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Comment: Re:Get ready to Bend over America (Score 1) 410

by tehSpork (#33149596) Attached to: Google and Verizon In Talks To Prioritize Traffic (Updated)
The Gulf of Mexico didn't "break Aunt Hilda's internet." Were Google to simply stop providing service to Verizon customers due to the way Verizon was doing business I guarantee you they would have half their customer base marching on the nearest customer service center.

Comment: Re:Not news (Score 3, Interesting) 89

by tehSpork (#32560696) Attached to: Can Transistors Be Made To Work When They're Off?
Same here. I took VLSI Winter 2009 and we spent an inordinate amount of time studying and working on sub-threshold designs. Part of our final project (and final exam) was to produce a simulated and laid-out circuit using a sub-threshold supply. It's not very complicated, you just lower your clockspeed and source voltage, most of your existing circuits work just fine. The major problem is that they are now working at very low clockrates (KHz as opposed to MHz) which doesn't make too many people very excited.
PC Games (Games)

Civilization V To Use Steamworks 295

Posted by Soulskill
from the hope-it-doesn't-get-you-in-hot-water dept.
sopssa writes "2K Games today announced that Civilization V will be using Steamworks for online matchmaking, automated updates, downloadable content and DRM for the game. Steam's Civ V store page is also available now, revealing some new information about the game. There will be an 'In-Game Community Hub' for online matchmaking, communication, and for sharing scenarios between players. While including Steamworks might put some people off, it might also indicate better online gameplay than in the previous Civilization games, where it was almost impossible to have a good game without playing with just friends."

Comment: Re:This will fail (Score 4, Insightful) 227

by tehSpork (#31649342) Attached to: Rapidshare Trying To Convert Pirates Into Customers

I passed over both Assassin's Creed II and C&C 4 due to the DRM (both of which resulted in canceled preorders). After hearing the horror stories about the more recent DRM "innovations" the vast majority of my gamer friends have followed suit.

Personally I won't purchase Assassin's Creed II until a crack or patch is released that resolved the DRM problem. If that means waiting until the game is a $5 steam special I'm fine with that, I don't have to play a game the instant it comes out.

What is so annoying about this entire affair is that I am not a thief, pirate, rampant violator of intellectual property, etc. I just want to be able to use the software I purchase without my crappy Comcast connection compromising my single-player gaming experience. Is this too much to ask?

Government

Secret Service Runs At "Six Sixes" Availability 248

Posted by timothy
from the only-need-half-as-many dept.
PCM2 writes "ABC News is reporting that the US Secret Service is in dire need of server upgrades. 'Currently, 42 mission-oriented applications run on a 1980s IBM mainframe with a 68 percent performance reliability rating,' says one leaked memo. That finding was the result of an NSA study commissioned by the Secret Service to evaluate the severity of their computer problems. Curiously, upgrades to the Service's computers are being championed by Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, who says he's had 'concern for a while' about the issue."

Comment: Re:Hell no! (Score 1) 512

by tehSpork (#31086062) Attached to: Is Internet Explorer 6/7 Support Required Now?

How do you explain something like Mirror's Edge then?

I love how people keep trotting this out as an example of how EA is not really as "boring" and formulaic as the community makes them out to be. That is the exception, not the rule. And they're making another one, so really EA just gained another formula to churn through every so-often.

Comment: Re:Awesome! (Score 2, Interesting) 124

by tehSpork (#30121176) Attached to: Intel Allows Release of Full 4004 Chip-Set Details
Unfortunately the Intel 4004 is much less sophisticated than even the simplistic models I studied as an undergrad. Not to mention that real chips suffer from real compromises and real problems, something our academic fantasy-land models never had to deal with. The simple models allow the students to learn the important concepts (such as multi-cycle instructions, pipelining, caching) without having to worry about why it was implemented a certain way, the concepts are what counted.

In my computer architecture classes we at least looked at the IA32 architecture but it was more of a space-filler and not a primary focus, our professor was heavily into MIPS.

Comment: Re:Do NOT get a HP TX. (Score 2, Informative) 176

by tehSpork (#29527089) Attached to: Best Tablet PC For Classroom Instruction?
The tx2xxx series also tends to ship with Broadcom wireless cards that have an alarming failure rate, we've had to replace untold numbers of these.

Between this and the problems with most of the rest of the HP laptops we see coming in at work my opinion of HP has gone from bad to worse in the last couple years.

Comment: Re:Should I Be Concerned... (Score 1) 188

by tehSpork (#29470209) Attached to: Blizzard Offers Look Inside WoW at GDC
Even more worrying is the American Express website - they have a 6 - 8 character limit and disallow special characters. They had better lock people out after a few bad tries as there are a frighteningly limited number of passwords you can come up with that fit those restrictions.

The websites both have terrible usability issues as well but you would think that they would at least be a little concerned about security.

Comment: Re:Bogus outdated thinking (Score 1) 444

by tehSpork (#29467537) Attached to: RAID's Days May Be Numbered

The problem is IT guys and PHB's that think RAID=Backup.

Bullshit. If that's true where you work then you'd better be looking for some new IT guys. In my time in IT I have never seen a RAID without a tape jukebox or some other backup system behind it.

Now were you to qualify that as "the unqualified scabs doing IT for most small businesses" that could be a different story.

Comment: Re:Spend your money right (Score 4, Insightful) 377

by tehSpork (#28850069) Attached to: Ubisoft Working On a New Anti-Piracy Tool

I am not saying your current games are bad - I have no experience with them

You've saved yourself some money and hours of crappy gameplay then. Assassin's Creed was almost enjoyable (if it hadn't been so buggy), other than that I haven't really enjoyed an Ubisoft title since Chaos Theory (released in 2005). I had been looking forward to Splinter Cell Conviction, however with the way they keep delaying it and changing things by the time we get it I doubt it will resemble the original franchise at all.

A note to game developers: Just because a franchise is successful doesn't mean that it will survive a substantial change in gameplay like we got with Double Agent. Furthermore, after a bomb like Double Agent it would be wise to return more towards the style that popularized your game in the first place before branching out in new directions. I'm not asking for EA Games Madden-esque repetition here and not saying that taking franchises in new creative directions is not good, but when you fail so badly take it back to base before you try again.

Also: If you notice game sales going down it probably has a correlation to your games sucking, regardless of the actual effects of piracy. Since the industry has pretty much stopped offering demos often times the only way to try a game is to download it first. If it sucks why would you bother purchasing it? "Better" DRM isn't going to help you on this front, however games that don't suck would. =)

The cost of feathers has risen, even down is up!

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