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Comment Old burned-out gamer chiming in (Score 3, Interesting) 308 308

Background: fairly serious gamer in the UT/Q3 era, was moderately competitive with FPS games then. Played around 8-10 hours a week. (which is what it took to build and maintain twitch reflexes) One of my frat brothers was much better, and ranked during Frag3 (I think that's what the big quake thing was called back then) and it took him 15-20 hours a week to maintain that level of skill.

Current situation: professional software engineer. Spend ~10 hrs. a day in front of a computer. Have absolutely no desire to sit in front of one when I get home. Frat bro is in the same situation, we actually worked at the same company right out of school. We both stopped playing the same week. A year later, we played some Q3 for giggles during lunch break and got depressed about how bad we sucked.

Conclusion: (this only applies to FPS, which is where >90% of my gaming experience lies) if you don't use it, you lose it. Online play has gotten sufficiently competitive that unless you have the resources and inclination to keep your skills up, signing on to a random server once a week for a few rounds is a completely demoralizing experience.

Comment Trying to think what's in my closet... (Score 1) 502 502

sport specific:
1 pair scuba booties
1 pair deck shoes
3 pairs teva sandals in varying models for different hiking/running conditions
1 pair mountaineering boots
1 pair light hiking boots
1 pair Newton running shoes
1 pair Vibram five fingers for tempo work
1 pair cycling shoes with SPD cleats
1 pair golf spikes

general purpose
1 pair presentable tennis shoes
1 pair destroyed tennis shoes for painting, etc
1 pair black dress shoes
1 pair cordovan dress shoes
1 pair suede boots
1 pair brown dress shoes
1 pair tan dress shoes
3 pairs Chucks, in varying colors
1 pair combat boots, shiny
1 pair combat boots, destroyed, for mowing lawn
1 pair work boots
1 pair ridiculous pastel shoes for Easter bought on a dare
1 pair flip flops
1 pair wooden geta

so, 27. Maybe another pair I'm forgetting about. All of those have been used in the last 12 months, most many times. I haven't bought a pair of shoes in several years, except the Newtons as they wear out every 400 miles or so. The mountaineering boots are on their third soles and I've had them for 15+ years. I'm lucky to have feet that didn't grow in college, so I've been wearing the same shoes size HS, when I bought the boots. I generally buy a pair of new tennis shoes every other year, as they old ones get rotated to the trash and the newer ones get relegated to messy chores as they become unpresentable. Not planning on buying any new shoes for several years, either, unless I move away from SPD pedals on my road bike and need to get new shoes to support whatever platform I go with. I polish all my shiny leather shoes every time I wear them, which keeps them supple and in good shape. My oldest pair of dress shoes is 15+ years old, on it's second set of soles, so maintenance matters. All the hiking boots get re-waterproofed and conditioned every other year. My oldest pair of Tevas is 13-14 years, they have hundreds of miles of hiking on them and look great, Teva builds solid stuff.

In general, a good pair of shoes should last nearly forever if you take care of them and keep resoling them. The exception is most athletic shoes as the soles are non-replaceable. I have experimented, with limited success, on extending the life of my athletic shoes (mainly the Newtons as they cost so much) by buying Vibram soling sheets and teaching myself cobbling, but it's messy and the shoe never feels or looks the same.

Comment Re:Blegh (Score 1) 458 458

Pre-nups are stupid; it's like saying "I love you dear, but I expect we'll get divorced someday".

Not necessarily. It's just being prepared for something you hope doesn't happen. I don't EXPECT my house to catch fire, but there are smoke detectors and fire extinguishers anyway. I don't EXPECT to wreck my car, but there's a seatbelt cutter and first aid kit in the glove box anyway. I don't EXPECT to suddenly die, but I have life insurance anyway. The list goes on. A pre-nup is just marriage insurance.

Comment Re:Hacks (Score 5, Insightful) 337 337

We have all grown up in a world ruled by salesmen, thugs, and psychopaths, but that's not the world I'd like to leave to my kids. I'd like them to live in a world led by artists, engineers, scientists, and humanitarians.

Artists, engineers, scientists and humanitarians do not have an unquenchable, innate thirst for power.

Salesmen, thugs and psychopaths do. So they work hard to gather, consolidate and maintain power while decent people don't. It's that simple.

Comment Re:Not very impressive pictures (Score 1) 129 129

agreed. those look about like 25# bags (~11-12kg) so 75# total. most teenagers with a strong back can easily haul that around, having a full grown man in an exosuit doing it is ridiculous. while the suit might not be able to handle cars, you'd think he'd at least be toting the bodyweight of a grown man.

Fujitsu To Develop Vigilante Computer Virus For Japan 129 129

wiedzmin writes "Japanese Defense Ministry has awarded Fujitsu a contract to develop a vigilante computer virus, which will track down and eliminate other viruses, or rather — their sources of origin. Are 'good' viruses a bad idea? Sophos seems to think so, saying, 'When you're trying to gather digital forensic evidence as to what has broken into your network, and what data it may have stolen, it's probably not wise to let loose a program that starts to trample over your hard drives, making changes.'"

Earthscraper Takes Sustainable Design Underground 269 269

Hugh Pickens writes"The 'Earthscraper,' a 65-story, 82,000-square-foot inverted pyramid beneath Mexico City takes a new approach to escalating megacity problems like population growth, urban sprawl, preserving open space, and conserving energy and water, promising to turn the modern high-rise, quite literally, on its head. The proposed building will be located at the Zocalo, Mexico City's major public plaza one of the few sizable open spaces left in the city of 9 million. 'It's a massive empty plot, which makes it the ideal site for our program,' says architect Esteban Suarez. The Earthscraper concept begins with a glass roof replacing the opaque stone surface of the Zocalo preserving the open space and civic uses of the Zocalo, while allowing natural lighting to flow downward into all floors of the tapering structure through clear or translucent core walls. The first 10 stories would hold a museum dedicated to the city's history and its artifacts. 'We'd almost certainly find plenty of interesting relics during the dig — dating right back to the Aztecs who built their own pyramids here,' says Suarez adding that the design incorporates a system of gardens occurring roughly every 10 stories, to help generate fresh air. One thing working in Earthscraper's favor is there are strict laws that prevent building upwards in this part of Mexico City, but no laws for building down. 'They will have to develop new laws to stop this from happening,' says Chief Design Officer Emilio Barja. 'I hope they don't [find the] time to do that.'"

Syntactic sugar causes cancer of the semicolon. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982