Thanks for the in-depth response. I appreciate it.
Aren't there actions a first responder could take that could be potentially life saving without putting the responder at risk? Something like helping a critically injured person that isn't in a burning building? Creating potential escape routes by dousing portions of a house with water? Extracting someone from a collapsed structure?
There's a difference in my mind between doing nothing at all, carrying out actions that have little to no personal risk, and running into a burning and/or smoke filled building.
Standard IANAL disclosure blah blah. It seems to me like there could be some legal responsibility here in the case of loss of life. If you have the means, the opportunity and the training to prevent loss of life without substantial personal risk but willfully do nothing, I'd think, at the very least, you'd be liable for criminal negligence if not manslaughter.
I'm not a big fan of deductions either. My point was that the health care bill is business as usual. I just don't get how it's markedly different than what came before.
How about instead of a $950 fine, we raise taxes for everyone? Then you get to deduct (up to some maximum, say $950) the amount you spend on health care?
Or instead of health care, you get to subtract an amount for each kid you have. Or how much interest you pay on your mortgage. Or... hopefully you get my point? I guess you can argue the health care bill is raising taxes on those that don't buy insurance and is deceptive in the way that tax is being levied. I might even agree. The problem is, I fail to see how that's markedly different from other tax/deduction rules. Or at least different enough to motivate me to join protests or political rallies or tea parties.
People are already taxed more for not paying mortgage interest. That makes less sense to me than paying more to subsidize the sick (even though I benefit from the mortgage interest deduction). Why wasn't the mortgage interest deduction upsetting people as much? It effectively "fines" people for not buying real estate on credit.
It's like a segment of our population suddenly woke up and realized they have to pay income taxes following incomprehensible rules. The strange thing is, that awakening seemed to occur at the same time Obama won the election.
Speaking of python, check out Panda3D. It's a complete game engine written in c++ and has a nice python API that exposes pretty much everything. It's totally open-source as well (very liberal BSD license).
It ships with a large set of examples, some of which are games.
I agree. I guess I still prefer a mouse to a joystick but both the controllers and the games have gotten much better for console FPS'. It doesn't make much difference to me now. I migrated to consoles for similar reasons as you did (mainly cost). I miss trying out community generated mods and maps but that's my biggest gripe.
Joystick movement of character movement is better than wasd. It's much harder to do a mix of tip-toeing, walking and running on a keyboard. You usually have a sprint button and you might move slower when you're crouching or laying prone but that's about it. You pointed out the biggest console deficiency - quick turns, although some games have a quick turn-around button (LFD2 has one on 360 for example). The quick-turn around button isn't as good but it's a serviceable work-around.
It's not really precision that's missing in joystick controls, you can be just as accurate with a joystick. Rather, the difference is the rate at which you can accurately hit a target. What I've found is that the joystick accuracy lag actually feels more realistic than being able to move your reticule nearly instantly with a mouse. In real life, even the pros can't move a rifle to a new target 40 yards away as fast as you can flick the mouse the same distance in a game. The result is that console guns "feel" like they have weight. It could be argued whether that bit of realism is good or bad but the weighted movement is starting to grow on me.