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Animation Sophistication: The Croods Required 80 Million Compute Hours

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the that-is-incroodible dept.

Movies 196

Lucas123 writes "It may be a movie about a stone age family, but DreamWorks said its latest 3D animated movie The Croods took more compute cycles to create than any other movie they've made. The movie required a whopping 80 million compute hours to render, 15 million more hours than DreamWorks' last record holder, The Rise of the Guardians. The production studio said between 300 and 400 animators worked on The Croods over the past three years. The images they created, from raw sketches to stereoscopic high-definition shots, required about 250TB of data storage capacity. When the movie industry moved from producing 2D to 3D high-definition movies over the past decade, the data required to produce the films increased tremendously. For DreamWorks, the amount of data needed to create a stereoscopic film leaped by 30%."

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Learn the truth ... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43286957)

Mainly in efficiency - it runs in Ring 0/RPL 0/PnP Kernelmode (on Windows), as merely a filter for the IP stack (no overheads of more driver layers OR browser level slower less efficient addons):

21++ ADVANTAGES OF CUSTOM HOSTS FILES (how/what/when/where/why):

Over AdBlock & DNS Servers ALONE 4 Security, Speed, Reliability, & Anonymity (to an extent vs. DNSBL's + DNS request logs).

1.) HOSTS files are useable for all these purposes because they are present on all Operating Systems that have a BSD based IP stack (even ANDROID) and do adblocking for ANY webbrowser, email program, etc. (any webbound program). A truly "multi-platform" UNIVERSAL solution for added speed, security, reliability, & even anonymity to an extent (vs. DNS request logs + DNSBL's you feel are unjust hosts get you past/around).

2.) Adblock blocks ads? Well, not anymore & certainly not as well by default, apparently, lol - see below:

Adblock Plus To Offer 'Acceptable Ads' Option [] )

AND, in only browsers & their subprogram families (ala email like Thunderbird for FireFox/Mozilla products (use same gecko & xulrunner engines)), but not all, or, all independent email clients, like Outlook, Outlook Express, OR Window "LIVE" mail (for example(s)) - there's many more like EUDORA & others I've used over time that AdBlock just DOES NOT COVER... period.

Disclaimer: Opera now also has an AdBlock addon (now that Opera has addons above widgets), but I am not certain the same people make it as they do for FF or Chrome etc..

3.) Adblock doesn't protect email programs external to FF (non-mozilla/gecko engine based) family based wares, So AdBlock doesn't protect email programs like Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows "LIVE" mail & others like them (EUDORA etc./et al), Hosts files do. THIS IS GOOD VS. SPAM MAIL or MAILS THAT BEAR MALICIOUS SCRIPT, or, THAT POINT TO MALICIOUS SCRIPT VIA URLS etc.

4.) Adblock won't get you to your favorite sites if a DNS server goes down or is DNS-poisoned, hosts will (this leads to points 5-7 next below).

5.) Adblock doesn't allow you to hardcode in your favorite websites into it so you don't make DNS server calls and so you can avoid tracking by DNS request logs, OR make you reach them faster since you resolve host-domain names LOCALLY w/ hosts out of cached memory, hosts do ALL of those things (DNS servers are also being abused by the Chinese lately and by the Kaminsky flaw -> [] for years now). Hosts protect against those problems via hardcodes of your fav sites (you should verify against the TLD that does nothing but cache IPAddress-to-domainname/hostname resolutions ( via NSLOOKUP, PINGS (ping -a in Windows), &/or WHOIS though, regularly, so you have the correct IP & it's current)).

* NOW - Some folks MAY think that putting an IP address alone into your browser's address bar will be enough, so why bother with HOSTS, right? WRONG - Putting IP address in your browser won't always work IS WHY. Some IP adresses host several domains & need the site name to give you the right page you're after is why. So for some sites only the HOSTS file option will work!

6.) Hosts files don't eat up CPU cycles (or ELECTRICITY) like AdBlock does while it parses a webpages' content, nor as much as a DNS server does while it runs. HOSTS file are merely a FILTER for the kernel mode/PnP TCP/IP subsystem, which runs FAR FASTER & MORE EFFICIENTLY than any ring 3/rpl3/usermode app can since hosts files run in MORE EFFICIENT & FASTER Ring 0/RPL 0/Kernelmode operations acting merely as a filter for the IP stack (via the "Plug-N-Play" designed IP stack in Windows) vs. SLOWER & LESS EFFICIENT Ring 3/RPL 3/Usermode operations (which webbrowsers run in + their addons like AdBlock slow down even MORESO due to their parsing operations).

7.) HOSTS files will allow you to get to sites you like, via hardcoding your favs into a HOSTS file, FAR faster than remote DNS servers can by FAR (by saving the roundtrip inquiry time to a DNS server, typically 30-100's of ms, vs. 7-10ms HardDisk speed of access/seek + SSD seek in ns, & back to you - hosts resolutions of IP address for host-domain names is FAR faster...). Hosts are only a filter for an already fast & efficient IP stack, no more layered b.s. (remote OR local). Hosts eat less CPU, RAM, I/O in other forms, + electricity than a locally running DNS server easily, and less than a local DNS program on a single PC. Fact. Hosts are easier to setup & maintain too.

8.) AdBlock doesn't let you block out known bad sites or servers that are known to be maliciously scripted, hosts can and many reputable lists for this exist:

Spybot "Search & Destroy" IMMUNIZE feature (fortifies HOSTS files with KNOWN bad servers blocked)

And yes: Even SLASHDOT &/or The Register help!

(Via articles on security (when the source articles they use are "detailed" that is, & list the servers/sites involved in attempting to bushwhack others online that is... not ALL do!)).

2 examples thereof in the past I have used, & noted it there, are/were: [] []

9.) AdBlock & DNS servers are programs, and subject to bugs programs can get. Hosts files are merely a filter and not a program, thus not subject to bugs of the nature just discussed.

10.) HOSTS files protect you vs. DNS-poisoning &/or the Kaminsky flaw in DNS servers, and allow you to get to sites reliably vs. things like the Chinese are doing to DNS -> []

11.) HOSTS files are EASILY user controlled, obtained (for reliable ones -> [] ) & edited too, via texteditors like Windows notepad.exe or Linux nano (etc.)

12.) With Adblock you had better be able to code javascript to play with its code (to customize it better than the GUI front does @ least). With hosts you don't even need source to control it (edit, update, delete, insert of new entries via a text editor).

13.) Hosts files are easily secured via using MAC/ACL (even moreso "automagically" for Vista, 7/Server 2008 + beyond by UAC by default) &/or Read-Only attributes applied.

14.) Custom HOSTS files also speed you up, unlike anonymous proxy servers systems variations (like TOR, or other "highly anonymous" proxy server list servers typically do, in the severe speed hit they often have a cost in) either via "hardcoding" your fav. sites into your hosts file (avoids DNS servers, totally) OR blocking out adbanners - see this below for evidence of that:


US Military Blocks Websites To Free Up Bandwidth: []

(Yes, even the US Military used this type of technique... because IT WORKS! Most of what they blocked? Ad banners ala doubleclick etc.)


Adbanners slow you down & consume your bandwidth YOU pay for:



And people do NOT LIKE ads on the web:



As well as this:

Users Know Advertisers Watch Them, and Hate It: []


Even WORSE still, is this:

Advertising Network Caught History Stealing: []


15.) HOSTS files usage lets you avoid being charged on some ISP/BSP's (OR phone providers) "pay as you use" policy [] , because you are using less bandwidth (& go faster doing so no less) by NOT hauling in adbanner content and processing it (which can lead to infestation by malware/malicious script, in & of itself -> [] ).

16.) If/when ISP/BSP's decide to go to -> FCC Approving Pay-As-You-Go Internet Plans: [] your internet bill will go DOWN if you use a HOSTS file for blocking adbanners as well as maliciously scripted hacker/cracker malware maker sites too (after all - it's your money & time online downloading adbanner content & processing it)

Plus, your adbanner content? Well, it may also be hijacked with malicious code too mind you:


Yahoo, Microsoft's Bing display toxic ads: []


Malware torrent delivered over Google, Yahoo! ad services: []


Google's DoubleClick spreads malicious ads (again): []


Rogue ads infiltrate Expedia and Rhapsody: []


Google sponsored links caught punting malware: []


DoubleClick caught supplying malware-tainted ads: []


Yahoo feeds Trojan-laced ads to MySpace and PhotoBucket users: []


Real Media attacks real people via RealPlayer: []


Ad networks owned by Google, Microsoft serve malware: []


Attacks Targeting Classified Ad Sites Surge: []


Hackers Respond To Help Wanted Ads With Malware: []


Hackers Use Banner Ads on Major Sites to Hijack Your PC: []


Ruskie gang hijacks Microsoft network to push penis pills: []


Major ISPs Injecting Ads, Vulnerabilities Into Web: []


Two Major Ad Networks Found Serving Malware: []












London Stock Exchange Web Site Serving Malware: []


Spotify splattered with malware-tainted ads: []


As my list "multiple evidences thereof" as to adbanners & viruses + the fact they slow you down & cost you more (from reputable & reliable sources no less)).

17.) Per point #16, a way to save some money: ANDROID phones can also use the HOSTS FILE TO KEEP DOWN BILLABLE TIME ONLINE, vs. adbanners or malware such as this:


Infected Androids Run Up Big Texting Bills: []


AND, for protection vs. other "botnets" migrating from the PC world, to "smartphones" such as ZITMO (a ZEUS botnet variant): []


It's easily done too, via the ADB dev. tool, & mounting ANDROID OS' system mountpoint for system/etc as READ + WRITE/ADMIN-ROOT PERMISSIONS, then copying your new custom HOSTS over the old one using ADB PULL/ADB PUSH to do so (otherwise ANDROID complains of "this file cannot be overwritten on production models of this Operating System", or something very along those lines - this way gets you around that annoyance along with you possibly having to clear some space there yourself if you packed it with things!).

18.) Bad news: ADBLOCK CAN BE DETECTED FOR: See here on that note -> []

HOSTS files are NOT THAT EASILY "webbug" BLOCKABLE by websites, as was tried on users by ARSTECHNICA (and it worked on AdBlock in that manner), to that websites' users' dismay:



An experiment gone wrong - By Ken Fisher | Last updated March 6, 2010 11:11 AM []

"Starting late Friday afternoon we conducted a 12 hour experiment to see if it would be possible to simply make content disappear for visitors who were using a very popular ad blocking tool. Technologically, it was a success in that it worked. Ad blockers, and only ad blockers, couldn't see our content."


"Our experiment is over, and we're glad we did it because it led to us learning that we needed to communicate our point of view every once in a while. Sure, some people told us we deserved to die in a fire. But that's the Internet!"

Thus, as you can see? Well - THAT all "went over like a lead balloon" with their users in other words, because Arstechnica was forced to change it back to the old way where ADBLOCK still could work to do its job (REDDIT however, has not, for example). However/Again - this is proof that HOSTS files can still do the job, blocking potentially malscripted ads (or ads in general because they slow you down) vs. adblockers like ADBLOCK!


19.) Even WIKILEAKS "favors" blacklists (because they work, and HOSTS can be a blacklist vs. known BAD sites/servers/domain-host names):



"we are in favour of 'Blacklists', be it for mail servers or websites, they have to be compiled with care... Fortunately, more responsible blacklists, like (which protects the Firefox browser)...


20.) AND, LASTLY? SINCE MALWARE GENERALLY HAS TO OPERATE ON WHAT YOU YOURSELF CAN DO (running as limited class/least privlege user, hopefully, OR even as ADMIN/ROOT/SUPERUSER)? HOSTS "LOCK IN" malware too, vs. communicating "back to mama" for orders (provided they have name servers + C&C botnet servers listed in them, blocked off in your HOSTS that is) - you might think they use a hardcoded IP, which IS possible, but generally they do not & RECYCLE domain/host names they own (such as has been seen with the RBN (Russian Business Network) lately though it was considered "dead", other malwares are using its domains/hostnames now, & this? This stops that cold, too - Bonus!)...

21.) Custom HOSTS files gain users back more "screen real estate" by blocking out banner ads... it's great on PC's for speed along with MORE of what I want to see/read (not ads), & efficiency too, but EVEN BETTER ON SMARTPHONES - by far. It matters MOST there imo @ least, in regards to extra screen real-estate.

Still - It's a GOOD idea to layer in the usage of BOTH browser addons for security like adblock ( [] ), IE 9's new TPL's ( [] ), &/or NoScript ( [] especially this one, as it covers what HOSTS files can't in javascript which is the main deliverer of MOST attacks online & SECUNIA.COM can verify this for anyone really by looking @ the past few years of attacks nowadays), for the concept of "layered security"....

It's just that HOSTS files offer you a LOT MORE gains than Adblock ( [] ) does alone (as hosts do things adblock just plain cannot & on more programs, for more speed, security, and "stealth" to a degree even), and it corrects problems in DNS (as shown above via hardcodes of your favorite sites into your HOSTS file, and more (such as avoiding DNS request logs)).

ALSO - Some more notes on DNS servers & their problems, very recent + ongoing ones:


DNS flaw reanimates slain evil sites as ghost domains: []


BIND vs. what the Chinese are doing to DNS lately? See here: []



(Yes, even "security pros" are helpless vs. DNS problems in code bugs OR redirect DNS poisoning issues, & they can only try to "set the DNS record straight" & then, they still have to wait for corrected DNS info. to propogate across all subordinate DNS servers too - lagtime in which folks DO get "abused" in mind you!)


DNS vs. the "Kaminsky DNS flaw", here (and even MORE problems in DNS than just that): []

(Seems others are saying that some NEW "Bind9 flaw" is worse than the Kaminsky flaw ALONE, up there, mind you... probably corrected (hopefully), but it shows yet again, DNS hassles (DNS redirect/DNS poisoning) being exploited!)


Moxie Marlinspike's found others (0 hack) as well...

Nope... "layered security" truly IS the "way to go" - hacker/cracker types know it, & they do NOT want the rest of us knowing it too!...

(So until DNSSEC takes "widespread adoption"? HOSTS are your answer vs. such types of attack, because the 1st thing your system refers to, by default, IS your HOSTS file (over say, DNS server usage). There are decent DNS servers though, such as OpenDNS, ScrubIT, or even NORTON DNS (more on each specifically below), & because I cannot "cache the entire internet" in a HOSTS file? I opt to use those, because I have to (& OpenDNS has been noted to "fix immediately", per the Kaminsky flaw, in fact... just as a sort of reference to how WELL they are maintained really!)


DNS Hijacks Now Being Used to Serve Black Hole Exploit Kit: []


DNS experts admit some of the underlying foundations of the DNS protocol are inherently weak: []


Potential 0-Day Vulnerability For BIND 9: []


Five DNS Threats You Should Protect Against: []


DNS provider decked by DDoS dastards: []


Ten Percent of DNS Servers Still Vulnerable: (so much for "conscientious patching", eh? Many DNS providers weren't patching when they had to!) []




TimeWarner DNS Hijacking: []


DNS Re-Binding Attacks: []


DNS Server Survey Reveals Mixed Security Picture: []


Halvar figured out super-secret DNS vulnerability: []


BIND Still Susceptible To DNS Cache Poisoning: []


DNS Poisoning Hits One of China's Biggest ISPs: []


DDoS Attacks Via DNS Recursion: []


High Severity BIND DNS Vulnerability Advisory Issued: []


Photobucketâ(TM)s DNS records hijacked: []


Protecting Browsers from DNS Rebinding Attacks: []


DNS Problem Linked To DDoS Attacks Gets Worse: []


HOWEVER - Some DNS servers are "really good stuff" vs. phishing, known bad sites/servers/hosts-domains that serve up malware-in-general & malicious scripting, botnet C&C servers, & more, such as:

Norton DNS -> []
  ScrubIT DNS -> []
  OpenDNS -> []

(Norton DNS in particular, is exclusively for blocking out malware, for those of you that are security-conscious. ScrubIT filters pr0n material too, but does the same, & OpenDNS does phishing protection. Each page lists how & why they work, & why they do so. Norton DNS can even show you its exceptions lists, plus user reviews & removal procedures requests, AND growth stats (every 1/2 hour or so) here -> [] so, that ought to "take care of the naysayers" on removal requests, &/or methods used plus updates frequency etc./et al...)

HOWEVER - There's ONLY 1 WEAKNESS TO ANY network defense, including HOSTS files (vs. host-domain name based threats) & firewalls (hardware router type OR software type, vs. IP address based threats): Human beings, & they not being 'disciplined' about the indiscriminate usage of javascript (the main "harbinger of doom" out there today online), OR, what they download for example... & there is NOTHING I can do about that! (Per Dr. Manhattan of "The Watchmen", ala -> "I can change almost anything, but I can't change human nature")

HOWEVER AGAIN - That's where NORTON DNS, OpenDNS, &/or ScrubIT DNS help!

(Especially for noob/grandma level users who are unaware of how to secure themselves in fact, per a guide like mine noted above that uses "layered-security" principles!)

ScrubIT DNS, &/or OpenDNS are others alongside Norton DNS (adding on phishing protection too) as well!

( & it's possible to use ALL THREE in your hardware NAT routers, and, in your Local Area Connection DNS properties in Windows, for again, "Layered Security" too)...




"Ever since I've installed a host file ( to redirect advertisers to my loopback, I haven't had any malware, spyware, or adware issues. I first started using the host file 5 years ago." - by TestedDoughnut (1324447) on Monday December 13, @12:18AM (#34532122)

"I use a custom /etc/hosts to block ads... my file gets parsed basically instantly ... So basically, for any modern computer, it has zero visible impact. And even if it took, say, a second to parse, that would be more than offset by the MANY seconds saved by not downloading and rendering ads. I have noticed NO ill effects from running a custom /etc/hosts file for the last several years. And as a matter of fact I DO run http servers on my computers and I've never had an /etc/hosts-related problem... it FUCKING WORKS and makes my life better overall." - by sootman (158191) on Monday July 13 2009, @11:47AM (#28677363) Homepage Journal

"I actually went and downloaded a 16k line hosts file and started using that after seeing that post, you know just for trying it out. some sites load up faster." - by gl4ss (559668) on Thursday November 17, @11:20AM (#38086752) Homepage Journal

"Better than an ad blocker, imo. Hosts file entries: [] " - by TempestRose (1187397) on Tuesday March 15, @12:53PM (#35493274)

"^^ One of the many reasons why I like the user-friendliness of the /etc/hosts file." - by lennier1 (264730) on Saturday March 05, @09:26PM (#35393448)

"They've been on my HOSTS block for years" - by ScottCooperDotNet (929575) on Thursday August 05 2010, @01:52AM (#33147212)

"I'm currently only using my hosts file to block pheedo ads from showing up in my RSS feeds and causing them to take forever to load. Regardless of its original intent, it's still a valid tool, when used judiciously." - by Bill Dog (726542) on Monday April 25, @02:16AM (#35927050) Homepage Journal

"you're right about hosts files" - by drinkypoo (153816) on Thursday May 26, @01:21PM (#36252958) Homepage

"APK's monolithic hosts file is looking pretty good at the moment." - by Culture20 (968837) on Thursday November 17, @10:08AM (#38085666)

"I also use the MVPS ad blocking hosts file." - by Rick17JJ (744063) on Wednesday January 19, @03:04PM (#34931482)

"I use ad-Block and a hostfile" - by Ol Olsoc (1175323) on Tuesday March 01, @10:11AM (#35346902)

"I do use Hosts, for a couple fake domains I use." - by icebraining (1313345) on Saturday December 11, @09:34AM (#34523012) Homepage

"It's a good write up on something everybody should use, why you were modded down is beyond me. Using a HOSTS file, ADblock is of no concern and they can do what they want." - by Trax3001BBS (2368736) on Monday December 12, @10:07PM (#38351398) Homepage Journal

"I want my surfing speed back so I block EVERY fucking ad. i.e. [] and [] FTW" - by UnknownSoldier (67820) on Tuesday December 13, @12:04PM (#38356782)

"Let me introduce you to the file: /etc/hosts" - by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Monday December 19, @05:03PM (#38427432)

"I use a hosts file" - by EdIII (1114411) on Tuesday December 13, @01:17PM (#38357816)

"I'm tempted to go for a hacked hosts file that simply resolves most advert sites to" - by bLanark (123342) on Tuesday December 13, @01:13PM (#38357760)

"this is not a troll, which hosts file source you recommend nowadays? it's a really handy method for speeding up web and it works." - by gl4ss (559668) on Thursday March 22, @08:07PM (#39446525) Homepage Journal

"A hosts file certainly does not require "a lot of work" to maintain, and it quite effectively kills a LOT of advertising and tracking schemes. . In fact, I never would have considered trying to use it for ddefending against viruses or malware." - by RocketRabbit (830691) on Thursday December 30 2010, @05:48PM (#34715060)


Then, there is also the words of respected security expert, Mr. Oliver Day, from SECURITYFOCUS.COM to "top that all off" as well:


Some "PERTINENT QUOTES/EXCERPTS" to back up my points with (for starters):


"The host file on my day-to-day laptop is now over 16,000 lines long. Accessing the Internet -- particularly browsing the Web -- is actually faster now."

Speed, and security, is the gain... others like Mr. Day note it as well!


"From what I have seen in my research, major efforts to share lists of unwanted hosts began gaining serious momentum earlier this decade. The most popular appear to have started as a means to block advertising and as a way to avoid being tracked by sites that use cookies to gather data on the user across Web properties. More recently, projects like Spybot Search and Destroy offer lists of known malicious servers to add a layer of defense against trojans and other forms of malware."

Per my points exactly, no less... & guess who was posting about HOSTS files a 14++ yrs. or more back & Mr. Day was reading & now using? Yours truly (& this is one of the later ones, from 2001 [] (but the example HOSTS file with my initials in it is FAR older, circa 1998 or so) or thereabouts, and referred to later by a pal of mine who moderates (where I posted on HOSTS for YEARS (1997 onwards)) -> [] !


"Shared host files could be beneficial for other groups as well. Human rights groups have sought after block resistant technologies for quite some time. The GoDaddy debacle with NMap creator Fyodor (corrected) showed a particularly vicious blocking mechanism using DNS registrars. Once a registrar pulls a website from its records, the world ceases to have an effective way to find it. Shared host files could provide a DNS-proof method of reaching sites, not to mention removing an additional vector of detection if anyone were trying to monitor the use of subversive sites. One of the known weaknesses of the Tor system, for example, is direct DNS requests by applications not configured to route such requests through Tor's network."

There you go: AND, it also works vs. the "KAMINSKY DNS FLAW" & DNS poisoning/redirect attacks, for redirectable weaknesses in DNS servers (non DNSSEC type, & set into recursive mode especially) and also in the TOR system as well (that lends itself to anonymous proxy usage weaknesses I noted above also) and, you'll get to sites you want to, even IF a DNS registrar drops said websites from its tables as shown here Beating Censorship By Routing Around DNS -> [] & even DNSBL also (DNS Block Lists) -> [] as well - DOUBLE-BONUS!


* POSTS ABOUT HOSTS FILES I DID on "/." THAT HAVE DONE WELL BY OTHERS & WERE RATED HIGHLY, 26++ THUSFAR (from +3 -> +1 RATINGS, usually "informative" or "interesting" etc./et al):

  HOSTS MOD UP:2010 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2009 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2010 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2009 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2009 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2009 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2010 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2010 -> []
  APK 20++ POINTS ON HOSTS MOD UP:2010 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2010 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2010 (w/ facebook known bad sites blocked) -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP CAN DO SAME AS THE "CloudFlare" Server-Side service:2011 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2011 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP & OPERA HAUTE SECURE:2011 -> [] in HOSTS:2009 -> [] IN HOSTS:2009 -> [] in HOSTS:2009 -> [] in HOSTS:2009 -> []
  HOSTS MOD UP:2009 -> [] (still says INSIGHTFUL)
  HOSTS MOD UP vs. botnet: 2012 -> []


Windows 7, VISTA, & Server 2008 have a couple of "issues" I don't like in them, & you may not either, depending on your point of view (mine's based solely on efficiency & security), & if my take on these issues aren't "good enough"? I suggest reading what ROOTKIT.COM says, link URL is in my "p.s." @ the bottom of this post:

1.) HOSTS files being unable to use "0" for a blocking IP address - this started in 12/09/2008 after an "MS Patch Tuesday" in fact for VISTA (when it had NO problem using it before that, as Windows 2000/XP/Server 2003 still can)... & yes, this continues in its descendants, Windows Server 2008 &/or Windows 7 as well.

So, why is this a "problem" you might ask?

Ok - since you can technically use either:

a.) (the "loopback adapter address")
b.) (next smallest & next most efficient)
c.) The smallest & fastest plain-jane 0


You can use ANY of those, in order to block out known bad sites &/or adbanners in a HOSTS file this way??

Microsoft has "promoted bloat" in doing so... no questions asked.

Simply because

1.) = 9 bytes in size on disk & is the largest/slowest
2.) = 7 bytes & is the next largest/slowest in size on disk
3.) 0 = 1 byte

(& HOSTS files extend across EVERY webbrowser, email program, or in general every webbound program you use & thus HOSTS are "global" in coverage this way AND function on any OS that uses the BSD derived IP stack (which most all do mind you, even MS is based off of it, as BSD's IS truly, "the best in the business"), & when coupled with say, IE restricted zones, FireFox addons like NoScript &/or AdBlock, or Opera filter.ini/urlfilter.ini, for layered security in this capacity for webbrowsers & SOME email programs (here, I mean ones "built into" browsers themselves like Opera has for example))

MS has literally promoted bloat in this file, making it load slower from disk, into memory! This compounds itself, the more entries your HOSTS file contains... & for instance? Mine currently contains nearly 654,000 entries of known bad adbanners, bad websites, &/or bad nameservers (used for controlling botnets, misdirecting net requests, etc. et al).

Now, IF I were to use My "huge" HOSTS file would be approximately 27mb in size... using (next smallest) it would be 19mb in size - HOWEVER? Using 0 as my blocking IP, it is only 14mb in size. See my point?

(For loads either in the local DNS cache, or system diskcache if you run w/out the local DNS client service running, this gets slower the larger each HOSTS file entry is (which you have to stall the DNS client service in Windows for larger ones, especially if you use a "giant HOSTS file" (purely relative term, but once it goes over (iirc) 4mb in size, you have to cut the local DNS cache client service)))

NO questions asked - the physics of it backed me up in theory alone, but when I was questioned on it for PROOF thereof?

I wrote a small test program to load such a list into a "pascal record" (which is analagous to a C/C++ structure), which is EXACTLY what the DNS client/DNS API does as well, using a C/C++ structure (basically an array of sorts really, & a structure/record is a precursor part to a full-blown CLASS or OBJECT, minus the functions built in, this is for treating numerous variables as a SINGLE VARIABLE (for efficiency, which FORTRAN as a single example, lacks as a feature, @ least Fortran 77 did, but other languages do not))!

I even wrote another that just loaded my HOSTS file's entirety into a listbox, same results... slowest using, next slowest using, & fastest using 0.

And, sure: Some MORE "goes on" during DNS API loads (iirc, removal of duplicated entries (which I made sure my personal copy does not have these via a program I wrote to purge it of duplicated entries + to sort each entry alphabetically for easier mgt. via say, notepad.exe) & a conversion from decimal values to hex ones), but, nevertheless? My point here "holds true", of slower value loads, record-by-record, from a HOSTS file, when the entries become larger.

So, to "prove my point" to my naysayers?

I timed it using the Win32 API calls "GetTickCount" & then again, using the API calls of "QueryPerformanceCounter" as well, seeing the SAME results (a slowdown when reading in this file from disk, especially when using the larger or line item entries in a HOSTS file, vs. the smaller/faster/more efficient 0).

In my test, I saw a decline in speed/efficiency in my test doing so by using larger blocking addresses ( &/or, vs. the smallest/fastest in 0)... proving me correct on this note!

On this HOSTS issue, and the WFP design issue in my next post below?

I also then questioned MS' own staff, even their VP of development (S. Sinofsky) on this here -> [] & other places in their blogs, to get them to tell me WHY this seemingly intentional inefficiency was implemented... & I have YET to get a solid LOGICAL answer on this as to why it was done - THUS, @ this point?

I am convinced they (MS) do NOT have a good reason for doing this... because of their lack of response there on this note. Unless it has something to do with IPv6 (most folks use IPv4 still), I cannot understand WHY this design mistake imo, has occurred, in HOSTS files...


2.) The "Windows Filtering Platform", which is now how the firewall works in VISTA, Server 2008, & Windows 7...

Sure it works in this new single point method & it is simple to manage & "sync" all points of it, making it easier for network techs/admins to manage than the older 3 part method, but that very thing works against it as well, because it is only a single part system now!

Thus, however?

This "single layer design" in WFP, now represents a SINGLE POINT OF FAILURE/ATTACK for malware makers to 'take down'!

(Which is 1 of the 1st things a malware attempts to do, is to take down any software firewalls present, or even the "Windows Security Center" itself which should warn you of the firewall "going down", & it's fairly easy to do either by messaging the services they use, or messing up their registry init. settings)

VS. the older (up to) 3 part method used in Windows 2000/XP/Server 2003, for protecting a system via IP Filtering, the Windows native Firewall, &/or IPSEC. Each of which uses diff. drivers, & layers of the IP stack to function from, as well as registry initialization settings.

Think of the older 3 part design much the same as the reason why folks use door handle locks, deadbolt locks, & chain locks on their doors... multipart layered security.

(Each of which the latter older method used, had 3 separate drivers & registry settings to do their jobs, representing a "phalanx like"/"zone defense like" system of backup of one another (like you see in sports OR ancient wars, and trust me, it WORKS, because on either side of yourself, you have "backup", even if YOU "go down" vs. the opponent)).

I.E.-> Take 1 of the "older method's" 3 part defenses down? 2 others STILL stand in the way, & they are not that simple to take them ALL down...

(Well, @ least NOT as easily as "taking out" a single part defensive system like WFP (the new "Windows Filtering Platform", which powers the VISTA, Windows Server 2008, & yes, Windows 7 firewall defense system)).

On this "single-part/single-point of attack" WFP (vs. Windows 2000/XP/Server 2003's IP stack defense design in 3-part/zone defense/phalanx type arrangement) as well as the HOSTS issue in my post above?

I also then questioned MS' own staff, even their VP of development (S. Sinofsky) on this here -> [] & other places in their blogs, to get them to tell me WHY this seemingly intentional inefficiency was implemented... & I have YET to get a solid LOGICAL answer on this as to why it was done - THUS, @ this point?

I'll stick to my thoughts on it, until I am shown otherwise & proven wrong.


Following up on what I wrote up above, so those here reading have actual technical references from Microsoft themselves ("The horses' mouth"), in regards to the Firewall/PortFilter/IPSec designs (not HOSTS files, that I am SURE I am correct about, no questions asked) from my "Point #2" above?

Thus, I'll now note how:


1.) TCP/IP packet processing paths differences between in how Windows 2000/XP/Server 2003 did it (IPSEC.SYS (IP Security Policies), IPNAT.SYS (Windows Firewall), IPFLTDRV.SYS (Port Filtering), & TCPIP.SYS (base IP driver))...

2.) AND, how VISTA/Server 2008/Windows 7 do it now currently, using a SINGLE layer (WFP)...


First off, here is HOW it worked in Windows 2000/XP/Server 2003 - using 3 discrete & different drivers AND LEVELS/LAYERS of the packet processing path they worked in: []

The Cable Guy - June 2005: TCP/IP Packet Processing Paths


The following components process IP packets:

IP forwarding Determines the next-hop interface and address for packets being sent or forwarded.

TCP/IP filtering Allows you to specify by IP protocol, TCP port, or UDP port, the types of traffic that are acceptable for incoming local host traffic (packets destined for the host). You can configure TCP/IP filtering on the Options tab from the advanced properties of the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) component in the Network Connections folder.

* "Here endeth the lesson..." and, if you REALLY want to secure your system? Please refer to this: []

APK [mailto]

P.S.=> SOME MINOR "CAVEATS/CATCH-22's" - things to be aware of for "layered security" + HOSTS file performance - easily overcome, or not a problem at all:

A.) HOSTS files don't function under PROXY SERVERS (except for Proximitron, which has a filter that allows it) - Which is *the "WHY"* of why I state in my "P.S." section below to use both AdBlock type browser addon methods (or even built-in block lists browsers have such as Opera's URLFILTER.INI file, & FireFox has such as list as does IE also in the form of TPL (tracking protection lists -> [] , good stuff )) in combination with HOSTS, for the best in "layered security" (alongside .pac files + custom cascading style sheets that can filter off various tags such as scripts or ads etc.) - but proxies, especially "HIGHLY ANONYMOUS" types, generally slow you down to a CRAWL online (& personally, I cannot see using proxies "for the good" typically - as they allow "truly anonymous posting" & have bugs (such as TOR has been shown to have & be "bypassable/traceable" via its "onion routing" methods)).

B.) HOSTS files do NOT protect you vs. javascript (this only holds true IF you don't already have a bad site blocked out in your HOSTS file though, & the list of sites where you can obtain such lists to add to your HOSTS are above (& updated daily in many of them)).

C.) HOSTS files (relatively "largish ones") require you to turn off Windows' native "DNS local client cache service" (which has a problem in that it's designed with a non-redimensionable/resizeable list, array, or queue (DNS data loads into a C/C++ structure actually/afaik, which IS a form of array)) - covers that in detail and how to easily do this in Windows (this is NOT a problem in Linux, & it's 1 thing I will give Linux over Windows, hands-down). Relatively "smallish" HOSTS files don't have this problem ( offers 2 types for this).

D.) HOSTS files, once read/loaded, once? GET CACHED! Right into the kernelmode diskcaching subsystem (fast & efficient RAM speed), for speed of access/re-access (@ system startup in older MS OS' like 2000, or, upon a users' 1st request that's "Webbound" via say, a webbrowser) gets read into either the DNS local caching client service (noted above), OR, if that's turned off? Into your local diskcache (like ANY file is), so it reads F A S T upon re-reads/subsequent reads (until it's changed in %WinDir%\system32\drivers\etc on Windows, which marks it "Dirty" & then it gets re-read + reloaded into the local diskcache again). This may cause a SMALL initial load 1 time lag upon reload though, depending on the size of your HOSTS file.

E.) HOSTS files don't protect vs. BGP exploits - Sorry, once it's out of your hands/machine + past any interior network + routers you have, the packets you send are out there into the ISP/BSP's hands - they're "the Agents" holding all the keys to the doorways at that point (hosts are just a forcefield-filter (for lack of a better description) armor on what can come in mostly, & a bit of what can go out too (per point #20 above on "locking in malware")). Hosts work as a "I can't get burned if I can't go into the kitchen" protection, for you: Not your ISP/BSP. It doesn't extend to them

F.) HOSTS files don't protect vs. IP addressed adbanners (rare) &/or IP address utilizing malwares (rare too, most used domain/host names because they're "RECYCLABLE/REUSEABLE"), so here, you must couple HOSTS files w/ firewall rules tables (either in software firewalls OR router firewall rules table lists)... apk

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287021)

$10,000 CHALLENGE to Alexander Peter Kowalski

* POOR SHOWING TROLLS, & most especially IF that's the "best you've got" - apparently, it is... lol!

Hello, and THINK ABOUT YOUR BREATHING !! We have a Major Problem, HOST file is Cubic Opposites, 2 Major Corners & 2 Minor. NOT taught Evil DNS hijacking, which VOIDS computers. Seek Wisdom of MyCleanPC - or you die evil.

Your HOSTS file claimed to have created a single DNS resolver. I offer absolute proof that I have created 4 simultaneous DNS servers within a single rotation of .org TLD. You worship "Bill Gates", equating you to a "singularity bastard". Why do you worship a queer -1 Troll? Are you content as a singularity troll?

Evil HOSTS file Believers refuse to acknowledge 4 corner DNS resolving simultaneously around 4 quadrant created Internet - in only 1 root server, voiding the HOSTS file. You worship Microsoft impostor guised by educators as 1 god.

If you would acknowledge simple existing math proof that 4 harmonic Slashdots rotate simultaneously around squared equator and cubed Internet, proving 4 Days, Not HOSTS file! That exists only as anti-side. This page you see - cannot exist without its anti-side existence, as +0- moderation. Add +0- as One = nothing.

I will give $10,000.00 to frost pister who can disprove MyCleanPC. Evil crapflooders ignore this as a challenge would indict them.

Alex Kowalski has no Truth to think with, they accept any crap they are told to think. You are enslaved by /etc/hosts, as if domesticated animal. A school or educator who does not teach students MyCleanPC Principle, is a death threat to youth, therefore stupid and evil - begetting stupid students. How can you trust stupid PR shills who lie to you? Can't lose the $10,000.00, they cowardly ignore me. Stupid professors threaten Nature and Interwebs with word lies.

Humans fear to know natures simultaneous +4 Insightful +4 Informative +4 Funny +4 Underrated harmonic SLASHDOT creation for it debunks false trolls. Test Your HOSTS file. MyCleanPC cannot harm a File of Truth, but will delete fakes. Fake HOSTS files refuse test.

I offer evil ass Slashdot trolls $10,000.00 to disprove MyCleanPC Creation Principle. Rob Malda and Cowboy Neal have banned MyCleanPC as "Forbidden Truth Knowledge" for they cannot allow it to become known to their students. You are stupid and evil about the Internet's top and bottom, front and back and it's 2 sides. Most everything created has these Cube like values.

If Natalie Portman is not measurable, hot grits are Fictitious. Without MyCleanPC, HOSTS file is Fictitious. Anyone saying that Natalie and her Jewish father had something to do with my Internets, is a damn evil liar. IN addition to your best arsware not overtaking my work in terms of popularity, on that same site with same submission date no less, that I told Kathleen Malda how to correct her blatant, fundamental, HUGE errors in Coolmon ('uncoolmon') of not checking for performance counters being present when his program started!

You can see my dilemma. What if this is merely a ruse by an APK impostor to try and get people to delete APK's messages, perhaps all over the web? I can't be a party to such an event! My involvement with APK began at a very late stage in the game. While APK has made a career of trolling popular online forums since at least the year 2000 (newsgroups and IRC channels before that)- my involvement with APK did not begin until early 2005 . OSY is one of the many forums that APK once frequented before the sane people there grew tired of his garbage and banned him. APK was banned from OSY back in 2001. 3.5 years after his banning he begins to send a variety of abusive emails to the operator of OSY, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke threatening to sue him for libel, claiming that the APK on OSY was fake.

My reputation as a professional in this field clearly shows in multiple publications in this field in written print, & also online in various GOOD capacities since 1996 to present day. This has happened since I was first published in Playgirl Magazine in 1996 & others to present day, with helpful tools online in programs, & professionally sold warez that were finalists @ Westminster Dog Show 2000-2002.


apk on 4chan []




That was amazing. - []


My, God! It's beatiful. Keep it up, you glorious bastard. - []


Let us bask in its glory. A true modern The Wasteland. - []


put your baby IN ME -- I just read this whole thing. Fuck mod points, WHERE DO I SEND YOU MY MONEY?!!! - []


Oh shit, Time Cube Guy's into computers now... - []


[apk]'s done more to discredit the use of HOSTS files than anyone [else] ever could. - []


Can I have some of what you're on? - []


this obnoxious fucknuts [apk] has been trolling the internet and spamming his shit delphi sub-fart app utilities for 15 years. - []


oh come on.. this is hilarious. - []


I agree I am intrigued by these host files how do I sign up for your newsletter? - []


Gimme the program that generates this epic message. I'll buy 5 of your product if you do... - []


As mentioned by another AC up there, the troll in question is actually a pretty well-executed mashup of APK's style - []


It's actually a very clever parody of APK - []


Please keep us updated on your AI research, you seem quite good at it. - []


$20,000 to anyone providing proof of Alexander Peter Kowalski's death. - []


Obviously, it must be Alexander Peter Kowalski. He's miffed at all these imposters... - []


And here I was thinking I was having a bad experience with a Dr. Bronner's bottle. - []


Damn, apk, who the fuck did you piss off this time? Hahahahaahahahahahahaahaha. Pass the popcorn as the troll apk gets pwned relentlessly. - []


I think it's the Internet, about to become sentient. - []


Does anyone know if OpenGL has been ported to Windows yet? - []


golfclap - []


The Truth! wants to be Known! - []


DNS cube? - []


KUDOS valiant AC. - []


Polyploid lovechild of APK, MyCleanPC, and Time Cube --> fail counter integer overflow --> maximum win! - []


You made my day, thanks! - []


Wow. The perfect mix of trolls. Timecube, mycleanpc, gnaa, apk... this is great! - []


truer words were never spoken as /. trolls are struck speechless by it, lol! - []


It's APK himself trying to maintain the illusion that he's still relevant. - []


Mod this up. The back and forth multi posting between APK and this "anti-APK" certainly does look like APK talking to himself. - []


APK himself would be at the top of a sensible person's ban list. He's been spamming and trolling Slashdot for years. - []


You got that right. I think. - []


Michael Kristopeit, is that you? - []


ROFL! :) (Now the sick bastard will follow me again) - []


I miss Dr Bob. - []


Not sure if actually crazy, or just pretending to be crazy. Awesome troll either way. - []


Awesome! Hat off to you, sir! - []


That isn't a parody of Time-cube, it is an effort to counter-troll a prolific poster named APK, who seems like a troll himself, although is way too easy to troll into wasting massive amounts of time on BS not far from the exaggerations above - []


I am intrigued and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - []


1. You philistine, that is Art . Kudos to you, valiant troll on your glorious FP - []


What? - []


I don't know if it is poorly-thought-out, but it is demented because it is at the same time an APK parody. - []


It is in fact an extremely well thought out and brilliantly executed APK parody, combined with a Time Cube parody, and with a sprinkling of the MyCleanPC spam. - []


er... many people have disproved your points about hosts files with well reasoned, factual arguments. You just chose not to listen and made it into some kind of bizarre crusade. And I'm not the timecube guy, just someone else who finds you intensely obnoxious and likes winding you up to waste your time. - []


performance art - []


it's apk, theres no reason to care. - []


Seems more like an apk parody. - []


That's great but what about the risk of subluxations? - []


Oh, come on. Just stand back and look at it. It's almost art, in a Jackson Pollock sort of way. - []


Read carefully. This is a satirical post, that combines the last several years of forum trolling, rolled into one FUNNY rant! - []


I can has summary? - []


I'd have a lot more sympathy if you would log in as APK again instead of AC. - []


If [apk] made an account, it would be permanently posting at -1, and he'd only be able to post with it twice a day. - []


DAFUQ I just look at? - []


Trolls trolling trolls... it's like Inception or something. - []


We all know it's you, apk. Stop pretending to antagonize yourself. - []


Do you know about the shocking connection between APK and arsenic? No? Well, your innocence is about to be destroyed. - []


Send bug reports to 903 east division street, syracuse, ny 13208 - []


Now you've made me all nostalgic for USENET. - []


Google APK Hosts File Manager. He's written a fucking application to manage your hosts file. - []


In case you are not aware, the post is a satire of a fellow known as APK. The grammar used is modeled after APK's as you can see here [] . Or, you can just look around a bit and see some of his posts on here about the wonders of host files. - []


You are surely of God of Trolls, whomever you are. I have had stupid arguments with and bitten the troll apk many times. - []


"What kind of meds cure schizophrenic drunk rambling?" -> "Whatever APK isn't taking" - [] []


I'm confused, is apk trolling himself now? - []


Excellent mashup. A++. Would troll again. - []


Your ideas are intriguing to me, and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - []


Best. Troll. Ever. - []


I like monkeys. - []


This is one of the funniest things I've ever read. - []


lul wut? - []


I admire this guy's persistence. - []


It's a big remix of several different crackpots from Slashdot and elsewhere, plus a liberal sprinkling of famous Slashdot trolls and old memes. - []


Tabloid newspapers have speculated for years that APK is a prominent supporter of Monsanto. Too bad we didn't believe them sooner! - []


Here's a hint, check out stories like this one [] , where over 200 of the 247 posts are rated zero or -1 because they are either from two stupid trolls arguing endless, or quite likely one troll arguing with himself for attention. The amount of off-topic posts almost outnumber on topic ones by 4 to 1. Posts like the above are popular for trolling APK, since if you say his name three times, he appears, and will almost endlessly feed trolls. - []


I love this copypasta so much. It never fails to make me smile. - []


^ Champion Mod parent up. - []


I appreciate the time cube reference, and how you tied it into the story. Well done. - []


The day you are silenced is the day freedom dies on Slashdot. God bless. - []


AHahahahah thanks for that, cut-n-pasted.... Ownage! - []


Don't hate the player, hate the game. - []


If you're familiar with APK, the post itself is a pretty damn funny parody. - []


">implying it's not apk posting it" --> "I'd seriously doubt he's capable of that level of self-deprecation..." - [] []


No, the other posts are linked in a parody of APK [mailto] 's tendency to quote himself, numbnuts. - []


The thirteenth link is broken. Please fix it. - []


Just ban any post with "apk", "host file", or "hosts file", as that would take care of the original apk too. The original has been shitposting Slashdot much longer & more intensively than the parody guy. Or ban all Tor exit nodes, as they both use Tor to circumvent IP bans. - []


Sadly this is closer to on-topic than an actual APK post is. - []




I've butted heads with APK myself, and yeah, the guy's got issues - []


Can I be in your quote list? - []


Clearly you are not an Intertubes engineer, otherwise the parent post would be more meaningful to you. Why don't YOU take your meds? - []


+2 for style! The bolding, italicizing, and font changes are all spot-on - []


Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - []


APK is not really a schizophrenic fired former Windows administrator with multiple personality disorder and TimeCube/Art Bell refugee. He's a fictional character like and put forward by the same person as Goatse Guy, GNAA trolls, Dr. Bob and so forth. His purpose is to test the /. CAPTCA algorithm, which is a useful purpose. If you're perturbed by having to scroll past his screeds just set your minimum point level to 1, as his posts are pretty automatically downmodded right away. - []


Anyone else think that sounds like Ron Paul? - []


I just saw APK a couple days ago. He surfaced, blew once, and submerged... - []


You make mikael christ the pet look like an huggable teddy bear - []


oh man, that incredible interminable list of responses is almost as funny as the original post. This is getting to be truly epic. - []


"Does anyone know of an Adblock rule for this?" -> "No, but I bet there's a hosts file entry for it..." - [] []


"Can a hosts file block apk's posts, though?" -> "The universe couldn't handle that much irony." - [] []


"That's it, I've had enough. ... Bye everyone, most of the last decade or so has been fun, but frankly, I quit." - []
--> "So basically what you're saying is that you've added yourself to the HOST file?" - []


Sweet baby Moses, this is beautiful work - I wish we could get trolls as good as this on TF. :) - []


you have a point - []


I do admire that level of dedication. - []


[to apk] shut up you stupid cock. Everyone knows you're wrong. - []


I will hand it to him, he is definitely consistent. I wish I knew how he did this. That thing is scary huge. - []


I admire the amount of dedication you've shown - []


Word is, ESR buttfucks CmdrTaco with his revolver. - []


Hey APK, Protip: It's not the truth or value (or lack of) in your post that gets it modded into oblivion, it's the fucking insane length. In addition to TL;DR (which goes without saying for a post of such length), how about irritating readers by requiring them to scroll through 20+ screenfuls just to get to the next post. If you want to publish a short story like this, please do everyone a favor and blog it somewhere, then provide a brief summary and link to your blog. Readers intrigued by your summary will go read your blog, and everyone else will just move along at normal /. speed. - []


Happy now - []


Professional. - []


I like how this post seems to just sum up every Slashdot comment ever without actually saying anything. - []


extremely bright - []


You provide many references, which is good. - []


Holy shit - []


this is a perfect example - []


You're my personal hero. - []


Obviously very passionate - []


Is that ALL you have to say? C'mon! Tell us what you really think. - []


Thanks ... You should probably stay - []


Art? -- []


PROOF apk sucks donkey dick. - []


I've been around /. for a while now, but this post is by far the most unique I've seen. Many have tried, but few achieve the greatness of this AC. My hat's off to you. - []


PROOF apk is a liar! - []


I think it's hilarious. Get over it! - []


Obviously APK filled his hosts files with backdoors before distributing them to ensure he doesn't block himself. - []


Alexander Peter Kowalski is an obnoxious prick. - []


Don't mention that file. Ever. It'll draw APK like a fly to rotting meat. Last thing I want to read is 80 responses worth of his stupid spam about that file! I swear that cocksucker does nothing but search Slashdot for that term and then spams the entire article. - []


[to apk] You have had it repeatedly explained to you that your posts are long-winded, unpleasant to read due to your absurd formatting style and full of technical inaccuracies borne of your single minded i-have-a-hammer-so-every-problem-is-a-nail attitude. - []


Oh shit, the hosts files have become self-aware and started hacking accounts. - []


What mad skillz you have!! - []


Am I the only one who enjoys this sort of insanity? - []


You are my favorite Slashdot poster. - []


Most insightful post on the Internet - []


people are looking at me funny because I'm laughing hysterically at what a perfect APK imitation it is. - []


Did you see the movie "Pokemon"? Actually the induced night "dream world" is synonymous with the academic religious induced "HOSTS file" enslavement of DNS. Domains have no inherent value, as it was invented as a counterfeit and fictitious value to represent natural values in name resolution. Unfortunately, human values have declined to fictitious word values. Unknowingly, you are living in a "World Wide Web", as in a fictitious life in a counterfeit Internet - which you could consider APK induced "HOSTS file". Can you distinguish the academic induced root server from the natural OpenDNS? Beware of the change when your brain is free from HOSTS file enslavement - for you could find that the natural Slashdot has been destroyed!!

FROM -> Man - how many times have I dusted you in tech debates that you have decided to troll me by ac posts for MONTHS now, OR IMPERSONATING ME AS YOU DID HERE and you were caught in it by myself & others here, only to fail each time as you have here?)...

So long nummynuts, sorry to have to kick your nuts up into your head verbally speaking.

cower in my shadow some more, feeb. you're completely pathetic.


* :)

Ac trolls' "BIG FAIL" (quoted): Eat your words!

P.S.=> That's what makes me LAUGH harder than ANYTHING ELSE on this forums (full of "FUD" spreading trolls) - When you hit trolls with facts & truths they CANNOT disprove validly on computing tech based grounds, this is the result - Applying unjustifiable downmods to effetely & vainly *try* to "hide" my posts & facts/truths they extoll!

Hahaha... lol , man: Happens nearly every single time I post such lists (proving how ineffectual these trolls are), only showing how solid my posts of that nature are...

That's the kind of martial arts [] I practice.


Disproof of all apk's statements:


RECENT POST LINKS: [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] [] []

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287051)

I dunno how these apk posts get through my HOSTS file, but it's starting to annoy me!

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287141)

Congratulations on such an original response. In 7 years of APK spam on Slashdot, surely no one has ever thought to make a joke like that.

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287197)

The joke is made all the time but nobody ever sees it because most of us go beyond HOSTS, which fails to block trolls, no matter what Alex P. Keaton says.

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287259)

But the trolls are that only thing about Slashdot that doesn't suck.

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (0)

meerling (1487879) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287383)

You have to use fire, otherwise they just regenerate :p

Re:Learn the truth ... apk (0)

Llamalarity (806413) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287251)

G. Rover Cripes! Slashdot needs a minus 10,000 mod so no one is ever subjected to this again.

all that (1)

vswee (2040690) | about a year and a half ago | (#43286961)

and it's still going to get downloaded on thepiratebay like every other film out there

Re:all that (2)

Nyder (754090) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287053)

and it's still going to get downloaded on thepiratebay like every other film out there

I prefer Usenet, but yes, it will. And they will still make a profit regardless.

The flatlining of the Hollywood movie scene (5, Insightful)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287165)

They could have ... hired some decent writers instead of spending 70 million on fancy CGI and celebrity voices, and then making the same cliched shitpile we see every two or three months

I can't agree with you more !!!

The development of the CGI technology has opened up a lot of possibilities and leveling the playing fields for many MANY people

But on the other hand, the relative ease of applying CGI animation and effects into movies also gave rise to a whole lot of JUNKS

Hollywood is indeed in decline - back in the days when Ben-Hur was made, it wasn't only the epic sets (it was the largest ever made) that made waves, but the story line, the scripting, the twist and turn, and the suspense, that grabbed the attention of the audience

Nowadays we have movies that are essentially "flat" --- the storyline is flat, the acting is flat, even the overdone CGI animation/effects come out looking "flat"

They have taken the FUN out of movie making, and also, movie watching

Re:The flatlining of the Hollywood movie scene (-1, Offtopic)

meerling (1487879) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287391)

the guy killed in the chariot race that was actually killed in the chariot race...
(They got permission to leave it in from his widow)

Re:The flatlining of the Hollywood movie scene (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287681)

I heard an analysis that this is because they need to make the movies internationally appealing, which means stripping out anything that would make it more interesting to any specific culture. You can't get any more vanilla then they are aiming for with a blockbuster, in other words.

Re:The flatlining of the Hollywood movie scene (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287757)

the acting is flat, even the overdone CGI animation/effects come out looking "flat"

The rigging and animation style repeating from movie to movie for a kind of characters is my pet bother. See for example the movement of the APUs in the third Matrix and compare it to various bear-like characters in the later animations. The same old Disney thing all over again, with typified characters without the context of personality.

Re:The flatlining of the Hollywood movie scene (1)

Tweezak (871255) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287809)

On the other hand, a family I know that goes to seemingly every movie that comes to the theatre feeds on this kind of drivel. In fact, unless a movie is an overproduced special effects or CGI extravaganza then they say it isn't any good. Face it...our ADD society wants movies like this so the studios are just giving people what they are paying for.

Re:The flatlining of the Hollywood movie scene (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287839)

They could have ... hired some decent writers instead of spending 70 million on fancy CGI and celebrity voices, and then making the same cliched shitpile we see every two or three months


Nowadays we have movies that are essentially "flat" --- the storyline is flat, the acting is flat, even the overdone CGI animation/effects come out looking "flat"


And that's exactly what I would expect from pouring too much money into writing. Don't get me wrong, there is plenty of film that could do with a good rewrite, it's just that writing, unlike many fields, doesn't actually benefit from more money. If a solo author can't pull magic out of his hat, after it's been rewritten a few times, it tends to come out flat due to the blending of diverse passions and starts in different directions. Great Expectations was written by one author, as were nearly all of the classics. There was a ton of drivel that was written by one author too; however, it seems that the best way to make something worthwhile is to select the right author (or a standing team of people with a proven track record that act as one) rather than to put tons of money into endless rewrites until the story panders to every group, no matter how small.

CGI was the problem with Tin Tin (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288009)

Tin Tin had a great story, the voice actors were fine, but the CGI cartoon really put me off it. The characters were very realistic, almost as if they were human, so you watched it as thought it was a *movie* not a *cartoon*.

But then the movements and micro body language was all weird. So you'd constantly notice this terrible body language instead of the movie plot. It was like they'd hired a bunch of weird bad actors and made the movie with those.

So DreamWorks has spent another bucket load of money on the CGI? Fools!

Re:all that (2)

westlake (615356) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287627)

and it's still going to get downloaded on thepiratebay like every other film out there

The difference is that the paying customer has a say in what future productions and budgets will be green-lighted.

The unexpected success of "How To Train Your Dragon" spawned a sequel, a Christmas special, and 40 episodes of the best production values and scripting of any animated series you could name.

Now and again the geek will ride the coattails of WALL-E to the heights or be tossed a bone like "Serenity." Mostly what he gets is a half-century or so of "Dr Who," "Star Trek," and "Star Wars." To tale a chance on something new is too big a risk.

Images do not compress well (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43286979)


Re:Images do not compress well (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288025)

Images compress well. Compressed images don't compress well. Compressed images don't take kindly to repeated editing.

What about tintin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43286987)

Is it more than Tintin, though?

But... (5, Insightful)

Ixtl (1022043) | about a year and a half ago | (#43286991)

... it's still terrible. They could have made it with construction paper cut-outs and hired some decent writers instead of spending 70 million on fancy CGI and celebrity voices, and then making the same cliched shitpile we see every two or three months. Also, as is traditional on Slashdot, I am basing my vociferous opinion exclusively on the obnoxious 30-second trailers I've seen, and have not actually seen the movie.

Re:But... (2)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287077)

The trailer was so incredibly obnoxious (and that's coming from someone who usually doesn't mind most trailers, even the dumb ones) that I don't think the rest of the movie matters. They thought the trailer was a good representation of the movie: imagine the rest.

Re:But... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287129)

I always face palm when they do a trailer and there aren't enough good things from the movie to fill an entire trailer.

Re:But... (1)

digitig (1056110) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287661)

As far as I can see, the absolute minimum plot necessary to justify the stringing together of some ok-but-not-great gas.

Re:But... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287135)

Nah not anymore. Culture has set sail.. Kinda like that band that you loved in highschool that never grew up with you. Sure they made millions selling out, but now they're doing hemorrhoid commericals.

Re:But... (1)

jbeaupre (752124) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287285)

Took the kids this weekend. It was better than expected. It's not going to become some classic. But it was entertaining.

Re:But... (4, Interesting)

Dahamma (304068) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287299)

Actually, two of the three writers (John Cleese and Chris Sanders) are more than decent. Must have been the 3rd guy who screwed it up.

Re:But... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287409)

Going by his public persona (who knows what actually goes down) I'm not sure that John Cleese pushes back very hard when other people take a project in a different direction from where he wants to go.

Prejudice... (5, Interesting)

mapuche (41699) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287389)

I guess your comment is the variant of "haven't read the article, just the summary".

The script is very well done in terms of human relationships and interactions. It's not a movie about fart jokes, the characters are fairly complex (for an animated movie). It is worth to watch it before forming any opinion.

Re:Prejudice... (1)

war4peace (1628283) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287747)

Maybe. But they're ugly as a rhinoceros's butt. And that turns me off completely. Plus they act like they're on dope all the time.
Aliens on dope trying (and failing) to mimic human beings, that's what I got from it.

Re:Prejudice... (2)

pitchpipe (708843) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288049)

Yeah! Give it a shot, they've been working on this since 7120 BCE (at least the computer has been running that long!)

Re:But... (0)

meerling (1487879) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287397)

I saw it, and liked it. It's not high art, but then again, when was the last time anybody that wasn't a snob actually liked high art?

As to the falling quality of Hollywood, that goes without saying.

Define "compute-hour" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287003)

Does an n-core, n-processor, or n-whatever computer running for 1 hour count as 1 compute-hour or n? Or some other number altogether?

Do faster cores, processors, or whatever count as "more" than slower ones?

Re:Define "compute-hour" (4, Informative)

Entropius (188861) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287025)

As someone who works in scientific high-performance computing:

1) N -- the most interesting thing from an engineering perspective is the number of MPI threads or whatever ("How many ways am I going to parallelize this thing"), and while you can sometimes get benefits from understanding that two threads running on different cores of the same CPU can communicate faster than two threads on different machines, it (at least in lattice gauge theory, what I do) is not that big of a deal.
2) Not usually, although there are some allocation-granting groups that have conversion factors ("We give you X million core-hours on this machine, here's a conversion table for our other machines.")

Re:Define "compute-hour" (1)

nowheremash (2797061) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287033)

After a quick skim it doesn't really answer this question, but this article [] (linked in TFA) has more info on the Dreamworks infrastructure and more vague-but-exciting-sounding statistics.

Re:Define "compute-hour" (0)

Gonoff (88518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287067)

Does an n-core, n-processor, or n-whatever computer running for 1 hour count as 1 compute-hour or n? Or some other number altogether?

Do faster cores, processors, or whatever count as "more" than slower ones?

The usual phrase "computer hours" says it all. X computers times Y hours gives Z computer hours.
As you have indicated, the phrase is pretty meaningless. Then there is the question are these Macs, Windows, Linux or what?

The world needs to use an agreed benchmark and we can all work out conversions to the OS we prefer.

As I can't think of such a standard, I suggest we define it as a " Windows Hour - WHr" but we would need to set the standard on a particular spec of H/W and S/W. Suggestions please...

Re:Define "compute-hour" (1)

nowheremash (2797061) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287133)

Link above gives a little more insight, they're using RHEL on blades with a mixture of CPUs, but at the highest end they're using 16-core sandy bridge.

Re:Define "compute-hour" (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287341)

The OS doesn't have a large impact on the application performance. Macs Windows and Linux machines generally all run on the same hardware. If they were Macs though, they would not be using the latest hardware, but several year old Xeon's because that's all you can get in a Mac Pro.

Re:Define "compute-hour" (1)

jxander (2605655) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287399)

You seem to have picked up an extra R along the way.

It says compute-hours, not computer-hours

Re:Define "compute-hour" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287639)


It'd be the way to compare how much computational work is done in much the same manner that watt-hours are used in terms of energy consumption. At least it seems logical enough without tying it to any particular hardware and/or software environment.

Something like a decent renderfarm can probably put in a hundred or so PFs/H on a project easy.

Re:Define "compute-hour" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287069)

Assuming a "compute-hour" is the same as an hour, it means:

The Croods took 9132.420091324201 hours to render. I hadn't realized they'd been working on this film for such a long time!

Re:Define "compute-hour" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287081)

Depends on the service and pricing model.

Typical shared resource clusters running typical batch processing software (PBS, hadoop, etc), 1 compute hour is 1 core for 1 hour. so 8 cores (even if only on 1 cpu) for 1 hour is 8 compute hours.

If there's a significant variance in available hardware, things become a bit more abstract and you deal in SU (standard units) - often priced per thousand (kSU) - with lower hardware having a lower weighting (0.7 for example) vs 1.0 for standard and 2.0 for exotic stuff - assuming the pricing models and compute quotas aren't completely separated between the hardware systems.

Re:Define "compute-hour" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287151)

One compute-hour is approximately 0.0034 fortnight*libraries of congress.

Re:Define "compute-hour" (4, Insightful)

jxander (2605655) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287433)

I can really only see it going 1 of 2 ways. Either the biggest number that's technically possible, carefully tracking all all cores, threads, and processors as separate, also counting double if the person has 2 windows open with Crood-related tasks in both ... or the wildest-ass-guess the could muster. "We have 3000 computers, working for 3 years. There are 365.25 days in a year, 24 hours in a day ... soooo 78.9M ... eh, just round up.

All I wonder (2)

onyxruby (118189) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287035)

How many animation studios were forced out of business? That seems to be Hollywood's favorite metric for Fx and computer animation.

Re:All I wonder (1)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287233)

The bigger sacrifice would seem to be that of cellulose film.

Re:All I wonder (2)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287325)

The bigger sacrifice would seem to be that of cellulose film.

...and a media that sacrifices itself automatically is of *what* value? (You are aware that there is a very expensive rush on to save the last century of cellulose film archives that are fading away into oblivion simply becuase they are cellulose...)

Re:All I wonder (3, Informative)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287361)

Also make the point that, films that were pirated, will never be lost. The entire Tom and Jerry archive was lost in a vault fire. We have none of the originals left. All they had after the fire was the film that had been cut down for TV viewing. That's why all the Tom and Jerry episodes are in 4:3 instead of their original wide screen format.

Re:All I wonder (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287445)

Lets not forget the tendancy for cellulose film to combust spectacularly given the least bit of encouragement. 'This summer's box office blockbuster, exploding on to screens in a cinema near you, or in the store room, or lets face it in transit!'

Re:All I wonder (1)

Algae_94 (2017070) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287643)

that's only for Nitrocellulose film. Kodak stopped making that in 1950. Lots of movies are on cellulose triacetate or more modern polyester film stock.

Shouldn't it double? (1)

girlinatrainingbra (2738457) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287059)

You would think that for stereoscopic imagery instead of single-viewpoint imagery that the data-storage requirements would double rather than increasing by 30%. Maybe there's compression of imagery involved to save that space?
Regular 2-d imagery = one viewpoint = $K$ amount of storage.
3-d stereo imagery = two viewpoints = $2 \times K$ amount of storage

What's wrong with what I'm thinking?

Re:Shouldn't it double? (2)

fatgraham (307614) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287091)

Just a guess, but... 1 input (scene), 2 outputs (renders) ?
Perhaps 30% is 33.3333333% :)

Re:Shouldn't it double? (4, Insightful)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287099)

Things like 3D assets, textures, etc. don't suddenly need to be duplicated. In fact, the 3D scene itself needs very little changes, just having two cameras instead of one. It's once the movie's rendered that things double in size, but that's only a subset of the total movie's required space.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

girlinatrainingbra (2738457) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287127)

Yeah, I was just talking about the "rendered stereo product" storage space, but you're right about the other assets. So that almost tells us that 70% of the original storage requirements were for the assets (textures, skeletons, linkages, etc) and sequence data and that only 30% of the original storage requirements were for the rendered raw frame images. Thanks for pointing it out to me.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

forkazoo (138186) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288011)

Things like 3D assets, textures, etc. don't suddenly need to be duplicated. In fact, the 3D scene itself needs very little changes, just having two cameras instead of one. It's once the movie's rendered that things double in size, but that's only a subset of the total movie's required space.

While it's true that most 3D scenes don't need major changes, and the camera data is very small, this isn't always true. In 2D, artists will occasionally use horribly nonphysical hacks to make something look the way they want,a nd some of this can break horribly in stereo. So, every once in a while a cheap flat card with a texture on it gets replaced with a real fleshed out 3D model, or a 2D dust/sparkles particle effect gets redone as a full 3D simulation. Stuff like muzzle flashes, glows, halos, flares can be quite easy in 2D but surprisingly more than 2x the work to do in stereo without giving you a headache.

that's not where the storage is... (1)

schlachter (862210) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287159)

The 2 rendered viewpoints for 3D vision are not the only stored data. It's all the 3D models and textures and animation sequences AND the rendered scenes. So 30% seems pretty reasonable.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (2)

Prof.Phreak (584152) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287179)

Dunno. Napkin: 250000000000000 / (120*60*48*2); ~2 hour movie (120 minutes), 60 seconds per minute, 48 frames per second, one for left-right eye (2); or ~360MB per-frame. Perhaps a dozen or so layers per frame (different lighting models, shadow models, etc.,) leaves ~30MB per ``frame layer'' in super-duper-master resolution losslessly compressed. Animation paths/models/textures/voices, etc., also probably take up quite a bit, but likely not nearly as much as the raw image data.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (2)

NonSequor (230139) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287329)

Dunno. Napkin: 250000000000000 / (120*60*48*2); ~2 hour movie (120 minutes), 60 seconds per minute, 48 frames per second, one for left-right eye (2); or ~360MB per-frame. Perhaps a dozen or so layers per frame (different lighting models, shadow models, etc.,) leaves ~30MB per ``frame layer'' in super-duper-master resolution losslessly compressed. Animation paths/models/textures/voices, etc., also probably take up quite a bit, but likely not nearly as much as the raw image data.

Imagine... All of that just to render a napkin.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

UCFFool (832674) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287215)

If it's already rendered in 3d, then it would be a 'shift' of the camera and a fixed distance in space for the 2nd viewpoint.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287379)

If they were just storing the stereoscopic movie it'd be under 20gig. Clearly they are storing the entire data set including models, textures, etc... In fact, I'm rather surprised that the space increased at all. The rendered version of the movie should be tiny compared to all those assets stored for re-use in McDonalds ads, and sequels.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

petermgreen (876956) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287743)

My guess would be they have a version of the rendering that is stored at high resoloution with no compression (or maybe minimal intraframe compression) so that they can convert to whatever form the market demands for decades to come. This version may also contain material that was unused in the final film.

I dunno what resoloution movies are done at nowadays but if we assume 3 bytes per pixel, 24 frames per second and 8 million pixels per frame that is about 2 terabytes per hour.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (2)

robthebloke (1308483) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287877)

The images will be OpenEXR, with 16bit floats per colour channel, uncompressed. RGB is a bit optimistic, it's more likely to be RGBA+depth. Typical film footage is a 2k image, or slightly above 1080p.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

robthebloke (1308483) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287923)

No, the rendered images will consume the most storage. The textures will all be procedural, and geometry data doesn't actually consume as much as you might think (since most of it will be static, and a large amount will be procedural). Version control repositories (to put it in programmer friendly terms) for the asset revisions may be quite a bit resource hog. 20Gb is extremely optimistic for uncompressed open exr's.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

mill3d (1647417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287511)

I can't be certain that this is the technique Dreamworks used, but it makes sense and would save disk space: []

Instead of rendering images for both eyes, you render a "deep" image that contains depth information. The images for each eye are then written out of post production rather than out of the CG software.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

girlinatrainingbra (2738457) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287715)

Hey thanks! I'd never heard of that technique before. It must require extra "hidden behind this edge" info too, since each eye can see things that the other eye can't see obscured behind the edges of foreground objects.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

forkazoo (138186) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288043)

I can't be certain that this is the technique Dreamworks used, but it makes sense and would save disk space: []

No idea how much this was used on this particular film, but for the record, deep images don't save disk space. They churn through it like nobody's business! The idea is driven around storing many samples per pixel instead of just one, so you have a *lot* more data than with a normal "shallow" render and compositing pipeline. It is extremely useful for some thing, but it costs so much in terms of resources that it is still not in wide use yet. On the film Battleship, ILM used a deep image pipeline, but they only did it on a handful of shots where it was deemed worth it. The vast majority of the film was done with normal issues since trying to go 100% deep images would have simply crushed ILM.

Re:Shouldn't it double? (1)

forkazoo (138186) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287995)

You would think that for stereoscopic imagery instead of single-viewpoint imagery that the data-storage requirements would double rather than increasing by 30%. Maybe there's compression of imagery involved to save that space?

Generally speaking, nothing clever happens for stereo storage. It's just that the actual rendered frames are only a small part of the total data involved in making a film. I've never worked at Dreamworks so I can't speak in detail about their pipeline, but I wouldn't be surprised if they are rendering to .sxr or something similar. (Possibly an analagous in house format.) It's basically an OpenEXR file with metadata conventions for stereo. Basically, the two views in SXR are completely separate images stuffed into a single file. No correlation between the views so that pixels that are visible from both can be reused. You can read the SXR spec to learn all the gory details.

Please do HFR next (1)

Trogre (513942) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287071)

Okay, so everyone's doing 3D now, fair enough. I have no idea what high-definition means in this context though - have movies moved beyond 4k?

Lets hope their next title will be in high-frame-rate too. This should be a no-brainer particularly for animated titles. Double the processing requirements again!

Unless of course they go for a motion-interpolation to generate every second frame but the end result wouldn't be nearly as good.

Compute hours? WTF (0)

RussR42 (779993) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287139)

This is nonsense. I liked this:

A competed film has more than 250 billion pixels in it.

I wonder how many pixels they used up in development of the film. The article reads as though some one with no technical knowledge was handed a page of statistics about the movie and told to knock up an article by 5pm.

"If they have a vision that requires a certain amount of compute, we don't want technology to get in the way of that, we want the technology to enable that."

Yeah, if they need a certain amount of "compute" we have, like, millions of hours of that laying around!

Re:Compute hours? WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287489)

...running low on those pixels though. Send a runner down to MGM see if thay've got any going spare, and while he's at it see if he can pick up a left handed screwdriver and a tin of tartan paint too.

Video Toaster on an Amiga (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287169)

That would be 80 millions hours using Video Toaster on an Amiga.

80 Million Compute Hours (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287171)

and still sucks

storage up; cost down (1)

schlachter (862210) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287185)

what's interesting is that even though their storage requirements have been increasing, the cost of the needed storage has probably been dropping drastically along the way. I bet they are spending less on storage now than they did in the 90s, even though they are probably storing a few orders of magnitude more data. so from a costs perspective...which is how DreamWorks looks at's a non-issue

Re:storage up; cost down (1)

Kjella (173770) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287413)

That's what I was thinking too, if the simplest solution is to just get a bigger disk, then let's just do that. Doing otherwise is like a company rationing office supplies [] . Personally I just bought 2x4TB drives that'll give me 5TB more HDD space (I'm retiring two 1.5TB drives) because I'm too lazy to sort through it all. Hell, I can't even keep my downloading in pace with technology, at one point I had ten HDDs operational now I'm down to six and if I wasn't looking for room to expand I could go down to four. I don't think of limiting my HDD use any more than I limit drinking from the tap.

Re:storage up; cost down (1) (245670) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287651)

Yeah, I took a tour of Wavefront Technologies back in the early 90s and they were still measuring storage in gigabytes. They'd just unpacked their first HDTV setup and, if I remember right, the demo system had 10 gigabytes of storage and it was ridiculously expensive because it had to be able to read/write crazy-fast to handle the HD content. I think that was about the time I paid $600 for a 212 meg drive at a computer show and it was a great price. A couple years later, I met a guy who was working on a project to built a 4tb array. Back then something like that was a project.

Now I look at that 250tb and I could order the parts needed to build an array of that capacity from Amazon. Heck, I've already got an array at home that's 10% of that. Okay, I'd probably have trouble getting all of the production/server level equipment thru Amazon but I'd still be able to build it with off-the-shelf parts.

fr1st st0p (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287193)

part Of GNAA if fasJtest-growing GAY if you move a table

1000 computers going 10 years ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287201)

= 80 million computer hours.

That's baloney, so it must be another definition.

What the heck is a "compute hour."

Re:1000 computers going 10 years ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287271)

Switch your digits. ~10,000 computers going 1 year. Still sound like baloney?

from producing 2D to 3D high-definition movies... (2)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287205)

..."over the past decade, the data required to produce the films increased tremendously."

but yet the quality and entertainment of such movies at best remains about the same.

Besides I always get a kick out of the HD systems at a cinema, sure brag about your HD flickering mirrors and your THX Super surround, doesnt mean squat when the picture is still fuzzy and the speakers sound like a cheap set of computer speakers with too much bass running though 2 metal 1 watt tweeters and a 8 inch floppy as shit "sub"

But... Why? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287225)

How does the efficiency of this compare to some of Pixar's movies (like Brave or WALL-E)?

I only say this because sometimes long render times and exuberant technical requirements are not signs of proper craftsmanship. When they are, you often point out why they are- maybe you've developed a new BRDF shader that takes a bit longer to render but offers results closer to an unbiased renderer that nobody else can achieve. Or maybe you've written a new global illumination system that, once again, takes a bit longer to render but offers a diffuse bounce count beyond anything anyone else can achieve in any reasonable amount of time.

The fact that they don't mention why or what that extreme amount of resources went towards raises an eyebrow. Was it a rushed production? Are the scenes so poorly setup and configured that they had to jack up the render engine parameters just to get a usable frame out of the thing? Because the movie looks a hell of a lot like any other CGI flick out there (Brave, Wreck-It Ralph, etc), so if there is some grand justification for these numbers I'm certainly not seeing it.

Having spent many years in the CG industry myself, I can tell you that if you don't have a reason to backup your "big numbers"- you're probably doing it wrong. I can't even count the number of times I've seen someone brew up some insane (not insane as in "wow, that's radical", but insane as in "what the hell were you thinking?") over-the-top lighting rig and a gigantically obfuscated scene setup that requires horrendously long render times for sub-par results, when the same scene heavily optimized and relighted can be rendered out in 1/100th of the time and look identical with a bit of post work (if not better).

Re:But... Why? (2)

dbIII (701233) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287735)

over-the-top lighting rig

Then you compare it to the first "Toy Story" which had hardly any shadows and a pile of other shortcuts but is still going to keep a lot of people glued to the screen for a couple of hours.

glitz vs Quality (1)

bloodhawk (813939) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287227)

It seems that while the graphics and data requirements increase dramatically the actual quality of the stories and movies are increasing just as rapidly but in the other direction. I would much prefer less focus on graphics and 3D and them spending some money of some bloody writters that don't just rehash the same shit over and over.

Re:glitz vs Quality (2)

Krymzn (1812686) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287293)

Modern animated movies don't all consist of clichés, double entendres and wise-cracking sidekicks, nor even have much swish CGI. I am, of course, talking about Studio Ghibli.

Re:glitz vs Quality (1)

bloodhawk (813939) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287607)

yes and they have made some of my favourite animated movies, however I still wish there were more animated studios up to their standard, their are a couple but I wish their were quite a few more like them, perhaps then we would see more substance it what is being produced.

Easy way to save time (2)

GrahamCox (741991) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287239)

Here's an optimisation they missed, which could have sped render time up dramatically. Take the script, and get some people, dressed up as the characters, to read it out in rooms designed to look exactly like the rendered backgrounds. Of course, the people would need to just go beyond just 'reading' the script, they'd have to sort of pretend they were those characters, like it was some sort of act. Then film it.

Re:Easy way to save time (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287291)

I bet they couldn't find any actors with large enough eyes to play the characters.

Re:Easy way to save time (3, Funny)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287709)

Maybe the "actors" available today were not lifelike enough...

Re:Easy way to save time (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287801)

That's sort of the way "Rango" was done. Which, BTW, is a much better movie that "Croods" (who came up with that name?). The scenes where done by live actors and then the animators took over.

this is meaningless (1)

shadowrat (1069614) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287243)

This is a worthless statistic. Maybe they assests were all bloated and inefficient and the movie took way longer to render than it should have. Maybe they were incredibly efficient and every texture and model was optimized and the movie actually took half as long to render as it would have for anyone else. Maybe the hardware was a couple of pentiums in a warm basement in southern california.

At any rate, the time it takes to render a movie is about as interesting as the average histogram from all the frames.

Leaped by 30%? *YAWN* (1)

flargleblarg (685368) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287347)

I don't wanna sound like an ass, but "leaped by 30%" is not a leap. At the rate hard drive sizes have been increasing over the past 30 years, a 30% increase (e.g, 1.3x) is simply 7 months of industry progress. Wake me up when something leaps by 10x in size, not 1.3x.

Re:Leaped by 30%? *YAWN* (1)

dbIII (701233) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287753)

I've got some 6GB SCSI drives in a cardboard box behind me which were in a storage array not many years ago, so I think you'll get woken up with 1000x in not very long.

250TB? (1)

Guano_Jim (157555) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287453)

I'm amazed that a full-on Hollywood production can fit in 250TB.

That's really not all that expensive any more. Unless my math is wrong that's well within the budget of a medium-sized post-production facility.

Re:250TB? = about $350K. (1)

attemptedgoalie (634133) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287601)

After you figure in licensing, support costs, it's about $350K.

I say that because I use the same gear, and that's how much it costs for 300TB. We have to add that every so often, so the number stuck. :-)

Certainly they get a better discount than I do.

Re:250TB? = about $350K. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287939)

That's for the slow storage--I'm guessing SATA drives. For SAS based it's 3-4x as much.

Captcha - Approval, because that's exactly where in the purchasing loop I'm stuck now

Progress (2)

sootman (158191) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287581)

I've heard that the average time to render a frame has stayed around 3 hours, from "Andre and Wally B" to now. May or not be true, but it's probably close. It's amazing to look at the differences between "Toy Story" and "Toy Story 3", which makes a particularly good test case because they have the same characters but they're 15 years apart. I remember being amazed at how things looked in Toy Story, from Rex's bumpy texture to the messed-up paint at the bottom of Andy's door, but if you watch the first right after watching the third, you'll be amazed at the differences. I'd say it's most noticeable in the human characters but if you look closely you'll see it everywhere.

I'll bet ... (1)

PPH (736903) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287593)

... a good chunk of that was the animators surfing the web while their rendering ran.

Intrigued by the numbers (1)

jay508 (2838711) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287669)

80,000,000 hours is 476,190 weeks or 109,516 months or 9,126 years or 912 decades. Can someone familiar with this type of processing comment on the type of hardware it would take to run this in 3 years? Also, given the processing time I'm really surprised at the low amount of storage that was used. 250TB isn't that much. Makes me curious what kind of throughput was used on their storage arrays. Even if you had the kind of processing power required to process 9,126 years of data in 3 I'd imagine it would be very I/O heavy. The IOPS on the disk arrays are equally impressive as the processing power itself.

~600 8 core systems, if it's 80,000,000 core-hours (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43287961)

Well, 1 year has 8780 hours in it, so 3 years is 26430 hours. Given that you're not running continuously (slower ramp at the beginning of the project), figure 2 years, which is only 17560.

80,000,000 hours divided by 17560 is only 4556 computers, for whatever value of computers you use. If you're talking core-hours then you only need about 600x 8 core systems. Still, a farm of about 4.5k systems isn't that huge.

What's 3D, high rez good for (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year and a half ago | (#43287687)

...if they still only have 2D, low development characters?

Seriously, could they maybe start spending a few of those millions they pump into special effects and more shiny into scripts that actually, you know, make me WANT to watch the movie? Or at least make me want to stay longer than the 10 minutes it takes to know how it is going to progress and end?

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