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Comment: Re:Criticizing behavior takes time (Score 1) 538

by tepples (#46759635) Attached to: Microsoft Confirms It Is Dropping Windows 8.1 Support

Video games are trivial to get published.

It really depends on the genre because the more locked-down platforms handle some genres better than PCs. Party games, fighting games, and cooperative platformers really need two to four players holding gamepads and looking at one screen. A PC can technically do those, but in practice, desktop or laptop PC's monitor isn't big enough for more than one person, and I'm told few people are aware that they can use virtually any HDTV as a PC monitor. The touch screen that ships with a mobile device makes certain genres hard to control as well, as I discovered when I repeatedly failed to make a certain jump in the demo of Pixeline and the Jungle Treasure on my first-generation Nexus 7 tablet.

ObMicrosoft: Look at the drama surrounding updates to Fez .

Comment: Two presses per letter (Score 1) 259

Some people might think "firstpost.com" is a troll site like "hotgrits.org" or anything in the .cx top-level domain. So let me explain this input method in my own words. It works in much the same way that activating tiny hyperlinks in the Chrome browser for Android works. Tap once in the vicinity of the key you want to press, and it'll zoom in on an area of the keyboard centered on where you pressed. Tap again to actually enter a letter.

Comment: Re:Wow what idiots....can you make it more confusi (Score 1) 538

by tepples (#46756113) Attached to: Microsoft Confirms It Is Dropping Windows 8.1 Support

And the .NET updaters seem to take a lot more time than regular patches.

That's because the .NET Framework is rebuilding the "assembly cache" (recompiling the runtime library into the processor's assembly language) after an update. In a comment to a Slashdot story a few days ago, I suggested doing this rebuilding in the background, letting the user use native applications in the meantime, and marking managed applications that aren't yet ready to start with an hourglass icon. But another Slashdot user objected that letting the user run anything before the assembly cache finishes would break native applications that start a managed subprocess without user interaction.

How badly do you have to fuck up a language runtime library to make it need monthly updates?

The JavaScript runtime (Firefox or Chrome) needs updates as well. And on Ubuntu, I get plenty of updates to various libraries.

Comment: Buy a certificate to retrieve your core dumps (Score 1) 538

by tepples (#46755971) Attached to: Microsoft Confirms It Is Dropping Windows 8.1 Support

but would it kill them to stick a "details" button on the dumbed-down error popup to make it trivial for a techie to ask the user to click it and read out a more useful message?

Microsoft would probably do it the way it does crash reporting, where the user is given the option to automatically send error reports to Microsoft. The developer can retrieve these crash reports by 1. forming a corporation or LLC, 2. buying a certificate from VeriSign or DigiCert in this company's name, and 3. registering with Windows Dev Center Hardware and Desktop Dashboard (formerly Winqual).

Comment: CA53W with antenna and bigger screen (Score 1) 259

it would also have been hard to represent an RF data connection replacing physical data transfers

A telescoping antenna analogous to those on portable radios would have sufficed for that. For a keyboard, I would have probably used the 4x4 matrix of my Casio calculator watch.

Comment: Port to GCC, then ensure no backdoors in GCC (Score 5, Interesting) 168

by tepples (#46752893) Attached to: First Phase of TrueCrypt Audit Turns Up No Backdoors
One way to detect a backdoored compiler to a fairly high certainty is diverse double-compiling, a method described by David A. Wheeler that bootstraps a compiler's source code through several other compilers. For example, GCC compiled with (GCC compiled with Visual Studio) should be bit for bit identical to GCC compiled with (GCC compiled with Clang) and to GCC compiled with (GCC compiled with Intel's compiler). But this works only if the compiler's source code is available. So to thwart allegations of a backdoor in Visual Studio, perhaps a better choice is to improve MinGW (GCC for Windows) or Clang for Windows to where it can compile a working copy of TrueCrypt.

Comment: Adding yet another box (Score 1) 421

by tepples (#46742485) Attached to: UN: Renewables, Nuclear Must Triple To Save Climate

You can use a small box like an Apple TV, which has a 6W power supply, or something like an Xbox 360 or Playstation 3 and use from 10 to 20 times more power for absolutely no reason.

If you happen to already own the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 console, how much energy does it take to manufacture and ship an Apple TV box and an automatic HDMI switch box?

Comment: No true Scotsman changes industries (Score 1) 97

by tepples (#46741701) Attached to: MA Gov. Wants To Ban Non-Competes; Will It Matter?
I agree that under our present constitution there ought to be at least some limits on contracts to prevent de facto indentured servitude. But allow me to argue the other side for a moment to ensure your argument isn't rooted in fallacy:

If his choices were to sign a non-compete or not be employed in the industry, that's not a real choice.

Please be careful of falling into "no true Scotsman". One could always make ends meet by being employed in a different industry.

If you violate a non-compete, who the hell do you think the company goes to for enforcement? We allow, and even expect, government to interfere with contracts all the time: either because they have no meaning without some third party to actually enforce them

Under some libertarian ideologies, that's the whole reason a government exists: to enforce private contracts.

Do you believe that government should not interfere with a contract that, say, grants ownership of one human being to another?

Governments already enforce custody agreements, which grant ownership of a child to a particular parent or guardian until the child reaches the age of majority.

Comment: Will it help them get a job? (Score 2) 427

by tepples (#46741605) Attached to: Is Germany Raising a Generation of Illiterates?

If the text written using this method can be read as easy and fast as text written according to the rules, what really is the problem?

The problem is that a lot of people with the power to hire and fire may pretend that they cannot read the text "as easy and fast as text written according to the rules". HR may judge a prospective employee as "uneducated" for not following traditional prescriptive rules.

"Life sucks, but death doesn't put out at all...." -- Thomas J. Kopp

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