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Comment The fun in that is (Score 1) 854

Game developers used to ask players what they wanted, and players asked for more, harder, content. Then the internet was invented, and consoles got online games. And developers got to measure the gap between what players said they did, and what they actually did. And game developers found that the more, harder, content was mostly ignored, and actually the majority of players gave up on content longer than a few hours, and stuck to easy mode. Because thats where the fun is.

Comment I disagree. Its the LACK of proper multiplayer. (Score 1) 362

Multiplayer has never been about me and some strangers. Multiplayer is a social experience. Multiplayer is LAN gaming. Multiplayer is why the PS/2 supported 4 controllers.

There is a real dearth of PROPER Multiplayer game titles for the Wii, PS/2 and PC this last decade.
Diablo II - I played with my friends on a LAN, not on Battle.NET. The same for Starcraft II.
Games like counterstrike were big LAN titles. Champions of Norrath and Baldurs Gate were the last proper multiplayer titles on the console and I think theyre 10 years old now.
The modern focus seems to have become PvP focused games played over the internet. Not co-operative titles played with friends, on a couch.

I want multiplayer.

Comment Bah Humbug (Score 3, Interesting) 173

Reading patents with an eye to identifying "Technologies" to use is an exercise in futility:
Most are stupidly obvious. The others written in leagalease.

Reading patents with an eye to identifying "technologies" to avoid is also an excercise in futility. Again, you need the mind of a lawyer, combined with the approach of a security researcher, to "see" the ways a patent could be exploited to somehow map to your own problem domain. That you were happily solving without resorting to the giant database of solutions to micro problems no one is interested in.

Next, theres just too damned many of them. If anyone took the time out to exhaustively read and analyse each patent enough to determine if the possibility for collision existed, well they wouldn't have a problem with patents as they'd never write any code.

Lastly, it takes courts a long time to determine if a particular product does conflict with a patent. This means theres a lot of grey area around the edges of a patent to determine if a particular approach is covered or not. Which means, of necessity, that, like Chinese ISPs, developers who read a patent would have to defensively eliminate huge swathes of potential solution space from their investigations, to avoid getting "too damned close".

Comment You have 3 choices. (Score 1) 1019

* Try and discuss the issue rationally, be ignored (and follow up with the remaining two options) :-
* Ignore the directive and continue listening to music, collect three written warnings and be fired.
* Quit now.

The sad truth is, people who think like this exist. And you CANNOT change their mind. Sometimes. But not every time. They end up in positions of management. They believe that rules, and strict control, is how to achieve productivity in their underlings and every descision they ever make will be coloured by that.

They will install firewall software to monitor and block employees web access, despite the fact that a lot of useful research material code-wise tends to occour on blogs, wiki's and other sites that fall into blacklist categories like "peer to peer", "social networking" or "network backup". Your life degenerates into a living hell of finding every topic of research ends up being a google results page full of blocked results.

The will disallow any form of gaming on company hardware (during non work hours) because they are oblivious to the team building aspects of LAN games, as well as the inspiration many programmers (especially games developers those lucky bastards) find in the work of others.

They try to measure productivity in meaningless and easy to game metrics like "number of bugs per test cycle" or "lines of code written".

Unless (and only if) you manage to make a successful stand against them, they will use the failures engenderd by their own bad policies as evidence that more draconian measures need to be introduced. Every time a critical bug reaches the world, they will react by adding more developer 'checks' and testing procedures, ensuring that the next bug is yet more expensive (and time consuming) to fix. Each time, YOU the developer will be blamed for the ever more massive costs incurred by their futile attempt to stamp out the one constant of computer science - if youre not making bugs, youre not developing features.

This will over time, sap the reason you became a programmer. your zest and zeal will die. Programming will become a 9 to 5 hellish drudge that you can only hope to escape from at the end of the day. You will feel self doubt and actually come to believe that it IS you, not them, responsible for the hellish state of affairs - where it takes over 6 months to develop and ship a single feature or upgrade.

These people read dilbert, and find it funny not sad - because theyre empathising with the PHB.

You cannot frankly discuss things with them because, while you are both speaking english, your core understandings of basic concepts is fundamentally different. As such, when you present what you belive to be a compelling argument to them, they will draw a totally different conclusion from the same data. they are not idiots. Or classically stupid.

they do however think differntly. And they live amongst us. and become our managers.

Comment I was just wondering... (Score 1) 188

if and when non invasive blood sugar / insulin monitors monitors were going to become possible. Being vaguely interested in the rammifactions of the Atkins diet, as a geek i'm bloody interested to know (not suffering from any metabolic problems (yet)) just exactly what happens to blood sugar and hormone levels as I consume various products. One see's so much stuff labled "Low GI" now, but how do you really know?

Comment The lack of commoditization is hitting them. (Score 1) 225

Basically, each new title that comes out invalidates all the previous songs. I now own GH III. GH Aerosmith, GH World Tour and GH Metallica. There is *some* sharing of DLC amongst the latest titles, but for every disk I put in my console - that acts to eliminate the majority of my collected songs from my available playlist. Until/Unless the next version of Guitar Hero allows me to copy ALL the songs from ALL my Guitar Hero's onto my disk and play them all from a single playlist, well, i'm losing interest.

Comment This can't work. (Score 1) 120

While it is possible to design a game from first principals to be playable from an electric Guitar - and I eagerly await the release of GuitarRising in that regard, unfortunately, the buttons pressed on GH and RB controllers are not directly mapped to the equivalent concepts on a real guitar.

Basically, at its core, at various times in various songs, the red button can imply a fret that in a different song is played by holding (for e.g.) green.

There is thus no way for the guitar software, even after its done all the finger sensing magic of figuring out which string is being held where exactly when plucked, to map that to a a combination of 5 buttons.

The implication of the article, and site, is that this Guitar can be used to play the existing Guitar Hero games. That will never be possible. New versions of the game with explicit support for the guitar as a controller? sure.

The trouble with being poor is that it takes up all your time.