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Comment: Re:I am guessing they will make a sequel (Score 1) 301

by PhrostyMcByte (#47913069) Attached to: Microsoft To Buy Minecraft Maker Mojang For $2.5 Billion

They said they wont make changes to Minecraft, so how will they make money?

I've seen kids wearing Minecraft backpacks and shirts, said something like "hey cool! what're you building right now?" only to discover that while they've heard of the game they haven't actually played it.

I suspect these paraphernalia stand to make a lot more money than the game does.

As far as coming out with sequels, I'm not sure how well that would work anyway. Minecraft prides itself on being extremely basic, letting the player provide the creativity. What could a sequel possibly provide that didn't do away with that premise?

Anyway. Worth 2.5 billion? Highly doubtful, especially looking at the lackluster response to anything non-Minecraft they've brought out.

Comment: Re:Can someone clarify the state of BitCoin? (Score 4, Interesting) 134

by PhrostyMcByte (#47862901) Attached to: Paypal Jumps Into Bitcoin With Both Feet

Bitcoin itself doesn't have any known security flaws. One usability issue is that you can't instantly guarantee a transfer of coins -- nobody is going to be buying coffee with it directly.

It's not so much about problems with Bitcoin, but with Bitcoin "banks" that turned out to be incredibly insecure. The banks were created to exchange paper money for Bitcoins, and to facilitate instant transfers. They just happen to be incredibly bad at it, and because there is no regulation like an actual bank, are pretty much free to be as bad as they want.

Paypal is actually a good fit, as Bitcoin is essentially a decentralized Paypal. Paypal is also pretty well known for the same evils as they aren't regulated like an actual bank either, but they've got a lot of infrastructure and experience that could make them a far better Bitcoin bank than what's available right now.

Comment: Re:Franchise laws = Racket laws (Score 1) 157

by PhrostyMcByte (#47825539) Attached to: Tesla's Next Auto-Dealer Battleground State: Georgia
Car franchise laws were put in place to protect dealerships. Car manufacturers did not want to put in the heavy local investment to sell cars in every area, and dealerships did not want a manufacturer swooping in to steal the business with lower prices once the areas started booming.

Comment: Re:pdf.js (Score 2) 132

by PhrostyMcByte (#47625093) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best PDF Handling Library?

Office Automation is problematic -- because it literally opens up a hidden window of your Office app and simulates clicking around the UI to do what you need, if something unexpected happens it can unhide the window to show the user a message. This might be good enough for a desktop app, but if you're running it on a server it'll just freeze up your process with noone there to click it.

For Office->PDF conversion of word docs, Aspose.Words has a fairly easy API and generally very accurate rendering. I highly recommend it.

Comment: I'm convinced there is no elegant PDF library (Score 4, Informative) 132

by PhrostyMcByte (#47625017) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best PDF Handling Library?

At least on the C# side of things, the three libraries I've used (iTextSharp, PdfSharp, and Aspose.Pdf) are all a bit of an unintuitive mess with inconsistencies all over the place and very little documentation. In the case of iText, their revenue stream is putting all their documentation into a book for people to buy, so it's not uncommon to get an intentionally vague response when asking for help.

I cycle between each depending on what I need to do, because they all have their own quirks and supported features. I've even piped from one to another to get certain parts of the process working.

Good luck.

Comment: Bose is worried (Score 5, Insightful) 162

by PhrostyMcByte (#47541863) Attached to: Bose Sues New Apple Acquisition Beats Over Patent Violations

Bose and Beats are both highly brand-focused. Bose targets the more mature quality-seeking crowd, while Beats targets the bass-hungry and fashion-conscious youth. There's some overlap, but generally I'd say their targets kept competition to a minimum, and they've pretty much cornered those targets

Apple has the best of both worlds being viewed both as high quality and a status symbol. If they start using their monster marketing teams to align peoples' view of Beats with that of Apple, Bose stands a chance of being pushed out of the market by a frightening direct competition. They've got good reason to try to stall the acquisition as much as possible

Comment: Re:Bah (Score 1) 280

You can buy a YubiKey to do this today without any finicking with a Raspberry Pi. There are a few modes depending on the devices you buy. First is what you say -- it can emulate a keyboard, and input a password for you whenever you press a button on the device. It can also perform HOTP/TOTP authentication, and some of them can act as a legitimate security token that integrates with your platform's crypto.

Comment: Re:Stack Overflow reputation (Score 2) 285

by PhrostyMcByte (#47408079) Attached to: The World's Best Living Programmers

Stack Overflow reputation indicates that you're a 1337 documentation writer, not necessarily that you know how to program.

SO reputation indicates a number of things -- that you can understand and dissect problems and code from others, that you have intimate knowledge of the platforms you're answering about, that you can code reasonably well, and that you can communicate well.

Basically, someone with a high rep is very likely to be enthusiastic, knowledgable, and great to work with. Does this mean Jon Skeet can out-code an elite like John Carmack? No. Does it mean he's a good coder? Probably. One of the "top" programmers? Not enough data.

This whole article is a bit of a bonkers idea. What makes a good dev? Is it the ability to work quickly, elegantly, and robustly? Being able to pull innovative algorithms out of thin air? Is it the ability to hack together important, complicated projects even if the code itself is a mess? How about less direct things, like overall contribution to the dev community and enthusiasm for helping other people grow?

If you hype something and it succeeds, you're a genius -- it wasn't a hype. If you hype it and it fails, then it was just a hype. -- Neil Bogart

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