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Comment There are two kinds of gamers... (Score 0) 308

"Yes, I said it: nowadays, the CPU and GPU are too powerful, and game designers are hell-bent on 3D and other graphical gimmicks, instead of focusing on gameplay."

There are two kinds of gamers. Those who play games, and those who don't. And then there's everyone else in between. You seem to be the 'gamer' type. That's the type who is fond of figuring things out, playing puzzles, solving quests, etc. I would guess that games like Tetris appeal to you as well. While I enjoy that occasionally, but that is NOT why I like modern graphical 'games'.

When I buy a modern 3D game for my PC, I'm looking for a lushly graphical, photo-realistic, and impressively huge immersive environment in which to explore. I want the graphics and sound to be so good that I simply lose my mind in the environment as if I was there. Games like this don't come cheap, so I'm willing to save and spend my money on only the quality ones that matter. Too many 'me too' games are the fast food of the industry. There's a lot of games that just aren't worth the time and effort to play.

For me, the more time and effort a company has put into the graphics and sound, and the more effort that has gone into the character of the world the better. I simply don't play games that are 'just for gaming'. I play games that simulate another environment that I can journey to after a hard days work. Modern 3D graphics games like "Skyrim" are in many ways like reading a good book, a book that becomes your story. In those simulated worlds I can go places and do things I could never do in real life, no matter how much money I had. When is the last time you could go to Hawaii and have the whole island to yourself with ancient castles to explore?

If anything, the game Skyrim's failings were that it wasn't 'good enough' graphics for 2011. The game was dumbed down to make it fit in the console. It's great that modders for games like Crysis and Skyrim can step in and make them better, otherwise we'd be stuck in 2005 era graphics. I will say however that Skyrim, even though an ultimately boring game from the point of view of story and gameplay, pushed the envelope of what is possible.

So the 'list' in order of what I want is:

1. Insanely great photorealistic 3D graphics engine.
2. Huge immersive high quality environment to explore.
3. Story. A background mystery for me to solve.
4. Some baddies for me to take on.
5. Some skills to achieve. Note: NOT UNLOCKS. UNLOCKS SUCK.
6. Gameplay. Something like the Myst series of game play was fun.

So for me there are 'games', and then there are 'simulations'. Games are something you spend a little time on occasionally because you have nothing better to do, and you need to keep yourself occupied. Simulations are immersive 'cyber' environments that tell a story, have gaming aspects, and provide a place for me to get lost in. And they can be huge time sucks. I wouldn't mind spending over $100 USD on a photo-realistic simulation that would take over 6 months to play. Few companies care to go there however because they don't think people like me are out not out there. And they just care for the business of gaming and pushing out the me-too fast food.

Give me real-time ray-traced graphics and a world to explore as good as the intro to Final Fantasy 13...


1. I think PC gamers world over recognize Crysis (the 2007 original) as the defacto standard for which all games of that era should be measured against. FarCry 2 is another. These are games in which the developers worked very hard. It was also the last generation of games that weren't dumbed down to console level. I see that CryEngine 3, and developers, are finally recognizing that we've got to move on. Being trapped in console level graphics just aren't going to get us anywhere in the future. As technology advances, we must constantly try to push the envelope of what is possible with technology. I'll put my money there.

2. Minecraft was an excellent example of what is possible on an individual level and I champion this. Indy games must also push the envelope of possible story lines and worlds that could be created. Big companies need something to measure themselves against there too.

Comment Your topic is irrelevant... (Score 3, Interesting) 360

People should at least know a couple of things. Some companies make computer hardware, and some companies make computer software. Software is something that works on computer hardware. It "can" be the case that the same companies who make the the hardware could also make the software, but this is NOT implied. In the past, we've had the pleasure that we could get our software from anyone because the PC design philosophy was "open".

The standard car analogy may suffice here. Some companies make cars. Some companies make gas. We don't buy "Ford" or "Chevrolet" gas do we? But the analogy gets deeper than this. The gas is seen as the OS in this analogy. We figure that if we put in a single type of gas, example "Ford" gas, we can still travel where we want. But the problem is that the "Ford" gas will only work on certain highways that the car maker will allow us to go down. Going forward in the computer industry, this exactly what is going on. If you use Apple computers and devices for example, you can only view the world through Apple's lens.

Comment Google Earth from 30 miles up... (Score 0) 349

Anybody who does not believe the earth is too populated has not viewed the earth from 20 to 30 miles up. Given where I live in the southeastern U.S. I can see the massive devastation of forest and biomass that once existed here. In my lifetime, I have seen massive amounts of land just decimated by "developers". I can foresee that this will continue because of course, the land has no value until it is developed.

Comment And after it's commercialized... (Score 3, Insightful) 57

And later, after it is patented, made into a product, and commercialized, it will cost most hospitals more than $100,000.00. And when you need a scan, your bill will show an $8,000.00 medical imaging cost to the insurance company, while your out of pocket will be $2,000.00. And since it is patented, nobody will be able to raise the capital to compete for many years to come.

Comment Re:Only once have I splurged like that (Score 1) 281

The original Crysis game (CryEngine2), combined with mods like Real Lifesys (or other extreme tweak mods aka Photoreal), combined with HD textures, and all viewed on 1920x1200 or above res display devices (especially combined with multi-monitor setups), will make your jaws drop.

You really need pure GPU and CPU power to push this stuff over 50 FPS. Whoever tells you otherwise simply hasn't done it.





Granted, Crysis has it's problems, but it is far and away better graphics-wise than anything console, or console ported to PC, and it's almost 5 years old now. Console ported games by comparison look a bit "cartoon'ish", even the strange changes they made in the CryEngine 3 to port Crysis to consoles (reduced res and color textures, etc). I'm one of the guys who purposely didn't buy Crysis 2 because I didn't think the graphics were any better than the original Crysis. I've also skipped Skyrim, for the graphics (poor), but also because slaying dragons (and every other creature in the woods that wants to do you in) all day does get old. Why can't Skyrim graphics look as good as this? ...


I'll tell you why. It's because Skyrim was made for the CONSOLES that came out 5 years ago!

Personally I am a high-end enthusiast. I do run SLI and 1920x1200. I do have an overclocked 4.1 GHz machine. I do upgrade my graphics about every 2 to 3 years. I use my money to push the industry along. I honestly believe that if people quit buying high-end, then the state of the art in GPU/CPU will slow down dramatically and we will never reach pure photorealism as soon. Console designs will also suffer because of it. For example, the nex-gen consoles had better be coming with DX11 capable GPUs and 4+ Gig mem, or for this day in age they would fair poorly. I am the reason that this new AMD graphics card even exists.

I'm the type of person who would buy this...



... just to game on cold nights in the winter, so I can hang out on a Crysis style beach projected on my living room wall.

Sure, arguments can be made that the "game" is more important than the graphics. That is not entirely true, but it is why I still love a game of the now 11 year old Quake 3 Arena multi-player on occasion. But what I have been craving all my life is pure immersion. I'm an adult, and as such I'm looking not so much for a game, but more of a way to escape reality and go places that you cannot be in real life. I want massive exploration in a game, and I want that new environment to be as immersive as possible. Both with sound and graphics. And I'm willing to pay a company over $200 USD for the type of "simulation/game" environment that takes me away for 3 to 4 months playtime. It's a lot like reading a really good book. I am NOT looking for the McDonalds fast-food gaming experience where I'm bored to tears of the game after two weeks. In fact, I would go so far as to say that I'm looking for a game that would last almost 6 months or more of a world to explore. And I know that development wouldn't come cheap. So if I'm spending $500 on a graphics card, why not $250+ for a totally over the top ultra game?

Btw, FarCry 2 was an awesome game, with good graphics, with a very large environment to explore. I just loved how I didn't know what to expect around every mountain turn, or over a hill. I'm looking for a game world like that, and about 10 times bigger! I'd also like more realistic cloud, rain, weather, and sound environmentals.

I would say that anyone sitting at home, in their underwear, on the couch, on a console with a little stick controller, or jumping around the room with a kinect doesn't really care much about anything in-depth, and it isn't those people who are pushing the industry along. Those people are just pushing "fast-food" gaming, and everything is dumb'ed down because of them. They are the lowest common denominator, and just drag everything down with them. Yes those people have money, and I may be in the minority, BUT I HAVE MONEY TOO!

To the gaming industry: Get me a photorealistic ray-traced like environment, in 60+fps that's immersive as hell, and supports 2560x1600 graphics on multi-monitors and I WILL PAY YOU FOR IT. I make money. I have money. I will spend it. I'm not a child or teenager with ADHD and a little console at home. I'm looking for something like a FPS shooter / Myst series / FarCry / Final Fantasy massively huge immersive open-world game with absolutely stunningly beautiful graphics.

Note: I don't know any console gamers who have not questioned why the game play world looks so much poorer than the visual cut scenes in Final Fantasy. We want to play in the world of the visual cut scenes, NOT THE CONSOLE graphics...

PC game industry, Microsoft, hear me... let me play IN these worlds! Don't let console users crush our future. Occupy high-end gaming!

Comment PADS are WAY OVERPRICED... (Score 1) 181

iSupply is wacked. The price would be less than $100.00 based on components in lots of 1000.
The prices listed in the BOM look like off-the-shelf component costs.

For example, here's the TOTAL comsumer cost for a new 27' TV...

There is no way a tablet is going to be priced MORE than the above monitor.

Or how about this TOTAL consumer part...

The cost of the high-end engineering that goes into the above graphics card is much more than most tablets these days. Even more considering the market for which these graphics cards are supposed to sell.

There is a reason that APPLE is making a killing on the iPads these days. Consumers wallets are getting taken to the cleaners.

Comment I beg to differ... (Score 0) 78

I beg to differ greatly with your assumption that "we don't have clue one about how to explain consciousness".

In fact we do know a few things...

You are never "conscious" all the time.
Every millisecond or so people are unconscious.
When you sleep you are also unconscious.
There can be many health related problems that would lead you to being unconscious.

Conscious machine properties:

      Has minimums related to spacial volume, and computational capacity for human level "consciousness".
      Has sensory input.
      Processes sensory input.
      Must have a set time-slice unit for processing new information (you will be unconscious during processing).
      Reduces and stores important processed sensory information (must have memory).
      Compares current sensory input with previous sensory input (negative and positive feedback).
      Can generate associative differential information based on the comparison of current to previous information (and stores that for future feedback).
      Can make decisions based on meta level associative differential information.
      Can interact with its surroundings based on decisions.
      Can process events over time, therefore reasoning that events occur over time.
      Requires a semi-stable, but not quiescent, environment from which to operate in.
      (Both environmental deprivation, and complete randomness for input would lead to a non-functioning machine.)
      Probably requires extended downtime to further process daily high level associative differential (and hash) information for higher level reasoning. (Sleep)
      Requires information loss. Must necessarily "forget" non-important (useless) information. It is impossible to store every sensory event.
      Time slice processing can increase or decrease rate based on emergency life protection need.
      (If your life is in danger, adrenaline will increase the rate of processing, and events will seem to "slow down".)
      (Consequently when you age, your sensory processing rate naturally slows, so events in your life seem to "go by faster".)

So the machine must have memory for consciousness, otherwise it is just pure sensory "awareness" without knowledge of itself within and apart from the world.

You are a biochemical machine. All humans are biochemical machines which are "self aware" because of the above properties.

Based on the above properties, it should be possible to build an analog amplifier (op amp) that is trainable to obtain the voltage outputs we desire based on the discrete voltage level inputs. This amplifier would not necessarily be "conscious" but would be the core of something that one day could become "self-aware", and then to "consciousness".

Some philosophical wanderings...

Suppose you awoke the next morning in someone elses body with someone elses memory. Would you then not be "that" person?

The ultimate question is, what makes "you", you?

If you could make a complete copy of yourself using say, a Star Trek like transporter, then what would be the difference between you, and the other "you"? Only one thing... location, which is a position in space-time from which to have and generate separate associative differential information.

It is impossible to have two conscious beings occupy the same space-time location.

Is the "self aware" you that is "you" the same "self aware" me that is "me"? Coo coo ca choo.


Comment How about trying paid service? (Score 2, Informative) 363

Does it not occur to some internet companies that I may actually be alright with um, oh I don't know, PAYING THEM for the services they offer, instead of being tracked and advertised to? Or are they too afraid of making money the traditional tried and true way of customers paying for their "apparently" superior offerings.
I mean if the only way a company can make money is by tracking and advertising to people then what business does a company like that have being on the stock market? Apparently they've just admitted in this "protest letter" that they really have no products or services that are worth being "sold".

Comment Forest meet trees... (Score 1) 235

Fallout from a meteor strike, and fallout from an entire reactor core after being vaporized are two completely different things.
Yes, while a Tunguska sized event would be catastrophic for New York, or Washington, it's effects are mainly localized except for some atmospheric dust. This is the exact example of what happened at Tunguska. Now imagine if all four Fukushima reactors were at ground zero of the Tunguska strike. All those radioactive isotopes could have been vaporized into the atmosphere. Possibly making a much larger area uninhabitable for thousands of years. Tunguska has already recovered, in well under a hundred, and with no lasting radiation.
If that Tunguska event had hit Chernobyl in 1986 instead of the simple explosion that happened, we may very well be seeing things much differently today.
Also remember, Plutonium is not natural.

Comment Lesser risk? Really? (Score 3, Interesting) 235

I have to say I'm very much on the fence on this one. In my youth I was definitely against nuclear power, then later I was a strong supporter. Now I'm back to being not sure.
There's a big problem if, for example, you had perfected the containment process, then out of the blue, a Tunguska sized event (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tunguska_event) happened nearby (or on top of) your nuclear sites.
The fallout from that would be impressive.
A Tunguska sized event is a "lesser risk" that we all live with every day, yet it did happen, and very probably will happen again within a few generations.

Comment Going further... (Score 1) 250

This is exactly why someone needs to standardize, as soon as possible, a consumer device for metering your IP. The device should be small (pocket sized), possibly battery operated, has a liquid crystal display, and simply shows the IO flow of IP packets into and out of your home, with totals. The device should be under $10.00 or $20.00 USD. To use the device, you would simply place it in-line between your ISP modem, and your home router. Every month, you would simply read its value from the LCD just like the electric, water, and gas meters outside your homes. It should not slow down your internet traffic, or interfere with it in any way. The reading should be retained through a power loss of the device, such as change-out of an old battery. The device should not be hackable in any way since it should probably just read the IP header content size info and accumulate that.

Home routers, in theory, could possibly perform the function, however there would be wildly varying methods of reading and displaying the data. All older router firmwares would need to be updated, and the metering method used would need standardization.

If enough of these devices get out there, and soon enough, then consumers should be able to push back on this issue. After a while, perhaps, the Time Warners, AT&Ts, and Comcasts of the world will force one version of the meter readers to be "standardized" across the industry. This would be a very lucrative deal for the developer of the meter.

Comment Oh gee, not this myth again... (Score 1) 303

The Windows registry is just a database that sits on the file system. Parts of the database are maintained in memory for extremely fast access. The database also handles locking when multiple applications need to have access, or write to the same piece of data at the same time. The registry was made to replace the need to keep the following from happening...
(My application needs and INT value that describes something.)
1. opening a file.
2. locking a byte range.
3. seeking to the byte range on the disk.
4. parsing the byte range.
5. performing ASCII/UNICODE to numeric INT/DWORD/LONG conversions where required.
6. re-writing the byte range (when required).
7. unlocking/closing.
Since there are no numeric conversions, this also takes care of keeping values small, and taking up less disk space and speeding things up as well. The registry also has ACLs for the data.

If you've ever watched access to the windows registry via applications through hooking programs like regmon, then you will note just how much you need that speed and accuracy.
There's nothing "special" or evil about the windows registry. It's just a miniature database "data" file system on top of a larger file system.

It's global, but your applications don't have to use it if you don't want to. For your applications to have Windows logo certs, you would need to apply certain registrations of software install information in the Windows registry, but that is about it. You don't need to store any of your applications' data in the registry. You can just store things in text files if you want. Slow poke.

This myth about what the Windows registry is just lame and probably comes from being absent minded about other technologies and ways of doing things.

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