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Comment: Re:simple math (Score 4, Insightful) 973

by GreatRedShark (#32795742) Attached to: A Composer's-Eye View of the Copyright Wars

... but surely the transcription process is quite easy for any talented musician.

If you play a song in a band, and are a decent musician, the sheet music is just a minor inconvenience, a bit like writing out the steps to a math problem that you've done in your head. Why would a by-product be 400% higher than the finished product? Does it make any sense that the nails, boards, etc. in a shed would cost 400% more than the finished product?

Spoken like someone who has probably never gotten very far in music. Try finding a "talented musician" to transcribe all the parts of a symphony for a full orchestra. In a reasonable amount of time.

And comparing nails of a shed to sheet music is ridiculous. More realistic would be comparing the assembly instructions for the shed to sheet music. To someone who has no idea how to build a shed, the instructions are VERY valuable. Your shed instructions analogy is appropriate to compare to beginner's music. For more complex music, simply pick assembly instructions to a more complex structure.


Zombie Pigs First, Hibernating Soldiers Next 193 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the fattening-up-on-brains dept.
ColdWetDog writes "Wired is running a story on DARPA's effort to stave off battlefield casualties by turning injured soldiers into zombies by injecting them with a cocktail of one chemical or another (details to be announced). From the article, 'Dr. Fossum predicts that each soldier will carry a syringe into combat zones or remote areas, and medic teams will be equipped with several. A single injection will minimize metabolic needs, de-animating injured troops by shutting down brain and heart function. Once treatment can be carried out, they'll be "re-animated" and — hopefully — as good as new.' If it doesn't pan out we can at least get zombie bacon and spam."

Asterisk Vishing Attacks "Endemic" 141

Posted by Soulskill
from the enter-your-ssn-if-you-concur dept.
Ian Lamont writes "Remember the report last year that the FBI was concerned about a 'vishing' exploit relating to the Asterisk IP PBX software? Digium played down the report, noting that it was based on a bug that had already been patched, but now the company's open-source community director says that attacks on Asterisk installations are 'endemic.' There have been dozens of reported vishing attacks in recent weeks, says the article: 'The victims typically bank with smaller regional institutions, which typically have fewer resources to detect scams. Scammers hack into phone systems and then call victims, playing prerecorded messages that say there has been a billing error or warn them that the bank account has been suspended because of suspicious activity. If the worried customer enters his account number and ATM password, the bad guys use that information to make fake debit cards and empty their victim's bank accounts.'"

Comment: Traffic / commute time (Score 1) 447

by GreatRedShark (#29287217) Attached to: Back-to-school time means ...

I notice that on my current commuting route, there are lots of university students. Once the school year starts, a commute that took just under 30 minutes today could take almost an hour with all the extra congestion on the roads and on the busses. But I know that after the first round of midterms, a lot of first-year students will start dropping out and there will be more seats available. :) By next Spring, the traffic will be almost back down to summer levels.

Comment: Design by committee (Score 1) 832

by GreatRedShark (#29135175) Attached to: Poor Design Choices In the Star Wars Universe

I can believe the bad design choices of R2D2 and C3P0 if they were designed by committees. Nothing ruins a good design more than lots and lots of meetings and demands for consensus and compromises.

It probably went something like this:
Engineer 1: "So the demo's all ready to go. Did you guys finish the voice synth integration?"
Engineer 2: "Uhh yeah.... so actually, they cut that from the project."
Engineer 1: "WTF?!?!?"
Engineer 2: "Management said that testing time would take too long and we'd miss the product launch deadline for this holiday season so they told us to scrap it."
Engineer 1: "What? How is this machine supposed to communicate?"
Engineer 2: "They said to just leave the diagnostic beeper in with the developer's code manual. The voice chip will be a separately available upgrade in 6 months. Besides, this thing is really just supposed to talk directly to other machines. What's the worst that could happen?"
Engineer 1: "I'm selling my stocks in this company this afternoon, want to join me?"
Engineer 2: ".... Yeah I guess so. I hear there's this other awesome project, some kind of moon-sized battleship. It should be fun. Let's check if they're hiring!"

And I bet that the Death Star problems were due to budget overruns...

Comment: Re:Remember, kids... (Score 5, Funny) 491

by GreatRedShark (#28205753) Attached to: Best kind of engineering:

a joke:

A mechanical engineer, an electrical engineer, and a civil engineer are debating what type of engineer God is.
The mech. engineer says "God must be a mechanical engineer! Look at the amazing way the human body is put together!" The electrical engineer says "No, God must be an electrical engineer. Without all the marvelous wiring and circuitry of nerves and brains, the body would never work!"
The Civil engineer says "No! God is a civil engineer!"
The other two look at him and say "Why?!" and he replies: "Who else but a civil engineer would run a waste disposal pipeline through a recreational zone?"

Comment: Re:depends on the stupidity (Score 1) 378

by GreatRedShark (#27242511) Attached to: Believable Stupidity In Game AI

I seem to recall that in the original Halo, some of the short little Covenant enemies would also sometimes freak out when the player attacked then ducked behind a corner out of sight. It could work to the player's advantage if they hit them with a plasma grenade - the freaked out baddy would sometimes run screaming back to his freinds just as the grenade went off! :P It didn't always work, I think a couple times they came running at me!

I get more annoyed by RTS AI's - even on "Normal" difficulty, they seem to have omniscience of the whole map and can "concentrate" on several objectives (capture point on map, attack enemy base, hold resource mine, build secondary base, etc...) at once, more easily than a human player. In "campaign" modes, they tend to be too heavily scripted - I find this especially true in Supreme Commander: hit one objective and the AI simply waits for the player to make the next move.

Entropy isn't what it used to be.