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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 10 declined, 2 accepted (12 total, 16.67% accepted)

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Submission + - The Insidious Creep of Latency Hell (skytopia.com)

Twinbee writes: "Gamers often find 'input lag' annoying, but over the years, delay has crept into many other gadgets with equally painful results. Something as simple as mobile communication or changing TV channel can suffer. Software too is far from innocent (Java or Visual Studio 2010 anyone?), and even the desktop itself is riddled with 'invisible' latencies which can frustrate users (take the new Launcher bar in Ubuntu 11 for example). More worryingly, Bufferbloat is a problem that plagues the internet, but has only recently hit the news.

Half of the problem is that it's often difficult to pin down unless you look out for it. As Mick West pointed out: "Players, and sometimes even designers, cannot always put into words what they feel is wrong with a particular game's controls.....Or they might not be able to tell you anything, and simply say the game sucked, without really understanding why it sucked.""


Submission + - Top 20 Apps for an Infinitely Fast Computer (skytopia.com) 5

Twinbee writes: "What would you do if you had access to an infinitely fast computer with infinite memory and zero latency? The question has rarely been asked before, but the implications could prove interesting. Some of the applications include more obvious things such as weather prediction, and games featuring incredible path-traced graphics with worlds made from molecules. But more subtle ideas explore what a programming language may look like, how graphics creation may fundamentally change, and the chance to use sheer brute force to find a Grand Unified Theory for the universe."

Submission + - Renoise 2.1 Goes Gold (musicradar.com)

Twinbee writes: "The music DAW — Renoise 2.0 (and more recently 2.1) has been released for Mac, Linux and Windows. For those not familar with the 'tracker' style of music editing, many would say it's a welcome change from programs such as Logic, Cubase or Reason due to the sheer speed of editing and navigating notes, which are fed into a compact and information-rich spreadsheet-like structure. Although the learning curve may be a little steeper at first than the aforementioned (keyboard shortcuts are king), trackers have come a long since the early days of Protracker, OctaMED, FastTracker et al.

Essentially, it's suitable for create anything from classical to electronic, to jazz. Standard features include full VST/LADSPA/AU support, PDC, multi-core load balancing, rock-solid GUI, envelope automation, MIDI i/o, and a decent community/forum. The latest 2.1 version offers ReWire / Jack Transport support, and pattern 'scheduling' to allow for live performance mixes."


Submission + - Existence of Real 3D Mandelbrot? (skytopia.com)

Twinbee writes: "Could there ever exist a true 3D analogue of the Mandelbrot which isn't just an extruded mountain, lathed rotation or Quaternion cross section? If such an object did exist, it could look indescribably beautiful. This site goes in search of the mythical beast, and gives us hope that we may even find it one day. There's also a nice 'cream of the crop' collection of 3D fractal pics on display at the end (from many artists) which are well worth a look."

Submission + - MP3 Player Comparison - Winamp vs iTunes vs WMP (skytopia.com)

Twinbee writes: "Skytopia recently featured a comparison of four of the most popular music organizers for Windows, including Winamp v5.51, iTunes v7.6, Windows Media Player v11.05, and MediaMonkey v3.01. The review focuses on "basic operation, including file types, searching features, tagging, and the speed of the program", and goes into quite some depth over the five pages.

Winamp turned out to be the winner, but only just. According to the writer, all of the players may be close enough to warrant sticking with for now, especially if you're used to their way of working."


Submission + - Greatest Widget Toolkit for C/C++

Twinbee writes: "I'm a C/C++ programmer looking to expand into the world of the GUI. The ideal widget toolkit should be cross-platform, but adhere to the native widgets where possible. It should also be simple to use with the shortest code possible, yet flexible and mature to suit large-scale projects. Finally, the applications should all run like greased lightning and have decent WYSIWYG GUI editors if possible.

After a cursory look, it would seem there are so many; wxWidgets, Ultimate++, JUCE, GTK, QT, V, Fox, Lgi, WTL, ZooLib, and SmartWin. After experiencing some of the horrors with the Win32 API, which of these are worth trying out?"

Submission + - Aerogel Hailed As New Wonder Material (timesonline.co.uk) 1

Twinbee writes: "The amazing properties of the space-age material aerogel have been known for some time, but only now is it beginning to be manufactured for widespread use. Highlights of the news article include resistance from a blowtorch at more than 1,300C, and how "6mm of aerogel was left almost unscathed by a direct dynamite blast". Perhaps the most obvious use for the 'super-sponge' like material is for insulation, whether we're talking about mountain boots, house insulation, or any winter wear.

Quote: "However, it has failed to convince the fashion world. Hugo Boss created a line of winter jackets out of the material but had to withdraw them after complaints that they were too hot.""


Submission + - Record Cost/watt for Solar Panels

Twinbee writes: "We've just had a Slashdot story which reports the efficiency of solar panels has increased yet again, this time from 40.7 to 42.8%. However, what's surely more important is the price per watt statistic. It's the benchmark which more than anything else, will help propel us into a cleaner energy age.

So, Slashdot readers, what is the current record? From a quick Google, I find a few results to get us started: $26.60 per watt (Maplins). $4.40 per watt (the-green-company) $4.16 per watt (GE Energy GEPV-173 Solar Panels)

I have zero affiliation with the above companies, and no, I have no idea why Maplins panels are so expensive.

Can anyone find anything better $4.16 per watt?"
Classic Games (Games)

Submission + - Best 2+ Player Games?

Twinbee writes: "I was wondering what you lot would consider the best 2+ player games of all time. Apart from games for mixed skill players, this has never been asked on Slashdot before, so it would be interesting to see. From my own experience and research, it looks as though a top 50 would include games such as Streetfighter 2, World of Warcraft, Speedball 2, Super Mario Kart, SWIV, Ikaruga, Stunt Car Racer, Super Monkey Ball, Puzzle Fighter, and Mario Party. Whether they are competitive or cooperative, Slippery slope or Perpetual comeback, 2-player or multiplayer, retro or cutting edge, I want to hear them! I would prefer MMOG games not to be included, unless there is a good deal of interaction between the people in the 'same house' (e.g. perhaps they can team up and play against the world)."

Submission + - Top 50 Fantasy Technologies

Twinbee writes: "Well 57 to be precise. Ever wondered how far off we are to creating a working flying skateboard, disintegrator disc, or anti-sleep pill? Mysteria Onera from Skytopia.com is a rather strange, but entertaining article that sets out to discover how useful these gizmos would be, the closest we've got so far, and a prediction date for when (or if) we can expect it to appear. As always with these kind of things, it's not going to be 100% accurate, but it's an interesting and humorous look at some of the weirder technologies out there."

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