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Comment Better than could be hoped (Score 4, Interesting) 83

For everything in this package and the technology involved, I'm blown away by this price point. My original guess was that the HTC Vive was going to cost $1000 at launch. The lighthouses are a particularly complicated and likely expensive piece of hardware. From what I could gather from releases, they are using similar Laser mapping technology as can be seen on the Google Car. Because of this I was suspecting each lighthouse to cost at least $100-150 each.

If anything, this makes Oculus look really bad. The Rift is launching with a controller, built in headphones, a basic IR tracker (not laser), the HMD, and a dinky remote. The CV1 isn't even going to have the Touch controllers for a better experience included and those have to be purchased separately which I'm expecting to cost in the range of $50-100 which puts the Rift CV1 at a price around $700.

If we're talking about who we think might come out on top though. I think the Touch controllers on the Oculus are a better overall form factor and will fit better with the kind of games that benefit from a VR experience. The Vive controllers just seem about as clunky as the Playstation Move controllers. I think the HMD are probably going to be fairly similar in quality but I have a sinking suspicion that the Oculus might turn out better simply because of how much time they've put into the process. In terms of games, I think the Vive has a chance to come out way ahead since they have Valve's backing and because SteamVR is integrated right into Steam. Steam is going to provide a huge platform for indie devs looking to build experiences for VR. The big worry for anyone looking at getting the Oculus though will be whether Valve makes it a point to make sure the SteamVR releases are always up to date with the Oculus SDK or not. If they aren't, then the Vive will always be ahead of the Oculus and that's going to lock a lot of people out of potential games. The best example to date is Elite: Dangerous, which in terms of most up to date VR versions, only works on SteamVR with Frontier stating that they plan to support V1.0 of Oculus sometime in the future.

Taking all of this into consideration, I think overall Oculus stands the best chance of claiming VR on the PC. The Vive can do more I think, but the "more" that it can do seems almost "gimmicky" and not in tune with how I think most games will probably use VR (ie: sitting down). If we can get access to the camera on the Vive though, there are some potentially huge AR applications that the Vive can tap into that the Oculus just can't. All of the worries about the drivers/SDK will probably clear up after a year or two, and the Oculus has more room to come down in their price point as time goes on compared to the Vive which is probably tied down by the complicated lighthouse units.

Comment Re:Ouch... (Score 1) 278

Facebook/Oculus's goal shouldn't be recouping the 2B. What they need to do is shore up the VR market in their favor. They need developers to realize "they are the leader" in the market and focus their development on the Rift versus the Playstation VR or the Vive. With a $600 price point though, they are stretching it, especially if Sony or Valve decide that its better to take a loss on their units and undercut the Rift. If the win the VR war, then they'll eventually get that 2B back.

One of three outcomes is likely in the market.
  1. 1) Someone comes out on top and dominates the VR market due to the developers building all their games for that unit.
  2. 2) Everyone lines up behind an agreed upon standardization for VR which can the be used in an SDK everyone can use. In which case, multiple vendors can potentially be successful. This could also occur with different market successes, ex: Sony claims the console market and HTC/Valve has the PC market for VR. Assuming Sony is Sony and makes it so the Playstaion VR won't work on PC.
  3. 3) The market is just so fractured that VR dies a death like the Kinect.

Comment Oculus is going to get creamed (Score 2) 278

I was talking to a friend about Oculus, Valve/HTC, and Sony; and we arrived at the decision that Oculus is probably going to get creamed in the VR industry. The main problem is that the unit is just too expensive and is coming to market way too close to other units that are coming. At $600, I may as well hold out and see what HTC and Sony have to offer here in 4-6 months when they come to market.

In the conversation, I also brought up the question of why didn't Oculus just take a loss on the first 10,000 units or so in order to bring the price down (I actually guessed that it would probably cost at least $600). As someone that was on the fence about buying a unit, $600 is just too much for me to spend when I know that in 6 months HTC or Sony will have their own unit out. The interesting revelation that me and my friend came to however, was the fact that HTC and Sony are in a better position to actually take a loss on their VR units compared to Oculus since they are actually backed by another platform that they can make money off of. To Sony and Valve, their VR unit is very similar to a game console, where they want to try and get as many adopters to buy into their system as possible so they can make money off of the games and peripherals that go along with it. So the smart thing for Sony and Valve to do now is to come out with a price now that is $200-$350 cheaper than the Rift, even if it means they have to take a loss on the first 10k units or so.

Personally I'll be holding out to see what HTC/Valve do since I want something that I know will work with the SteamVR SDK.

Comment Ridiculous Endeavors (Score 4, Insightful) 174

About a week ago, me and my friend had actually been discussing all the stupid business decisions that Mozilla has been making. Their OS and the Firefox Phone were two big ones that came to mind that just didn't make any sense to either of us. The money they have received, they've squandered on pointless pursuits into industries they stood no chance at making a dent in.

Seriously, what was the logic behind trying to get into the phone market in the first place? Other companies have tried just as well (Amazon, Microsoft) with little to no success. The thing that bugged us was the fact that they must have spent millions trying to do this which could have been more smartly invested to ensure that they didn't run out of money to support and improve the current products they know are/were liked (Thunderbird and Firefox). Now as result, we are left with them trying to find money streams to support Firefox, and most of this comes from pushing unwanted software and advertisement into Firefox.

Comment Re:Problem (Score 1) 171

but this encumbers human development indirectly - newcomers purchasing these games are gonna face cultural clash with them, since they weren't made for this point of time, especially their stories, while their genres, even despite a rework, will be out of place (time*)

It has already been stated by Square that the FF7 HD remake is going to undergo changes to the story. I expect the same thing to happen with many of their other games as well. Compared to older games though on the (S)NES, FF7's story is less in need of modernizing.

Comment Re:My opinion about all this (Score 1) 100

I never liked LiveCoding. I found out about this whole "watch people code live" thing from the article sometime back about /r/watchpeoplecode and the people on Twitch that were doing it. It was interesting way to see what people were doing and even landed me a part time job doing some freelance coding with someone on the side.

Somewhere around the time that /r/WatchPeopleCode was gaining some traction, LiveCoding seemed to pop up out of no where and started to aggressively try and recruit people that were streaming on twitch. They, or rather the primary founder it would seem, would "stalk" people (looking for their primary email contact, or hitting them up on social media) and constantly email them trying to get them to switch to LiveCoding. Some of the people that actually did try it out found themselves trying to be forced to stream on schedules. Apparently there was/is a spreadsheet that had time blocks that specified when they should be streaming. They weren't even asked if they wanted to participate in something like this.

LiveCoding has never been particularly user friendly for either the streamer or the viewers. I'm not sure if they've changed it now, but months ago, you still had to register in order to be able to see streams. This just drives away any one thats interested. The founder gave the excuse that this was due to bandwidth concerns or whatever. In addition, they set up focused advertising which would appear on /r/watchpeoplecode to draw people to their site. I always figured they were in this for the money, but I never saw the angle until now. I guess its try and get in on the freelance market or something.

Comment Re:Vacuum? (Score 2, Interesting) 107

Hyperloop's biggest problem will never be engineering. It'll be the concerted efforts of the airline industry, the dated train industry, and the trucking industry; all coming down on any attempt to build a real life version connecting any two cities spanning 100s of miles. Even if the most conservative costs of freighting for the hyperloop were to double (from what I've read in the Hyperloop Org's huge PDF), it'd still be faster and cheaper than all the current means of transportation of goods. Nothing like the Hyperloop would get built easily if it stands to destabilize or even destroy these other industries.

Comment Re:Is this your brain on drugs? (Score 4, Interesting) 75

There is a guy that wrote wrote an essay some years ago that suggested as much. He posited that drugs like psilocibin basically overload the brain and cause it to form feedback loops. Many of the effects you can experience on hallucinogens also suggest as much. Closed eye visuals for instance are basically the "lights" you see when you push on your eye balls. They are just amplified and put into a feedback loop. Thought loops are common on hallucinogens as well, I imagine its the result of that as well.

Submission + - Sourceforge Hijacks the Nmap Sourceforge Account (seclists.org) 2

vivaoporto writes: Gordon Lyon (better known as Fyodor, author of nmap and maintainer of the internet security resource sites insecure.org, nmap.org, seclists.org, and sectools.org) warns on the nmap development mailing list that the Sourceforge Nmap account was hijacked from him.

According to him the old Nmap project page (located at http://sourceforge.net/projects/nmap/, screenshot) was changed to a blank page and its contents were moved to a new page (http://sourceforge.net/projects/nmap.mirror/, screenshot) which controlled by sf-editor1 and sf-editor3, in pattern mirroring the much discussed the takeover of GIMP-Win page discussed last week on Ars Technica, IT World and eventually this week Slashdot.

That happens after Sourceforge promises to stop "presenting third party offers for unmaintained SourceForge projects. At this time, we present third party offers only with a few projects where it is explicitly approved by the project developer, or if the project is already bundling third party offers."

To their credit Fyodor states that "So far they seem to be providing just the official Nmap files (as long as you don't click on the fake download buttons) and we haven't caught them trojaning Nmap the way they did with GIMP" but reiterates "that you should only download Nmap from our official SSL Nmap site: https://nmap.org/download.html"

Submission + - SourceForge MITM Projects (github.io) 2

lister king of smeg writes: What happened?

SourceForge, once a trustworthy source code hosting site, started to place misleading ads (like fake download buttons) a few years ago. They are also bundling third-party adware/malware directly with their Windows installer.

Some project managers decided to leave SourceForge – partly because of this, partly just because there are better options today. SF staff hijacked some of these abandoned accounts, partly to bundle the crapware with their installers. It has become just another sleazy garbage site with downloads of fake antivirus programs and such.

How can I help?

If you agree that SourceForge is in fact distributing malicious software under the guise of open source projects, report them to google. Ideally this will help remove them from search results, prevent others from suffering their malware and provide them with incentive to change their behavior.

As this story has been submitted several times in the past several days, by various submitter and is going around various other tech forums( https://news.ycombinator.com/i... , https://soylentnews.org/articl... , https://www.reddit.com/r/progr... ,) this submitter wonders has our shared "glorious Dice Corporate overloads" been shooting this story down?

Submission + - SourceForge assumes ownership of GIMP For Win, wraps installer in adware (arstechnica.com)

An anonymous reader writes: It appears that SourceForge is assuming control of all projects that appear "abandoned." In a blog update on their site, they responded saying in part "There has recently been some report that the GIMP-Win project on SourceForge has been hijacked; this project was actually abandoned over 18 months ago, and SourceForge has stepped-in to keep this project current. "

SourceForge is now offering "to establish a program to enable users and developers to help us remove misleading and confusing ads."

Submission + - Sourceforge staff takes over a user's account and wraps their software installer (arstechnica.com) 11

An anonymous reader writes: Sourceforge staff took over the account of the GIMP-for-Windows maintainer claiming it was abandoned and used this opportunity to wrap the installer in crapware. Quoting Ars:

SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements.


Submission + - SourceForge wraps open source software in adware

An anonymous reader writes: "SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements."

Submission + - Sourceforge hijacks GIMP For Windows project, adds malware to downloads (google.com)

David Gerard writes: SourceForge has taken over control of the GIMP for Windows SF project and is now distributing an adware/malwared installer for GIMP. They also locked out the maintainer, Jernej Simoni. Sourceforge claims it was "abandoned" and they're providing a service by "mirroring" the original, though it's unclear how much value malware adds for the end user, rather than for SF. (This comes two years after SF claiming its malware was just "misunderstood".) Since being busted, SF is now serving an .exe that matches that at the official download site. Other projects recently hijacked by SF include many Apache projects (Allura, Derby, Directory Studio, the Apache HTTP server, Hadoop, OpenOffice, Solr, and Subversion); Mozilla Firefox, Thunderbird, and FireFTP; Evolution and Open-Xchange; Drupal and WordPress; Eclipse, Aptana, Komodo, MonoDevelop, and NetBeans; VLC, Audacious, Banshee.fm, Helix, and Tomahawk media players; and many others.

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