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Comment 8 Year Veteran (Score 1) 189

I've worked in the games industry at an independent company for 8 years (all at the same company).

Before that I worked at a startup on EJB apps (and many other odd jobs), and before that I worked at a small company writing and debugging embedded systems software and hardware. All the jobs had their benefits and drawbacks, but if you can find a good game developer to work for (as I feel I have) it's well worth it. Our games have been relatively successful, and profit sharing from those games has resulted in my average compensation to be almost double my salary. I've definitely worked long hours during my time, but when you're working on something you and others around you believe in (as has almost always been the case) it has a completely different feel than the 12-hours-a-day-7-days-a-week periods I was forced to work in my previous job.

The problems are hard, and solving them is fun. The people are incredibly smart, and they're the kind of people I'd want to hang out with outside of work.

You might get paid less than working at a consulting firm, but in my experience the atmosphere and problem space is much more interesting.

Comment Sounds great, terrible example. (Score 2) 153

I look forward to the days when cars can effectively communicate.

The example of the Mack truck being notified as it was entering the intersection sounds like a convoluted way to pitch the idea as a lifesaving system.

Has this system been in place at the time it seems more likely the truck driver would have seen the alert at precisely the same instant the truck contacted the school bus.

Comment Re:"Very expensive"? (Score 1) 127

Putting out an album with record label backing is 100% analogous to starting a company with VC funding.

Close, but from what I understand it's actually worse than VC funding.

With record deals, book deals, and videogame deals you actually pay your debt (advances) out of your cut instead of off the top. That means if you get a 25% cut and owe $100,000 you won't see a dollar until the gross surpasses $400,000.

Comment Re:Including retail games? (Score 4, Informative) 303

The answer to your rhetorical question is "because EA gives you a cut of the sales".

Just look at Valve's current efforts with "Steam Workshop", where the community is allowed to build items for their more popular titles.

They recently disclosed that at least one of the people who contributes content has already made over $500,000 from sales of their items.

Comment Re:Oddly enough the solution is a new law (Score 1) 620

To be clear, I share your sentiment, and feel police should be discouraged from interfering with someone recording them in a public place.

I'm not sure how I could craft a law that satisfied the spirit of that without creating weird loopholes.
Would I be able to shield myself from arrest or interference when doing something else simply by whipping out a video camera?

I also agree that destroying the video should be akin to destroying evidence, but how do you prove that it happened? Do all devices record the fact that they're recording? What's to prevent me from pretending to film and then claiming the police destroyed the video?

Comment Re:Another Kickstarter Slashvertisement? (Score 1) 122

Seriously, do we need a Slashdot story about every piece of Kickstarter vaporware that meets its funding goal?

How can it be vaporware if they've already built and distributed fully-operational prototypes to several individuals/companies?

Carmack's been tweeting about specs and improvements he's been making for months now.

Comment Re:At some point poking the beast will not be wise (Score 2) 226

I've watched that talk before, and while the message is interesting, she casually (and frequently) glosses over the fact that her industry is literally about putting the clothes on people's backs. It should be surprising to no one in the audience that people buy food and clothing more than CDs and DVDs.

If I recall correctly she even talks about how their industry requested and was /denied/ copyright on the ground that clothing /was too important a commodity/ to be regulated as such. It's not that they're a group of "fashion should be free" folk, it's that they're not allowed to stifle a basic good needed for human survival.

I'll emphasize again that the talk has a lot of interesting points about innovation and reuse of ideas, but implying that leisure and luxury industries can adopt similar strategies and see similar results seems specious.

Comment Re:Magicians = authority figures on deception (Score 1) 175

Being a magician and a skeptic often go hand-in-hand, Houdini was well-famed as both. One of his main focuses was people purporting to talk to the spirit world. I believe he even went so far as offer a personal reward for someone who could show proof of someone communicating with the dead.

Comment Re:So they maintain that App is short for "Apple"? (Score 4, Informative) 279

This strangely echoes the fight between MCA and Nintendo over the name "Donkey Kong".

MCA claimed that Donkey Kong infringed on their "King Kong" trademark, Nintendo won the battle when they showed that MCA had previously argued (and won) that King Kong and its characters were already in the public domain.

Comment Re:I'm surprised (Score 1) 95

The fact that games (which, lets face it, appear to rely on either a) horrible advertising or b) selling your details, because there's no other way they could make it so profitable)

Whoa, slow your roll there. I'm sure lots of apps make money on advertising, but it's unfair to say that their business model is based around violating user privacy.

The biggest games (Zynga games, especially) have proven that people are absolutely willing to engage in microtransactions in exchange for speed-ups and convenience.

Comment This is how the game industry works as well (Score 1) 495

and the book publishing industry too.

They advance you a sum of money, and then you pay them the money back using your 10-30% royalty from sales. They get to keep 90-70% starting at dollar 1, whereas the writer or developer doesn't see anything until their advance is repaid.

Such a shame.

Comment Re:Crap Flash Games (Score 1) 186

The terms of use are also very slimy

You waive your right to sue, to join others in a class action or other collective lawsuit, to filing an injunction,

IANAL but isn't it the case that courts never uphold the validity of those kinds of causes in contracts? You can still do all those things, you'll just be in breach of contract (a contract you probably don't care about if you're filing or joining a class-action lawsuit).

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