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Comment: Re:This is unfortunate. (Score 1) 569

by Ren.Tamek (#43103367) Attached to: SimCity 5: How Not To Design a Single Player Game

Fuck that, COD4 used SecuROM for it's copy protection. The 200X time period will live on in my mind as the era when it became standard practice for companies to sneak some type of malware onto your PC as a 'reward' for buying their game. I was pretty careful at this time to make sure I was buying 'clean' games, but still ended up with StarForce on my machine somehow.

This annoyed me so much at the time that I completely abandoned PC gaming, and a sustained boycott of all new PC games from most large publishers is still the only way to keep your PC safe from malware.

Compared to that, always on DRM actually seems to be a step in the right direction. OK so the game might not always work (same with all DRM'd media), but at least you can delete the game from your machine if that annoys you.

Comment: Re:ALL consoles suck... (Score 1) 403

by Ren.Tamek (#43038911) Attached to: Is the Wii U Already Dead?

I do agree with you, but I think there was an element of newness there too, because this was the first major xbla release. It was bitesize indie gaming for cheap, accessible to everyone, and there was some real excitement about that. Probably a lot of bloggers in the major gaming news wanted to overanalyse it, which lead to it being much overhyped.

Those were interesting times - I remember thinking how dumb it was to expect me to buy a hdtv, now you can't even get regular tv's anymore :)

Comment: Re:ALL consoles suck... (Score 1) 403

by Ren.Tamek (#43015545) Attached to: Is the Wii U Already Dead?

I'm somewhat surprised this isn't modded up to 5 by now. Perhaps there aren't many gamers on slashdot who have seen multiple generations? The WiiU is only a few months old at this point, it needs a good 6-8 months after launch to acquire a good enough library to be a good purchase. But it is still selling, even with the current software drought - wikipedia says 3 million units in 3 months, which is not bad in my book.

Heres the xbox 360 launch lineup: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xbox_360_launch#Titles

Nothing but crap in there. You're basically buying the console for CoD2 and PGR3, and these were the best titles on the system for quite a while! But the system matured and became good over time. This is a non-story really.

Comment: Re:Calculus and Shakespeare (Score 1) 1010

by Ren.Tamek (#40820979) Attached to: Political Science Prof Asks: Is Algebra Necessary?

Lastly, there are some students who are truly intellectual. ... They may take non-major related classes out of interest (I'm doing this with physics, chemistry, and maybe biology)

Emphasis mine. You've conveniently split your peers up into 3 categories - two 'bad' categories, complete with cutting descriptions, and a third that you happen to belong to. It's human nature to value your own worldview above other peoples, but I think it's worth pointing out what we're all reading here.

You go on to say that those other people are binging you down and making education worse for you. But I say those other points of view are quite valid, and the world doesn't revolve around your needs and desires. We need to come to terms as a society that formal education is just for getting letters in front of your name, and to stop expecting so much from it.

Here is my personal philosophy: the best we can hope for is to introduce someone to a topic that sparks their interest. The best work will come from personal study, no professors or classmates required. And if someone wants to have a beer and watch football instead, there is nothing wrong with that either.

Comment: Re:World of Goo's methodology is flawed (Score 1) 795

by Ren.Tamek (#33187914) Attached to: DRM-Free Game Suffers 90% Piracy, Offers Amnesty

Indeed. If you look at the World of Goo post you just mentioned, they reference a previous study on Gamasutra of an indie title that also estimated their piracy rate to be about 90%. Considering 2D Boys rationale seems fairly rushed and decidedly innacurate, isn't it surprising that they came up with the exact same 90% figure? For a game with a totally different copy protection structure, in a totally different genre, calculated 9 months apart? How much do you want to bet that they knew about that article before they calculated that figure.

So now this Machinarium article appears for a game released 2 years later, in yet another totally different genre, and they find an estimated piracy rate of 85% to 95%. You can bet they were aware to the 2D-Boy 90% figure, since it was well publicised on /. and in the gaming media. Do we think this figure we have an existing bias to might have some relation? Hello, this is just the same 90% figure with a 5% error rate on either side!

The problem here is that, without any competent statistics having been done, the popular media are giving people the impression that a 90% piracy figure has been established, with numbers people have pulled out of their rear ends. Piracy issues aside, one thing that gets on my nerves is bad statistics. It's basically the same as lying to people.

Comment: Re:Authenticity (Score 1) 390

by Ren.Tamek (#33176732) Attached to: US Military 'Banned' From Viewing Wikileaks
Absolutely, the last thing you want as a military commander is the troops thinking for themselves and questioning the absolute intellectual and moral superiority of their leaders. The next think you know, they'll be refusing orders to pointlessly march to their deaths! Luckily, we can order them to remain ignorant and only receive information from proper government channels, assembled by men of intellect who have done all the thinking that ever needs to be done. It's a good thing these people have sifted through the bullshit and are now able to tell us the truth: everything is fine, we're winning, good job team!

Comment: Battery (Score 1) 365

by Ren.Tamek (#32811916) Attached to: Working Toward a Universal Power Brick For Laptops
Fuck the power brick, those are easily and cheaply replaced and rarely ware out. Laptop batteries are constantly needed for the machine to function away from a desk, and lose their capacity very quickly. How about a common housing and voltage for those? You could have like 5 standard shapes and sizes, ranging from small to large for different sized laptops. Every dell 15 inch is about the same size, shape, and colour (black) as a toshiba 15 inch, an asus 15 inch etc.

Comment: Re:Just don't use facebook and stop crying (Score 1) 363

by Ren.Tamek (#32150974) Attached to: A Call For an Open, Distributed Alternative To Facebook

Basically, if you have a wordpress/blogspot, a flickr/picassa, an email address/home page, you should be able to "plugin" to something that gives all the functionality of facebook. Yet you would be free to expire/migrate/manage your data as you see fit.

How does the first sentence guarantee the second? The first thing an internet marketing company would do with such a system is spider all available information to their own private databases. All information that you've published there, even if you later deleted it, would be available for purchase. These people, who try to fill my personal inbox with 500 pieces of marketing spam per month, will not respect the privacy settings of your robots.txt file.

And besides that, how would you prevent people on your private friends-only area from accidentally republishing private bits of your web space to their own public space by 'liking' or writing comments on your updates or photos? There would have to be a mechanism to stop that, which everyone on your friends list has to adhere to. That would be even more difficult outside of a centrally controlled company like facebook.

Comment: Re:It's a matter of convenience (Score 1) 389

by element-o.p. (#32131348) Attached to: The Desktop Security Battle May Be Lost

It's simply a matter of convenience.

And ego (or maybe it's just me).

A couple of years ago, IIRC, /. had an article on an Australian bank that required their users to login with Knoppix that they distributed on a CD-ROM. If you weren't using their version of Knoppix and their recommended web browser, you didn't get on-line access to your account. I tend not to be a terribly egotistic person, but despite that, my first thought was, "I'm a SYS ADMIN, and I know MY PC isn't infected. Where do they get off thinking that I'm not competent enough to keep my PC secure?!?!?" Then I realized that most home users are going to think pretty much the same thing...

Comment: If they really want to improve public safety... (Score 1) 513

by AnonymousClown (#32125390) Attached to: Arizona Backs Off Its Speed Camera Program
How about going after tail gators and other aggressive driving habits?

And also go after the left lane hogs? Here in GA (I-75N) we get a lot of the *snow birds who insist on staying in the left lane as they go through GA and folks who want to speed are dashing around them. The old people in the land yachts are usually pretty courteous and stay to the right with their other car in tow. And then you get the idiots who are on their cell phone who are traveling at 50, then 75, then 60, then 70 - and it's worse when their in the left hand lane.

* Snow birds: retired people (mostly old) who travel to Florida during the Winter and then move back to their homes in the North during the Summer.

Comment: Re:Two senses of "closed." (Score 1) 850

by Ren.Tamek (#32116602) Attached to: Flash Is Not a Right

They have a lot of influence in those fields though, and it's growing by the day. Smartphones / netbooks are markets which are just starting to hit the mainstream, and Apple is disproportionately able to influence the direction of their growth.

Even if what they're doing isn't illegal it is still a Bad Thing, and GP's arguments still hold precisely because they appear to be well on their way to securing a monopoly in one or both areas. Regardless of whether they've reached the magic monopoly marketshare number or not, I think now is an excellent time to stand up and let them know we think they're behaving unethically.

Mr. Cole's Axiom: The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant; the population is growing.

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