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Comment: Not a simple question, or maybe it is... (Score 5, Insightful) 421

by torchdragon (#46297151) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Should I Get Google Glass?

I'm an early adopter because of my employer. We do mobile development and have been pushing to be a leader in Glass development. I've had a lot of hands on time with the device and its is a really cool piece of tech but there's a bunch of gotchas for it.

1. Its limited. There's little it can do right now that isn't handled better on your smartphone.
2. Battery usage is pretty abysmal. If you're looking to get a solid 8-10 hours of casual usage, you won't make it.
3. Its expensive. $1500 is a lot for what it can do.

Those things are severe downsides as a non-developer. However, if you're interested in learning how to develop on the device and juicing up your resume with wearable design / implementation experience, then for someone like me (a mobile developer), the $1500 is an investment that you get to play around with on your off hours.

So if you want to be a leading edge developer and you can back up your interest with cash, go for it. If you're looking for a good investment on a solid end user experience you will be disappointed, just wait for the consumer version to hit the market.

Comment: Re:A Linux game company that wasn't troubled? (Score 4, Insightful) 142

by torchdragon (#38893721) Attached to: Linux Game Publishing CEO Resigns

Except that those numbers are incredibly weak when compared with the "mainstream" game channels.

When I checked, there were $488k in 82k sales. That's for 4 titles and a charity. Assuming a 100% revenue push from customer to developer (an impossibility), that means their average of $5.95 per sale gets split into 4 companies equating to almost $1.50 per sale, per company.

So we've got $122,000 total possible revenue without any removal of revenue hitting the developer. If you're a one or a two man independent development team, Congrats, you get to (possibly) pay your bills. If you're a 3 or a 4 man team, you're still working a second job. If you're at all bigger, you'll be shutting down unless you have another source of revenue for your game.

Out of those 82,000 sales, less than 25% are linux sales, but even going with 25%, that means 20,500 people specifically bought the Linux version.
Now, not all of the users on Steam have paid $5.95, but I'm willing to be a vast majority have. As I type this there are 4.1 million users on Steam and the vast majority of them are going to be Windows.

So honestly it really isn't hard to argue that there's no market. 20,500 people is great for an interest group, not for a global market.

Comment: Re:My mother's house. (Score 1) 441

by torchdragon (#38600674) Attached to: Windows 8 To Include Built-in Reset, Refresh

My grandfather is still using a machine that I built for him 8 years ago off the same Windows XP install that I put on the machine. Yes he uses the internet, yes he uses email. He's not really a computer person, he's been retired from repairing clocks for over 20 years now. I've been over to his house once to fix the computer, and that was to install a new hard drive to replace a failing IDE drive.

My brother works in landscaping, he's not a computer person. I've had to go to his house a couple times to replace hardware.

My mother is an HR manager, my father a retired factory worker. I've had to go to their house a couple times to replace hardware.

My family is not comprised of geniuses, yet they still manage to operate Windows computers for years at a time without requiring an "OS reinstall" or massive software surgery. I know there's counter-rage against the PEBKAC group but there has to be something done about user knowledge. Ignorance really isn't an excuse if you've been doing the same thing wrong for 10 years or more. We have the capacity to learn and change. We should exercise that frequently.


Treading the Fuzzy Line Between Game Cloning and Theft 235

Posted by Soulskill
from the welcome-to-the-world-of-policeactioncraft dept.
eldavojohn writes "Ars analyzes some knockoffs and near-knockoffs in the gaming world that led to problems with the original developers. Jenova Chen, creator of Flower and flOw, discusses how he feels about the clones made of his games. Chen reveals his true feelings about the takedown of Aquatica (a flOw knockoff): 'What bothers me the most is that because of my own overreaction, I might have created a lot of inconvenience to the creator of Aquatica and interrupted his game-making. He is clearly talented, and certainly a fan of flOw. I hope he can continue creating video games, but with his own design.' The article also notes the apparent similarities between Zynga's Cafe World and Playfish's Restaurant City (the two most popular Facebook games). Is that cloning or theft? Should clones be welcomed or abhorred?"

Comment: Re:Won't work in some areas (Score 1) 184

by torchdragon (#29823893) Attached to: NVIDIA Targeting Real-Time Cloud Rendering

Perhaps you could call my condo association and have them reverse their decision to disallow Verizon's deployment of FIOS.

You're right though, I suppose I should just be asking myself "Have you thought about changing residences?"

That makes a lot of sense just to play a video game, way more sense than going to NewEgg and buying a new video card for my computer.

Comment: Re:Trash the X-box ... Starcraft 2 will be here so (Score 0, Flamebait) 435

by torchdragon (#29799839) Attached to: Xbox 360 Update Will Lock Out Unauthorized Storage

Yeah, it'll be great to play StarCraft 2 on a bunch of home built computers on your private home network! Ohhhh, yeah, that's right they took that you so you still have to connect to Battle.Net in order to play a LAN multiplayer game.

It's also really awesome that they're launching it for not one but two open source platforms! Oh, right, forgot... Windows and OS X aren't actually open source.

But yeah! Right there with ya man! I'm so sick of this proprietary crap too! I just can't wait for Blizzard to finish making their product which includes pretty much a custom built set of code that is not available to anyone but Blizzard employees... making it not really an open product.

Hmm... well, guess its not as open souce as I thought but woo, man that spin was great for about 15 seconds!

Linux!!!! Wooo! *kegstand*


NASA's Skylab $400 Littering Fine Paid By DJ 111

Posted by samzenpus
from the you-gonna-pick-that-up? dept.
astroengine writes "Space Disco speaks with a Californian radio DJ about his role in raising, and paying, NASA's 30-year old littering fine levied by a Western Australian town. Skylab parts fell on Esperance in 1979, but the space agency's refusal to pay $400 has resulted in an entertaining annual grudge. Now the Barstow radio DJ is guest of honor at this weekend's 30th anniversary celebrations in Oz and the two small towns at opposite ends of the Pacific will be twinned... all because Skylab had a messy re-entry..."

Comment: Re:Science makes us great. (Score 1) 753

by torchdragon (#27744407) Attached to: Obama Says 3% of GDP Should Fund Science Research And Development

I'll see your anecdotal evidence and raise you mine. I've owned my 2003 Focus (manufacture date 2002) since Sept 2004. Ignoring normal consumables that need to be replaced I've spent an entire $100 and 2 hours on repairs for the vehicle.

My father owns an F150 that is 2 years older than my Focus and has needed a total of $250.

My brother owns an F250 that is relatively new and has never needed to repair it.

My brother's previous F150 had to be wrapped around a telephone pole before he stopped driving it and that's only because the frame's not legal to drive on anymore.

*shrug* I guess they're like everyone else in every other industry. Some good, some bad.

Comment: Re:Linux, lynx, and an anonymizer (Score 1) 372

by torchdragon (#27647281) Attached to: The FBI Has a Trojan To Watch You

I think you've just written the best new CSI, Criminal Minds, NCIS, Law & Order, and JAG episode script simultaneously. In fact, I know I've seen an episode or 12 that went exactly like that so I know the public will be excited to see your fresh take on things.

You should get a producer to sell your idea to every network so that they can all make a version of your tremendously soul-reaching plot. You'll probably want to put in some techno-babble just to give it that extra punch the media execs are looking for these days.

An inclined plane is a slope up. -- Willard Espy, "An Almanac of Words at Play"