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Comment Less FUD please (Score 1) 120

I get real tired of this "XBox one cannot do 1080p" crap that Sony/ Nintendo fans keep trotting out. Yes, it can. FIFA Soccer 14, Forza Motorsport 5, NBA 2K14, Need for Speed Rivals, all run at 1080 internally. Yes, a number of games run at less and I imagine that'll only be more common as time goes on, but it doesn't change the fact that the system is perfectly capable of 1080. Heck for that matter, not all PS4 titles run at 1080, BF4 being an example.

I have no stake in this fight, I don't do console games I'm all PC all the time. I say "lolconsoles" to 1080p30, I do my gaming at 2560x1600 @ 60fps please and thanks. However don't go spreading misinformation, particularly technical information on a tech site.

Comment Also the problems are different (Score 1) 346

ATMs don't have to worry about viruses n' such generally because users can't get at them. You can only use their custom interface, you can't surf the web with them. There also isn't USB access (or rather shouldn't be, I'm not saying there has never been a stupidly designed one). So a lot of the threats you'd face on a normal desktop don't apply.

Plus there's the unequal relationship with the bank, in that an ATM trusts it completely. They don't actually process your account, they just send data back to the bank, via special purpose built encryption cards. It hands off what you want to do to the bank, which then tells it what it can do. It doesn't deal with data security in a normal sense.

So what the OS on an ATM does is present a user interface to the users, and communicate to the hardware (the encryption device, the cash dispenser, that kind of thing). Hence their concern is something that is easy to develop a UI for, and supports the devices in the system. Not something that is hardened against security issues since that really isn't a problem in the way it is used.

Comment Yep (Score 2) 76

Amazon operates on very thin margins. This is partially because they want to give customers a good price, which means they don't make a lot of profit per sale. It is also because they reinvest their profits in their business, buying more infrastructure, that kind of thing.

They are not like Apple, just hoarding tons of cash, they don't actually have a tone of money left over.

Comment Links on the subject (Score 4, Informative) 102

Comment Re:Longer cycles and tick/tock please (Score 1) 128

I wish I could run CentOS for everything. Unfortunately, for the Desktop CentOS has problem keeping up with the changes in VPN technology, so because in my practice I'm liable to run into anything, I run Fedora 17 on the desktop and Fedora 19 in my laptop. I will be trying either Fedora 20 or 21 in a "beta" computer before making the transition. The news that 21 is going to mark the beginning of longer update cycles, but not as long as Enterprise update cycles, is welcome. Of course, that means my expenses for hard drives will drop...

Comment Ya that is near as big a problem (Score 4, Informative) 198

The limit in the new Sim City is 2km x 2km. That is pathetic. Literally all you can create is a couple city blocks, or a very tiny small town. I mean I live close enough to work to bike in, and I live a good deal further than that (8km).

While there are always limits as to what you can do reasonably in a game, this limit is way too small to be fun. It isn't a matter of being able to create a "big city" it is a matter that almost all small towns are far larger than that.

Apparently they aren't fixing it either. They say the performance isn't good on larger cities, which translates to "We fucked our engine up bad so it can't scale at all."

Unless that is fixed as well, I wouldn't get it. Offline mode is a requisite for sure, but if gameplay is still broken then it isn't worth money.

Comment You don't get to buy your games on sale (Score 1) 110

You might, but then again you might on consoles too. Games cost full retail on Steam. Assassin's Creed 4 is $60, same as for the PS4 and the Xboner. It is, in fact cheaper for the PS3 and 360, only $50. Now, it was on sale for a day on Steam's winter sale for $45 (still more expensive than the Wii U version now) but only for that short sale. If you want it now, $60 it is.

What about older titles? Say, Crysis 2. Only $30 in the Steam Store now. From Amazon? $20 for the PS3/360.

Yes Steam has sales, but they are limited time only sales. Guess what? Amazon, Gamestop, etc all do that too. If you shop sales, and if you buy older titles, you can have games cheaper. You want the newest titles around release? You are paying $50-60, regardless of platform.

Don't get me wrong, I love Steam, I'm a PC-only gamer, I have 200 games in my Steam library. However don't kid yourself in to thinking you spend more getting a Steam machine and the save money on all games. No such luck.

In fact, I'd hazard a guess that on the old generation consoles, you could spend even less if you stuck strictly to older games, because used is an option. Like again take Crysis 2. If you buy on Steam, you pay Steam's price, period. $30 right now, and even assuming a big 75% sale $7.50. Right now Amazon has used copies for sale for $5 for the 360. There are never any used Steam games, since you cannot resell them.

So sorry, but for most consumers it isn't going to equal some amazing cost savings, unless Valve drops their prices a lot. They can't do that though, because they let publishers set the prices and the big publishers require agency pricing anyhow.

Comment Pretty much (Score 1) 296

Yes, MS may eventually go out of business, or discontinue Windows. They also might eventually change the way it works so substantially as to break things. However, it is a pretty unlikely scenario, they have pretty good history and a good definition of their support lifecycle.

Nothing in the universe is certain, of course, but neither would be something like Steam Box. Being Linux based doesn't mean anything. I mean, suppose all of a sudden Intel, AMD, and nVidia got together and decided to totally change everything. New ISA, no more DirectX or OpenGL, etc, etc. Everything would need to be reported, redeveloped, and it would be a massive problem.

Now that is exceedingly unlikely to happen, but just another example that you can't have some solution that is perfect, forever, and will never go away no matter what.

Hell look at the console market. You can't rely on shit there, yet it still seems to do well. You don't know if a new console will come out, if it does when, when it does if it'll be backwards compatible, etc, etc.

This idea that a Steam Box is needed for some kind of stability is silly. The parent has it right: It is an ego thing, and a thing to try and protect Steam. Valve loves Steam because it means they can fuck around and do as they please, no worries about money because it rolls in for very little effort. However if people started using the Windows Store to get their software instead (not likely, Microsoft is making a big hash of it) then Steam's market could dry up and that would suck for Valve.

Comment Of course steamboxes are more expensive (Score 1) 110

The hardware makers have to make money on it.

Traditional game consoles are subsidized. When they launch they are sold for a very thin profit at most, and generally are sold for a loss (sometimes a fair sized one). The money is then made up on games (each game sold pays a license fee to the console maker).

That's not the case with Steam boxes. Valve isn't subsidizing it, they aren't even participating the the building. They are having others do it. Well Dell doesn't mind, they are open to sell PC hardware anywhere they can. But they require a profit on it. They aren't going to take a loss, because the only money they'll see from it is the up front sale.

Also, something that does help the consoles price wise this generation is the AMD chip. Their GPU and CPU is one unit. That costs less than two separate units. Also AMD is giving the makers a very deep discount to win the contract.

Hence, it is gonna be more expensive. That is one of the major problems a Steam box will have: It'll cost more than a console of roughly equal performance.

Comment Re:Holy crap (Score 0) 365

Lileth? The PDP-11 was a hardware Fortran machine, and C was its assember! What does that have to do with the price of fish?

Realistically, if these guys ide of the relative complexity of logic makes them think that Add is 3 gates (per bit), but divide is 6, then they should not even be designing softwatre.

Hint: divide can be implemented in a wide variety of gates, but for words longer than abuot 2 bits, there is likely to be an enormous difference in speed (like 10^6) between implementations using 6 gates and ones using 10B^2 gates (where B is width of operands in bits).

(A real expert will havev a more accurate figure).

I once implemented a divide in hardware (FPGA) by using look up tables to find the logs of the numbers, subtracting them, and looking up the antilog (it had to be fast),

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