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Comment Re:I don't mean to Troll (Score 4, Insightful) 227

In 2007, there were 15,500 reports of damage to fishing equipment caused by the creatures.

In other news: Last year several thousands of SUVs were damaged by children who, for some reasons, were not constrained by their parents to stay inside all the time and instead failed to stay at the proper speed to move smoothly with the traffic. Due to the excellent structural protection from the SUVs their drivers did not suffer major physical injuries.

Comment Re:format does not matter, it's about download lim (Score 4, Insightful) 206

You haven't provided any reason that this font format is different than what we already have, and you're completely ignoring the SVG format which is actually a fully open standard, and is already supported if you properly support SVGs.

The point you didn't get: It doesn't matter.

  • It does not matter if this could be done with existing technology.
  • It does not matter that it is basically OpenType in a new packaging.
  • It does not matter that it does provide close to no copy protection.
  • It does not matter that browsers could simply ignore it.
  • It does not matter that font licenses make the RIAA look like the EFF.

The ONLY thing that matters is that the foundries accept WOFF, because they have the content that everybody wants to license. And if they puke on SVG, TrueType or OpenType, it wouldn't matter if these were the best formats the world has ever seen. The "new format" is more a psychological definition than a technological one. Yes, one can find a million reasons why this is stupid, unnecessary, nothing new, but it doesn't matter.

And for the (old and boring) argument against font use on the web: There IS no good typography on the web, because it cannot work due to lack of good fonts. So using the current state as an argument why WOFF is unnecessary is kind of short sighed, when the current situation is bad due to the lack of an established font solution accepted by the industry, which is exactly what WOFF is trying to change.

If you want to argue that typography is bad, please use print as your target, because this is where typography is put to good use. I write this on a display at 160DPI, the iPhone also has about 160DBI and the Nokia tablets have 240DPI. In a few years every screen will be indistinguishable from paper, all operating systems will be resolution independent and 20 years of lousy font support at 72DPI will be a fading memory of the past. The future of web typography will be much longer than its current past, so judge it on what it can do (and does on paper today), not based on failed implementations.

Comment Re:format does not matter, it's about download lim (Score 2, Insightful) 206

I believe it when I see it. It is trivial to convert a WOFF font back to Truetype or CFF. And most WOFF fonts probably won't be subsetted, so the foundries are essentially allowing their licensees to put their complete fonts on the web downloadable for everyone.

From the page I linked to in my previous post: "For this reason FF Meta designer Erik Spiekermann, the FontFont Typeface Library – the world’s largest collection of original, contemporary typefaces –, and the FontShops endorse the WOFF specification, with default same-origin loading restrictions, as a Web font format. FontFont expects to license fonts for Web use in this format. ... We hope that besides the upcoming Mozilla Firefox 3.6 other browsers will join in implementing WOFF."

Compare it to watermarking in MP3: It does not protect against unauthorized copies, it can often be removed, so why would the music industry agree to something like that? Because it made copying a little bit harder, prosecution a little bit easier, while not pissing everybody of with some pain in the ass DRM scheme.

The foundries have a problem: they would love to make money on web typography, they are scared shitless because every web font technology out today is trivial to copy. You don't even have to copy it, just link from your CSS to a licensed font on another site, might even be legal.

On the other hand they watched other industries screwing it up by annoying their customers to hell and in the end driving a lot of potentially paying customers to discover ways to avoid being hassled by the industry. So they will not try to take invent another crazy DRM method just to get their asses kicked. WOFF might not be the solution they would like to see, but probably the best thing they can hope to realistically get, if they want to earn a dime from all those companies that would love to license fonts for the web to keep their CI consistent in all media.

Comment format does not matter, it's about download limits (Score 4, Informative) 206

The interesting part of WOFF is not that it is a new font format. Actually it is mostly a wrapper around the OpenType format from Microsoft and Adobe with some goodies. The important part is that WOFF restricts where the font can be linked to. While e.g. a truetype font can be referenced from anywhere with CSS, a WOFF font has to be stored on the same site as the web page/css.

This might seem minor to you, but due to this restriction some of the large font foundries like fontfont and linotype will license their professional fonts for web use for the first time (, probably because it would make prosecution of non licensed font use doable). This is actually big and will probably be an important step for typography on the web. I hope for the end of sFir, headlines as graphics and other bad ideas.

I think the format itself is not so much a technical and more a political achievement. It actually helps that it was derived from drafts from two typographers, not from some of the browser producers. The fact that it is a new format (so no copy problem baggage) and that it will provide some very light copy protection without having to implement DRM on the browser site probably helped getting the foundries on board. And you really need the foundries if you want typography to work, the current state of free fonts is just not good enough for most professional requirements.

Gecko, webkit and Opera already support OpenType, so adding the new format will be easy. Microsoft's IE supports crippled OpenType as eOT. The primary reason for crippling it was providing some light copy protection to get the foundries on board (which failed), so maybe even Microsoft will play along this time.

If this happens, we will not only see one font technology that is supported by all browsers for the first time, but will also be able to use thousands of professional fonts along with already usable free fonts to help browsers catch up with the increased readability and expressiveness print has had for hundreds of years due to the long time experience in typography.

First Person Shooters (Games)

Submission + - Why Americans adopt suicide bombing tactics

chriss writes: "Clive Thompson describes in his commentary at Wired how he, confronted with certain death due to superior opponents, automatically switched his tactics to an approach now well established all over the world: suicide bombing. Fortunately he only did this in Halo 3.
Nonetheless his analysis of why he started blowing up himself (and his opponents) when there was no more chance of winning and the scary parallels to the conditions terrorist find themselves in are rather revealing. In the end one cannot win against others who can invest more time/money/technology. But if losing is inevitable, making the opponent pay the highest possible price becomes the natural objective.
Of course this is a vast oversimplification of the motivations for terrorism, but in contrast to just trying to analyze he actually 'felt' it. Playing games might be a better way to understand fighting seemingly inferior enemies, especially for those who still believe that better technology guarantees winning. The other side doesn't necessarily have to win, they just have to make sure you lose too."

Videogames Fill Psychological Needs for Players 143

codegen writes "The CBC (among others) is reporting that researchers at the University of Rochester and Immersyve Inc. have released a study indicating that people enjoy video games because they satisfy a psychological need. The study showed that the interrelations between players in MMOGs were particularly important. From the article: 'Gamers said they felt the best about their experience when the games they played produced positive outcomes in scenarios related to the real world ... The researchers evaluated players' motivations in virtual worlds by asking four groups of people to play different games, including a genre known as massively multiplayer online (MMO) games, which some industry watchers regard as the future of video games.'"

Submission + - Germany backs out of EU Search Engine

An anonymous reader writes: The Guardian Limited is reporting that "senior officials in Germany's economics and technology ministry" have decided to dump Quaero, a search engine specifically made to counter ""Anglo-Saxon" cultural imperialism".

From the article: "Earlier this year Mr Chirac announced a series of ambitious technological projects designed to challenge the global dominance of the US. They included Quaero, a Franco-German search engine whose name is Latin for "I search", but which was swiftly dubbed "Ask Chirac". Today German officials confirmed they were abandoning the 400m (£270m) project."

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PL/I -- "the fatal disease" -- belongs more to the problem set than to the solution set. -- Edsger W. Dijkstra, SIGPLAN Notices, Volume 17, Number 5