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Comment Re:GPS is just an aid (Score 1) 574

Note that you're assuming that you are from a country where numbered roads are a thing. In Germany, for example, it's extremely uncommon to use this kind of scheme and even in places where it is used it's often used differently - for example, in Mannheim they enumerate blocks instead of roads and due to the need for the scale to be able to expand in three directions they set it up so that A1 and L1 are adjacent. However, in Europe roads are commonly not straight, which can help with navigation (if you have a map, that is).

Likewise, the nearest mountain could well be a few hundes miles away. Of course any set of landmarks will do but coming from a completely flat area I'm familiar with towns where no landmarks are visible from most places in town.

In such situations I just take out my smartphone and do a map search for whatever is on the road signs. Even just knowing how the current road is laid out can help you get your bearings and if that's not enough you can match the names of crossing roads with what you see on the map to get your exact location. Yes, that's using Google Maps as a road map with a search function. It works fairly well for that and doesn't bulk up your pockets when you're on foot.

Comment Re:Where is the full article? (Score 1) 513

Remember that one the biggest enemies of a feminist is a member of a different wave of feminism. If we get a truly random mix of feminists together I'd expect it to take about half an hour before the bulb gets shoved into somebody's eye socket.

Which might count as screwing it in, I guess, so the answer should probably be "one radfem and one libfem".

Comment Re:Licensing? (Score 1) 182

Road signage should be standardized either at the state or the federal level, depending on who makes the traffic laws. As such, either the state or the federal government should pay 800 Dollars to make the font available to all government entities for government purposes and then everone would be happy. If the new font offers clear enough advantages to switch to it, it should be licensed and mandated for all new signage from then on.

I don't see how anyone would consider it a good idea to have entities small enough to even notice an 800 Dollar dent in their budget license the font individually. Does that mean that municipalities can use whichever font they want for their signage? Why would that ever be considered a good idea? Traffic signage is a clear example of an area where shared standards are better for everyone. Why let people put up whatever they feel like?

Comment Re:Translation:quit optimizing for Intel technolog (Score 1) 152

Actually, I got my R9 390 precisely because of quality. Nvidia had this embarrassing thing where the cards they marketed as being DX12 compatible weren't, in fact, fully compatible with DX12. Some missing functionality had to be done in software, at a noticeable performance cost. That's what made me choose AMD as I want my card to last me a few years, probably well into when DX12 will actually matter.

And it's not the first time Nvidia released a product that only technically did what it was supposed to do. I still distinctly remember the GTX 970 which had two gigs of memory, only 1.5 gigs of which you could use without significant performance losses. But hey, technically it had two gigs! You just couldn't use a quarter of the memory.

Recently, every time I was in the market for a GPU, Nvidia's offer was theoretically good but ultimately failed to impress because of some corner they'd cut without informing anyone before launch. AMD might have mediocre drivers and less explicit support from games but at least I don't have to expect zany caveats.

Comment Re:stress is the systemic killer in modern workpla (Score 1) 60

Uh-huh. Once he gets that degree the first thing we'll do is to talk him into taking a sabbatical. Well, it won't take much talking. Even if it means we'll have to take turns providing couches for him to crash on, he really needs some stress-free time. Hopefully that'll help him avoid the worst of it.

If it doesn't he's still fluent in C and there's a lot of unfilled tech jobs around these parts. Not what he dedicated years to getting a degree in but defeinitely much preferable to unemployment.

Comment Re:Thank you! (Score 1) 232

Actually, you can even have CGI in every single shot without it looking bad. The key is in using it discreetly. The Truman show is a good example: CGI was extensively used... to render the upper halves of buildings. They built the ground floors as a real set and then digitally added the upper floors, which nothing ever interacts with. Yes, it's just a glorified animated matte painting. But it works very well to turn an unimpressive set into a nicer one.

CGI can be used well for three things: Unobtrusive background stuff like this, impossible (or prohibitively expensive) things or full-CGI movies. If you stray form that (like, say, making Yoda a full-CGI Gummi Bear with a lightsaber) your movie will probably age very poorly - to the point where it may look ugly before it's even out.

Comment Re:stress is the systemic killer in modern workpla (Score 1) 60

Another example: A friend of mine is pursuing a PhD. His advisor is one of the world's leading experts in his field. And that sounds nice until you realize that "leading expert" translates to "absolute workaholic who works at least twelve hours a day seven days a week and expects the same from his postgrads". For the last eight years my friend has been run ragged with fun things like ninety-hour work weeks (mostly unpaid, of course) doing completely unrelated stuff for the work group during which he was naturally expected to still work on his thesis in his spare time. And of course this unrelated work had to be flawless, after all if the work group's new paper can't make it into Nature why even bother having a work group in the first place?

These days he's actually finding the time to write - not because the workload has lightened but because the university has started asking the supervisor pointed questions about why certain people are taking so long writing their thesis. But he's having huge problems actually working on his thesis because over the years he started slipping into depression and what's increasingly looking like burnout syndrome... what a surprise.

Of course he always had the option of walking away and finding a different university to write his thesis at. Except that it would've seriously pissed off his supervisor who happens to know pretty much every other potential supervisor in the country. Even if his supervisor isn't vindictive, the mere chance that he might be is enough to make leaving an unfeasibly dangerous option.

Makes me happy I got my master's-equivalent degree and left for a programming job. Postgrads run on fumes and a constant fear of their supervisor. I rather prefer the comparative tranquility of mere office politics.

Comment Re: Already here - it feels unfair to some (Score 1) 412

Remember, this is about Europe. Some assumptions you made don't hold. For instance, in many parts of Europe living 30 minutes from any kind of civilization is only possible if you don't own a motorized vehicle. We don't have as many vast swathes of uninhabited land as the USA do. And even in bad areas of towns you're unlikely to run into people packing heat. Stuttgart isn't Detroit.

America is full of guns and there are some very good historical reasons why that is the case. Europe generally isn't, for similarly good reasons. We like to keep it that way. Sure, easy access to guns means that I can shoot someone if I decide they are a threat to me. However, it also means that they (inluding burglars, muggers etc.) can shoot me. At least the way things are now, shouting for help and/or running away is a feasible option and if more protection is desired both self defense courses and pepper spray are effective measures. I wouldn't rely on any of that if the person threatening me could put lead into my body from twenty meters away.

(For the record, I have been a witness of gun-related crime and I know perfectly well that with both the attacker and the victim running it's still perfectly possible for the attacker to shoot the victim in the leg. I also know just how much a single bullet can fuck up a person's body. Thank you, not interested.)

Comment Re:Sensible then not (Score 1) 503

A little further off-topic, but you mention the sonic stinger. Is there any evidence of low frequencies causing similar symptoms? There's a public facility I visit on a regular basis, and their A/C unit causes one of the rooms to rumble at about 4 or 5 Hz. Obviously too low to "hear" but I can feel it when it kicks on, and I get nauseous shortly thereafter. Who knows?

The phenomenon is well known. Human reactions to infrasound include unease, anxiety, sleep disorders and even even a ghost sighting (in a case where the sound almost matched the resonant frequency of the human eye). It varies from person to person but it is possible that that 4-5 Hz rumble causes your nausea. What makes infrasound even more fun: Infrasound that greatly affects some people doesn't affect others much so it's hard to even identify as a problem source.

Comment Re:no, without linefeeds it says PRI*HTTP/2.0SM (Score 3, Insightful) 200

// HTTP 1.1 is essentially 1.0 so any future version of HTTP will work with our code.
var weSupportThis = new Regex("^HTTP/\d+\.\d+").IsMatch(header);

There are many coders out there and many broken ways of detecting protocols. Only changing the version number might run into trouble if one side of the conversation assumes that everything starting with "HTTP" is going to be pretty much equivalent to HTTP/1.0. So at least the "PRI" part makes sense.

Comment Re:Bad comparison? (Score 1) 119

Depends on the game. A few MM*s are happy with giving you time off. Those are generally either pay-to-own like Guild wars or free to play and supported by a microtransaction model. Some, like Path of Exile, let you idle for as long as you like. Others, like League of Legends (admittedly a MOBA but with the same kind of non-pay-to-win microtransactions), will release your account name after a period of inactivity, although if I remember correctly, LOL allows you to recover an inactive account somehow.

I may be wrong on that last one; I dropped LOL for good when I realized it wasn't really for me.

One thing I do know is that most of my friends avoid subscription-based MMOs like the plague. Too expensive, too demanding.

Comment Re:WoW! really its taken this long to figure that (Score 1) 119

True. I play Path of Exile a lot although I don't see it as an MMO - it's more like a Diablo clone with great multiplayer. That's the appeal, actually: I don't have to run through shared areas, competing with random strangers over who gets to kill the mobs. I don't have to put up with random strangers forcing me into PVP so they can get off over how superior their optimized PVP build is to someone else's PVE build. I can party with my friends whenever we feel like it, though. The game is effectively a singleplayer game with drop-in multiplayer support. I like that.

And it doesn't do subscriptions. It has a microtransaction model that avoids the whole pay-to-win issue by only selling you cosmetic items and a few non-essential convenience things. That makes it easy to pick up and put down as well as making it completely invisible to TFA's subscription metric.

I don't really play any other MMOs. But then again I'm not into massively multiplayer games and PoE only sticks with me because it doesn't play like an MMO. Some games just fit into more than one genre.

Comment Re:the USA is Portugal (Score 1) 87

"The USA" doesn't mean a lot now that private companies have sprung up. You do have a point, however: NASA is damn good at payloads. Their stuff usually works really well once it's up but, well, they kinda suck at launch vehicles. The most likely reason is pork. It's hard to spread out manufacturing of a space probe over fifty states but a new launch vehicle? Easily. And once parts manufacturers exist they must never go away, hence the SLS, which most likely will be unneccessarily expensive while performing worse then a vehicle that wasn't designed to generate revenue for every damn state in the union.

Honestly, NASA would probably do better if they sold their launch assets to SpaceX and focused entirely on payloads and missions. Whether they'll end up launching with rockets from Russia, Japan, SpaceX or even Copenhagen Suborbital is no matter as long as the rockets are reliable. The existing rockets have a track record and it's often a good one. NASA's new launcher doesn't.

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