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Comment: Good news! (Score 3, Interesting) 241

by trawg (#46737373) Attached to: PC Gaming Alive and Dominant

I'll make sure to let the 7,518,856 other people I play Dota 2 with every month know (that number from just loading the game and looking at the unique monthly players figure).

That is, if I can get their attention while they're all trying to be the next team to win $1m in cash.

(Related aside: check out Valve's Free to Play documentary; it's a great watch for some insight into the lives of professional gamers.)

Comment: Re:Nothing new here (Score 1) 322

by trawg (#46732833) Attached to: Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

I have visited several other societies and I can tell you that the United States is absolutely less corrupt than any other society that I have visited. Of course, I have only witnessed a few: Several Central American Countries, France, South Korea, India, China.

I always find it funny how often this is a (modded-up) defence to claims of corruption in Western society (generally the USA on Slashdot, but you'll see it almost everywhere else).

It doesn't mean that that you should stop striving to eliminate what corruption you do have. Or highlighting it at every opportunity and saying "that's wrong".

From the perspective of an outsider (Australian), the US increasingly looks like it's becoming an oligarchy where money is the only thing that matters. If this story were true it is a sad state of affairs.

+ - Five Year Old uncovers XBOX ONE log in flaw.->

Submitted by Smiffa2001
Smiffa2001 (823436) writes "The BBC are reporting that five-year-old Kristoffer Von Hassel from San Diego has uncovered a (frankly embarrassing) security flaw within the XBOX ONE log in screen. Apparently by entering an incorrect password in the first prompt and then filling the second field with spaces, a user can log in without knowing a password to an account.

Young Kristoffer's Dad has submitted the flaw to Microsoft — who have patched the flaw — and have generously provided four free games, $50, a year-long subscription to Xbox Live and an entry on their list of Security Researcher Acknowledgements."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Victory for the Thought Police? (Score 1) 1744

by trawg (#46654093) Attached to: Brendan Eich Steps Down As Mozilla CEO

It's not that simple. Marriage is not a right. For anyone. It's a social construct. You can't engage in the "active suppression of other people's rights" when there is no right involved.

It's a social construct that has been turned into legislation, which then defines the rights. Some people have the right to get married, and some don't.

I see both sides of the issue have valid arguments, but booting somebody out of an organization for having a different political opinion does not speak of a "culture of openness." It's open and inclusive until you vote in a way we don't like. Wow.

When your organisation is built on the concept of "openness and inclusiveness" then it seems strange to me for them to allow someone - their leader - to hold an opinion which is arguably not about those things.

Is the only thing worth being intolerant about, intolerance itself?

Anyway. This is a complicated issue; I still am not sure how I feel about it. I feel sorry for Brendan because of the situation he was put in - but I am probably more sorry for an entire class of people who are denied rights to engage in a social construct of their own free will for some arbitrary reason like the gender of the person they want to be with. I don't know how to do this kind of moral calculus.

+ - .NET Native Compilation Preview Released

Submitted by atrader42
atrader42 (687933) writes "Microsoft announced a new .NET compiler that compiles .NET code to native code using the C++ compiler backend. It produces performance like C++ while still enabling .NET features like garbage collection, generics, and reflection. Popular apps have been measured to start up to 60% and use 15% less memory. The preview currently only supports Windows Store applications, but is expected to apply to more .NET applications in the long term. A preview of the compiler is available for download now.

Caveat: I both work for MS and read Slashdot."

+ - Brendan Eich Steps Down as Mozilla CEO->

Submitted by matafagafo
matafagafo (1343219) writes "Mozilla Blog says:
Brendan Eich has chosen to step down from his role as CEO. He’s made this decision for Mozilla and our community.
Mozilla believes both in equality and freedom of speech. Equality is necessary for meaningful speech. And you need free speech to fight for equality. Figuring out how to stand for both at the same time can be hard......"

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Are people not allowed to have opinions? (Score 1) 1482

by trawg (#46633873) Attached to: OKCupid Warns Off Mozilla Firefox Users Over Gay Rights

As far as we know he just doesn't like the idea of Gay Marriage, that is a far cry from being a radical anti-gay advocate.

I was wondering this too, but unfortunately his blog post on the subject - which I would say is the only really authoritative source of information - is basically just gutless corporate-speak (e.g., "Mozilla will remain egalitarian blah blah blah").

It does nothing to explain his personal opinion or his history on the topic, so the only thing I can get out of it is that I'll have to remain largely in the dark about what his personal opinions are and hope it doesn't influence any decisions he makes for Mozilla.

I would like to see an honest, up front post on his blog where he lays out his opinion. Even if I disagree with it (as I suspect I would), at least then I'd respect him for being up-front about it.

Comment: Re:actually, it was the fleas. (Score 1) 135

by trawg (#46621097) Attached to: Researchers: Rats Didn't Spread Black Death, Humans Did

Your two posts were fascinating, thanks. It has never crossed my mind to think about rats that much, but the sentence about humans effectively keeping them safe from other predators is one of those obvious-in-hindsight things that I probably never would have realised.

As an Australian that has recently relocated to the US, you have also inculcated a new fear of raccoons, which I will now go at lengths to avoid!

Comment: Re:Depends (Score 1) 151

by trawg (#46614567) Attached to: How Facebook and Oculus Could Be a Great Combination

If it's used as some kind of vehicle to push FB onto the few who don't have it and don't loathe it on principle, then I can very well do without and am retroactively glad I decided against funding the kickstarter.

Out of interest, have any of Facebook's other acquisitions been used to force users onto the FB platform? In other words, do they have a strong precedent of doing this?

In the case of Oculus spending $2b and then immediately trying to alienate its core user base by somehow pushing FB on the tiny percentage of users that don't already have it seems like it would be a weird thing to do.

Comment: Re:Facebook is written in php (Score 1) 232

by trawg (#46609047) Attached to: Michael Abrash Joins Oculus, Calls Facebook 'Final Piece of the Puzzle'

Yes, I guess Abrash really dropped the ball when he didn't do his due diligence on what language the parent company of the VR company he just accepted a job at build their website in!!!@@@

What an odd piece of techno-elitist whining. For what it's worth, Facebook's engineering acumen can be seen in some of the software they've released, including the Hiphop VM for PHP as well as the recently announced Facebook Hack. They have contributed to a huge variety of OSS ( https://code.facebook.com/proj... ) - and things like the OpenComputer project ( http://www.opencompute.org/).

The scale alone of Facebook is an impressive engineering feat. That is entirely the point of Abrash's post, really.

+ - Michael Abrash Joins Oculus, Calls Facebook "Final Piece of the Puzzle"-> 1

Submitted by trawg
trawg (308495) writes "Programming legend Michael Abrash has announced that he has joined the Oculus team to work on the Rift VR headset as Chief Scientist, and will be once again working with John Carmack to bring VR to life. His post covers a lot of ground, including the history of his quest for VR, and ends with his explanation of why he thinks the Facebook acquisition is ultimately a good thing — they have the engineering, resources and long-term commitment "to solve the hard problems of VR"."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Carmack on Snow Crash (Score 4, Interesting) 535

by trawg (#46578767) Attached to: Facebook Buying Oculus VR For $2 Billion

This ./ article from 1999 has Carmack talking about Snow Crash:

Making Snow Crash into a reality feels like a sort of moral imperative to a lot of programmers, but the efforts that have been made so far leave a lot to be desired.

It is almost painful for me to watch some of the VRML initiatives. It just seems so obviously the wrong way to do something. All of this debating, committee forming, and spec writing, and in the end, there isn't anything to show for it. Make something really cool first, and worry about the spec after you are sure it's worth it!

I do think it is finally the right time for this to start happening for real. While a lot of people could envision the possibilities after seeing DOOM or Quake, it is really only now that we have general purpose hardware acceleration that things are actually flexible enough to be used as a creative medium without constantly being conscious of the technical limitations.

The Metaverse of the Snow Crash world was basically an epic social virtual reality experience. I've always figured Carmack would be involved in making that a reality somehow, and the Oculus Rift certainly seems like it could be a critical part. Facebook actually makes sense from a social perspective as well.

I'm sure there's going to be a lot of people terrified because of imagined privacy implications, but I'm still fascinated to see where this ride takes us.

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