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Comment Re:Not me but friends (Score 1) 189

Knowing GL/DirectX is pretty meaningless in games unless you're looking to be hired as a graphics programmer. Even more interesting these days is that as more of the gaming experience moves online, we're seeing fairly traditional skillsets such as DBA or server side programming become much more in demand. It all depends on what you want to do *on* a game development team. Knowing graphics programming doesn't guarantee you a job anymore than being demonstrably skilled in any other facet of game programming. In fact, going in and thinking that just because you can write a hobby game front to back yourself is far less interesting to employers than being able to demonstrate an interest in a specific area.

Comment Re: What does the job entail? (Score 3, Informative) 189

I work for one of the top 5 developers on console games, as a programmer. Are there crunch times? Yes. Do you get comp time? Yes. I'm going to be taking 35 days vacation this fall. The work itself is vastly more interesting and personally rewarding (to me) than working on business intelligence software, which is probably where I'd be otherwise.

You get what you put into it, and you also get what you put up with. I don't recommend that anybody sacrifice their quality of life simply to be in games, and certainly some studios are worse than others, but in making games for 9 years, if you can put up with a some crunch every year or two, it can be a really fun job. Just put up resistance if you're being treated unfairly (80 hour work weeks? Never.) .. once you get some experience, you can move around. The entire industry is a game of musical chairs, so you should be able to find something at your 'pressure' level. Some people will put up with those insane for the privilege of working on a GTA title, but there is plenty of middle ground.

And as somebody else pointed out above, just because you like playing games (or even making them for yourself) doesn't necessarily mean you'll like making them in the AAA game space. I just wrapped up a title where the credits take about 40 minutes to watch, so there are lots of considerations in terms of how much time you're willing to put in, how much individual credit you're looking for, etc.

Comment Where is it practical? (Score 1) 127

But it does not allow rockets to reenter the Earth's atmosphere at orbital velocities, slow down, and land.

How about the Moon and Mars? It seems to me that the fuel capacity of Dragon isn't enough to do both lunar descent and ascent just on the Super Draco thrusters and the trunk's fuel capacity.

Comment What's really impressive (Score 2) 127

The impressive part is that they do it with an actual rocket that is 106 feet tall, and that they have launched it 7 times with 0 failures.

Using the same engine, rather than treating the engine as a disposable object that only performs one burn in its lifetime. Most rocket engines can't be throttled, can't be shut down and then restarted in flight or otherwise.

The tricky part is going to be for any stage to have enough delta-V to return to the pad after lifting a payload to orbit. Also, as far as I can tell, this takes a drag chute for lower stages, and a re-entry shield for upper ones.

Bruce

Comment I can't wait! (Score 0) 395

For a few months I am consulting in San Jose and driving from Berkeley. I can't wait for all of those folks to move to the cities and get off the roads! Typical commute is 1.5 hours to drive no more than 49 miles. Even getting on the road at 6 AM doesn't beat the traffic.

Comment Re:Phenotipyc variance (Score 1) 204

I am no authority on homosexuality. All I really know is that I meet a lot of gay folks here in Berkeley, and they are every bit as nice as anyone else.

Nor am I a genetics expert. But I know enough to hold a discussion.

You are right that there may be no genetic connection with homosexuality, because it doesn't seem to be inherited in general. But there are intriguing differences such as digit ratio, and we know that many developmental differences can have a genetic factor. Who knows what we will find?

I think the flaw with your argument is that you are assuming that homosexuals don't breed. Not true, and there may also be factors increasing the success of their offspring such as small, educated and relatively affluent families.

Next, do not assume that direct reproductive success is the only possible pro-survival factor. The contribution of homosexuals to the reproductive success of their close genetic relatives or even their community may be a pro-survival factor for genes like their own.

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