Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

×

Comment: Re:Just damn (Score 1) 401

by mjwx (#49160823) Attached to: Leonard Nimoy Dies At 83

if it 's bad for the companies to profit off a legal product, it's just as bad for the government to profit off it.

the biggest profiteer from cigarettes is the government.

No.

Taxes from Tobacco sales doesn't even cover the medical costs of long term treatment of smokers in Australia, where tobacco taxes are high.

This is just medical costs, it doesn't include fires started by cigarette butts or costs that the government doesn't have to pay (such as cleaning a car or house after it's been occupied by a smoker) that have a net drain on the economy.

Comment: Re:news, why? (Score 1) 47

by mjwx (#49160769) Attached to: 42 Artificial Intelligences Are Going Head To Head In "Civilization V"

Civ V, a game historically known for its poor programming, rushed schedules and years of repair to get playable. This game still has one of the most artificially stupid AI's in the history of the Civ series, so I fail to see how this is even mildly interesting.

For the same reason people prefer to watch 42 meat heads wrestle each other for a ball rather than watch 42 of the brightest minds debate.

I dont mean the suppressed homoerotic desires either.

Given my experience with Civ V, they'll build about 2 cities each and never actually go to war, let alone attack. It will be a paint drying simulator. The incredibly stupid AI was what ultimately forced me back to Civ IV.

Comment: Re:It's not just the fragmentation (Score 2) 136

by mjwx (#49143215) Attached to: Who's Afraid of Android Fragmentation?

I don't understand why people are expected to buy more software on their phone then on their PC.

Because this is pretty much the only thing the anti-android crowd can complain about.

Its becoming harder and harder for them to hide how butthurt they are behind legitimate excuses because the legitimate excuses are disappearing rapidly. Whenever you see an article on the horrors of Android Fragmentation/Piracy/Profitability and so on you know it's going to be bullshit by someone who's upset that Android has become the dominant platform.

These renewed attacks are conveniently timed with Google's release of Google Work.

However, what people forget is that 95% of small app developers on IOS dont break even, it's still high 90's on Android but more break even due to lower start up costs. The idea that you make millions from an app is something Apple likes to perpetuate but in reality only 0.001% of devs make a significant amount of money. The way to make money as an application developer on Android or IOS (or Win Phone, can we call it WinPo?) is the same way as you do it on PC. You make applications for other people.

Everyone from banks to supermarkets to coffee shops want an application that they give to customers for free as it brings in business. Someone has to write these applications and dollars to doughnuts I'll bet that Tesco didn't write the Tesco app, they hired someone to do it for them. If you want to make money from Android or IOS, forget selling direct to consumers because chances are you wont make it.

Comment: Re:No (Score 2) 136

by mjwx (#49143179) Attached to: Who's Afraid of Android Fragmentation?

There'll be forks, there'll be distros that die out but ultimately choice is good. Out of all the traditional Linux distributions eventually a status quo develops of some core popular ones. Over time they fall out of favour and the critical mass slowly moves to another. In the medium term maybe some fresh eyes and fresh thinking will solve some of the current issues that plague users now. Will they have vested interests? May they take things down a path that turns out ba? At times, probably but there's a fork for that

This.

The only people afraid of Android "fragmentation" (those are sarcastic quotes) are the people who dont have an Android device and are desperately hoping for Android to fail for some reason, any reason.

Comment: Re:Follow the money (Score 5, Insightful) 136

by mjwx (#49143123) Attached to: Who's Afraid of Android Fragmentation?

On Android, most Android users don't pay for apps. Either because they can't (Google Wallet isn't universal)

Next time, just write "I know nothing about Android" because it'll waste less of our time.

You dont need Google Wallet to purchase apps on Google Play. You can do it with a normal credit card or the Google Play preload cards that are sitting next to the Itunes cards.

Google wallet is a completely different product, whilst it can be used on Google Play, it is not required.

So the Android business model is to sell ads and give the app away

And this ends up being more profitable. Especially over the long term.

Comment: Re:Google had Flash ads? (Score 3, Interesting) 188

by mjwx (#49133817) Attached to: Google Now Automatically Converts Flash Ads To HTML5

Great Scott! It appears I've been leading a sheltered life thanks to AdBlock, Ghostery and the like. I did not expect that level of douchebaggery from them, though. Well, hope AdBlock is ready for this.

Yeah, it's like the HORROR the web looks like when you are working on an end user's PC and they only have Internet Exploder.

I guess there will be HTML5 blocker extensions soon.
And I'll use them. Why? I hate ads. To me there is NO SUCH THING as an acceptable ad. I will never surf without ad blockers running. And if you don't like it, take your site offline.

And now that its happened, I'm going to blow my own trumpet.

For all the people who bashed Flash and said HTML5 is our lord Geezus and Saviour, I hope you enjoy it because now that you've more or less killed flash all the things flash was being used for (I.E. annoying the living shit out of you with ads) is now in HTML5. The problem is, Flash was a plugin, you cold block it completely at that level and easily select the bits you wanted to play. Now with HTML5 the ads and annoying videos are part of the code so in order to block them you need to parse the code. This means advertisers can get even trickier in hiding ads as part of the content and ad blockers are going to have to wrestle with a higher number of false positives.

If you thought adwords was annoying, wait until you have adword videos in HTML5 (and if I've thought of it, you can bet that someone with less scruples has too). So you've killed flash and all the evil that was in flash is not moving to HTML 5 where it'll be easier to hide and harder to block. There's your victory, drink it in.

Comment: Re:The patents (Score 1) 186

by mjwx (#49133227) Attached to: Jury Tells Apple To Pay $532.9 Million In Patent Suit

Looks like 7334720 is just applying DRM "over the internet," using a portable computer. How can anyone be granted such wide patents?

The same way someone is granted a patent on using rounded corners or scrolling on a mobile device.

The patent system is horribly broken and now only works for money (you pay, you get patent).

Comment: Re:Yes (Score 1) 162

by mjwx (#49133173) Attached to: Should a Service Robot Bring an Alcoholic a Drink?

A robot bartender in a commercial environment would either need to be able to follow all the same rules or be operated by someone that does.

A robot bartender will be programmed with a set of rules that will look very similar to the rules set out for human staff.

It will be the same with a robot carer. They will be programmed to the same parameters as a human carer would receive. So someone with chronic liver issues will be denied alcohol, someone who has mobility issues will be able to order the odd sherry.

People forget we already have a system of rules for decision making in place. The main reason they're flawed is because humans sometimes dont follow them (I.E. the man with chronic liver issues might persuade his carer to give him a sherry because it's his birthday).

The difference between a human and robot bartender is that when you've had a few too many the robot bartender can not be bargained with, reasoned with, it doesn't feel pity or remorse or fear and it absolutely will not stop until you've been served a diet soda.

Comment: Re:meh (Score 1) 148

by mjwx (#49133047) Attached to: Artificial Intelligence Bests Humans At Classic Arcade Games

This just in: Even in simplistic AAA games with bots, the AIs are better than human players, we have to dumb them down to keep the game fun.

Thats because 99% of AAA games are twitch games. No strategy involved, just reflexes. Games like COD, Halo, et al. really limit what the player can do and it really is the fastest mouse wins. So they have to limit the reaction time of the AI to what a human is capable of.

Now if you look at strategy games like Civ IV, you had to give the AI unfair advantages to put it on equal footing with human players. But turn based strategy games have a lot of fuzzy logic. So really an AI mastering COD is not news, we can have been able to build bots with superhuman reaction time since the 90's. Wake me when they can master a city building sim as well as a good human player.

"Right now I feel that I've got my feet on the ground as far as my head is concerned." -- Baseball pitcher Bo Belinsky

Working...