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Comment: Re:Never really understood the point. (Score 2) 126

by Phrogz (#42495479) Attached to: Toyota To Show Off Autonomous Prototype Car At CES Show

[...] much like ABS and 4-wheel drive, this will probably just backfire and increase death rates.

[citation needed]

Your post would amount to more than fear-mongering if you provided any links to data showing that, for example, anti-lock brakes have resulted in an increase in death rates.

Comment: Re:Can this be retroactively legalized (Score 1) 326

by Phrogz (#41322605) Attached to: House Approves Extending the Warrantless Wiretapping Act

Does the constitutional prohibition of ex post facto laws prevent the legalization of illegal activity as a means to annul the culpability of preexisting perpetrators?

Despite beliefs to the contrary, society is nothing but a giant game of Nomic. There may be rules about what you can do, but if you play well enough you can change those rules. Playing well includes the ability to change them retroactively.

Comment: Re:Raw- or OOP-base Lua? (Score 4, Interesting) 145

by Phrogz (#38891911) Attached to: Wikipedia Chooses Lua As Its New Template Language

BTW, my personal opinion on Lua:

It's a fun language to learn, because at the core it is *so* simple. In less than a week a good scripter can fully wrap their head around everything that Lua has to offer from the scripting side (not the C++ side; that might be another week). It's rather elegant, really, with convenient syntax for integer-based for-loops that automatically create a new copy of the loop variable on each pass for simple closure creation.

However, when you get down to actually typing in itwell, it's not as verbose as Java, but there's some real RSI danger there. With it's simple core come decisions like "not only will we not give you foo++, we won't even give you foo+=1". Try typing things like "frameCounter = frameCounter + 1" many times and you'll start to scream. Every day I scripted in Lua at work I would long for the times when I could use Ruby to actually get something done.

For those who know JavaScript and want to get a glimpse of what Lua is like, I have a page on my site: Learning Lua from JavaScript.

Comment: Raw- or OOP-base Lua? (Score 4, Interesting) 145

by Phrogz (#38891829) Attached to: Wikipedia Chooses Lua As Its New Template Language

I'll be interested to see if they go for WoW-style "raw", imperative Lua (gobs of functions) or a more OOP-style Lua (NB: my site).

In designing the Lua interface for an old Game UI authoring product I originally went with OOP-style Lua. It was (IMHO) a rather elegant wrapper on our DOM. However, we soon found that the memory thrash of using Lua's lightweight userdata to go back and forth between C++ and Lua resulted in poor performance on consoles, and I ultimately had to redesign the interface to be more WoW-like for our next release.

It was a shame, putting more onus on the scripter to manage objects (tables of properties in Lua) based on a 'pointer' passed around to uniquely identify each element in the DOM, and passing that pointer to all relevant functions. But the performance increase was dramatic.

Comment: Yes, of course...and some do. (Score 1) 486

by Phrogz (#33803884) Attached to: Should ISPs Cut Off Bot-infected Users? cut me off in 1999 when a Windows server I had at home was exploited (MSSQL Server...grr) and infected. I called them, they explained what was up and how to fix it. I 'fixed' it, called them back, and they put me back online...and then offline again 12 hours later because I hadn't cleaned it all up properly. (My then-girlfriend-now-wire really wanted to play Quake 3 Team Arena...I didn't have time to fight Windows!) I fixed it for real, and they put me right online again.

It was frustrating at the time, but I knew then and I know now that what they did was what I wish more companies did.


The Virtual Choir Project 58

Posted by samzenpus
from the is-it-real-or-is-it-youtube dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Conductor and composer Eric Whitacre has successfully created a virtual choir using the voices of 185 people who posted their performance on YouTube. The piece that's performed is called 'Sleep,' composed by the conductor himself in 2000. Anyone can join in — all you need is a webcam and a microphone."

Comment: Re:Silly (Score 1) 482

by Phrogz (#29374531) Attached to: Why Motivation Is Key For Artificial Intelligence

What defines HUMAN$? Redefine the variable, the law is still satisfied. We hoomanz do it with brainwashing and conditioning. They're not humans, they're gooks. They don't even believe like we do. It's fine to kill them. Heathens anyway, right? But I'd like to think the robot might be able to work it even more subtly, subverting the law.

Or perhaps the robot will take the laws very seriously, to ill effect.

Comment: What was their intention again? (Score 1) 268

by Phrogz (#27555527) Attached to: Grad Student Project Uses Wikis To Stash Data, Miffs Admins


"About: ... We use the term graffiti for our work since we are storing data in a way that non-network participants may regard as unsightly or unwanted vandalism. ..."

"Update: ... It was never our intention to maliciously deface sites, ..."

I don't blame them for changing their tune once they came under fire, but I'm surprised that they have both statements on the page at once. Or am I somehow seeing a contradiction where none exists?

Thus mathematics may be defined as the subject in which we never know what we are talking about, nor whether what we are saying is true. -- Bertrand Russell