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Comment Re:Microtransaction = Cheating (Score 2, Insightful) 82

It devalues the work other people have put into their characters and therefore makes playing the game at all that much more pointless, thereby gradually spoiling the game.

It is similar to saying, I don't want to study for four years for a degree, so if I can bribe someone to give me a degree without the studying, why shouldn't I do it? Similar to steroid use. If I bust my ass off for a good body, it is inevitable that someone will accuse me of steroid abuse eventually, degrading the effort, making it pointless to bother at all.

Comment Re:Dude you're not listening (Score 2, Informative) 123

Carriers are nearly worthless against zerg, they can be plagued and ensnared, they can be scourged, and hydras can be dark swarmed making them invulnerable for a considerable amount of time. They are expensive investments and while you are producing them your ground forces stand a good chance of being overwhelmed.

Honestly you sound like I would have a year ago. I suggest you make an account on iccup, patch up your broodwar (or download a non legit copy on iccup), use their anti hack launcher and proceed to be humbled by some D- players. It is more fun than it sounds. The community is much more mature than it used to be and the meta game and map pool has advanced a ton. There is also more of an international mix of players now.

I started watching pro matches on youtube and on and it pulled me back in the game after 8 years. The worst broodwar players today would be better than the best players of 8 years ago. There were over 2 million games played on iccup last season (that does not count, and it is even more fun now than it was then. I suggest you give it a shot.

Comment Re:Back into the Internet Lexicon... (Score 4, Informative) 123

Your understanding of the game is poor.

Zerg do not have to win early. In fact if left alone, a zerg will expand twice as fast as the other races, culminating in wave after wave of hundreds of units. They may have weaker units, but their unit production is so much faster that it greatly affects their resource production. They also have much more nimble units and the ability to cross the map meaning they can hold these expansions with relatively small forces.

It is obvious you stopped playing 8 years ago, and the game has advanced so far you simply can't even conceive of it. I'm not saying that to insult you, but it is true. Neither you or your newbie friend would be able to win a single game in 20 against even the worst players on iccup.

Comment Re:netflix (Score 1) 475

When I stream youtube I get a video that is a little choppy, sometimes laggy (thanks to flash). When I stream on netflix I get a "your platform is not supported" message. I'll take the lesser of two pieces of crap.

To be fair my internet is very fast, it is often easier to just torrent stuff these days. Netflix needs to get its streaming act together before I get tired of waiting.

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 475

I would. I already pay 17 a month for netflix. The only difference is that youtube streaming actually works on my computer.

Of course this requires youtube to get real content and not just a couple shows...

Comment Re:Evolution versus artificial modification (Score 1) 369

When I say it requires energy, I don't mean that evolution requires energy. I mean that development requires it.

As in, when you are a baby, instead of developing little extra growth hormone or storing away some extra calcium into your muscles, instead some of your genes start hardening your mouth's defenses instead via some extra specialized proteins in your saliva. Meanwhile the other kid develops a little more quickly in those other areas and later on deals with his mouth problems using five dollar bottles of special mouthwash in his 30's. Since human success is practically winner take all, he will have some small advantages over you in a competitive environment, particularly when he is young. You only have to be just a little bit smarter, a little bit faster, a little bit stronger to take 90% of the rewards.

That's not to say that there couldn't be one day some killer mouth virus that defies scientific prevention. If that occurred, only people with natural immunity would be successful. I'm only saying that the balance between artificial and natural ability has not been reached yet. We are quickly becoming more naturally frail but more highly specialized, and overall I think it is a good thing.

Comment Re:Evolution versus artificial modification (Score 1) 369

I kind of veered off topic in my original post. But what I'm trying to say is this:

My dog for example has a digestive system made of iron. I cannot even digest raw meat (or if I try there's a good chance I'd get sick).

You might say that cooking is a waste of time. Why should we spend a half hour a day cooking when we could just have iron stomachs like our ancestors? The answer is that we spend less effort cooking than an animal spends developing a robust digestive system. Since we don't have to spend that energy on our digestive system, we can instead spend it on brainpower.

Human beings supposedly use 20% of our own energy output in brainpower. The next nearest is a chimp at something like 8 or 10%. That is a _huuuge_ investment and we have to pay for it somehow. Now that we cook our food, vaccinate our children, use weapons, we no longer need to develop biological equivalents. We don't need to have children that can walk the moment they come out of the womb like horses. We don't need to hibernate, so we remain productive. We don't need to synchronize reproduction to the season or food availability. Hell, we don't even need to fit through the birth canal anymore.

The problem here is that you think these are problems when it is actually the fact that animals routinely spend immense amounts of invaluable resources on these traits that are so easily circumventable. It is the fact that we have removed hundreds of developmental bottlenecks that every other animal in this world must simply live with that give us such a huge advantage in areas that actually matter.

Comment Re:Evolution versus artificial modification (Score 1) 369

> I can't discount the possibility that most/much health treatment would be a thing of the past in 500-5000 years though if nobody was ever treated.

At what cost? For a body to be capable of surviving a host of diseases without treatment it will have to spend energy on it that could have gone to purposes such as higher brain function, longevity and endurance.

I remember reading gulliver's travels as a kid, the part where he lamented that humans were the most inferior species. We have no claws, no teeth, we're not fast or particularly strong. The fact is that due to artificial tool use, we no longer need to spend any developmental resources on those traits, and so we spend it biologically on much more worthwhile pursuits. These neuro pills are just another example of tool use. A couple hundred years from now it will be as standard to enhance one's intelligence as it is to receive vaccinations.

Some people will think it is unfair, but I'm sure the first monkey to be beaten by another smaller monkey with a stick thought the same thing.

Comment Re:No thanks (Score 4, Interesting) 305

This doesn't sound as stupid to me. Obviously this wouldn't work well for something like an fps, but for something like an rpg, a casual game, a turn based game, some rts's? It would work fine. Secondly there is hardly any upfront cost. Essentially the hardware on your end would be 40 bucks including the controller. That is an amazingly low barrier to entry, considering you might have access to dozens or hundreds of games right off the bat. There will also never be any issues of backwards compatibility, every game will be playable for as long as the company feels like supporting it. There's no cheating, no red rings of death. The only real barrier right now is bandwidth, but for how long?

I've been predicting this would happen eventually, much to the derision of others, but I didn't expect to see plans for another five years maybe.

Comment Re:it depends on the size, I think (Score 2, Informative) 277

Trying to explain why git is better than svn is like trying to explain why svn is better than cvs. To someone who has never used it, they simply can't imagine anything better. I've actually been in the position of advocating svn over cvs and been shot down with arguments much the same as you are making now (that cvs has almost everything svn has).

There are a myriad of git commands that do all sorts of useful stuff. mergetool, cherry, rebase -i (interactive), add -i (interactive hunk based add), gitk (for visualization), colored diffs, a history aware grep, bisect (for narrowing down a patch that broke a feature), and dozens of others.

To directly address your comment, changing history may sound like a convenience, but it makes things a lot easier. Some person's patch breaks the website? You may find that the entire change is self contained in one or a small series of contiguous patches, making it super simple to revert. In subversion I've had to track down and revert 15 separate disparate commits over a series of weeks to bring a piece of software back into line. Another benefit is that as you are working, you can add your current work without committing and diff that version against any new changes you make. This makes it extremely easy to develop because you can keep track of just what you've done in say the last 15 minutes, as opposed to the entire day. It is great to be able to go back and review what you've done and tidy it up a bit.

Everything on the client side that svn does, git does better. I want to list more actual use cases, but this post keeps getting too long. So Instead I'm going to encourage you to experiment with git svn at work, or on one of your personal projects. You'll mess up a couple times at first, but the productivity you gain after a few days will be well worth it. I've converted a couple people at work, and they seem happy. Personally my productivity has doubled or even tripled, although I cannot guarantee that will be the case for everyone.


Submission + - Programming exercises for learning new languages

pinkfloydhomer writes: When learning a new programming language or library framework, I find that the most effective method is to work on a real project. The project shouldn't be too big or advanced of course, but it shouldn't be a toy project either.

I usually write a small game or something like that. But of course, that doesn't necessarily take me through the entire language or framework. I think several different kinds of projects would be needed for that. Maybe one focusing on graphics, one focusing on networking, one focusing on database access, etc.

So please give your suggestions for small-but-not-too-small projects that will be instructive to do to learn a new language or framework.

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