Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Thanks for giving up on poor students (Score 2) 86

by SolemnLord (#45558923) Attached to: Sebastian Thrun Pivots Udacity Toward Vocational Education

Because a startup is obligated to serve those who need help that it cannot provide, rather than those who make the best use of its technology?

When you make promises about radically upending education for everyone, it turns out you have to actually include everyone.

Comment: Re:What about this case was so complicated (Score 1) 289

by SolemnLord (#44313051) Attached to: Gore Site Operator Arrested For Posting Video of Murder

that it took more than a year to develop?

A whole lot of things:
1. As the summary mentioned, the various parts of Jun Li were mailed to political parties and schools, which means that at least some time would have to be taken ensuring everything "matched"
2. At the same time, if I recall, there was another dismembered body (or just regular body) being found in the Montreal area, so the police had to determine whether or not that was tied to the other crime
3. Magnotta fled the country and was eventually caught in Germany (which is an interesting story in and of itself).
4. Pre-trial hearing 5. Magnotta's been under psychiatric care while the courts decide whether or not he's fit for trial

That's some of the big reasons, off the top of my head.

Comment: Re:Yeah, let's do that... (Score 1) 235

by SolemnLord (#43190091) Attached to: Smartest Light Bulbs Ever, Dumbest Idea Ever?

I can't think of anything worse than a bulb that's at the mercy of your WiFi router. My router falls over roughly twice a week and needs rebooting. Congratulations, you just took one of the most reliable appliances in the home and made it grotesquely unreliable.

I have a set of the Philips Hue bulbs, and just to clear things up, they're not "at the mercy" of my router- sort of.

By default, all the lights are designed to "turn on" when the power is restored to the bulb. It's a full-brightness, slightly-warm light, about as close to an incandescent 60W as it can manage. Right now my lights are "off", but the power's still flowing. They revert to the default state whenever the power is turned off and then back on, meaning even if the router is down you still get "dumb" functionality. It also means you don't get a bulb stuck in a less-than-useful state (for example, I have a low red setting for when I watch movies. Great then, not at all useful anytime else).

Obviously, that's a lot of money to spend on a dumb bulb. If the router's down you lose the more useful features, like scheduling or colours, but the bulbs aren't rendered useless. The bulbs don't revert to the default state if the router goes down but power remains consistent, meaning no sudden colour changes.

I've been using the bulbs since their release, and I haven't had any issue with the router being a problem. My biggest complaint is that the default app is pretty crap. Fortunately, Philips has freely released the API, so hopefully a better app will get out soon.

Comment: Re:Get rid of all the BS (Score 1) 337

by SolemnLord (#42420171) Attached to: How To Make PC Gaming Better

Don't make multi-player games that can't be played on a LAN or which can't be hosted by players.

So how would you go about making an MMO?

Don't do in-game advertising, purchases of virtual crap for real money and assorted bullshit.

Guaranteed income from non-POS sources ultimately means more money for developers. As for "virtual crap", let's use me as an example: I'm slowly getting older, with less time for gaming. I still enjoy it, but I straight up do not like grinding for gear. My time is definitely worth more to me than my money, and spending a couple dollars to avoid playing for hours to get the same item seems like a decent trade-off. Gamers should never be obligated to pay beyond a game's initial buy-in (unless it's subscription-based), absolutely, but having the option there is great.

Don't install spyware or otherwise contact the mothership unless required to fullfill the users request.

Agreed, although some people's definition of "spyware" is a little interesting.

Don't do CD keys, limited activations, professor zorgs guides to alien etiquette or any other such anti-piracy garbage that treats the purchaser as a suspect.

Excessive DRM is poison, absolutely. But pretending that piracy doesn't exist isn't going to help the industry either. It's far more complicated than "no DRM ever", no matter how much you'd like to pretend otherwise, and I'm not even going to pretend I have anything approaching an answer..

Don't require the user to wade thru a bunch of bullshit screens before starting the game.

Yeah, no argument here.

Never lobobotomize gameplay in order to give noobs a fighting chance.

When you sit down and look at it, this argument doesn't even make any sense. Are you angry at tutorials? If you're worried that it's too easy, turn up the difficulty. Gameplay decisions are made for any number of reasons, and complicating a game doesn't automatically make it more better.

Stop making games that are impossible to lose.

You can lose at any game. Call of Duty, for all its faults, doesn't somehow bestow god mode on the player right at the beginning. If what you mean by "lose" is a "game over, start from the beginning" screen, here's what you can do: restart the game yourself.

Never remove language or funny shit for political reasons.

This might shock you, but international sales matter.

Basically make games that are fun to play again. Things have "evolved" to where this has simply become impossible to do so I no longer bother.

Maybe it's that your definition of what's "fun" doesn't match up with some of the high-profile games out there, because the pickings have never been richer.

Comment: Re:Frankly, I saw this coming (Score 3, Insightful) 346

by SolemnLord (#40969947) Attached to: Facebook Faces High-Level Staff Exodus

The whole platform falls on its face as an event organization platform if even one key person refuses to sign up to having their personal lives data mined.

The event was doomed to fail anyway, if the organizers can't figure out how to keep one "hold-out" (for lack of a better word) in the loop through other means.

Comment: Re:Doesn't make sense (Score 4, Interesting) 757

by SolemnLord (#40957705) Attached to: Romney Taps Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan As Running Mate

Yeah, the far right will never vote for Obama. But if they think they're being ignored they might not vote at all.

There's also the matter of mending fences with the party leadership and other power brokers, who control money, volunteers, etc. All of them are solid far right these days. They were the ones that wouldn't let McCain have a moderate running mate.

Those are all good reasons, and I just want to add one more: Ryan looks like he has a plan.

I might think that Ryan's policies would be about as effective as literally setting fire to the entire United States, but the fact remains that he's worked hard at outlining his plan and putting it out there. Romney has been on the defence his entire campaign, ever since he came out as the "one to beat" in the Republican primary. Bringing Ryan into the fold might make it look like he has an actual vision for his presidency now, and puts something up that Obama will have to respond to.

Comment: "the discipline of the capital markets" (Score 4, Funny) 418

by SolemnLord (#40794451) Attached to: Mark Zuckerberg's Big Facebook Mistake

Hahahahahahahahahaha oh. You were serious. Right after saying:

The bankers at Morgan Stanley applied all the lessons of the last 15 years and priced the IPO at $38, which was very aggressive, in an attempt to avoid leaving any money on the table and the embarrassment that a huge IPO pop would represent.

That sounds like a huge amount of discipline.

Comment: Re:Thinner! (Score 2) 427

It's just became some sort of Apple dogma that thinner is better and thinnest is best.

And yet the latest iPad is actually thicker than the iPad 2, but I doubt you'd find anyone in Cupertino calling the iPad 2 "the best".

As the Gizmodo article pointed out, the smaller connector gives Apple the opportunity to either add more internal space to the currently-existing iPhone footprint, or shrink the device down further. Both of those are beneficial to the device's design (especially since the next iPhone will probably have LTE, and will need all the battery it can get). And when all other things are equal, in mobile computing smaller and lighter is straight-up better. It's the whole point of mobile. "Fits in pocket" is nice, but "fits well in pocket" is even better. "Can be easily fished out of the pocket when you really need it but you're sitting down and your jean pockets are small in the first place" is best.

Thinner also means "dissipates heat easier", which matters when you cram your electronics as tightly together as you can, which is what Apple does. (If I'm wrong on this, feel free to correct me. I'm no materials engineer)

Addendum:

They switched to displayport because VGA/DVI ports were too thick,

And ugly. They were big and ugly. And obsolete (VGA, anyway). So they were big and ugly and obsolete. Pretty good reason to ditch something, if you ask me.

Comment: Re:Ads included? (Score 5, Informative) 366

by SolemnLord (#39611975) Attached to: Google Earns $2 Per Handset; Apple, $575

Do "Android revenues" include advertising, e.g. ads shown in apps?

Yes. That's where the gross majority of Google's revenue from Android comes from. The Asymco link breaks it down, and points out that Google also makes between four and five times that much per iDevice, since Google is the default search engine on iOS. Google's ad-based revenue lets it worry about revenue per smartphone, not just per Android smartphone.

Comment: Re:Apple fragmenting the market (Score 1) 113

by SolemnLord (#39477671) Attached to: Apple Offers Nano-SIM Design Royalty-Free

"It [Apple] also asks that all other patent holders accept the same terms in accordance with the principle of reciprocity."

I don't read that as Apple asking the other tech companies to free up their licenses (lord knows Apple won't open up theirs), but asking the other patent holders on the nanoSIM design to do the same. Basically: "we're not making a dime in order to push this through, guys, you should be doing the same." Just because Apple is the designer doesn't mean they're the sole patent-holder.

They could be, but this is mobile phone technology we're talking about. For every one concept there's at least eight patent holders.

Comment: "Right turn, one hundred meters." (Score 1) 516

by SolemnLord (#39465423) Attached to: NHTSA Suggestion Would Cripple In-Car GPS Displays

"The system could still give an auditory warning for the next turn, but without being able to glance down at the map and see how close the next street is would likely lead to a lot of missed turns and resultant frustration."

Because it is literally imposible for someone to engineer an audio-only alert system for GPS units.

I've used standard GPS units, and I've still missed turn-offs. The only sure-fire way of doing things right is to study a map beforehand, plan ahead, and then pay attention to the road. You know, what we've been doing for the past century.

Comment: Re:All major OSes are pretty well usable (Score 2) 1091

by SolemnLord (#39425437) Attached to: Why Linux Can't 'Sell' On the Desktop

- UNIX with a pretty GUI (though KDE is pretty nice nowadays).

It's not "pretty", it's "well-designed", and just happens to look good. Until more Linux advocates start realizing the distinction (and props where props are due, there are plenty of design-centric Linux devs out there. Canonical, for example. Android is forcing a lot more to be), that will always be a massive hurdle for the OS.

Comment: Re:This is currently an issue. (Score 5, Interesting) 401

by SolemnLord (#39160879) Attached to: Canada's Conservatives Misled Voters With Massive Robocall Operation

I've always felt the Harper was one of the only things keeping the Conservatives in check, and the reason for his somewhat authoritarian style is that a lot of his MPs are pretty far off the deep end so he needs to keep them under reign.

I agree and I disagree. Harper certainly had to keep his MPs in check, but that seemed to matter more when he was running a minority government than now. You didn't hear a peep out of the fringe MPs up until the Conservatives had a majority. Without the need to appeal to Canadian moderates who would have voted for the Liberals otherwise, Harper is showing less interest in holding back the fringe MPs, and more interested in ramming his legislation down our throats. It was practical intra-party authoritarianism.

As for who might be responsible, I started writing up things and realized that I was probably sounding paranoid. I think that the Nixon comparisons being made in the Globe & Mail are warranted, but I admit I could be wrong, too.

"There is hopeful symbolism in the fact that flags do not wave in a vacuum." --Arthur C. Clarke

Working...