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Comment Re:Unintended consequences? (Score 1) 76

Currently you have to sign up for ContentID manually anyway. They don't give it to everyone by default. You have to show that you're hosting all original content.

I'm for this change as I spend a lot of time filing takedowns for people who re-up my videos, and it's only thanks to alert viewers who take the time to send me messages that I find out about them. I don't have time to do routine searches. I will likely be signing up for contentID fairly soon.

Comment Does anyone care? (Score 5, Insightful) 62

Do you think the average teenager or soccer mom who uses these features actually cares who invented what first? They are not reading these stories, they are not concerned with abstract hand-wringing. They just care if the platform they use does that cute little trick where they can overlay a cat nose on their face in realtime. Facebook knows this. They are appropriately more concerned with their bottom line than with the opinion of tech journalists. I just don't see the point. Competitors in every industry copy each other and try to one-up each other. that's the whole point. If you feel you are losing ground to X competitor because they rolled out Y new feature, you're going to also roll out Y new feature and hopefully add Z innovation on top of it, and X competitor may copy Z new innovation back in return. Why single out the feature arms race of social media?

Comment A deeper look at the CRT 'look' (Score 4, Interesting) 184

Putting on my old school broadcast engineering hat for a second. There are a lot of differences between CRTs and LCD displays, and in terms of nostalgia and authenticity towards 'the way it was' yes there will be something lost. For starters, CRT tubes were driven with an interlaced signal - the gun would scan top to bottom every other pixel row in 1/60th of a second, then scan the rows between those bottom to top in the next 1/60th of a second. Each set of half resolution rows is called a field. NTSC television ran at 60 fields per second, which gave the motion equivalent of 60 frames per second. A lot of these video games ran using only one field, for a vertical resolution of about 240 lines, at 30 fields per second. In between those lines were black lines, which gave the games a unique look. Rather than doubling each line, which makes the graphics look blocky, the black lines tricked the eyes into making it look like it was a higher resolution than it actually was, it gave a pleasing look. On some emulators such as MAME, there is an option to add the black lines in, which approximates the look. for the games that ran the full 60 fields, it also had a unique look as you could make out interlace flickering. Another artifact is the slight glow / spillover from each pixel, and the rather large visible discreet R, G and B dots that make up each pixel area, which also had some black between them. Add to that the curvature of the glass, and the frequent misalignment of the RGB pattern giving a chromatic abberation towards the edges of the signal. (when the R, G and B lines diverge) plus the softness of the analog signal overall, and you have a pretty unique look. In truth, emulators display games far crisper than they ever looked to us. This tends to over-emphasizes the simplicity of the graphics in a negative fashion. It's very possible to get close to the CRT look, but it will never be quite the same. I think that increased computing power will allow for the emulation of all of the artifacts listed above in realtime, it's just a matter of someone understanding them enough to emulate them. you could even dictate a level of screen burn for the attract screens, which most games tended to develop after a number of years cycling endlessly.

In the mean time, get thee to an arcade expo such as California Extreme to experience it 'as it was'.

Comment Clarification needed on the use of DA users work (Score 1) 63

I think they need to clarify immediately what they mean by that, whether it's art that users have explicitly open sourced for stock use (a common thing there, artists allowing other artists to use their work as input material for photomanipulations) or if they are insinuating that everything is up for grabs, which would be a violation of everyone's copyright. I suspect it is the former, but they need to clarify to avoid a panic among the DA userbase.

The stuff I have on there is copyrighted and specifically not allowed for stock use without permission. Allowing Wix users to use the work on their own sites does not seem to be a valid extension of the permission given to DA to use the artwork on its own pages and promotions.

Comment Apples and oranges (Score 1) 220

You're talking about two entirely different things. One is a dedicated music service where users listen to music exclusively for hours on end. Another is a video service where people might occasionally go listen to a song, amongst the other videos they might watch that do not contain third party copyrighted music content. So comparing the amount per user is a bit like apples and oranges.

This should be straightforward...number of views on licensed content times amount per view, maybe on a sliding scale or something if that's how it was negotiated. Adjustment for percentage of the song they listened to or was used in the video, if desired.

Comment It's missing the full picture (Score 3, Interesting) 199

Currently it is incredibly energy intensive to separate hydrogen from oxygen. What power plant is powering the separator? If it's anything but nuclear, hydro, solar or wind, then it's powered by whatever fossil fuel is doing the separation, and at a much lower efficiency than simply putting diesel fuel into a diesel-electric or directly powering an electric train by overhead catenary. In the end you're just centralizing the pollution.

If the separator is run by a non-fossil fuel source, then more power to them.

Comment Depends on the scope (Score 1) 305

if it is directed only at street level storefront space on University Ave (downtown) and surrounding areas, that's fine. If including the office space around downtown - that's dumb.

Palo Alto has done many dumber things, such as declaring itself a "Nuclear Free Zone". No nucleii allowed!

The zero growth advocacy and climate is similar to Santa Cruz. Their housing crisis is their own creation. The classic hippies vs. techies war.

People who have lived in Palo Alto for a very long time are understandably pissed that it isn't the town they moved into 40 years ago. I remember it before the first tech boom. University Avenue was mainly a place for Stanford Students to unwind at the local restaurants and sushi joints. Some nice independent bookstores and the Varsity Theater. It was a cleaned up but not super busy downtown.

Comment QuickBase is awesome... (Score 2) 163

...but the price is not. They have no serious competitors as far as I can tell, the market is screaming for competition. If you need to build a network-accessible database driven application that runs in a browser, it's really, really slick.

I was involved with a project to build a type of customer database using QuckBase - it would track and follow a customer's project all the way to completion, and multiple people with different roles could interact with it in various ways. Imagine Filemaker Pro or MS Access on steroids and network enabled.

To earn our business, QBase reps basically built the bones of the program in realtime as we chatted on the phone and watched via webex, for free and gave us a month to play with it at no cost. After that it was around $300 per month, so out of range of individuals but fine for businesses that can justify it with revenue.

I think there is a huge future for this market that's waiting to be tapped further. Right now it's a bit of a monopoly.

Comment I'd like to see... (Score 1) 148

"Dr." Nick Begich attend the open house, and for someone to be rolling video on him. He is singularly responsible for the conspiracy theories via his book "Real Angels Don't Play This HAARP".

Not that, as most people here say, it would change any minds. They merely move the goal posts or say that everything really worthwhile has been hidden from view during the open house, or misrepresented. Conspiracy theorists don't want to learn, they just want to be right.

Comment Re:I stopped Win 7 updates long ago (Score 1) 275

I also stopped after the first few Win 7 service packs - everything's running great. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. They got all the major stuff ironed out early. I have not had a crash or a problem in many years.

This is fine for a home user who runs with noscript and adblock plus and is very careful in general with security. I wouldn't try to force that paradigm on my family or anyone not a serious computer enthusiast, however.

Comment Mostly junk... (Score 3, Informative) 83

I played with and also searched for various titles. Mostly it is endless demo scene disks, demo versions of games and many of them don't work properly. The ones that do load play sound erratically, the emulator timing ramps up and down like a record with variable speed playback.

There were some really amazing games on the Amiga, and you're not going to get the sense of what it was like here. No Psygnosis games, and I couldn't get even the Turrican Demo to work properly. Plus no options that I can see for scanline emulation, the line doubling looks pretty bad and doesn't present what it actually looked like on a CRT monitor.

The fascinating thing which is hard to realize now is that when games like "Shadow of the Beast" came out in 1986, the PC / DOS crowd was still largely on 16 color CGA with no sound beyond beeps and clicks unless you bought an expensive add on sound card like a Turtle beach. The Macintosh was just discovering color. We were enjoying arcade quality graphics and sound as far back as the Amiga 1,000 thanks to a set of discreet graphics and sound chips. (Paula, Agnes, Denise etc.) It was heady times and a great time to be an Amiga user, from the mid-80s till the early 90s.

Comment Shouldn't a good ad-blocker be undetectable? (Score 2) 534

A good ad-blocker should let the page think it is being rendered exactly as requested, but actually removing the display of the ads to the user.

What manner of Javascript trickery or feedback loops do large site owners use to try to get around that?

It seems like the paradigm needs to be a sort of sandbox for the page and its anti-adblocker scripting, and then the page is delivered to the user sans ads completely unknowingly to the page.

I guess the one thing Facebook could do to make it very hard to remove the ads is to make them look exactly like a user post. you would need a sort of fingerprinting as another poster mentioned to get around it.

Comment IMDB etc. (Score 1) 136

Aahh. and look how fast that page loads, devoid of all the needless crap we pile on now.

I don't have a grey beard (it wasn't THAT long ago and I was young) but I do remember downloading the entire IMDB as a file and parsing it with a reader. They would post periodic updates.

I was also the designer of the original set of icon buttons for web version of IMDB, which were made on my Amiga. Good times.


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