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Comment: Re:You nerds need to get over yourselves (Score 1) 107

by TheRaven64 (#48912547) Attached to: Why Coding Is Not the New Literacy

When people say coding is the new literacy they are not suggesting that everyone become professional programmers anymore then saying someone should be able to read and write means they should become professional writers.

Exactly. Go back a couple of hundred years and you even have well-off people saying 'I don't need to learn to write, I can afford to hire a scribe'. You had people saying 'not everyone needs to learn to read and write, there aren't enough jobs for that many scribes anyway'.

Before he retired, my stepfather was the head groundskeeper on a golf course. Not exactly the kind of job you think of as requiring coding skills. Except that they had a computerised irrigation system that could trigger sprinklers in response to various events (humidity sensors, motion sensors, time, and so on). It came with a partly-graphical domain-specific programming language for controlling it. It's going to be very hard in the next 50 years to find a job that doesn't require some programming to do it competently - even this kind of stereotypically low-tech job requires it now.

Comment: Re:grandmother reference (Score 1) 253

It's really the only viable answer to piracy that's left and publishers are embracing it wholeheartedly.

I used to pirate games and I used to buy games. I eventually couldn't be bothered with pirating and worrying about malware or with trying to jump through the hoops that the publishers wanted, so I stopped playing games altogether. Then launched and sold me games that I was nostalgic about, cheaply. Then they started selling newer games. I spent more with them last six months than I did on total on games in the five years since Steam was launched and the industry wend DRM-happy. I can download DRM-free installers for all of the games, often in OS X, Windows, and Linux versions.

It turns out that there's another answer to piracy that works: sell your product in a way that's easy to use at a reasonable price. Stop worrying about pirates and start worrying about customers. Someone who wouldn't buy your game anyway who pirates it is not a lost sale, but someone who can't be bothered to put up with your treating them like a criminal and so doesn't buy from you is. Buying a game from is easier than pirating and, if you factor in the cost of your time, probably cheaper as well.

Give me a product I want for a reasonable price and I will happily hand over my money, because I feel that I'm getting something valuable in return. Don't, and... well, computer games are not the only form of entertainment available.

Comment: Re:precident (Score 1) 253

Resale of a legitimately-purchased product is a different matter.

Ubisoft are saying these were "fraudulently obtained", which is very different. Bought with stolen credit card, VAT not paid on them, or some other provable legal issue over their ownership (maybe they were cyber-cafe, or developer licenses and not intended for sale to the general public EVER?), that's very different to "I bought and own a genuine copy of AutoCAD and want to put it on eBay now".

Comment: Re:SAAS is a failure, this proves it (Score 1) 253

I'm sure uPlay will tell you - to be a legitimately purchased key, it has to be bought from them and all the terms they imposed on it followed. If those terms are broken (it's resold or whatever) it's not legitimately purchased.

Good-faith is hard to prove, especially when you're buying a product via a random third-party.

Even outside the digital world, this is the type of thing that would come under handling stolen goods (where only a court proof of good faith - not even having no knowledge of the origin of goods, which is deemed that it should have aroused your suspicion - can get you off the charges). You don't need to have proven to you by the seller that it was stolen for it to be a charge of "fencing". You know what happens in such cases? "Your" property is taken from you and - if possible - returned to the original owner. Because it wasn't yours to take in the first place.

You may have paid £10,000 to a guy for your car but if the court thinks you should have been the teensiest bit suspicious (e.g. if it was a £100,000 Lamborghini, you bought it in some back alley, or the guy never had the right paperwork) they will remove it from you. Your only legal recourse? To locate and sue the guy who sold it to you.

Good-faith is hard to prove. Buying from a third-party key site with no ties to uPlay that sells you uPlay keys for less than uPlay can sell them for... that's suspicious. I doubt a court would bother to hear the case past that point.

Tell me, if you'd bought a Windows key from some store on the Internet, would you consider that the same? You wouldn't be suspicious that it was much less than MS could sell you the same kind of key for (OEM etc.)? Or that it wasn't in the MS format of coming with a little certificate sticker, an MS-hologrammed box, etc.? You'd happily plug it into a PC knowing that MS would have the say in whether to activate it or not? Same thing.

Comment: Licensing (Score 1) 253

"Fraudulently obtained" could mean that they were keys offered under, say, a cyber-cafe program, or en-masse but with a caveat not to resell, or for developer testing, or just plain stolen, or any number of things.

All of which, sorry, but that's a legitimate reason to revoke if they've then been resold to the public as individual licences.

I have ALWAYS been suspicious of keys from anything other than the original store precisely because of this - you have NO way of knowing if they are genuine or not or whether they could be revoked or not.

And I was always suspicious that a key could be sold cheaper than, say, Steam or Origin or whoever were selling them. That just reeks that it's cheating some rule, even if it's been sold out of region restrictions or whatever - someone, somewhere is losing money and that makes me suspicious why they would allow that to continue.

Sorry, but Ubisoft aren't doing anything "wrong" here, maybe they aren't doing it "right" though (if you know who these keys are, why not put a pop-up on their account next time they login telling them that they don't have a genuine key - but you'll sell them one - maybe at a discount - for X amount of money so that you don't lose on their third-party sales and they get to legitimise their purchase? A bit like MS did with Windows keys a while back?).

Sorry, but the nature of app stores now is that you can't take third-party keys. Hell, I was incredibly suspicious of Humble Bundles but they seem to be genuine and approved and there isn't a lot of money involved on my end if they do get revoked (I'll be annoyed at the inconvenience, but I won't have lost the games as they provide DRM-free downloads too).

When you use an app store, whether that's Steam, or Windows Marketplace or Google Play Store, you have to get the keys from those companies. Ask yourself why would they co-operate with rivals selling their keys at a lower price than in the store, and offer their download and account services to other companies at a loss?

This may be a step backwards in terms of consumer protection, but equally people have been buying cars that only the original manufacturer can service for DECADES. As soon as you fit a non-standard part, the original company just doesn't want to know any more - in terms of warranty, service, etc. I consider this the same problem.

I have over 800 games on Steam. I trust that they are all genuine - lots are via the Steam store itself (most with money earned in-store via selling items from other Steam games!), and the rest are via trusted bundles that do have a relationship with Steam.

Whenever I saw someone fussing about saving a dollar by going through some external game key store that Steam used to obscure the URL to in their forums (always a good sign that they're official!), I wondered when it would catch up with them. I'd much rather have a genuine game for £10 than a game that could be revoked at any time without any legal comeback for £9. If you don't have the difference to spare, you shouldn't be buying games anyway.

Sorry, but this is your own fault. The only possible excuse is if someone's gifted it to you and you had reason to trust them but I'm not sure if uPlay even has that facility. At least on Steam, all that would happen in that case would be a reversal of the transaction that gave you the game (so you get back anything you traded for it, or nothing if you were stupid enough to trade for it outside of Steam).

Still waiting for all those Russian-sold games to catch up with the people on Steam who bought them cheap, or the games from outside Steam places that people tried to legitimise by using them despite the fact that Steam never say they have a relationship with those companies at all.

Comment: Invalid comaprison (Score 1) 116

by aepervius (#48912113) Attached to: Davos 2015: Less Innovation, More Regulation, More Unrest. Run Away!
They are taking the average net worth in the world then apply it everywhere. You are not "rich" or even in the "10%" with 77K$ net worth in the USA or most of western europe. You have to compare against the LOCAL 1% and 10%. Not the global one. As such , there are far fewer of the 10% or 1% on slashdot than you would think.

Comment: Re: JMS didn't get to run it like a movie director (Score 1) 388

by dbIII (#48912045) Attached to: Best 1990s Sci-fi show?

Thompson's character got killed off not too long after that came out.

Yes, executive interference. JMS had plans and had set up a story hook in "Deathwalker" for her to be in a later plot involving personality alteration. HR killed those plans because, 1950s style, they didn't like the workplace romance between her and Jerry Doyle even though their wedding should have been enough to avoid offending prudes.
However see "Crusade" for truly epic levels of executive interference.
It's really a wonder anything got made at all.

Comment: Re:I don't get why but some people hate VMs (Score 1) 127

by dbIII (#48911983) Attached to: DirectX 12 Lies Dormant Within Microsoft's Recent Windows 10 Update
It's always been full screen for me and pissed people off. I'll have to look at it again and see if I can get it running that way. Of course that still doesn't help with the stuff that still needs 16bit (AutoCAD), but I can see a use with a whole lot of label printing abandonware etc.

Comment: Re:Shame (Score 1) 78

by dbIII (#48911955) Attached to: SpaceX, US Air Force Settle Spy Sat Dispute
I was referring to this:

or perhaps the secrecy of such observation allowed the US hawks to spin and get the level of overkill the US eventually achieved

So yes, that's one accurate example. I didn't put a Kennedy's name on it so that I could delay the descent into cheerleading for one team or the other or a backlash for daring to say something bad about their "Saint".
Some people will not allow a bad word to be said about Saint Kennedy or Saint Reagan, so I find in this place it's better to write about the actions instead of what team they played for or if they are one of those two mythical figures that can do no wrong. That's especially after a tedious thread spanning weeks with an idiot that insisted the the Cuban missile crisis was a spectacular victory for the USA and having to give up the missiles in Turkey and Italy was "belly button lint". I'd dared to question his Saint.

"There is no statute of limitations on stupidity." -- Randomly produced by a computer program called Markov3.