At Chernobyl they had to dive into the water to release a valve (suicide mission, obviously). As I recall the first team couldn't even find it, because ultra-intense alpha radiation had turned the water into H2O2 and it oxidized their suits, skin, and equipment too quickly.
- where do you get your insane information, do you just come up with it as you go alone?
While it would seem he might be wrong about the H2O2 this news clipping from 1986 mentions some divers
"3 Dove into Pool The three men in wet suits dove into a pool, probing with underwater searchlights for two small valves that would allow the pool to drain, Tass said. It quoted one of the men, Alexei Ananenko, as telling Soviet journalists: "When the searchlight beam fell on a pipe, we were joyous: The pipe led to the valves. We heard the rush of water out of the tank. And in a few more minutes we were being embraced by the guys.""
So the story is not that far fetched. No mention of what happned to the divers after though
One of the original reasons to have a patent system was to help ensure the spread of knowledge and know-how. By providing limited time legal protection to patent holders, they had an incentive to put their ideas out in the public domain. Once the patent expires the entire world is free to copy the design etc. In contrast if someone keeps their product/idea as a trade secret instead ( WD-40 and coke for example) no one gains the ability to make your product unless they can figure out how you did it.
That concept seems to work just fine until we get into software. I have not read the patent but I have a feeling that you could not recreate whatever Google did just from reading it. From the write up it sounds like a common sense concept. Basically they get legal protection but don't really have to show how they do it. My hope is that Google is being defensive with this and ensuring that no one else gets the patent and then licenses the tech for free and the betterment of mankind (which they could do). I'm not a huge Google fanboi and they confuse me some times by doing one thing that seems very progressive and then turning around and taking a hard business view on something else.
In general I like the concept of patents and IP but the implementation is so bad that we might just be better off without it. At the least, if you apply for a patent on a device the patent should be a manual on how to make it from scratch by someone with the required skills. That way once your patent expires the knowledge is truly free for anyone to pickup and expand/make cheaper/whatever the fuck they wanna do with it. I think that would be more in line with the original idea of why we have patents.
Except that the Wii supports starndard micro SD cards. The N64 not supporting standard memory was kind of a given considering how old it is. On the wii I can pop my SD card out and put in in another wii with no problem. I can put it in my computer and backup my saves if i want.
Now we get to you and your 200. Your mistake above was that we start with you at the beginning of your purchase cycle. You know about my game, you have 200 to spend... and you decide that my game is not worth spending it on to you. However, you still want to play it. (Since it's the "zero" that does strange things to lots of equation, let's say it's "worth a penny" that you dig up off the floor of your car.) You're now essentially walking up to me with the following theoretical conversation: "Hi. I want to play your game. How much?" "Hi. My price is $20." "Hmm. Nah, I don't want to pay that." "Okay. Have a nice day." "No, I'm going to play it anyway. I copied my friend's CD." "So when do I get my $20?" "I dunno, I don't care. I'll tell a couple buddies, maybe they will buy a copy. I'm going to go play now, bye."
The problem with that argument is that if I was never going to buy it its still not a lost sale (you were not getting my 20 regardless). The strength if that argument is that maybe if I did not have the option of downloading I would buy it. This is where I think the way digital goods are sold could change to make buying something i wanted more likely. As many people have pointed out (and something I know iv done) they download something to try it first. The problem with that is once you have it downloaded its easy to say "well ill buy the next one because I have something else I can spend that money on right now". I think part of the cause for this is because you cannot return software (games especially). If I buy a board game and it does not live up to my expectations I can return it. If I buy a shitty game (DNF is a prime example) i'm stuck with it. Most games don't release demos anymore and even if they do they only show the parts that are decent.
Gabe Newell pointed out recently that price does not make a huge difference for pirates and its more that its harder to buy stuff then it is to download it. While I don't agree with that completely it does have a lot of truth to it. There is a lot of risk related to buying a game, it might suck and im still going to be stuck with a shitty product that was not what was advertised. If you make a shitty physical product and everyone who buys it returns it your going out of business any make no money. If you make a shitty game and advertise the shit out of it your going to make money (you might not make another game but you will already have the cash you got from that first shitty game), and something is wrong with that system.
Little known fact about Middle Earth: The Hobbits had a very sophisticated computer network! It was a Tolkien Ring...