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Comment Re:Many do not think it is illegal (Score 1) 387

Asus makes one. It's called the O!Play. $90 for wired, $140 for wireless (cheaper in some spots online). Plug a hard drive in or stream over a network.
There's also the Popcorn Hour and all the MivX devices. Soon we'll be getting the Boxee Box for this sorta stuff.

I'm surprised he found a pay download site (I haven't even HEARD of these places) but hasn't found one of the multitude of players that's compatible with his library.

Comment Re:It's not just Rockstar (Score 1) 633

It's a little disingenuous, this example. The pool of employee that becomes A (out of a job) rarely comes back at the level of pay he was at beforehand. Someone with a job in the tech field has a monumentally better chance of finding a better job than someone without one does at finding a job with their old level of pay. It's a momentum-based job market, almost.

Comment Re:foot.shoot(); (Score 1) 619

BS. The latest version of Windows Media Player that Windows going as far back as XP can run is capable of playing H.264 MP4 files just fine. Hell, if you have a DXVA-capable card (Every Radeon since the 2000 series and every Geforce since the 8000 series, with the sole exceptions of the 2900 and 8800 cards, respectively (8800GS is a go tho)), it'll even play accelerated with next-to-nil CPU usage.

In fact, it's probably more likely to play an H.264 MP4 file than it is a DivX/XviD-encoded Avi file w/o any codecs installed.

Comment Re:IBM's hardware vendor mind is taking over (Score 1) 863

Wine's biggest problem is that compatibility is currently more important than making it look like it belongs on Linux. At the moment it really feels more like I just opened up a Windows app on Windows 95 running in linux. What makes it so annoying is the following:

Wine will NEVER be fully compatible. Every month a dozen apps (that people actually use) come out (whether a new app or an update to an existing app) that aren't compatible and won't be for a few weeks at best.

Making Wine integrate properly with the desktop environment needs to be done once and has much more value than working with iTunes 9 (which programs like Wine-doors allow 99% of Wine users to work around easily anyway). By making your few legacy Windows apps look like native Linux apps, you make Linux a far stronger alternative to Windows.

Comment Re:Lost the point (Score 1) 543

I do admit that the strictness of the GPL does make the driver situation on Linux difficult, and I can clearly see where both sides have a good point. Some manufacturers don't legally have the right to open their driver (Ati is in that situation with FGLRX, actually), but the community doesn't want any situation where a manufacturer stops caring, drops support, and boom, everyone on the binary driver is now screwed (look up Intel's GMA 500 for an example, tho there's talk of that driver getting open-sourced, which is crazily unexpected). Not to mention drivers that arbitrarily divide market segments for devices. Nobody wants to release enough information to create an open-source driver if that runs them the risk of people buying their $50 devices and getting them to do the work they'd otherwise need the $300 device to do. It's a sad, perpetual, tug of war there.

As an aside, a video card driver is by no means an arbitrary undertaking, especially more recent cards. Mind you, work is being done by developers on Ati hardware, partially because of all the NDA-free documentation that's been released (check out the guy doing Radeon-Rewrite, for example, on pre-R400 hardware). Hopefully we'll eventually see someone join Ati's (Novell's?) team on the open source R500-700 drivers.

Comment Lost the point (Score 4, Informative) 543

Keep in mind, the basis behind GPL isn't it just have code that's open, it's to have code that STAYS open.

It's essentially self-perpetuating open source. I don't get all the people who discuss GPL work-arounds. It's really simple. If the GPL isn't for you, look for something with an MIT license, or even something in the public domain, or fucking code your own. The GPL borders on being an ecosystem, and if you wanna plunder it and move on, go somewhere else.

Every GNU zealout shouts this out at the top of their lungs, it should be pretty easy to understand by now: If you don't like the GPL license, don't fucking link to a GPL'd library. End of discussion.

Comment Even for power users... (Score 4, Interesting) 121

Even for power users, HTPC's can be aggravating. Why, in a world where you could put together a tiny monster PC for around $300 would someone buy a MivX or NMT player? Simple. Take any HTPC on the market, ANY.

Plug it into a regular, yellow, composite television.
Plug it into an HDTV via component or HDMI.

If you can turn it on, boot it up, and play a video on it without a single configuration edit without any hassle from installation, then please, reply to this topic because as far as I know, an HTPC that does this is akin to a fucking unicorn.

I have an iStar Mini and a Popcorn Hour, both NMT devices. The Mini's in the living room. If I wanna take that thing to the kitchen TV (13", composite in), I just put the movie on a USB stick and it's showing the film inside of the 2 minutes it takes to set up and boot. When it goes back to the living room, it's an HDMI connection to the TV and coax to the (admittedly cheap) surround system. Works just fine, automatically detects 1080p at startup. Over component, I'd have to hit two buttons to get 720p or 1080i (worst-case, 480p is instantly automatically enabled).

I had a friend try to build a MythTV box. Hours went by as this man tried to get MythTV to show up at a decent resolution on his HDTV (this was a few years ago, via DVI). This is a guy who runs and actually knows how to use Gentoo, and would be a sysadmin if he wasn't a programmer at a Fortune 500 company (A good one, you've probably used their services at some point(s) in the last six months). On the AppleTV, the first test isn't even a possibility without some insane level of hacking (especially if you want color out of the composite out). I can only IMAGINE what it's like an a Windows Media Center rig. And in the last two cases, playing videos other than Quicktime or WMV, respectively, (let alone something like MKV) is a hassle that goes more hours into getting up and running than those devices are probably WORTH.

As crappy and low-end as the interfaces are on mini video boxes are, they happen to work remarkably well for the simple process of "Plug into TV, watch stuff", whether "stuff" is on a usb stick or the network. Give me a call when the HTPC manages to get there on a remote-friendly interface.

Comment This is fucking retarded. (Score 5, Insightful) 119

Nintendo's the only one not surprised by this. They didn't have a single major release, save for maybe Wii Sports Resort (which came out when, 2 days ago?), this year. By Christmas they'll release New Super Mario Bros. Wii and next year brings Mario Galaxy 2, possibly a Wii fit expansion or whatever they're doing with the pulse sensor, and lo and behold, those months will do ridiculously well for the Wii, and the year afterward, on the same month, analysts will worry about Nintendo's downfall when the sales aren't as high due to a lack of major titles.

It's the same dumb shit with Hollywood. Half a dozen studios release films in June with quarter-of-a-billion budgets+marketing campaigns and when all of those types of films don't come out 'till August the next year, there's an article about how the film industry is failing, all because it's easier to make up "Sky is falling" predictions than to actually wait a whole fucking fiscal year and take into account the number major releases that hit a particular year.

Games and film have 2-3-year production cycles, and many times projects get delayed. The money still comes in (albiet with a higher cost due to the delay, which, for better companies, tend to result in more revenue for a better product), but as it doesn't come in steadily, it gives "analysts" plenty of fuel to predict doom whenever there is none.

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