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Comment Re:Basic income (Score 5, Interesting) 674

I don't understand the concept that if I have a loaf of bread, that I worked all day for...

I may be able to help there...

Money isn't something tangible, like bread. Money is a game token. It's like D&D hit points. It has value in the context of game, because other players are playing by the same rules. My dwarven cleric has 43 hit points, and my American corporation has three million dollars. Same principle.

If you just bake a loaf of bread, nobody cares. But if you convert your bread into game tokens, then other players will expect you to play by the game rules. If the local game rules include a tax on your tokens, and you hide tokens under the table, then the other players might accuse you of cheating.

Now, I'm not saying our local game rules are perfect. Maybe they'd benefit from a revision. But if you start thinking of money as something real, rather than as a game token, you're going to get confused. You're speaking in terms of "stealing," when you should be speaking in terms of revising rules to improve the game.

On the separate question of whether our game rules should include tax, I'm not an expert. But I found a list on of countries by taxes as a percentage of gdp.

For the most part, countries on top half of the list seem like nicer places than countries on the bottom half. There are exceptions, but overall it's hard to deny the trend. So I'm not sure lower taxes actually lead to a better-functioning game system.

Right now, I pay a lot of taxes. If I moved to Hati or Guatemala, house rules would allow me to accumulate tokens faster. But I'd rather stay here. Our local rules seem to make fo a better game, despite the annual drain on my tokens.

Comment Re:Oh... (Score 1) 129

This gets mentioned a lot around here and I've never understood. What difference does that equation make either way?

Here's my crack at a simple explanation:

P is a class of easy problems that computers can solve quickly.

NP is a class including hard problems that computers can't seem to solve quickly.

People are searching for a fast way to solve the hard problems. It's like a holy grail of computer science.

If someone finds this holy grail, there would be huge consequences. We could quickly solve hard problems like protein folding, which would help us unlock the mysteries of life. Lots of shit would be turned upside down.

If the grail does exist, that means P and NP are the same set of problems. (P equals NP)

Many computer scientists suspect the grail does not actually exist. But it hasn't been proven either way.

Comment Re:30 percent? (Score 1) 47

Unity, with a $1500 pro license, makes sense if you're making more than $30,000 per seat per game on average...

That price comparison is not quite apples-to-apples. The Unreal license includes the complete engine source, while the Unity license does not. Also, the Unity license costs extra for mobile platforms.

But in practice, the deciding factor between those two engines will usually be language support, not price. Unreal supports C++ and visual "blueprint" logic, while Unity supports C# and Javascript. For most developers, that decision will be a bigger factor than the price difference.

Comment Re:Will it be OpenGL & 64-bit? (Score 1) 149

Things are starting to turn around, though. Sony and MS have finally released consoles with 8GB ram

Uh yeah, quite some time ago now.

Only about a year ago. That's not very long.

At this point, cross-platform games are still releasing for the Xbox 360, which means they need to squeeze into half a gig.

The situation will change as the new consoles displace the old ones. But right now, games like Far Cry 4 and Battlefield:whatever are still worrying about the Xbox 360's tiny memory footprint.

Comment Re:Will it be OpenGL & 64-bit? (Score 1) 149

Bollocks. You see a 10-15% performance improvement on typical code when simply recompiling to 64 bit.

Games aren't typical code. Performance tends to be GPU-bound, not CPU-bound.

Which means you incur the cost of re-testing everything, plus the cost of replacing the one fiddly library that won't play nicely with 64-bit (there's always one). And your payoff is... quite possibly nothing, because your bottleneck was in the GPU.

Comment Re:Will it be OpenGL & 64-bit? (Score 1) 149

8GB is just not a lot of RAM any more. Any gamer who can afford to buy games can be expected to have that much.

Actually, take a look at the Steam Hardware Survey.

Last month, 47% of steam users had 4GB or less.

That's not a survey of general PC owners. Those are people on steam last month.

It may be true that people with more ram buy more games... but what developer is going to ignore half the potential audience?

Comment Re:Will it be OpenGL & 64-bit? (Score 3, Informative) 149

Just HOW MANY & which games ARE pure 64-bit nowadays?

There is a reason why most games are still 32-bit apps.

The big advantage of 64-bit instructions is that they can handle large amounts of RAM. If you aren't using a ton of RAM, there's little benefit to switching instruction sets. Until recently, most high-budget games were targeted at consoles with tiny amounts of RAM.

Even today, brand new computers are shipping with 4GB ram. I'm not just talking about Surface Pros and Macbook airs... Alienware is selling a dedicated gaming PC with only 4GB.

PC game developers know that requiring more than 4GB would sacrifice a chunk of their audience. So why bother porting to 64-bit? They can't really take advantage until all those 4GB machines go away.

Things are starting to turn around, though. Sony and MS have finally released consoles with 8GB ram, so we should expect to see 64-bit games appearing in the form of console ports.

Some programming languages manage to absorb change, but withstand progress. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982