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+ - Pixar Releases Free Version of RenderMan

Submitted by jones_supa
jones_supa writes: A year ago the animation studio Pixar promised its RenderMan animation and rendering suite to eventually become free for non-commercial use. This was originally scheduled to happen in the SIGGRAPH 2014 computer graphics conference, but things got delayed. Nevertheless, today Pixar is releasing the free version into wild. Free non-commercial RenderMan can be used for research, education, evaluation, plug-in development, and any personal projects that do not generate commercial profits. This version is fully featured, without a watermark or any kind of artificial limits. Featuring Pixar's new RIS technology, RenderMan delivers extremely fast global illumination and interactive shading and lighting for artists. The software is available for Mac, Linux and Windows. In conjunction with the release, Pixar has also launched a new RenderMan Community site where users can exchange knowledge and resources, showcase their own work, share assets such as shaders and scripts, and learn about RenderMan from tutorials.

+ - Twitch.tv Security Breach->

Submitted by FalleStar
FalleStar writes: Today, the world's largest video game livestreaming website, Twitch.tv, posted the following blog entry:

We are writing to let you know that there may have been unauthorized access to some Twitch user account information. For your protection, we have expired passwords and stream keys and have disconnected accounts from Twitter and YouTube. As a result, you will be prompted to create a new password the next time you attempt to log into your Twitch account. We also recommend that you change your password at any website where you use the same or a similar password. We will communicate directly with affected users with additional details.

The full details of the breach have yet to be released. Back in a 2013 blog post where Twitch reported that one of their CDNs had mistakenly exposed user account information, they mentioned that their user passwords are hashed, but gave no mention of whether or not they are salted. In addition to the blog post, Twitch users are being notified of the intrusion by email.
Link to Original Source

Comment: Come on Blizzard (Score 1) 192

by FalleStar (#49235815) Attached to: Steam On Linux Now Has Over a Thousand Games Available

Valve has done an awesome job of making Linux a viable gaming platform. I have over 200 games in my Steam collection, about half of which run on Linux now.

The only thing keeping me booted into Windows most of the time is that my primary game is World of Warcraft, taking up about 70% of my total gaming time. If Blizzard would step up and embrace Linux* I'd gladly get rid of my Windows partition.

* Yes I know WoW can run in a limited capacity under Linux, that's not good enough for real raiding/PvPing

Comment: Re:Agreed.. (Score 1) 212

by FalleStar (#48356275) Attached to: New Book Argues Automation Is Making Software Developers Less Capable

I agree that jQuery has it's flaws, but it is also a godsend in many other ways. The company I'm currently working for writes web applications for K-12. Some of our customers are running XP with IE7, others are using iPads, Chromebooks, and everything in-between. While the majority of the client-side code is just in plain JavaScript, we've started incorporating some HTML5 functionality into our products recently, unfortunately some of the older browsers are a bit lacking in support. Often times jQuery will have a wrapper that will implement that same functionality if the browser doesn't natively support it, but if it does then it will just act as a wrapper to call the native implementation with a minimal performance impact.

Hopefully a few years from now when XP has finally disappeared entirely and everyone is running a standards-compliant browser (as if there is such a thing) there will no longer be a need for a jQuery-like project, but until then I'm very glad that it exists.

Comment: Re:BULLSHIT.. Gamergate needs a real explanation (Score 1) 716

by FalleStar (#48330507) Attached to: Bounties vs. Extreme Internet Harassment

When you make excuses for people harassing people and making death threats, you are part of the problem. No amount of hand-waving can possibly change that. You're helping to enable bad behavior. Why would you want to associate yourself with that?

I don't like it when people do what you're doing right now and throw all gamers into one category and put a label on us. Gamers did not send this woman death threats, a handful of immature, probably mentally ill Internet trolls did. It would be great if those who are responsible were found and charged in accordance with the law.

With that being said, those threats do not invalidate the original purpose of GamerGate, and they damn sure don't give anyone the right to make blanket statements about gamers being psychotic and misogynistic.

Comment: Two Possibilities (Score 1) 349

by FalleStar (#46456759) Attached to: Crowdsourcing Confirms: Websites Inaccessible on Comcast

1) The author has managed to uncover a conspiracy by Comcast to hold the good people at http://021yy.org/ down by denying the no doubt millions of potential customers that would be flocking to the domain otherwise. After all, that domain name rolls right off the tongue.

or

2) Comcast doesn't have an entry in it's DNS servers for the site because it is a Chinese domain that looks like spam that no customer of theirs has tried to access before now.

Comment: Re:I don't dislike Valve (Score 1) 102

by FalleStar (#46145995) Attached to: Steam Music Now Accepting Beta Signups

But what can they bring to the table that old winamp and mp3s can't do better?

Here's a few thoughts:

  1. 1) Manage/Control music without leaving Big Picture mode, not useful for keyboard & mouse really, but if you're playing with a controller on a television I think this would be very useful.
  2. 2) Add a way to mix your music library with the in-game sounds. You could set the music volume to lower than the sound effects and dialogue volume, so that you could hear the music just fine, but without drowning out the noises from the game that might be useful to the player to hear (gunshots, mission directions, etc).
  3. 3) Integration with games to allow the music to pause automatically when a player enters a cinematic or cut-scene.
  4. 4) Use your own music library as background music for subtle immersion. Maybe you're playing GTA and walking down the street, as NPCs drive passed you might hear some of them listening to songs from your own collection. Not sure that this would be done, but it's possible.
  5. 5) The ability to maintain playlists that will trigger per game. To take it a step further even, perhaps you'd want to listen to different music when questing in World of Warcraft as opposed to when you're PVPing (I know I do).

I'm sure there's more creative uses for a feature like this, but these are just what came to me off the top of my head.

Comment: Re:Toy Example (Score 1) 186

by FalleStar (#45946767) Attached to: How Reactive Programming Differs From Procedural Programming
It also doesn't help that he's clearly trying to exaggerate how complex this simple logic would be in other programming languages. The "500 lines of Java code" is mostly whitespace, curly braces, and comments. When you remove the comments from the code he provides while keeping the generous line-spacing, it's only 275 lines of code.

Comment: Links to Patents (Score 5, Informative) 204

by FalleStar (#45946465) Attached to: Supreme Court Refuses To Hear Newegg Patent Case
#5715314 - The second most long-winded description of every online store ever.
#5909492 - The most long-winded description of every online store ever, much of it seems to be copied & pasted straight from the top link.
#7272639 - Describes what a session is.

Soverain Software is just another patent troll that never should have had them assigned in the first place.

Comment: Re:Why does Ford need this data? (Score 1) 599

I was under the impression that much of the data is actually transmitted via OnStar which is built into most new cars. My 2012 Chevy Sonic doesn't have an active OnStar subscription, but at any point I can double-press the button on the mirror and get connected to them. I don't know if the network connection is persistent or not, but I've always just assumed that it is.

Comment: Re:It doesn't matter (Score 1) 470

As someone that purposely went from Windows 7 to Windows 8 (got it for $40 from Newegg on sale), I have to say it was money well spent. The whole Metro setup is terrible, but with Windows 8.1 + Classic Shell, I never see that screen at all. My setup is almost identical to Windows 7, but it runs much better. My gaming rig runs on average 10-20 FPS higher on the same games in Win8 compared to Win7 and there is noticeably less input lag as well.

With all of that being said, if you're not a gamer, there is no reason to upgrade. On my non-gaming systems I run Mint because it is a superior desktop environment in just about every way.

Comment: Re:STILL not accurate and STILL misquoted (Score 1) 182

by FalleStar (#45546671) Attached to: SSD Manufacturer OCZ Preparing For Bankruptcy
I'm surprised to see so many people had issues with their OCZ SSDs. I've been running my 256GB OCZ Agility III for over a year with zero issues. I use the drive strictly for the OS partitions though, all my games and media are on my 1TB & 2TB drives. For what I paid for it, I feel like I've already gotten my use out of it. If it does fail on me, that's what backups are for.

Comment: Re:problems with multi-monitor support? (Score 1) 111

by FalleStar (#45477063) Attached to: Mir Won't Ship Even In Ubuntu 14.04

Don't know why I'm bothering to respond to an AC but what the hell, I'll bite.

When was the last time you actually used a good install of Windows, that is one that isn't full of malware/crapware that comes pre-installed from OEMs? Windows has been pretty rock-solid since XP SP 2 (skipping Vista of course). I'm currently running my gaming desktop dual-boot with Windows 8.1 (with Classic Shell of course) & Linux Mint no problem.

I admit that Windows lacks a lot of the things that make Linux great for power users, but at the same time I virtually never have issues with Windows. I've never once had issues with multi-monitor support and I run a dual, sometimes triple monitor configuration.

But go ahead and spread your FUD AC, what do I know?

Comment: Edutainment (Score 1) 79

As far as ways to communicate online goes, I'm not sure how useful of a tool this would be. I can definitely see how this could easily become the best way to learn sign language though if paired with Rosetta Stone-like tutoring software. My wife has been planning to learn sign language soon, I'm sure she'd love to have something like this as a learning aide.

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