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Submission + - SPAM: SNES Game Preservation Project Revived After Package Located

Xenographic writes: Byuu's SNES Game preservation project has been revived after social media attention led to the discovery of the $10,000 package of SNES games at an Atlanta, GA mail recovery center. As you may remember from Slashdot's previous coverage, byuu was working to preserve PAL format SNES games when 100 titles that were lent to him vanished in the mail. It turns out that the shipping label became separated from the package, causing it to fail to be delivered and only through special effort on the part of USPS were they able to locate the package and return it.
Link to Original Source

Comment Re:Huh? (Score 1) 208

I doubt it. In case you haven't heard, Volvo has already committed to doing this prior to any government regulations. It seemed likely that most were going to have to take this step anyhow to bolster consumer confidence. Plus, this just makes sense. If manufacturers aren't willing to accept liability for real-life accidents caused by their software, then that software obviously isn't ready for deployment on a mass scale.

Comment Re:Thanks. Mr. Obvious (Score 1) 208

At that point, with very few accidents *caused by* the self-driving vehicle, there won't be a financial incentive to shift the burden away from the manufacturer and onto the customer. The PR hit alone probably wouldn't be worth it.

Keep in mind that "acts of god" and other stuff for which the manufacturer can't be blamed is still going to require individual insurance.

Comment Re:Talk about a subset of a subset (Score 1) 54

I definitely agree that MS made some bad decisions that annoyed a lot of their customers, and that may have pushed a few of them away, but let's be honest here: we still haven't seen any significant shift away from Windows in the desktop numbers. Microsoft Windows still dominates at 96%, Mac is an also-ran, hanging in their at ~3% or so, and Linux trails at 1%, like it always has, with even that spread across several popular distros, and dozens of less popular ones.

For gaming, you're seeing more support for Mac and Linux because the major engines support those platforms, and so it makes sense to release for all platforms possible. That's definitely the good news. I think many game developers (including myself) would LIKE to see Linux doing better as a hedge against MS, so go out of their way to support it when feasible.

If you're waiting for MS to die, though, it's going to be a long wait. They've wisely started focusing on things like cloud services, Xbox, new high-end hardware, and so on, and of course, they still completely dominate in the business world (for PCs and productivity software). They've also got a lot of cash reserves. They're no longer the dominant player in the industry like before, but they're hardly becoming irrelevant.

TL;DR: Wake me when Linux on the desktop breaks 1%.

Submission + - AZ Bill Would Make Students in Grades 4-12 Participate Once In An Hour of Code

theodp writes: Christopher Silavong of Cronkite News reports: "A bill, introduced by [Arizona State] Sen. John Kavanagh, R-Fountain Hills, would mandate that public and charter schools provide one hour of coding instruction once between grades 4 to 12. Kavanagh said it’s critical for students to learn the language – even if it’s only one session – so they can better compete for jobs in today’s world. However, some legislators don’t believe a state mandate is the right approach. Senate Bill 1136 has passed the Senate, and it’s headed to the House of Representatives. Kavanagh said he was skeptical about coding and its role in the future. But he changed his mind after learning that major technology companies were having trouble finding domestic coders and talking with his son, who works at a tech company." According to the Bill, the instruction can "be offered by either a nationally recognized nonprofit organization [an accompanying Fact Sheet mentions tech-backed Code.org] that is devoted to expanding access to computer science or by an entity with expertise in providing instruction to pupils on interactive computer instruction that is aligned to the academic standards."

Comment Re:Talk about a subset of a subset (Score 1) 54

But the game industry, and Valve in particular, are in a difficult spot as Microsoft moves to force everyone to go through their app store.

No one except a few outspoken crazies in the game industry believe that's going to happen. Even APPLE hasn't shut down non-store apps. There are simply too many legacy apps that are critical to businesses and/or individuals for MS to kill the Win32 API, and that's what would essentially be required to force this on everyone. Windows' strength is its backwards compatibility and the size and robustness of its 3rd party ecosystem. Windows isn't open-source of course, but it IS still a very open development platform.

So, no. Will not happen anytime in the foreseeable future. There's plenty of other stupid shit that MS is doing with Windows (like you mentioned) without worrying about stuff like this.

Comment Re:Fake science/sloppy science (Score 1) 293

You have that wrong, I think. Sure, the Scientific Method is not about building a consensus, however, the Advancement of Science (as in expanding our understanding of the universe), has to be about consensus. Without consensus on what is true (or likely to be true), Science would perennially be stuck at what a single scientist could accomplish in one lifetime. At some point, you have to accept that other scientists have already researched and discovered things. At that point, the scientific consensus will help you find areas for your own research that haven't already been exhaustively studied.

Of course, there is nothing stopping someone for challenging the consensus on any scientific topic, but if you do want to challenge the consensus, then you better have a good alternate theory and the evidence to back it up.

Comment Re: s/drug trials/climate change/g (Score 3, Informative) 293

Record high temps, record low temps. record rain, record drought.

That's actually what you'd expect with a chaotic system built of multiple random variables. It would be unnatural for weather to always be the same.

Actually it's not. It's a simple fact that in a stable system, as time goes on, there are fewer and fewer "record" events because each new record needs to be more extreme than all previously recorded events. Over time, record-breaking events decline significantly. So, an increase in record events is, by itself, evidence that the system is undergoing change.

Comment Re:Mostly, send the snowflakes to Venezuela (Score 4, Insightful) 185

I heard a rather heated argument the other day at work. It was heated because the devs were up against a deadline, and the debate was (from what I gathered) whether to push a fix forward or not for the next release. Not once did I hear any rudeness toward other team members by those in the debate. Any swearing and most of the frustration was directed at the code and process, not other people.

More to the point, such a culture is set by the guys at the top. Our boss isn't the type to rant or yell at others, and in turn, everyone understands that such behavior doesn't belong at our company. Simple as that.

It's entirely possible to remain civil with fellow employees at all times, even when you're frustrated or tense. It's not exactly *necessary* for a company to behave that way to be successful, but all in all, I'm going to prefer working at a company in which people are expected to remain civil with each other.

Comment It doesn't like going through walls though (Score 1) 63

Or anything solid really. If you have line-of-sight it works pretty well but get anything in the way, and you can have serious issues. I tried it for wireless HDMI and it wasn't able to maintain a solid signal over about 25 feet because there was an interior wall in between the transmitter and receiver.

Comment Re:Umm (Score 1) 388

I think you're a purveyor of bullshit all around, but this one part I thought was worthy of further discussion:

Had a genuinely (non-insane, non-neocon) qualified Republican candidate run for president with a promise to enforce existing immigration laws, help create jobs for Americans first and foreigners second, and give priority to assisting Americans before outsiders, he would have won in a massive landslide reminiscent of Reagan's defeat of Mondale.

I think that scenario might actually be impossible. Republican primary voters were never going to allow a sane, sensible Republican candidate to run. Just look at the primaries, the reasonable people were among the first people eliminated. Of course, there a good chance that against a non-insane Republican candidate, Clinton might have actually won. In a large part, her loss can be tied to Trump's labelling her as "Crooked Hillary" and endless repeating that label. The negative campaigning had the desired result of depressing Democratic turnout. Furthermore, the problem is that Clinton's policies and a sane Republican's policies would have had limited differences, and Russia might have feared such a Republican candidate as much or more than Hillary, and their electoral sabotage could have been aimed at the both parties, or even just the Republicans. Frankly, I can name a single popular moderate Republican, I think (Jeb Bush?), because ideological purity tests seem to have either expelled the majority of them from candidacy or pushed them away from moderate positions to avoid challenges.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. If Obama had been a Republican President, he would have been the new Reagan. Republicans would be worshipping at his feet and praising his legacy, but because he had the wrong letter next to his name, most Republican voters despise him. So, with Obama representing so much of what the old Republican party would have stood for, and Obama being "irredeemably evil", the current Republican party keeps having to find newer, crazier issues to differentiate itself from it's mortal enemy.

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