to master a specific mechanic. What surprised me during my playthrough, though, was how some of these lessons were completely optional. The game doesn't have any forced hand-holding, and it isn't afraid of the player simply exploring it at his own pace (even if it means circumventing chunks of the experience)."
Education

Ocean-Crossing Dragonflies Discovered 95

Posted by samzenpus
from the incredible-journey dept.
grrlscientist writes "While living and working as a marine biologist in Maldives, Charles Anderson noticed sudden explosions of dragonflies at certain times of year. He explains how he carefully tracked the path of a plain, little dragonfly called the Globe Skimmer, Pantala flavescens, only to discover that it had the longest migratory journey of any insect in the world."

Comment: Re:icing on the cake: (Score 1) 1172

by 1alpha7 (#30048856) Attached to: Glenn Beck Loses Dispute Over Parody Domain
" . . . take a look at how great the democrats have done in areas like detroit (falling apart more every day) or seattle (crime skyrocketing), southern california (rampant unemployment), new york (do i even need to say anything here). With out fail, blue leadership has been killing all our major cities."

Detroit is the result of being dependent on one industry that is changing, not "the democrats". Seattle does not have skyrocketing crime. Southern California's "rampant unemployment" is no different than many other parts of the country, such as Florida, where I live. No, you don't need to say anything about New York; its a vibrant, successful city, one of the great cities of the World. "All our major cities" do not have uniformly Democratic leadership, nor are they failing.

Comment: If this is his experience level . . . (Score 2, Insightful) 276

by 1alpha7 (#29327601) Attached to: A Different Perspective On Snow Leopard's Exchange Support
"The Linux community, along with Google's new Android mobile platform, offer even less in terms of minimum standards and quality control, resulting in software that is often free but usually unfinished and typically inaccessible to anyone outside of dedicated tinkerers and hobbyists. While examples of fine open source client software exists, there is no available market driving this kind of development financially."

Lost in space? Does he use the same stuff I do?
Education

US Colleges Say Hiring US Students a Bad Deal 490

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the talking-to-you-cliff dept.
theodp writes "Many US colleges and universities have notices posted on their websites informing US companies that they're tax chumps if they hire students who are US citizens. 'In fact, a company may save money by hiring international students because the majority of them are exempt from Social Security (FICA) and Medicare tax requirements,' advises the taxpayer-supported University of Pittsburgh (pdf) as it makes the case against hiring its own US students. You'll find identical pitches made by the University of Delaware, the University of Cincinnati, Kansas State University, the University of Southern California, the University of Wisconsin, Iowa State University, and other public colleges and universities. The same message is also echoed by private schools, such as John Hopkins University, Brown University, Rollins College and Loyola University Chicago."
Security

Australian Gov't Offers $560k Cryptographic Protocol For Free 163

Posted by Soulskill
from the as-in-beer dept.
mask.of.sanity writes "Australia's national welfare agency will release its 'unbreakable' AU$560,000 smart card identification protocol for free. The government agency wants other departments and commercial businesses to adopt the Protocol for Lightweight Authentication of ID (PLAID), which withstood three years of design and testing by Australian and American security agencies. The agency has one of Australia's most advanced physical and logical converged security systems: staff can access doors and computers with a single centrally-managed identity card, and user identities can be automatically updated as employees leave, are recruited or move to new departments. PLAID, which will be available soon, is to be used in the agency's incoming fleet of contact-less smartcards that are currently under trial by staff. It will replace existing identity cards that operate on PKI encryption."
Communications

Bandwidth Fines Bad, But Not Net Neutrality Issue 159

Posted by Soulskill
from the give-me-streaming-hd-or-give-me-death dept.
Frequent Slashdot contributor Bennett Haselton writes with his take on the recent Time Warner Cable fiasco: "Net Neutrality crusaders at FreePress.net recently called attention to Time Warner's plan (later rescinded) to impose fines on users for going over bandwidth limits. I agree generally, but I think this is easily confused with the reasoning in favor of Net Neutrality, and it's important to keep the arguments separate." Read on for the rest of Bennett's thoughts.

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