It's not even that extreme these days, you can get 4TB drives now. So we're down to 5 drives stacked in a closet.
I have about 6TB now on backblaze and haven't received a complaint. I don't know who "Just Cloud" is but it sounds like a rather small organization who resells cloud storage. Backblaze prides themselves on being truly unlimited as well as their efficiency. They probably would see the cost of storage less than the cost of the PR nightmare from all their bragging being undone by a policy that only affects a handful of clients.
Having a 20TB backup would be a marketing win. It might cost them a couple dollars per month but that's cheaper than even a small Google ad campaign.
As my Civil engineering friend would always point out though, gas taxes barely cover a small fraction of a road's expenses. Most DOT construction budgets come out of the general funds.
One thing I'm waiting to happen is when this becomes an international incident. How long is it before a North Korean defected to the south doesn't put a blocks of C4 onto a drone and orchestrate a prison break?
One drone to fly to and from the prison. Determine where every guard post is. $100k for 20 drones to take out guard towers and blast a path through the fences/walls.
Or even milder forms of activism such as dropping leaflets on prisoners.
I'm sure there are quite a few people more than happy to donate heavily to such a cause. And a few years after that the price will drop even more. We might have nearly untraceable proxy wars on our hands carried out by terrorists/vigilantes.
Numerous studies show that illegal immigrants use less net government services than the average citizen. They might not be filling out W-4s but they are paying sales tax and numerous other taxes while taking no refunds and generally avoiding government services (less they be discovered and deported).
Yeah I just finished a shot with butterflies. They looked perfect but "Felt too frenetic" so they got slower... and slower... and slower... now they fly in slow motion and are approved. In real life they would fall out of the sky like bricks.
Softimage XSI used to be sold in multiple price brackets from a $500 cheapo version to a $7,000 'advanced' version. All that Autodesk did was kill the top of the line and the introductory version and released a single all inclusive version (The $7,000 version) for $3,500. This is exactly what they did with Maya too. Maya used to come in a $1,000, $4,000 and I think $8,000 version but then they consolidated down to their target price of $3,500.
If anything they offered a price drop. If you're a student you can also get a copy of any of the packages free of charge these days. So the $500 crappy version is $500 cheaper and 10x better than it used to be.
Almost all CGI is hand animated. Pretty much everything in Avatar even was motion captured but then redone by an animator. Motion capture is great for capturing intent but its data almost always ends up completely unused.
This is about half correct. ICE is not becoming Bifrost. Bifrost is the spiritual successor to Naiad, although some of the ICE people are working on it.
Also Bifrost isn't just coming to Maya it's being developed as a standalone API/SDK. So it's not a "Maya feature" any more than Renderman is a Maya feature.
As to profit hungry shareholders... XSI/Softimage has been a money losing expedition since the beginning. They had a really hard time getting people to transition from Softimage 3D to XSI. By the time XSI was released many of the users had already migrated to 3ds Max or Maya. It definitely has the newest core system but like Lightwave's attempt to rewrite its core they discovered that the time it takes is lethal to its marketshare. Microsoft bought it initially to port it to Windows NT in an effort to kill off SGI and prove that Windows could handle professional graphics. As a response Maya also moved to Windows so having succeeded in dumping money into Softimage they sold them off to Avid. Avid also dumped money into them hoping that they could have a total pipeline from edit to delivery in their post software. But after losing dump trucks of money on a failed product they too sold it off to Autodesk. Autodesk possibly bought it as a defensive move to ensure that nobody else would pick it up *cough Adobe* but they honestly probably thought they could turn it around. Well... they didn't it also cost them a crapload of money and now they're killing it.
XSI has been costing its corporate owners millions and millions of dollars for over a decade. I suspect it's never actually turned a profit in its entire history. The fact that Autodesk kept it alive this long is really actually surprising to me. It's been perceived as dead for the last 8 years.
As to the all-CG primates in Planet of the Apes... that was done by Weta and Weta has an inhouse proprietary muscle and sliding simulation system so you can't really add that as a flag as a + for softimage. Nor can you add Jurassic Park which predates XSI.
This is a good day for CG. Autodesk has wasted too many years spreading its resources across too many places and I for one am thrilled they finally stopped wasting their customers' money on a dead end.
I've seen this before though and this is the same wheel that everyone goes through.
"Look we got our system to run with 50% less memory!"
"Ok, so we sacrificed all of the features people expect these days, and in the last 3 years prices have dropped sufficiently that our product is no longer needed, but just wait for our next version!"
The better approach is to tackle low end devices like Microsoft and Google are already doing (And WP8 runs very well on low end systems) but not let it be your driving focus. Because inevitably what's a "high end" phone today will be a $5 prepaid phone in 3 years.
I wouldn't describe the Windows Phone market as "dead". It's doubled in the last 12 months and it looks like Microsoft has given up on it being a premium iPhone competitor which opens it up to competing with the crappy android hardware that's flooded the market.
With 1B smartphones sold each year even a 5-10% runner up represents a pretty substantial market for Qualcom.
AMD wouldn't have done anything if it weren't for Epic and Valve etc. AMD is responding to developer requests for more baremetal access. The developers who have been talking to AMD and NVidia are also talking to Microsoft and the OpenGL consortium and everybody in between.
This isn't really for the casual gamer though since if you buy the expansion you get one character up-leveled for free. It's unlikely a casual gamer has multiple characters that they feel need to be leveled up.
Also the subsidies for an ICE (oil and refinery subsidies) vehicle are built into the subsidized fuel price. So the $7,500 electric vehicle subsidy should be included as part of the price as well for an Apples to Apples vehicle cost comparison.
Why would I have been at all unhappy with my Zune. All of the reviews for the Zune were glowing. The Zune software was awesome compared to iTunes which is still horrifically terrible on Windows.
Zune was a complete sales disaster but it wasn't because it was a poor product. And I had no need for it to sell well to get a great experience.