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Comment: Re:Come now. (Score 1) 102

by Dogtanian (#47414185) Attached to: How Japan Lost Track of 640kg of Plutonium

According to another post [] this plutonium could not be used to make a bomb, and the explanation makes sense to me. So even if they change the constitution they won't be making any bombs, at least not with this plutonium.

This story rang some bells with me, and yes, it does appear to be the same case already reported on Slashdot (the figure given in the linked article there was also 640kg).

That time, however, the slant was on the Chinese being concerned that the Japanese may have been "stockpiling" this missing plutonium for weapons.

Which begs the question as to why, if it couldn't be used to make an atomic bomb?

Comment: BOOM! Take that ye scurvy bilgerats! (Score 1) 202

my old $500 epson is not as fast as a $50 cannon, but it renders images better

To be fair, I wouldn't expect a cannon to render *any* images very well. On the other hand, it probably does better than an Epson in defending ships against pirate vessels. (Well, perhaps not a $50 model...)

Comment: Re:Boards or ROM's (Score 2) 133

When I was about 15, there was a Laundromat down the street with an old Asteroids game where the vector monitor worked fine except that the beam never turned off, so you could see how it sat dead center in the screen most of the time, then drew a line from one asteroid to the next, to the next, etc. as it rendered a frame.

Let me guess... eventually it burned a hole all the way through the centre of the screen until one day it got through and (a) blasted the woman whose job it was to collect the change from the machines' head off or (b) lasered her, segment-by-segment- via an early-80s pseudo-computer-effect- into the Asteroids machine itself where she was forced to play life and death computer games and interact with anthropomorphic, sentient realisations of abstract computer concepts, while finding some way to prove that she *was* due the five hours overtime they'd refused to pay her?

Comment: Re:But the Tokyo area is so crowded (Score 2) 133

Secondly, even in Tokyo proper if you travel to any point in the city that is more than a 10-15 minute walk from a station(and there are plenty of them) you will find plenty of run-down and abandoned buildings. Property in Tokyo seems to follow an inverse square law, the value is inversely proportional to the square of the distance from the closest station.

Which begs the question- would it be worth someone's time to buy some of these unwanted out-of-the-way buildings and then fund (possibly fully) the construction of a line and station covering that area?

That quite obviously wouldn't be cheap- to put it mildly- but given the ludicrous value of some buildings and land in Tokyo, the returns could be huge.

Comment: Re:Haha, nobody will do this. (Score 1) 208

by demachina (#47311531) Attached to: The Simultaneous Rise and Decline of <em>Battlefield</em>

Game engines already exist. People already develop content though you kind of need a working and enjoyable game first, with some content, before people will develop more content for it.

Who funded Linux development in the early days, answer, noone? Would need to be a volunteer effort to some extent.

Hopefully Carmack will be disillusioned with working for Facebook soon and do it for love of gaming and graphics programming.

Kickstarter is the obvious answer if you really want cash.

Comment: Re:Haha, nobody will do this. (Score 1) 208

by demachina (#47310923) Attached to: The Simultaneous Rise and Decline of <em>Battlefield</em>

There is a pretty obvious solution to the steep decline in modern games. Its the same solution that was found to over priced, proprietary, commerical operating systems.

We need an open source gaming system. Its probably the only escape from eternal damnation to over priced, poorly designed, crap games.

Some critical issues need to addressed up front for it to work.

For starters you need to settle on an open source gaming engine. Torque3D would be one possibility, people here could probably name others. It needs to be capable, open source and multi platform, with as few licensing restrictions as possible. You need high caliber game developers, like Carmack to emraced it and work on it, with someone like Linus holding it together.

You need to develop a small number of core games based on the essential archetypes, FPS, MMORPG, Space battle/trading, racing.

You need to create councils for each game selected from game developers and excellent players who set rules, direction, maintain order and hold the game economy together.

As always if a game/council fails to satisfy their constituencey a solution is a fork but you want to ACTIVELY discourage forking when it leads primarily to fragmentation and wasted resources. You want as much wood behind one arrow as possible.

Each game needs to actively support and leverage mods and user developed content. In fact that will be the primary source of content.

The core games need to be designed for extreme longevity, its the content that needs to constantly changing and growing.

Councils need to design intelligent tournament systems and leader boards that actually put the most skilled players at the top, where they belong, not the grinders, scammers and cheats.

I'm a long time gamer who no longer plays games, because the games I loved the most died at the hands of corporate greed and stupidity. In particular they died because decisions were made by executives who were for the most part not gamers and made decisions that were all wrong.

If I could, I would probably still be playing the original EQ, the original WoW and Battlefield 2, Karkand Infantry only.

Battlefield 2, Karkand Infantry only was, in my mind the pinnacle of PVP. If you had evenly matched teams, with evenly matched gear, fighting a battle decided by 1 point there was no better adrenaline rush and it never got old. The map never changed, the rules seldom changed, the thing that constantly changed was the people playing it, their skills, their tactics and strategy. Developing huge maps like PS3 where you can never find an even fight, or in game purchases that allow the fools with the most money to win, developing massively too dense graphics, that are way to expensive to develop, require to much graphics power to run and add no FUN to the game, and adding too many gimicky weapons and gear that cause nothing but unbalanced matches, are just some examples.

If I could have kept the original EQ or WoW and just added a never ended series of new dungeons, quests gear and battlegrounds I would probably still be playing them. The first rule is you NEVER raise the level cap, because as soon as you do the game turns in to a pointless treadmill. New dungeons, gear and PVP is all a game needs to stay fresh.

I'd still be playing BF2 if there were any servers left that didn't suck.

Comment: Intel have done this before... and here's the snag (Score 3, Informative) 80

by Dogtanian (#47275757) Attached to: Intel To Offer Custom Xeons With Embedded FPGAs For the Data Center
Intel has already come up with an Atom CPU with integrated FPGA, but only for the embedded market.

I'd already been thinking about the possibility of end-user-accessible, on-the-fly-reprogrammable FPGA functionality as part of a "regular" computer before I heard Intel had produced an integrated CPU/FPGA (though it's not clear how easily configurable the FPGA was there). I raised the issue in that previous thread and got a *very* interesting and informative response (thank you Tacvek) that pointed out some major problems with the concept of general access to such functionality.

The issues raised there explain why Intel are unlikely to be making an easily-reconfigurable hybrid product like this available to the general public any time soon, however smart and exciting the idea sounds.

Comment: Fish are vegetables too!!! (Score 1) 39

by Dogtanian (#47270353) Attached to: Fish-Eating Spiders More Common Than Thought

'Flesh Eating Spiders' would have made this story worth posting.

What do you think fish are made of, tofu?

One of these spiders was going around telling people "Actually, I'm a vegetarian."

When I pointed out that it was eating a fish, the spider replied "Oh yeah, I can eat fish, that doesn't count."

"Also, I'm permitted to eat Carrot Top."

Comment: Re:Speculation... (Score 4, Insightful) 455

by demachina (#47268277) Attached to: NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Tesla's 3rd generation car is supposed to be a mass market vehicle that may disrupt the "automotive order" if Musk manages to build it. The giga battery factory he is looking for a home for is a critical component since it is critical to have enough affordable batteries for a mass market electric car.

Tesla today wont disrupt NADA, but Tesla in a few years very well may, they know it, so they are trying to nip it in the bud.

Comment: Re:BTW: Only way to prevent digital source-trackin (Score 1) 240

If you're implying the use of steganography, then you're a moron.

Given the existence of undocumented- and more seriously, undisclosed- yellow marks output by various laser printers which have in at least one case been proven to be steganographic markings *and* decoded, it's certainly not "moronic" to consider that a similar scheme could in theory exist hidden in some digital cameras.

Frankly, in the wake of the Snowden revelations I wouldn't even consider this possibility ludicrously paranoid any more. Of course, digital cameras can have giveaway signatures like naturally-occurring hot pixels (and other signs) anyway, so in a sense it's already there. I don't think it's plausible that a non-GPS-advertised device would have a hidden detector inside, or even any method (e.g. WiFi triangulation) of detecting its location if that wasn't already designed into it.

A camera on a GPS-enabled smartphone though? If my life depended on it, I wouldn't bet against the possibility.

"Religion is something left over from the infancy of our intelligence, it will fade away as we adopt reason and science as our guidelines." -- Bertrand Russell