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Comment That assumes they come visit only if they "want" (Score 1) 629

What about "need"? What if they NEED to come visit us for some reason? Either to satisfy their hyper-intellectual curiosity about what other life exists in the universe, or just to murder us and rape our natural resources a la Independence Day and every other Sci Fi movie about marauding alien cultures..?

Assuming that aliens will not visit us with those reasons is to assume that travelling the universe and meeting other cultures is justifiable only on a whim, a literal flight of fancy.. this is, in fact, the opening of Star Trek (to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilisations, to boldly go where no (man|one) has gone before..) but that doesn't mean to say that this is the only justification to do so and that if you were a hyper-brained hyper-culture that you just wouldn't give so much of a shit..

Comment Re:Tron 1.0 (Score 1) 412

There are only 15 minutes of actual computer generated effects in the whole thing: all in all, not a great deal at all. Grid bugs, light cycles, tanks, the mountains in the background when on the solar sailer, but otherwise, the vast majority of the original Tron was hand-animated, pretty much in every scene where there's a person in it as well as some scenery. It's all cleverly disguised matte painting, cel shading. The light cycle scene where they escape the game grid is mostly CG but every time it cuts to the view of the cockpit.. that's traditional animation. The setup of the bikes is traditional. The glowy lines on everything.

But that's besides the point anyway, I found it on watching it again last week (after watching it every 4 or 5 years or so out of sheer curiosity to see how well it matches my nostalgia of it from watching it on VHS when I was a kid, and in preparation for the new movie just so I could be even more giddy at the new shiny CG)

What I think was much better is how Jeff Bridges has decided that Flynn, after 20 years living in exile on the Grid and a decent amount of sitting on a pillow, has turned into The Dude. I dunno it just made the character so much more fucking interesting than the 80's jerk Flynn was in the original movie. At the same time though, not enough Alan Bradley/Tron even in flashbacks. Did they really spend that much money on Jeff's face but didn't bother with any other actor? His role ends up fairly pivotal and is a setup for a sequel but they didn't even bother making it much more than a cameo. The damn movie is *CALLED* Tron.

Comment Re:Uhh... what's wrong with Component? (Score 1) 221

oh so you just don't get to play your old HD-DVDs or watch DVDs in 1080p (not that they were anyway, right :) - does this affect GAMING at all? Not really in my assessment of the situation.

It still holds true that you need to manually configure your Xbox360 to display anything more than 480p (especially as a lot of cheap HDTVs don't do EDID properly over HDMI, so the Xbox decides it has no idea how to autoconfigure it) and I am betting most people don't delve into that 4-layers-down menu item, and when they GET the system for the first time and it does the setup wizard, they just go clickclickclick to get past it and run GAMES instead of dicking around.

Comment Uhh... what's wrong with Component? (Score 1) 221

Both consoles come with Component cables and the ability to output 1080i video on them, 720p at the very least.

The quality of the graphics from Component or HDMI is really not noticable for the vast majority of people - the REAL problem comes when you sit down and you have your HDTV with a lot of things connected, and your TV comes with 3 HDMI ports and only 1 set of Component inputs, which you may already be using for your DirecTV DVR..

The difference? Your XBox will default to 480p if it's using Component - perhaps even HDMI - and without knocking the settings up, games will play at the lower resolution. The statistics for Gears of War may be down to people just not changing their settings.

Comment Re:Reverse causation (Score 4, Insightful) 512

I don't agree.

"Realizing how the world runs" should not make you depressed. It's actually very easy to get through life with clinical depression without worrying about what George W. Bush did, about terrorists, about capitalism, about DRM and other things Slashdot readers get huffy about, because you're usually more often than not mired in some personal difficulty, not something about how the world "runs". This is from experience.

I must say the whole analytical breaking down things in to small chunks fits MY worldview. But I don't concern myself with bigger world issues; not that I don't care, but they just don't affect me. Part of dealing with depression is picking what to be depressed about. And if you're spending all your time having anxiety attacks and downward slumps and moody funks about what a politician is doing in another state, or who is suing who for patent rights, or the state of Somalia, you are going to have far more personal problems hit you in the ass later on than you can probably deal with adequately.

Comment Microsoft Bluetooth Mouse for Netbooks (Score 1) 569

I found this little gem at Best Buy (and got my girl to get me a discount ;) and it really is nice and comfortable, 6 buttons (left, right, wheel click, wheel scroll, and a button on the left near the thumb) - I use the thumb button to scroll through multiple tabs in Notepad++..

The precision on it is good enough for gaming and Bluetooth means standards compliant and goes everywhere (i.e. not any stupid "2.4GHz" custom protocol USB dongles or so floating around which you need to carry with you. The MS BMfN doesn't come with any transceiver, it assumes you already got one. I got a cheap $7 pico BT 2.1 adapter (the one where it's about 1/6th of an inch bigger than a USB connector) which works great with it.

Comment Use a real, reliable filesystem (Score 1) 289

Forget it. ext4 is still not stable even though they took the "dev" tag off. The filesystem is going to have problems upon problems upon problems for months and months and months and you're going to be looking at updating and patching kernels in perpetuity to keep up with those patches. The only thing they stabilized was featureset and on-disk format.

If you want the features of ext4 for production, you should already be running XFS. You can't get much better on Linux filesystems these days. By the time ext4 gets to be "production worthy" (by this I mean has spent a year in the tree and become the default on major Linux distributions meaning thousands of people have installed on it, found all the showstopper bugs and had it patched in distro downstreams at least), you can bet Btrfs will be out and "stable" anyway, and you'll be asking about whether THAT is ready for production.

Use XFS now. Wait 18 months for Btrfs, if it is indeed any better. If not, and still looking for a filesystem challenge today, work out a way you can use ZFS - which has its problems on Linux (especially that it needs to run through FUSE - not a performance issue so much as a technical nightmare to use it as your root filesystem that no distro actually would support because of moronic non-free policies).

Comment Re:I just call them Web Designers (Score 1) 586

True though. Just like getting into the IEEE and other engineering bodies, there's all that interning to do, working under another engineer for 5 years, being sponsored and then getting your accreditation as an actual Engineer and not just some guy who breezed through a Batchelor's degree.

Take an engineering degree (even in the USA) and this is one of the first things they talk to you about, and it gets revisited before final exams.

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