Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:opinion (Score 1) 211

In that case, which is the better comparison (with respect to games of course): the difference between PCs and consoles or the difference between Apple computers and the Windows PC ecosystem?
If we compare the iPhone vs. Android situation to PCs versus consoles, then we have an Enthusiast market versus a casual market (where basically different game types work better on either a PC or a console). If we instead make the comparison to Apple versus the PC market, then Apple pretty much lost in that respect, and eventually the iPhone should lose out to the avalanche of rapidly evolving Android devices.

Comment Re:Comment from the source (Score 2, Insightful) 286

I believe a lot of the innovation and features visible in Steam is driven by Valve's direct experience with creating and expanding their games. From the basic technology for easy updates of games, to easy modification distribution, to being able to easily store game configuration and items server side - these are all features that were important to Valve for their own games, and are now part of (or becoming part of) the vast number of tools available to 3rd parties releasing on Steam. Even things like the in-game IM client was born out of Valve wanting to have such functionality in Counter-Strike (the "Tracker" beta which existed way before Steam was proof of this). What I'm getting at is that I believe the drive for innovation and experimentation in Steam would be lost on a company which solely viewed Steam as an asset for enabling digital distribution. If Steam and Valve parted ways, I have no doubt that while it's current momentum and leadership position would give it success in the short to mid-term, it's future potential would be harmed.

Comment Video Jerkiness (Score 1) 205

This is something I've been wondering for a while. Presumably the video is being recorded to some sort of solid state flash memory. If that's the case, then there shouldn't be any moving parts in the camera while it is recording the video. Why do I see the video seem to stop in certain places, and seemingly skip a few tenths of a second?

The only theory I can come up with is that the motion is too great, and the camera's processor is unable to keep up with the increased bitrate? Some examples of this are @ the :30 mark and the :43 mark in the linked balloon video.

Comment Re:Uhm, bandwidth? (Score 2, Insightful) 148

The idea is that the only thing you are uploading to the server is input, such as mouse/keyboard/voice information. The game logic and assets all reside on the server itself, and thus don't have to be upload by your machine. It's as if you were playing a game over a VNC connection.

One thing that is really cool about this technology is that it has the potential to eliminate cheating in games such as first person shooters. A lot of the cheating in the past is because the game client running on a user's machine actually knows a lot more information than what is being shown to the user. If a user can get past those artificial barriers to the information with hacked graphics drivers to see through walls, or sound drivers to see the exact location of footsteps, then they have a huge advantage over another user which leaves those artificial "information limiters" in place. It turns out it's very difficult to limit the sending of information from the server to a game client to only exactly what a game client needs at any given time. Theoretically, if the only thing being received from a game server are pre-rendered images, the a user couldn't use that information to cheat with wallhacks or any other current cheats that I know of. The problem is that there would also be no way to do client-side prediction (which is why extra information generally has to be sent in the first place), and mitigate the lag that inevitably exists between nearly all servers and clients to this day.
Operating Systems

Submission + - 64bit Menuet 0.67 released

Michael135 writes: Menuet is an operating system for the PC written entirely in assembly language. It supports x86 assembly programming for smaller, faster and less resource hungry applications. Menuet includes pre-emptive multitasking, multithreading, ring-3 protection, responsive GUI, assembler and editor for applications. Networking includes TCP/IP stack with ethernet drivers, basic email/http clients and ftp/http servers. And Menuet fits on a single floppy.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - The Emoticon Turns 25 :-) (cnn.com)

tuxlove writes: CNN reports: "Twenty-five years ago, (Sept 19, 1982) Carnegie Mellon University professor Scott E. Fahlman says, he was the first to use three keystrokes — a colon followed by a hyphen and a parenthesis — as a horizontal "smiley face" in a computer message."

Emoticons are now part of daily life for anyone who uses a computer or other text-capable communication device. Just about everyone in the world has at least seen an emoticon. It may perhaps be the most important innovation ever in electronic communications. I know the smiley has saved me many times from horrible email misunderstandings. How many others has it saved? :-) Unfortunately, in recent years others have tried to claim rights to emoticons, most notably the evil folks at Despair.com. In a controversial move, they trademarked the frowny emoticon and banned its use from email without a license. In their defense, the license fee is quite affordable. :-( (Yes, this one is licensed.)

Comment Where's this law...? (Score 1) 329

I've tried to look up other laws in the past, and it's nearly impossible. None of the articles that I read linked to the law in question. I want to see whether the law references text messaging specifically, or just using the cell phone. If I've got directions cued up on my phone, and am checking my phone for the next direction, is that going to fall under this law?

Another law I've tried to look up in the past was the law referencing handicapped parking spaces. It took somewhere between 30min to an hour to find Seattle Municipal Code - Disabled parking. If anyone has a link to the full text of the law, please respond.

Slashdot Top Deals

The first version always gets thrown away.