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Comment Re:I'm mildly disappointed (Score 1) 108

A close-to-complete social map, for example, should be fairly doable to construct, just from observing who calls eachothers or send SMS to eachothers, you can even assign fairly accurate weights to the relationships based on frequency of call/sms and frequency and duration of being in the same spots.

Not "should be possible", "is happening."

I can tell you for certain this is taking place and they are collecting and already using this data to try and make more money. One of the things they look for is for who are the "influencers." For example, they have noted that certain people send short text messages and make short outgoing calls, but often get many responses that are much longer. Think of someone who just says "sup?" and 10 people respond with big stories about their day or offers to hang out, etc.

These people are often offered discounted phones or given excellent customer service or some other such special treatment. Mostly without ever even knowing.

The Economist has an excellent article on it all:

Comment Re:Street view (Score 2) 69

Only on Slashdot can I read a comment like that and think, "yeah, that's a pretty cool idea!" While simultaneously thinking, "holy crap we all need to get outside and interact with real people more often."

Comment Re:Unbalancing (Score 1) 62

Anarchy Online did this recently too. And while they maintained that same ol' song that they aren't going to make it a pay to win game, they effectively created a loophole for someone to buy credits (currency in the game) with real life money.

I think evenitably they just cant hold back the bean counters who are asking why the new outfits aren't bringing in enough money. It's like feature creep but with power/value to purchased items.

I think their subscriber numbers took a huge nosedive as the players saw through it all. But that's just biased speculation on my part. I think it's sad to see the industry innovating more ways to extract money with in game purchases and DLCs rather than creating good products. But I guess that's a sure sign the Gaming industry has really become mature and lucrative.

Comment Re:User feedback is overrated (Score 1) 71

It could go the other way too, where the data is just showing what people felt they needed to do in order to get to play the content they liked. Say an achievement was "Thirsty! - drank a health potion" (oversimplfying here) you might see 99.99% of players did that. Does that mean they love health potions?

I think using data and listening to feedback and using common sense about what rational conclusions can be drawn is all helpful, but each has bias.

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Memory fault -- brain fried