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Don't Super-Size My Smartphone!

Xocet_00 Re:Bigger != Better (660 comments)

I ended up buying the Xperia Ray for size reasons, despite the lower performance. If you put a custom kernel on it, it will overclock up to 2GHz (if you're brave). Anyone can safely run with the chip at 1.6GHz (this is what I do). I still get a full two days from the battery even at the speed (i.e. Monday morning until Tuesday night), and the wall charger will top it up from 10% or so in about an hour. The overclock really makes up for a lot.

about 2 years ago

Diablo 3 To Be Released On May 15th

Xocet_00 Re:So... DRM laden constant-connection bullshit? (246 comments)

If the production is anything like the beta, it's even worse than you think. Yes, you have to be constantly connected and you sign in with your Battlenet account. This has obvious disadvantages, but it has the advantage of carrying your characters and settings around with you when you switch systems. I don't mind this so much. What really eats me is the fact that not only do you have to be connected to play, your actions in the game are communicated to and from the server. In other words, every time you press a button, there's a transaction with the server, just like in World of Warcraft. So unlike Starcraft where you could connect on any old shitty connection and then play single player just fine, in Diablo III you will lag even in single player if your connection is poor. It's been a huge problem for me during the beta. It's possible there's something that I don't understand about how to set up my game. Maybe I can avoid this somehow. But if you log in and hit "Start Game" on whatever character while your connection is poor, you'll find the game pretty much unplayable.

more than 2 years ago

Asteroid Will Make Close Pass To Earth

Xocet_00 Re:Let's get this to scale... (119 comments)

But the Earth is much larger than a bowling pin. I'd say that passing passing within a few Earth radii is of us is a fair definition of a near miss.

more than 2 years ago

Windows XP In a Browser

Xocet_00 Licensing issue? (217 comments)

This has to violate the license terms of XP.

more than 3 years ago

Why SOE Decided To Cancel Star Wars Galaxies

Xocet_00 Re:g****** (149 comments)


more than 3 years ago

Magnetic Pole Shift Affects Tampa Airport

Xocet_00 Difficult to change, but not that rare. (317 comments)

The movements of magnetic north have, on many prior occasions, caused airports to have to redesignate their runways. Since it requires updating of all the charts that aircraft are required to carry (not to mention signage on the ground), it's often deferred as long as possible. Tampa doing this isn't really that significant, although I admit that it's kind of neat in a visual-manifestation-of-invisible-phenomenon kind of way.

Wikipedia subsection on the subject.

more than 3 years ago

Microsoft Reboots Two Classic PC Games

Xocet_00 Re:AOE MMO (275 comments)

According to the gameplay video on the site linked in the summary, the game does have a persistent world. Check at the 1:03 mark, where the words "PERSISTENT WORLD" are plastered across the screen.

more than 4 years ago

Atom Processors Set New Record For Power-Efficient Sorting

Xocet_00 System power is what they measure (92 comments)

They measure the power at the wall and not on the CPU specifically, so there's no 'fraud' going on. Putting processing elements on the north bridge does nothing to gain this system an advantage. Reading the contest rules, they recommend power meters like this: http://www.brandelectronics.com/meters.html

more than 4 years ago

Cisco Introduces a 322 Tbit/sec. Router

Xocet_00 Is it a constant? (281 comments)

In all seriousness, isn't the library of congress always growing? Is its growth rate significant enough that it's a very different size than it was in, say, the 1980s when we heard about hard disks that may someday be able to store an entire library of congress?

more than 4 years ago

8-Core Intel Nehalem-EX To Launch This Month

Xocet_00 No benefit? (186 comments)

This article outlines the various circumstances under which hyperthreading either benefits or impedes performance. While it's true that on average the benefit was zero (meaning about half of what they tested was faster, and about half was slower) there are clearly a lot of applications that see significant performance gains.

It should also be noted that the applications that benefit are ones that would generally be used in Xeon (server and workstation) machines. Further, most of the applications that failed to benefit from hyperthreading are not written to take advantage of many (more than one or two) cores. As applications are updated for "many core" systems, it is likely that the benefit from hyperthreading will become more significant.

In any case, it is far from "established" that hyperthreading has "no benefit."

more than 4 years ago

"Green" Ice Resurfacing Machines Fail In Vancouver

Xocet_00 Mod parent up (356 comments)

"Ice Time" is a very valuable commodity in Canada. People will drive for hours on a Sunday night just to get half an hour on the ice. The rink schedules are simply packed. I go to a "free skate" (basically just around the rink in a circle) for two hours on Sunday nights at 9pm. When we're walking out at 11pm, the hockey teams are taking to the ice for a game, which will take 2-3 hours to play.

I was talking to a parent at the free skate while they were resurfacing the ice (they resurface before and after the skate, and once in the middle) and he was saying that he would be back at 6am for his kid's hockey practice. 6am - 2am, resurfacing at least once an hour.

Frankly, I think the 12-15 times a day estimate was conservative, and that the number is probably closer to 20.

more than 4 years ago

Raise a Glass — Time(2) Turns 40 Tonight

Xocet_00 Only a rickroll after midnight (114 comments)

It's 12:21am, Jan 1, 2010 here and I got rickrolleded. I set my clock back a day, and got a white screen with a countdown.

more than 4 years ago

Music While Programming?

Xocet_00 Good call on symphonies. Ballets are even better. (1019 comments)

I listen to classical symphonies, but I also find that listening to ballet (Swan Lake is a perfect, classic example) is even better than symphonies, because while there are technically more breaks in the music than a symphony, there tends to be a single narrative flow in a ballet.

What I mean is that in a symphony each movement has its own underlying theme, upon which variations are built. Ballet, on the other hand, tends to carry the same themes through the entire work (although often more than one - usually one for each major character).

I'm very easily distracted by sound and need to choose very carefully what I listen to when I need to concentrate. I always seem to come back to ballet.

about 5 years ago

NRC Relicensing Old "Zombie" Nuclear Plants

Xocet_00 Re:Not so (260 comments)

I guess these older plants are still using Pentiums

about 5 years ago

Xbox Live Class Action Being Investigated

Xocet_00 Piracy AND Cheating (453 comments)

There seems to be an overwhelming consensus here that Microsoft is trying to protect its interests by preventing piracy. This is, of course, true. However, someone above mentioned a mother buying a PS3 instead of an XBox 360 because she was concerned about the banning, etc. The argument then is that Microsoft loses revenue by scarying people away, while all the banned people continue to refuse to buy games. In other words, they see Microsoft taking a net loss on this.

However, aside from preventing piracy, Microsoft is trying to prevent cheating. People are throwing around a number like 99% of people are doing this to pirate games. However in my experience there are as many people who mod in order to cheat in multiplayer games as there are people who do it specifically to pirate. I'm sure that the cheaters ALSO pirate games, but for a large number of people it is not their primary goal.

Lots of gamers will be turned of XBox Live and buying 360 games in general if they encounter a large number of cheaters while playing online. I've encountered more than my fair share. Microsoft gains from protecting legitimate customers from cheaters, keeping those customers playing and buying new games (and XBL subscriptions).

more than 4 years ago

ARM Attacks Intel's Netbook Stranglehold

Xocet_00 Porting code to a new architecture (521 comments)

What is involved in porting code to a new chip? I've done some programming in my life, but it has mostly been limited to personal interest and school projects. I imagine it can't be as simple as just recompiling. So what does it take to port code?What are the hurdles? Assume (accurately) that I'm a total noob.

more than 5 years ago



Japanese company discovers free energy

Xocet_00 Xocet_00 writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Xocet_00 (635069) writes "In what appears to be a blatant violation of the second law of thermodynamics, a Japanese company called Genepax has introduced a car that runs on nothing but water. The claim is that water is dissociated into hydrogen and oxygen via a catalytic membrane, and the hydrogen is then used as a fuel for the car (a car which would then exhaust... water). The only possible input of energy for the system described in the article would be in the catalyst which, the company claims, is not made using any exotic materials. Anyone have an idea about how this might actually work?"

Xocet_00 Xocet_00 writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Xocet_00 (635069) writes "BBC News has an article discussing a new algorithm for generating ray-traced graphics using only high end PC graphics cards. The algorithms were developed by a research group at the University of Saarland, in Germany. Apparently the technique has already been applied to Quakes 3 and 4, so hopefully this isn't Duke Nuke'em style vapourware."

Xocet_00 Xocet_00 writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Xocet_00 writes "Along with next generation gaming on HDTV comes next generation lag. Modern HDTVs do lots of post-processing before displaying an incoming image and this takes time, resulting in the picture from gaming consoles being displayed many frames behind the input. For some games this is not a problem, while others such as Guitar Hero, Tigers Woods Golf and other twitch-sensitive games can be virtually unplayable. This subject has been addressed qualitatively before, but this site outlines a simple, quantifiable test that you can perform on your own HDTV. Submit your results and add to the growing list of TV models already on the site."


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