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Comment Re:Nope (Score 1) 182

I believe it's even worse. He's describing a Soviet gaming culture where "game plays you". Gaming micro-transactions are bad enough today, but this is a whole new level of enslavement where every aspect of my day is predicated on how it affects my game avatar.

I'm not too worried about this yet. We still have to hit the intermediate step where in the next Battlefield 1 update the Turkish army is sponsored by Doritos, the blimps are now Metlife and Goodyear, medics inject you with Mountain Dew and the tanks are plastered with sponsorship stickers.

Comment Re:Security that the USER cannot control. . . (Score 1) 194

I don't have the full story - there's aspects she can't share with me, but I gathered that the politics of switching that stuff to Oracle are more complicated than just the SOX issue... but SOX compliance was the nail in the coffin so to speak. And it was a departmental decision, not just her. I do know their projects involves the handling of employee data for tens of thousands of people in many countries, as well as customer data and their compliance department is rather large and scary.

Comment Re:Security that the USER cannot control. . . (Score 2) 194

> Not controlling your own security will make things like, oh, HIPAA and PCI compliance problematical.

Add Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Compliance to the list as well.

My wife just dealt with this at her Fortune 500 company. Microsoft will not disclose completely what the telemetry in SQL Server 2016 is phoning home. They have no choice with respect to compliance , and have made the decision to migrate their older reporting from SQL server (older versions) to Oracle.

She wishes she had a recording of their MS sales rep telling her team that it doesn't matter.

Comment Re:Time to sell my Apple stock... (Score 3, Interesting) 361

> But... but... you forgot to mention they're using previous-generation processors in their brand-new laptops! That takes courage!

Not really. The Kaby Lake equivalents of the Skylake CPUs they are using have not been released yet, so they are the current generation CPUs in those configurations.

Comment Reconstructing text - Already been done (Score 1) 57

I used a technique back in the early 1990s where anyone using internet relay chat would have their keystrokes appear on my end. It was also 100% accurate, no microphone needed, and able to capture hundreds -- no, thousands of users at a time. I could capture dozens of conversations lasting hours sorted into "channels". It was fun for a while, I really should get back into it.

</sarcasm>

Submission + - How Elizabeth Holmes's House of Cards Came Tumbling Down (vanityfair.com)

alternative_right writes: Holmes had indeed mastered the Silicon Valley game. Revered venture capitalists, such as Tim Draper and Steve Jurvetson, invested in her; Marc Andreessen called her the next Steve Jobs. She was plastered on the covers of magazines, featured on TV shows, and offered keynote-speaker slots at tech conferences. (Holmes spoke at Vanity Fair’s 2015 New Establishment Summit less than two weeks before Carreyrou’s first story appeared in the Journal.) In some ways, the near-universal adoration of Holmes reflected her extraordinary comportment. In others, however, it reflected the Valley’s own narcissism. Finally, it seemed, there was a female innovator who was indeed able to personify the Valley’s vision of itself—someone who was endeavoring to make the world a better place.

Submission + - Hacker takes down CEO wire transfer scammers, sends their Win 10 creds to the co (theregister.co.uk)

mask.of.sanity writes: A penetration tester is hacking business email scammers compromising their Microsoft accounts and sending the criminal's information to police. The scammers, or whalers, are responsible for causing billions of dollars of damage by tricking business into wiring funds to bank accounts.

Submission + - Google Extends FASTER Undersea Cable Network To Taiwan

An anonymous reader writes: Google has extended the reach of its undersea cable network in Asia, laying a 26Tbps connection between Japan and Taiwan, which currently houses the tech giant’s largest data center in the region. Google confirmed that it had added the new FASTER cable to boost its speed of service in the area, as well as providing greater reliability and consistency for Taiwanese customers. The high-speed cable has been laid outside of earthquake and tsunami zones, in an attempt to better protect the infrastructure from network outages caused by natural disasters.

Comment Re:I don't understand. (Score 1) 277

Also, it wasn't until the early 60s that the earliest photocopiers appeared, courtesy of Haloid Xerox corporation, and a good decade after that before most people could usually get access to them for personal use.

That brought about a change in thinking. Prior, unless a print shop was going to get involved, you only really thought about making copies at the time of creation - via carbon paper, or mimeographs. People weren't used to the idea of creating copies of something after the fact.

The writing habits of authors and people like Roddenberry were already well developed. Today we think nothing of 'backing things up', but at the time it must have been a strange idea to them.

Comment Re:Given a choice in the 70's (Score 1) 277

Ahhh. David H Ahl's 101 BASIC games - those were written on a mainframe I believe, and required a little bit (not much usually) of work just to translate to the BASIC dialects found on the common machines of the time (Commodore PET, Apple ][, TRS-80, Atari). The Atari BASIC was the hardest of the bunch because it's string handling differed the most (not being based on the Dartmouth/Microsoft BASIC interpreters of the time)

For real fun, I remember at about age 14, taking a commercial game- Starbase Hyperion - that was written in Atari BASIC, but had a few 'anti-hack' measures, and undoing them to make it readable when listed (like coming up with meaningful names for all the variables - they were in a table that had been replaced with control characters).

Comment Re:Nothing unusual about CP/M (Score 2) 277

As I recall, it was common for the CPU in machines of that era to interact heavily with the Floppy Controller during the I/O process: listening for the sync hole (a real hole in the floppy), driving the stepper motor, transferring bytes, intra-sector timings, stop/start bits, etc. All of which could be further impacted by the system clocks and even the memory wait states used in that particular machine.

There were many early "homebuilt" CP/M machine from sources like HeathKit, Northstar, etc, so there could have been quite a few variants in terms of the actual magnetic data on the disk.

For some real fun, look up how the CompuColor II (circa 1979) controlled it's floppy disks -- it used a serial IO chip in developer/debug mode to save on having a dedicated floppy controller chip.

Comment Let me translate this for you... (Score 3, Interesting) 30

As someone who has made games for over 20 years, including mobile, and was responsible for a game in Steam's top 100 played over 10 years after it's initial release... let me translate this press release for you...

"We want a revenue stream sustained for 10 years without us having to constantly develop new games and enter into the lottery that is mobile games today.... ... We also want it to never rain during the daytime, or when we are out and about."

Having worked on some hugely popular titles let me just say that I've learned that despite all you do, you don't control your audience. You're in the entertainment business, no matter how good an entertainment product you have, and no matter how much marketing you are doing, you are not making something that is truly necessary in your customer's lives.

So if your players get bored, don't have as much time to spare, popular fads change, new fads sweep the popular conscience, technologies or platforms change, they don't have the money to spare, they want something new and more novel, or whatever... then life moves on and so do your players.

The idea suggested by the headline - that a game's life cycle will be longer just because a developer deems it should be, is ludicrous.

Digging into the press release, though, that's not what they are saying. They are saying they will design their games, technically and gameplay, with a long lifespan in mind. That means growing and evolving content - new levels, new content, new stories, etc. Ongoing active development, much like a long running TV show - never completely wrapping things up and always leaving the door open for what comes next.

Doing that means keeping a development team active for the duration.. which in reality is going to be for as long the game sustains a certain revenue level. If not, the game goes into "sunset" mode. Lots of mobile games are already doing this entire strategy.

Heck, I worked on an iOS game doing just that 3 years ago. It requires that your game develop a large enough *paying* player base early on, and that you sustain their interest enough to keep the IAPs coming, and do it on a regular and consistent enough basis. The whole whale vs non-payer thing comes into play, as well as newer, shinier competition. That means they will pull out all the (Skinner boxes, social groups/teams, etc) stops to keep players hooked and interested.

Great if you can do it, but there is no magic formula or guarantee that you will succeed, or for as long as you want to.

Submission + - Would Bernie Sanders gut NASA spending if he became president? Probably (examiner.com)

MarkWhittington writes: With Sen. Bernie Sanders, the independent socialist from Vermont, packing in huge crowds during his early August west coast swing, the idea that he might have a shot at the Democratic nomination has gone from the realm of fantasy to that of distinct possibility. This fact is especially true since the presumptive Democratic nominee, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, continues to slip in the polls and faces numerous ethical and legal woes.

Sanders’ surge means that interest is merited about his views on particular issues. One case in point is his attitude toward the space program and NASA spending. The answer is not very encouraging for those people who value space exploration.

Submission + - When Will Your Hard Drive Fail? (itworld.com)

jfruh writes: Tech writer Andy Patrizio suffered his most catastrophic hard drive failure in 25 years of computing recently, which prompted him to delve into the questions of which hard drives fail and when. One intriguing theory behind some failure rates involve a crisis in the industry that arose from the massive 2011 floods in Thailand, home to the global hard drive industry.

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