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Classic Games (Games)

Crazy Taxi Arrives For PSN, XBLA Version Coming Soon 56

Posted by Soulskill
from the get-out-of-the-way dept.
Today a remake of the Dreamcast classic Crazy Taxi launched on the PlayStation Network, with the Xbox Live Arcade release coming November 24th. The graphics have been updated to 720p, but licensing issues for the soundtrack and some in-game locations resulted in noticeable changes. Quoting the Opposable Thumbs blog: "The Offspring, along with Bad Religion, provided the game's soundtrack in the original release. These songs, along with the sound of that announcer, went a long way toward creating the game's mood. In the new version, they have been replaced by completely forgettable pop-punk tracks, and it's a downgrade. ... That's not the only thing that's missing. The game originally featured licensed locations. Customers would need to be dropped off at the Pizza Hut, for instance. These companies didn't spring for the advertising in the game's rerelease, but the buildings weren't updated to look like anything else; the result is a game that looks like its filled with closed-down fast food restaurants. ... this is an interesting look at what went on to become a cult classic. Still, this is no replacement for my original copy."

Comment: Re:Interesting, yet pointless (Score 1) 135

by heavygravity (#33659978) Attached to: Twitter Closes Hole After Attack Hits Up To 500K Users
I agree that it is mostly pointless. However, we use it in a way that I find very useful, but only occasionally. We have an Iridium equipped aircraft that has very limited data connectivity. When we are flying it over the Arctic or Antarctic for our work, we can update people on what we are doing and seeing using Twitter and our very limited data connection on an hourly basis. That means that mom back at home (or program managers, or interested scientists, students, whatever ) can monitor what we're doing almost while we are doing it. It's an easy solution to updating people and possibly providing some interesting information in semi-real time. However, I have yet to see any other practical use for it. I don't give a rats ass about using Twitter.

Comment: No funding for satellites.. (Score 1) 127

by heavygravity (#32481886) Attached to: US Climate Satellite Capabilities In Jeopardy
This really *is* a big deal. I've been working in a related area since 2001, and every year it seems like the NASA budget is getting worse and worse. We are funded by NASA and collect environmental data (similar to one of the satellites that "just" failed, ICESat) and have often been working on a shoestring when it comes to R&D and hardware. These satellites take years to develop and finally get into orbit. Without funding *now*, we could possibly be years without proper monitoring of our Earth. It's not all about Global Warming, but there are tons of other things that NASA looks at for a better understanding of our earth. OTOH, if a new ICESat weren't being built, that would just be more work for me.

+ - Jammie Thomas-Rasset's $2m file-sharing fine slash->

Submitted by heavygravity
heavygravity (160241) writes "In the ongoing saga between the RIAA and Jammie Thomas-Rasset, it looks like the judge threw out the $2m fine and reduced it to $54k. Judge Michael Davis, who heard the appeal, said "The need for deterrence cannot justify a $2m verdict for stealing and illegally distributing 24 songs for the sole purpose of obtaining free music," as well as "It was the jury's province to determine the award ...and this Court has merely reduced that award to the maximum amount that is no longer monstrous and shocking". It looks like the RIAA now has to accept the new fine or go to retrial."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:manual crash (Score 1) 911

by heavygravity (#28263287) Attached to: Computers Key To Air France Crash
This happened within sight of where I live. I wasn't there at the time, but I'll never forget it. This was totally avoidable on several levels, but the flight controller screwed up. That still doesn't justify revenge murder, but I can only imagine how such a tragedy affects you when your entire family dies like this. It was a pretty crappy situation.

Comment: Re:overwritten once CAN be recovered (Score 2, Interesting) 780

by heavygravity (#27963501) Attached to: Hacker Destroys Avsim.com, Along With Its Backups
As an expert, maybe you can answer this:

Earlier this year we had a hard drive failure, and we really wanted the data back badly (money isn't important).

So, off it went to a 'professional recovery' service. A couple thousand bucks later, they were able to image some portion of the drive, and handed us the files they had recovered.

The number of files they were able to recover was pitiful. It was as if they imaged the disk and ran a simple undelete program (ext2) or something.

Is this normal? Are there any guys out there that dig a little deeper than this?

I spent 2 weeks writing my own recovery software that carved the data out of the drive image, and saved 10 times the number of files they were able to. If I can do it, why can't they? Are there any recovery experts that actually compare samples of the data to be recovered (in our case, our own format binary data files, not similar to anything else) and make an effort to carve the files out, instead of relying on whatever recoverable filesystem information is available? (yeah, without being able to rely on ext2 filesystem information, you have to make certain assumptions..)

Comment: Re:Try and buy or try and ditch (Score 0, Troll) 403

by heavygravity (#27784327) Attached to: Stardock Declares Victory Over <em>Demigod</em> Piracy
I absolutely agree. I download unauthorized versions of some games, and if I like them, then I buy them. It's just too hard to know if a game is a waste of time/money without trying it out. Yeah, you can try a demo. But most of the time demos really just don't cut it when you want to decide about buying a game or not. It's a lot the same for me as if I were to go to a friend's house and play a game they already bought. If I realize it's a piece of crap after a few hours, then there is no way I'd buy it. But if it engages me and I decide I like it, I will buy a legit copy. I don't know why companies would have a problem with this.

Comment: I recommend... (Score 1) 272

by heavygravity (#27295521) Attached to: Reasonable Hardware For Home VM Experimentation?
I built a system rather cheaply that works great with virtualization. Go for a decent quad core (Q9450/Q9550 for example) and a MB that supports DDR2 instead of DDR3 (or both, like this motherboard)

- The Q9450/Q9550 have large caches and overclock (on air) easily and stably to 3.5GHz+ without any hassle.

- Get reasonably fast DDR2 ram (esp. if you are overclocking). You won't reap much/any benefits from going to DDR3 with this setup, so go the cheaper DDR2 route. Get 4GB (or more).

The rest of the parts will be up to you, but this is what I'd recommend at the moment as the core of your system. Make sure that you get a MB with enough internal SATA ports (or eSATA) - the MB I linked to has only 4xinternal SATA and 2xeSATA ports; if you need more, you'll have to look elsewhere.
Space

+ - Run SETI@Home on your NVidia GPU->

Submitted by
heavygravity
heavygravity writes "The long awaited ability to use your GPU to power SETI@home is now a reality! The developers have released a client that utilizes CUDA to process workunits between 2x-10x faster than previously. With a recent NVidia graphics card and updated drivers, you can now take advantage of that powerful GPU that usually just idles away while you're reading Slashdot."
Link to Original Source

Comment: A decent alternative (Score 1) 115

by heavygravity (#26138371) Attached to: Intel Quad-Core Price and Performance Showdown
If you're concerned about money but still want a screamer, I'd recommend the Xeon 3550 (the exact same as the Q9450, except reputed to run at lower temps, taken from better batches, etc). When I purchased one, it was the same price as the Q9450.

Pair this with decent DDR2 RAM (not DDR3, it's still expensive and not worth the gains) and you'll save a bunch o' money. In my case, the system overclocks reliably to 3.6GHz.

So if you want something better than the cheapest option, but don't want to spend bazillions - this is a decent way to go.

Money will say more in one moment than the most eloquent lover can in years.

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