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Comment Pick the Game first, then the Console (Score 1) 374

When shopping for any new gaming console, NEVER pick the hardware first. Since this is for some kids, figure out which games the kids are going to want to play. If any of them are exclusive to one console or the other, then your decision has been made for you. If Gears of War or Halo is on the list, your getting an XBox. If Gran Turismo or Ultra Street Fighter IV are on the list of games that they want to play, get the PS4.

If the games that they want are multi-platform, then the next things to consider are which controller is better in the opinion of the players, and what platform their friends play on (if online competitive play is a drawing point for the kids).


Comment It is more like the poor extorting the rich (Score 3, Insightful) 674

I tend to think of it a bit differently.

In my view of things, in any democratic society governed by the rule of law, people can only become as wealthy as the masses are willing to tolerate.

Maybe some of those who are rich managed to get there by hard work and talent, or maybe they were born into it. Either way, the only reason that the rich are able to stay rich, at a fundamental level, is that every other person in that society is willing to tolerate it. If the poor become angry enough, they will basically either steal all the shit that the rich person has by force, or just outright murder the fucker by forming an angry mob and going after them.

The basic income scheme can be viewed as the rich and powerful having enough foresight to see this possibility and trying to placate the mob sharing the wealth.

Besides, it also helps to keep in mind that those who are truly wealthy are in a position that which country they chose to live in is a near trivial matter of choice. If you have a billion dollars in the bank, and do not like the taxes in one place, you can afford to move to another place with a more hospitable tax regime.


Comment Which pays more to use? (Score 2) 757

Set aside for a moment about which programming language you like to use the most, and how much it upsets you that "People you Do Not Know also Do Not Like what You Like". Many of us are employed to work on projects we did not start. In most cases, you are not going to start a job and tell people 'Henceforth, all code shall now be implemented in the One True Language'.

Assuming that, which language is going to get you paid the most and make you most employable?

I am a game developer, and I have worked on consoles and currently on mobile games. I have used mostly C++. But I have had to work with pure C and C#. Being able to write good code in C++ is primarily responsible for me being employed.


Comment Fuck the wisdom. Tell her about who her father is (Score 1) 698

I would want my daughter to know who her father is as a person.

There is a great deal about you that your child will remember. But there are clearly stories about yourself that you would never tell a 12 year old girl.
Things like the first time you got drunk, or did something that horrified your parents. Essentially, things that your best friends and wife might know but might not tell your child about.

So tell your kid about the first time you got drunk, but also say why you did that and what you were thinking. Tell you child about the most important decisions you made in your life, and why you made them. Tell your child about your regrets and what you wish you could have done differently. If you have any strong beliefs that are important to you, talk about them and why they are important.


Comment FBI also does counter intelligence (Score 3, Informative) 52

The FBI has counter intelligence responsibilities (ie, dealing with foreign spies in the US), and some portion of related counter terrorism responsibilities, so they do have a legit need for the data.

While this does not exclude the possibility of general misuse of the data by the FBI, it is worth keeping in mind.


Comment Why not use with facial recognition? (Score 2) 264

If an officer with a camera is in the presence of a man who facial recognition flags as a possible match for someone with an open warrant out on them, it would probably be a good thing for the officer to be alerted about the match.

Now, of course what I am thinking of is the situation where some guy with an open murder warrent in Florida is spotted laying low in Wyoming. Having that guy picked up is probably a good thing.

I wonder exactly what sort of abuse you foresee with that situation? I am sure there are things that can go wrong.


Comment What about ongoing works? (Score 2) 360

Consider Spiderman.

The character was created in 1962, which puts it just over 50 years of existence. But the character is still being used in new and ongoing works. I expect that 100 years from now, the character will continue to exist in some form.

I think copyright laws need to recognize that characters used in ongoing works need different protection then something like a song (which is written once).


Comment Executions should be mechanical (Score 1) 1038

I am personally not in favor of a the Death Penalty, but I can understand why it exists and the arguments for having it.

I would say that if your going to have Capital punishment, then the means of execution should be mechanical, and performed in such a way as to minimize suffering. To that end, I agree with the idea of a dropping a sufficiently large mass on the skull of the condemned man, sufficient enough to crush a skull like a grape.

Lethal injection primarily exists to make executions more palatable by making them less gruesome. I disagree with this. Even if justified, ending a human life should not be an easy thing for those who must decide that it must happen.


Comment Why put this guy in Solitary at all? (Score 3, Insightful) 127

Solitary Confinement is the sort of thing that should only be used for the following reasons:

  - The inmate is dangerous to both other inmates and to the prison staff
  - The inmate is guilty of crimes that call for very harsh punitive measures, but execution is not an option
  - The inmate is being punished for rules infractions in prison (in which case solitary should be used for a limited time).

You need to have solitary confinement as an option to punish an inmate, otherwise the inmate may become uncontrolable. If your in prison and have no chance to ever be released, then why not stab that annoying cellmate / guard? They cannot keep you locked up for 2 life times. Solitary is the 'things can still get worse' measure.

The guy who created pirate bay is guilty of copyright infringement. I am going to assume he is not a threat to himself or others. So what basis is there for dropping him in solitary confinement?


Comment Why license it out? (Score 1) 277

Pokemon X and Y have sold 4 million copies worldwide in two days.

The retail price for those games is about $40.

If they license that content out to another platform, they lose a non trivial cut of that cash to the platform owner. If they release on the iPhone, I do not think the title would sell very well to an audience that expects everything to cost $1.

$40 * 4 million = $160 million in sales.

Do you think Pokemon would move 160 million paid sales on the iPhone?

Keeping that product on their own platform will give Nintendo the bulk of that profit, and it will help increase the size of the audience for other 3DS titles.


Comment What constitutes a reasonable search? (Score 1) 610

The 4th Amendment of the US constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures. Generally, this can be taken to mean that the police cannot pull a random passer by aside and go wrist deep into your rectal cavity on the off chance you might have something illegal up there, as it is unreasonable. I think I will get no disagreement on that.

Now, the reason that the above example is an unreasonable search is that it is absurdly invasive and there is no warrant, and in that particular scenario, there is no way to easily verify that the police officer doing the search did not plant evidence (or basically lie about finding a quantity of drugs or contraband up there).

The above example might become reasonable if the authorities were to follow due process and had reasonable cause to believe that there is something deep inside the suspects rectal cavity.

I think most people get hung up on the idea that the only reasonable search is one that has a warrant.

If the authorities opt instead to data mine thousands of e-mails looking for evidence of random wrongdoing the assumption of many is going to be that it is an unreasonable search. But on what basis is it unreasonable? Lets say such a search of several thousand suspects the authorities identify a few potential suspects of legit crimes, and the authorities then prosecute them. The people that were not implicated in that search will probably never know they were under scrutiny, and they would be hard pressed to prove any actual harm from that search.

So why exactly is that kind of search unreasonable? I am not about to say that such a search is reasonable (at least not without a warrant to go looking for something specific), but the only argument against it is for an expectation of privacy. While such an argument is valid, I am not aware of any laws in the US that guarantee privacy from non invasive scrutiny.


Comment On the topic of Nuclear waste, a question (Score 1) 380

The big issue with Fukushima at the moment is the build up of radioactive water that they do not want to introduce into the ocean / food chain.

If one were to use Electrolysis to separate the radioactive water into Hydrogen and Oxygen, would the Hydrogen and Oxygen also be radioactive? Or would the radioactive matter be condensed?

It may not be the most efficient use of power to convert the amount of water at Fukushima, but it would probably be much easier to manage the waste if it were condensed.


Comment Re:Do sport fans age out? (Score 5, Interesting) 304

Interesting question. I am going to guess no. Sports are surprisingly tied to modern culture.

While it is clearly not 'high culture' in the way that Opera, art galleries, ballet, and such manage to, sports are surprisingly important to modern culture. Humans are competitive with one another. Sports are one of the few acceptable physical outlets for that. Competition in sports allow humans to compete with one another, either individually or in groups, without resorting to violence. Humans are tribal, and sports teams push several psychological buttons for people (belong to a group, and lets kick the ass of those other guys from across the river).

Individual sports may increase or decrease in importance over time, but I expect that some form of sports will continue to be culturally relevant and important as long as humans are both competitive with one another and want to impress women by showing off how dominant they are.


You don't have to know how the computer works, just how to work the computer.