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Revelations On the French Big Brother

PsychicX Tinfoil time (98 comments)

It's almost as if every country of note is running massive internet surveillance programs, is aware of everybody else's program, and is only using the leaks as an excuse to publicly complain about something everyone knows everyone else is doing.

Nah, that would just be paranoid.

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do You Sell an Algorithm To Venture Capitalists?

PsychicX From experience (205 comments)

I have talked to VCs a number of times. Always wound up finding other funding in the end, but got a lot of perspective on what VCs are looking for and how they anticipate getting it.

Number one: a VC expects 5x-10x return on investment. That return is typically from selling to another company (which may itself be a VC). It may also be from revenue but VCs these days are less interested in active revenue. They want to sell the company and move on.
Number two: They don't care so much about the actual technology. It's important to have good demos etc, but it's kind of a tertiary concern. VCs are investing, first and foremost, in people who they think will get it done. Not just on the tech side, but on the business side.
Number three: The more you talk about the tech's details, the worse it gets. Focus on why this makes sense to consumers at a high level. Focus on why YOU are special. Not the algorithm. YOU.
Number four: It is enormously helpful to have important industry people to vouch for you. Find filmmakers or producers or somebody who are successful with recognized achievements, and have them write mini-recommendations for the tech.

As engineers, it is very tempting to try and explain to a VC why your algorithm is so much more clever than what's out there. Do not bother. That's not what capital is about.

about a year ago

Xen-Based Secure OS Qubes Hits 1.0

PsychicX Re:What a specimen (175 comments)

In all seriousness, it is nice to see that a perfectly normal looking woman (ie not "ugly" or "manly" as is often the norm for acceptability into male-dominated circles) is also a brilliant hacker and presumably successful businesswoman. Wait, not nice -- fantastic. Amazing. Wonderful.

about 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Best On-Site Backup Plan?

PsychicX Re:Delete more (326 comments)

I'm doing DSLR video work, and my camera is recording 700 MB of data per minute. (Hacked GH2 at high bitrates. Ouch!) Still not sure how I want to deal with the massive amount of data coming in, most of which is trashed in edit.

more than 2 years ago

Engineer Thinks We Could Build a Real Starship Enterprise In 20 Years

PsychicX A cost of one trillion dollars? (589 comments)

That's going to be one really, really big Kickstarter project.

more than 2 years ago

Lack of Technology Puts Star Wars Series On Hold

PsychicX He's forgotten what made Star Wars good (309 comments)

This is coming from a man who put together A New Hope on a shoestring budget fighting against all the odds. Now he can't put together a decent TV show at a decent budget? Come on. People don't watch Star Wars for the insane production values.

more than 3 years ago

Upscaling Retro 8-Bit Pixel Art To Vector Graphics

PsychicX Re:Yawn (325 comments)

Spoke too soon, the paper has an hq4x comparison. The results are really, really good -- it actually manages to do a better job than hq4x on Super Mario World.

more than 3 years ago

Upscaling Retro 8-Bit Pixel Art To Vector Graphics

PsychicX Re:Yawn (325 comments)

You can't understand the difference between SCALING and VECTORIZING? Really? Scaling algorithms increase the number of pixels, but you're fundamentally still dealing with a raster image. A vectorized drawing is a whole different beast.

That said, I would like to compare the final results against a best of breed scalar like hq4x for the same final output resolution.

more than 3 years ago

Confirmed: Microsoft Says It Will Open Source VB 6

PsychicX Re:And we care why? (205 comments)

As someone who is heavily involved in the Microsoft world -- does anyone care? Seriously, I did some great work with VB6 back in the day, but it was already struggling for any vague relevance by 2003. What possible appeal does the source code hold, apart from historical curiosity and amusement at what is probably a hilarious codebase? This doesn't help any Microsoft-houses, who have long since been forced to bail on VB6 -- and the stragglers are technical incompetents who can't get anything out of this.

In 2003, I could see how this would've been supremely useful (if arguably dangerous in any number of ways). Now, it just doesn't make any sense at all.

more than 3 years ago

Miguel De Icaza Forms New Mono Company: Xamarin

PsychicX Re:Surely... (286 comments)

It's a matter of unnecessary Slashdot editorializing, promotion of stupid viewpoints by stupid people. Free Software, amongst other things, exists to promote choice amongst developers and users both. So why is losing effective development choices productive? It isn't. But because there's a vague connection to Microsoft here, it must be evil and be destroyed. Especially now with Java in Oracle hands, what does this accomplish? It's like these people never got out of college and think their professors' dedication to C and a UNIX variant is the only legitimate viewpoint.

more than 3 years ago

Why Unlocked Phones Don't Work In the US

PsychicX The problem is not locked vs unlocked (442 comments)

It's popular to talk about why 'unlocked' phones, but I would wager that the vast majority of unlocked phone buyers do not care that the phone is unlocked. It's irrelevant. We're not planning to switch networks. It's the contract that is the problem. Locked phones are fine as long as they're off contract. And off contract is exactly where cell companies don't want their customers to be.

more than 3 years ago

The State of Linux IO Scheduling For the Desktop?

PsychicX Re:what about servers? (472 comments)

Funny how the miraculous solution to every problem anyone has with Linux is always just about to go in with the next version. Sure the current one sucks, but we promise the next one is totally different! Sigh.

more than 3 years ago

Benoit Mandelbrot Dies At 85

PsychicX Re:Dead? (131 comments)

He was at our graduation ceremony this past May (Hopkins 10) getting an honorary degree, in fact.

more than 3 years ago

Why Are We Losing Vertical Pixels?

PsychicX Re:Consider color balance, sub-pixel anti-aliasing (1140 comments)

What monitor type are you using? Remember that most PC monitors are TN type, which have terrible vertical viewing angles. You don't normally notice vertical angles -- until you turn it sideways and discover massive color shifts. IPS screens (Dell has a whole line now) are vastly better.

more than 3 years ago

Freetype Lands In... Microsoft Office?

PsychicX Re:Must burn. (212 comments)

Which is part of the Entertainment and Devices divison of MS, for some crazy reason.

about 4 years ago

Cambered Tires Can Improve Fuel Economy

PsychicX Re:How? (317 comments)

Many "normal" cars that are meant to be even vaguely sporty or fun to drive run a degree or two of negative camber as well. It's pretty much vital for reasonable cornering.

more than 4 years ago

Sun Founders' Push For Open Source Education

PsychicX - Probability and Stastics - nice book (169 comments)

Classic Sun style move. There are plenty of open source textbook efforts out there. Instead of contributing to them, start a new effort, pull a bunch of media hype, and generally sabotage everyone else without even acknowledging them -- all while providing mediocre results. Sun did it for twenty years and I guess it's a McNealy signature.

more than 4 years ago

Droid X Self-Destructs If You Try To Mod

PsychicX Re:It's the principle of the thing and more. (757 comments)

This tech is already in the Xbox 360, and has been from the day it launched. It's used slightly differently, mainly to prevent firmware downgrades. But it seems likely that hardware fuses are quietly tripped when you mod the console so that MS can do their mass bannings. So claims that users will accidentally trip it are perhaps far-fetched.

more than 4 years ago


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