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Comment Re:If it's floating,does it also generate hydropow (Score 1) 181

That could be done, sure. You would need to allow free rotation of the base of both the air and water blades relative to some shared flotation base. This way, the vaned blades could turn into currents without interrupting each other.

It would be best if it were fixed to a tower, to offer the most resistance to currents. Otherwise the wind and water currents might fight against keeping a tether taut.

Even better than vaned blades, you could use a vertical-axis helical turbine for the wind, and you could use the Cetus blade [Cetus Energy: ] in the water which would probably generate power no matter which way the current was passing.

The platform's bouyancy would just need to counter the force of the combined masses and gravity.

I suppose a design like that could be tethered and would often be found in some optimal location, systematic to the two different currents. But, this design would also probably be very expensive to license, as most of the more efficient vertical axis turbines are patented (and the Cetus blade certainly is.)

So it might be cheaper and might deliver substantially more power output if it were a stationary tower.

Comment sadly (Score 1) 104

Sadly, though, there is only one party offering to take a huge sum of money to crawl through code for a few weeks or possibly months. And it seems to me that the parties offering to do the work have a vested interest in the results coming out "negative for NSA bugs".

This means ( as others here have pointed out ) that there cannot truly be independent verification. As someone else points out, the money would be better spent on bug hunts.

The approach bears the mark of vigilantism. I say that, because encryption operating outside of scientific controls isn't trustworthy encryption. Anything that even touches the subject of encryption and expects to come away tinged with credibility needs to be isolated under scientifically controlled conditions.

Without the financially disinterested, scientifically and academically conglomerate third party offering to perform this same role as a purely academic public service, the scientific control doesn't exist.

You might point out that Green & White are academics, but also read in the article that they are going to take the money and hire an auditing company to do the actual work. That company is at this time completely up in the air. So the academe is thrown right out. The company could decide to hide troubling lines of code from Green & White. and give the code a clean audit. Who is going to raise the other $50,000 to cross-verify using similar means, when that means is so flawed that it obviously cries out for cross verification?

And what are Green & White hoping to get out of this? Are they going to become some sort of security world fixers? Are they going to become the secret holy grail of opportunistic businesspersons, the mythological "information brokers"? They aren't starting out with a purely academic premise or approach, so this is not going to be all that worthwhile for their academe so much as for their standing in that cross-ways between what Eisenhower referred to as "the military industrial complex" and what he referred to as "the educational research complex".

And our hypothetical, white-horse scientific group's work would have to be redundant. No part of the code could be independently verified by one person -- each procedure and call would have to be pored over by a panel to verify unanimously ( with the group ) that the conclusion about the reliability of the code segment was sound and that that section of code is trustworthy. Can we say anything like that is going to happen as this group of a few people munches and dines its way through the $50,000?

And this smacks of advertising. We're in a time, now, just after numerous encryption, secured storage, and secured email services have self-destructed in the wake of serious allegations of domestic spying. Apparently they found that they were either currently compromised, were facing a future of being compromised, or could not handle the pressure that the NSA was putting on them immediate or projected.

That's entirely the reason why this is happening -- to take a product that is popular and to scrutinize it carefully, taking advantage of its open source to contrast how different that reality is from the reality of closed box cloud services. It's a brand demonstration for the open source community in the least sense, but in a greater sense it's a product demonstration for TrueCrypt. Even TrueCrypt has rung in its "approval" of the audit.

We have people asking "who's auditing the auditors", "whose watching the watchdogs", etc. But who's watching this, this whole fiasco? A very limited crowd of people for whom it's not really a learning experience so much as reminder of the drudgery and toil that code and coding actually represent.

Let's ask ourselves seriously why this code isn't already vouchsafed by the community, first of all. If you can't take a completely open group that could theoretically consist of anybody with a computer terminal and say that this sample group -- the open source community, basically the world at large -- is sufficient to represent disinterest, then how are you going to somehow sample disinterest with a tiny handful of people? Who are doing it for profit? Who aren't even pursuing it in a scientifically controlled or purely academic manner? Obviously just turning the effort of auditing the code out to the open source community (and world at large) would be far more secure, and could potentially cost nothing. I'm sure a few million coders putting in bed-reading-time or youtube-subscription-catchup time could cross verify the entire thing to a satisfactory number of degrees of separation in good time. The effort would always be there for other people to join in and vouchsafe or re-verify. Why should this process occur in a closed laboratory?

Obviously the reason this sort of massively distributed auditing isn't occurring isn't just the logistics of it. It could be organized using any number of existing networks including Usenet, mailing lists (or would that be too vulnerable to tampering), and IRC. There is some psychological barrier to the work being already well done and established.

This brings me back to my point about how this all smacks of marketing to a specific niche crowd, the open source crowd. Now we can see clearly that the open source crowd ISN'T the go-getter, constantly vigilant, ultra-paranoid crowd that millions of Starbucks customers claim it to be. It's just another marketable consumer demographic, and this is how you market products to it.

With subterfuge and laziness.

Comment Re:Can they really re-capture it? (Score 1) 39

8 bit? ain't nothing 8 bit about it.


(from the linked page) >> The original River City Ransom was an instant hit when it debuted on the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1990, and Underground promises to pick up directly where it left off, complete with a banging chiptune soundtrack, beautifully rendered 8-bit sprites and frantic button bashing action as you plugh through River Cityâ(TM)s different street gangs with little more than your fists.

You were saying?

Also, the "MMORPGs" you refer to are often rendered in Flash. Yes, I've played some of those dubiously labeled "RPGs" and "Games".

In those cases, what is clearest about those "games" is that the programmers are pushed to their limits in coding a side-scrolling platformer taken straight from a tutorial. And, also, so is Flash for that matter (pushed to its limit). Those games are the way they are purely because of two things: skill and deployment.

Comment Re:Help a poor, ignorant American out. "-san"? (Score 2) 39

"san" just shows familiarity and endearment. Sometimes it's used ironically, or sometimes just to be familiar without the endearment attached.

Kishimoto is the guy's personal name, and Yoshihisa is the guy's family name.

The Japanese animation style is up for opinion. In my opinion it's meant to be drawn quickly and with a high level of conformity. This way you get similar quality across numerous hours of animation, with not much effort. "Cel shading" is used to give the most effect of depth and light with the least amount of effort and the smallest possibly palette of inks.

Also, again on the style, often Japanese animators like to include elements of "manga" comic drawing into their animated forms. "Manga" was designed around imparting the greatest sense of action, space (depth) and emotion possible using the least number of drawings and frames. Animators will sometimes use manga techniques just for a "roots" appeal, or sometimes because it would be more quick and effective to use a cartoonish looking manga image even in the middle of a "realist" animated sequence. This isn't always done just to save time drawing or to save ink -- typically it's done to maintain a speedy pace of the narrative, or to lend a character a diminutive cast by suddenly drawing them as a comic throwback in the midst of characters who are maintaining themselves better (and drawn in a cel-shaded, realist setting).

The resulting aesthetic has come to be loved and enjoyed by people around the world.

What techniques would you prefer they use? Do you prefer all of your animations rotoscoped or something?

Comment Can they really re-capture it? (Score 5, Informative) 39

Part of the appeal of River City Ransom is just how much content -- quality content, much of it -- they packed into this little side-scrolling beat-em-up.

There are even weird hidden wonders like, if the enemy throws a baseball at your head but you deflect it with a stick, IT'S ON -- Stickball time, and you and the enemies get into formation and play a damn game of stickball.

And, it's a beat-em-up with role playing elements like items, skills, and stats. There are some other games like that for the same system (Little Ninja Brothers for example, with its Kung Fu Heroes style battle screens) but this game is modern and admittedly slick.

So, consider how powerful that was back in the 8-bit days, and consider how that still resonates as a "good game" today.

How in the hell do you capture that, again? You might say "well they are taking a good step in the right direction by retro-styling it as 8-bit", but is that all it is?

Think of it dynamically: there is potentially so much *more* that could be done with the game, today. This is the same problem all devs face when they're planning a franchise reboot from the 8-bit days to the modern, post-3d-playforming days. The devs have to ask "how much space of the new world of gaming should this game occupy".

I'm not saying that making RCR into a cartoonish Grand Theft Auto is going to somehow improve it, either. I'm saying that the envelope has changed.

The original game was explosive because it packed all of that game into that tiny 8-bit envelope, when there was nothing else to work with. Now, there's tons of other stuff to work with. You can still pack just as much game into just as small of a bit width, but the envelope is so much bigger, now, there's not going to be as much explosive force.

It's the big let down of retro-styled gaming. It seems like such an awesome idea to make more 8-bit games, as if the legacy didn't leave enough of them behind, but then you sit down and play it and your thumbs go "blah".

You're asking your thumbs to go back and enjoy tomato soup like they did back in the days when there was only tomato soup, only now they're more accustomed to gazpacho, borscht, and bloody marys.

Comment Re:Get out of jail free card (Score 1) 51

Well, the way I read it, the problem wasn't that he choked storage with copies of the virus but that he screwed up in thinking that the phone system could handle all of these copies of the virus trying to make calls at once. He didn't realize the phone system was mechanical, for some reason, and couldn't handle a number of calls from a geometrically huge number of sources, all at once. Which is how the virus first got noticed. If I read the articles on the worm correctly.

But his mistake, in my opinion, wasn't writing the virus. I have to say and admit publicly, that I don't think RTM was ethically wrong in creating that hookworm and letting it free. See, he had already gone to people -- people in positions of authority -- who should have been more interested in what he was saying. And they failed to take much interest, and he was marginalized because of his efforts to do the right thing.

In the long run, we can measure the economic loss to the RTM worm in scant thousands of dollars in immediate cost. Projected costs, if we take into consideration that perhaps not being able to connect over the phone system to somebody in Massachusetts caused some broker to fuck up a $10,000,000 deal, we could add $10mil to it, but realistically it wasn't a huge fucking deal. Even calling it a m|stake begs qualification of the term, for the sake of clarifying the direction of the vector his mistake was scalar to.

Comment The Shockwave Rider (Score 1) 51

I read a great article on RTM called "Shockwave Rider" or something like that. It was called that because RTM Sr. used the book "Shockwave Rider" to explain to his son how what he did was right in a certain way of looking at it, but wrong in every other way of looking at it. Can't remember what magazine the article was in. It was a good article to read back in the early 90's.

We still have a lot of mechanical devices hooked up to the internet, today. Some might say more every day. I say "mechanical devices" in reference to phones, because the exchange hubs used rotating disks (implementing their own optimized form of binary counting) to connect calls.

Considering we've had one major blackout in the United States due to a power station being online to the internet and left vulnerable, I'd say this is a very relevant topic today.

When I was taking a college course on transformers, the instructor used to come to class bragging about the work he did (his other job) for Siemens, designing and building transformers. He was a real egotist. He'd not only brag to students, but he wasn't very in touch with theory either, as I found out. Coming from electronics 101, you tend to want to ask some questions about electronics theory to your other instructors, stuff that they should by all means be well acquainted with. Well, this guy didn't know. So he'd get pissed, and when he got pissed, he would literally say, "oh yeah, well can you do this" and start writing out schematics for transformers according to code on the blackboard, and then take a calculator and figure out how many turns of what gauge wire was needed to fit the demand according to code. Yaba yaba yaba. A very insecure individual. So I not only wasn't surprised when I read in the newspaper that semester that Siemens transformers that had some kind of internet-capable component were found 100% irreversibly vulnerable to attack over the internet through a backdoor that presumably some disgruntled, insecure "mage" installed before leaving the company -- I also wasn't very surprised at all when that jackass had jack shit to say when I mentioned the story to him except stare at his shoes awhile and get on with the next lesson in rotating transformers (to use the Tesla coined phrase, which that instructor hated so damn much whenever I said it.)

Anyways, it's always going to be relevant. That hookworm was elegant and though not thoroughly thought through, it did show the potential for electronic disaster in the form of less than a handful of barely discernible on's and off's.

Comment Re:We're not all farmers. And even if we were, wtf (Score 1) 545

>> I've never met one person, my whole entire life, who felt that Daylight Savings Time should be maintained. Especially while I've lived in Michigan...

I should have corrected that to, "and the sentiment against DST is Especially strong in Michigan", because I was already speaking in an absolute term. I have never met anybody who supported DST and thought it was a meritable exercise, but I have met people who "never really thought about it". In Michigan, I've met very, very few people who don't have some strong opinions about Daylight Savings Time and how it needs to be put where the sun doesn't shine.

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