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Comment Re:well that was new... (Score 2) 75

UO very much resembled a MUD. It was also a pretty awesome game until EA took it over and turned it into a WOW-style gear grind and started screwing with the skill balance. It was really the last MMO I've run across where player-crafted gear was the best gear in the game. Even in Eve Online, the best modules drop from rare spawns in low-security space, and although players can now research Tech 2 blueprints, the cartels that control the never-ending ones that were given out in the first couple years of the game have such a price advantage that crafting isn't all that satisfying in the game. At least not to me.

I used to make pretty decent coin in UO selling scrolls, spellbooks and location runes. That and making portals for people. The introduction of the later crap -- PvE-only areas, item insurance that would allow you to bind your best items to you and gear that would affect your stats, all made the game significantly less fun. Not to mention the constant tinkering that was required to try to keep the game balanced in the face of all these changes, so that all the players wouldn't quit in droves. Which they pretty much did anyway.

Comment Re:I can't believe this was modded up. (Score 1) 144

1) Encrypt it with the recipient's public key. You know, exactly how encryption always works. If you're writing a client with encryption support, it wouldn't be that hard to hold the public keys on the server and note when they change. Hell, you could just make a space for it on a contact's list. For someone expecting a man in the middle attack, making other arrangements to get a public key ought not to be difficult. The client would just have to copy his private key to all the devices he expects to use the encryption on.

2) I would fucking love for spammers to have to encrypt each message to each person on the list they're trying to send to. You want a spam filter, set your filter to reject unencrypted mail. Boom. Done. Even if they can automate the process, the additional computing and time requirement of encrypting each message to each person's key would substantially raise the cost of sending spam and lower the number of people a spammer could hit in a specific period of time. Since the encryption would (have to) happen the client machine, sending a substantial number of messages would require far more horsepower than just blasting a mail off to a list would.

Comment After Decades of Wondering What's Wrong (Score 4, Insightful) 391

After decades of wondering what's wrong with programming, did you ever stop to think that perhaps the problem... is you? If you don't like programming, why do you do it? I'm a programmer too, and I love it. I love making a thing and turning it on and watching it work as I designed it to. While other programmers wring their hands and wish they had a solution to a problem, I'll just fucking write the solution. I don't understand why they don't. They know the machine can perform the task they need and they know how to make the machine do things, but it never seems to occur to them to put those two things together. And I never, not even ONCE, asked why a playing card representation can't just look like a playing card. This despite having written a couple of playing card libraries.

This guy seems to want an objects actions to be more apparent just from looking at the object, but he chose two rather bad examples. His math formula is as likely to look like gobbledygook to a non-math person as the program is. And the playing card has a fundamental set of rules associated with it that you still have to learn. You look at an ace of spades and you know that's an ace of spades, you know how it ranks in a poker hand, that it can normally be high or low (11 or 1) in blackjack or in a poker hand. But none of these things are obvious by looking at the card. If a person who'd never played cards before looked at it, he wouldn't know anything about it, either.

Comment That's Nice (Score 3, Interesting) 144

How about they build an encryption API right into their service? Encrypt the message locally before it ever goes to the network. Oh, they don't want to do that. I see. So Microsoft promises to not read your mail, while retaining the ability to easily do so whenever it's convenient for them. That makes me feel so much better.

Comment That's Odd (Score 4, Interesting) 455

I'm not a huge Walmart fan, but I'm a bit surprised they don't just bring their own card to the market, then. They wouldn't even have to be terribly competitive, just anally rape you just a little less than the other credit card companies. The money they'd save on transaction fees in their own stores alone would probably more than cover the cost of the venture.

Comment Re:Linux kernel (Score 4, Insightful) 373

Ooh, I like this list! My usual MO is to (try to) write reusable libraries for most of my project and glue the library code together with a main program that does as little extra processing as possible on the library objects. If I'm writing a library, I like to add the extra criteria that it to be easy for a programmer to pick up and use. The actual library code can be absolutely hideous but if it gets the job done and the interface is easy to use I'm not going to complain about it.

I've been coding for the fun of it again in my spare time, and have a fair bit of code up on GitHub now. I've only been seriously using C++ for the last couple of years, and you can see a bit of a progression from my early code (fr_demo) to more recent code like the data library and resumetron. Stuff like cppxml which I use frequently gets updated more often than the old demo code.

I particularly like my factories. I have a relative going through a CS program right now and he's had some questions on a couple of his assignments and got a look at a piece of code with data readers provided by his professors. They always look like C code that was written 15 years ago. I know this because I also very recently was digging through some C code that was written 15 years ago. I like to think they're doing that on purpose, but they're not. So his introduction to design patterns could have been a nice clean data factory that requires three lines of code to write, but instead it's the singleton pattern, which every design review board on the planet will now reject immediately after the word leaves your mouth, whether it's actually justifiable or not.

One of these days real soon now I'm going to need to go back and replace all my std::string throws with std::logic_errors or other appropriate std::exception errors, and I'm kicking around the idea of building up a simple rest server around my old socket server code one of these days. That sounds like fun to me!

Comment Extremely Spicy (Score 1) 285

My go-to pepper of choice are those little thai "laser" peppers, preferably grown myself. Picked right off the plant they have a lot of flavor and weigh in somewhere between 30000 and 50000 IIRC. Anything much lower than that is below my pain threshold. Anyone notice the rise of what I like to call the "death jalepino"? Every so often you'll get a jalepino that's hotter than any habenero I've ever tried. I got one a while back while making chili and when I cut into it, I and a couple other people in the room started coughing uncontrollably. Most of the time, jalepinos taste like bell peppers to me, but these ones are different. I don't know if someone's selectively breeding the things for heat or what's going on there, but it's something to keep an eye out for (next time I get one I'm going to have to save the seeds and see if I can grow some plants.)

Comment With The Series In General (Score 1) 195

I find the prettier the graphics get, the less I seem to like their characters. If I hate the characters, I'm not going to get into the game enough to finish it. And I'm not going to drop $60 sight-unseen from a studio whose characters I typically hate. I've gotten to the point where I pretty much just ignore new game announcements from them, and that consider that to be an indicator of pretty bad health for the studio. They very much need to put some effort into making sure their games are actually fun and that people will give two shits about the characters in them. That's how you make an epic game, even with PS1 graphics.

Comment Yeah... (Score 2) 323

I've worked at companies where they used temp workers like Kleenix; blow your nose in it once and throw away. Their in-house software is noticeably harder to maintain and lower quality than the rest of the industry. And that's saying a lot since the rest of the industry is shit. No one there knows anything about the company, its business process or anything in-depth about the software. If all you care about is making shit products for people who don't know any better and who probably won't sue you very often if your shit products suck, I guess that's a decent business practice. At least until a company that takes the smallest amount of pride in its work comes along and runs you out of business.

Comment Because Justice Isn't About Revenge (Score 1) 914

Justice isn't about revenge and not even about punishment. Though I see how you could make that mistake in the police state you live in. It's about removing someone who's an ongoing threat to society until such time as they are no longer a threat to society. The fact that it's so often used for revenge and for enslaving entire generations of otherwise-peaceful drug users is an indication that your society is broken. Someone who would come up with an idea like this sounds just as evil as the people they envision punishing. Sure, let's take helpless people under our control and torture them for what seems like an eternity. That's brilliant.

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