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Valve Officially Launches Steam For Linux

atomican Re:SteamOS (313 comments)

Indeed, which is why I think this general Linux client is more of a stepping-stone towards Valve building their Steambox. They need Steam working on Linux for it to happen, so having a client for regular Linux users is a natural part of the process.

about a year and a half ago
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Valve Officially Launches Steam For Linux

atomican Re:Brace yourselves (313 comments)

Blah blah blah, DRM.
Blah blah blah, "in mother russia".
Blah blah blah, "I, for one, welcome our penguin shaped overlords".
Blah blah blah, "gun control".
Blah blah blah "godwin's law".

I know you're joking but the fact you mention complaining about DRM as part of the joke is disheartening. Yes it's overdone and beating a dead horse at this point, but it's still a serious point to raise and it's important that it never gets forgotten. The fact that games attached with DRM (Steam or otherwise) mean games now have an artificial lifetime attached when they didn't otherwise. Yes you might be able to crack them, but that's besides the point.

about a year and a half ago
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Valve Officially Launches Steam For Linux

atomican Re:Goodbye Windows (313 comments)

I'm sick of Microsoft extremely condescending attitude towards their customers

I'm sick of the (general) Linux community's extremely condescending attitude towards anyone who thinks Linux has flaws and dares to raise them as something that should be addressed, or that perhaps some things work better in Windows and that using Windows because it works better for particular use cases is perfectly reasonable. But no, everyone has to get emotional for some reason.

With regards to that UI masturbation called Windows 8, we'll "get used to it".

Sounds like the current crop of DEs in Linux. If you are told you have "choice" and can use something else, you apparently can choose DEs like MATE (which are OK but based on dead code), XFCE (which are a bit too simple and lacking in functionality) or Cinnamon (which is OK but still too new). Everything sucks in their own way, and moving to Linux can often just result in transferring the suck from one form to another.

about a year and a half ago
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Valve Officially Launches Steam For Linux

atomican Stop complaining about no 64-bit Steam (313 comments)

I simply don't understand why people complain about no 64-bit version of Steam when the games running on Steam are basically all 32-bit anyway, and so you'll have to pull down those 32-bit libraries to use Steam for its intended purpose anyway, regardless of the arch of the client.

As a side note, I'm considerably mixed about Steam for Linux since it means more Linux games... locked to Steam. I would have preferred separate DRM-free installers for things like Serious Sam 3 that didn't require a vendor-hosted platform (and hence having to ensure your account is in good health and the game's lifetime being limited to how long Valve remains around), but apparently that was too much to ask, otherwise we'd have more commercial games before Steam on Linux anyway.

about a year and a half ago
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New Medal Designed To Honor Cyber Soldiers

atomican Personal risk != medal (230 comments)

Contrary to popular notion, not all medals are awarded for bravery. As a matter of fact, relatively few are. Some are rewarded for merely being present in a particular theater of war or in a particular campaign; some are rewarded for skill or adroitness in combat. This would fall in the latter category I would think.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Alternative To the Canonical Computer Science Degree?

atomican Re:Canonical? (347 comments)

If you want more advanced degree go for Gentoo...

Bad idea. A Gentoo degree would take so long to finish that you'll likely encounter the heat death of the universe before the degree is completed.

about a year and a half ago
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When 1 GB Is Really 0.9313 Gigabytes

atomican Ubuntu vs Windows (618 comments)

This is what pisses me off about using, say, Ubuntu and Windows 7 on the same computer. Several years ago Ubuntu (and hence derivatives like Linux Mint) changed their units policy such that 1 KB = 1000 bytes, not 1024 bytes as Windows still does. Hence files sizes will appear differently between the two systems, which is terrifying if you're manipulating data between such operating systems.

about a year and a half ago
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Handheld Black Hornet Nano Drones Issued To UK Soldiers

atomican Manhack (97 comments)

The concept of portable drones a soldier can deploy in the field reminds me a bit of manhacks (those spinny-blade enemies in Half-Life 2).

Not that anyone remembers such an old game like Half-Life 2. Heck I think even Valve's forgotten about the series... /cry

about a year and a half ago
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The Book of GIMP

atomican Re:My experience with the GIMP (197 comments)

Here's another counter (counter-counter?) example - in the most recent versions of GIMP, you need to select Export rather than Save if you want to save in a bitmap format like PNG/JPG/GIF/etc. Save is now reserved for the native GIMP file format. Technically it makes sense since it clearly separates the functionality that would save all your layers and whatnots that only the GIMP format could retain, and those which do not. Only problem is a lot of people expect Save to also allow saving in multiple file formats just like any other program.

Apart from that, the stuff you mentioned, particular the panning and zooming, are things I definitely agree with and am happy that I'm not a graphics artist and hence don't have to "unlearn" anything since I never used PS much in the first place.

about a year and a half ago
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Piriform Asks BleachBit To Remove Winapp2.ini Importer

atomican Disappointing (305 comments)

I like Piriform. They make nice little Windows tools that are free but do the job reasonably well without having to resort to pirating larger commercial packages. This kinda of behaviour doesn't really help them in any way once it becomes public (as per the story). At least they were reasonably civil and didn't immediately threaten legal action for non-compliance.

about a year and a half ago
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Valve Sued In Germany Over Game Ownership

atomican Re:Being able to transfer games would be awesome (384 comments)

No, his point is that it shouldn't hurt that much if you have to go without certain games because of their DRM-laden nature. He said some games, not all games. Buy stuff from GOG for example and you don't' have this problem. Sure it's not necessarily the latest stuff, but you at least stick to your principles even if it means not playing the latest SimCity for example.

If people are to addicted to games to refuse to buy/play certain titles due to user-hostile actions by the developers/publishers, then honestly we have no excuse for what abusive measure come our way.

about a year ago
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What Early Software Was Influential Enough To Deserve Acclaim?

atomican Re:POV-Ray (704 comments)

I could never get into POV-Ray. I just couldn't conceive how to make an interesting scene if I had to type in the definitions myself and there wasn't an interactive GUI to create and define shapes with instead. Blender is more my thing these days, and even then it's a bit of a handful.

about a year and a half ago
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"Adults Only" OpenArena Now Playable On Raspberry Pi

atomican Re:Just talking about Quake Lan Parties (65 comments)

I thought it was generally agreed (by whom I'm not sure, let's just say public opinion) that Quake 3 is the purest, most distilled deathmatch FPS to the point where it is the quintessential game to use when explaining what deathmatch is all about. Now I didn't play it much online as dialup was a shocking way to play a multiplayer FPS and even if I could, I probably would have sucked anyway. But it still was incredibly popular and even played without any mods it has a simplicity and charm that I think is rather appealing.

Having said that, Quake 3 appears to have been designed so that it would appeal to the pro gamers which was an emerging concept at the time and hence this "soul" as you call it may have been lost when designing the game. Similar complaints have been made about StarCraft II - that it's not as fun as the original because it was designed to accommodate pro gamers and e-sports, and so some of the soul of the original (which didn't have this aim at all) didn't transfer into the sequel.

Anyways, it's all good nostalgia. I still have all the Quake games and play them occasionally with newer engines as they are extremely quick to load, play and do things with (modern games have too many unskippable movies, animations in the menus to slow things down and waste time connecting to online services with pointless achievements). But maybe I'm a grumpy old man. :)

about a year and a half ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

atomican Re:Recent Linux updates... (380 comments)

The problem I have is that, for all its flaws I still like Linux. I like the philosophy, the control, the freedom and the lack of in-your-face commercialism and corporatism that one gets in a lot of commercial software. So I try to ensure that whatever I do, I use as much cross-platform software and file formats such that if it does advance to a state where I'm satisfied I could use Linux as a primary system, the transition will be relatively painless. Until that happens, I'll keep following it with interest but not lose any sleep over having to deal with its shit.

Also someone modded my post troll before. Good old Slashdot - if you have an opposing opinion and even suggest Linux might not be the shining diamond that a lot of people make it out to be, you MUST be trollin'.

about a year and a half ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

atomican Re:Ubuntu, really? (380 comments)

It's a trade-off. You trade less freedom for a substantially more polished desktop experience. If you want full openness you have to sacrifice a bit of your sanity and time to deal with the problems of unsupported desktop DEs and lack of financial motivation to fix their issues.

Most people I know who initially value openness value their time more as they get older, hence the Linux geeks move to OS X or back to Windows and deal with the compromise. It's a complete failure as a desktop OS compared to commercial vendors.

about a year and a half ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

atomican Interesting post from Red Hat employee at Phoronix (380 comments)

Yes I know, Phoronix is a pretty scummy website at times with Michael taking credit for basically every new thing that happens to Linux, but there are some interesting posts on its forum when its users are not constantly fighting with each other.

AdamW (Adam Williamson, "the Fedora QA Community Monkey" according to the project wiki) posted this in response to this very topic:

It does always amaze me how people are happy to download an entire *computer operating system* and throw it at their computer - with valuable data on it! - without even reading the damn documentation.

For Pete's sake people, it's an operating system, not a new version of Angry Birds. You might want to read something about it before hitting the big red button. The F18 release documentation is pretty clear on the fact that the new installer UI is a first cut and still has rough edges: this isn't hidden information, it's called out in the release announcement itself. There's a guy on the Google+ thread who says "Not knowing that The World Had Changed, I downloded the DVD of F18 and tried up upgrade my machine" - where do these people come from? And what rock have they been living under while three thousand articles explained that F18 has a new installer? Sheesh.

So yeah: in case you didn't get the memo, F18 has a new installer and a new upgrade tool. They are both v1.0s. As in the case of all v1.0s, you may want to exercise some frickin' caution. If you want a Fedora release whose installer and upgrade tools were stabilized over a period of several years and 20+ releases, Fedora 17 is right in the torrent list. It works fine. If you want a nice polished version of newUI, you might want to wait for F19 or F20. It won't kill you. An operating system installer is a psychotically complex lump of code, it is not plausible that you can entirely rewrite one and get it working perfectly on the first try, and we never aimed to. We aimed to have something that broadly implemented the new design and worked reasonably well in simple cases, and that's what F18 has.

GNOME 3 is GNOME 3. We package it up and ship it. If you don't like it, use something else; Fedora does not skimp on the choices.

(http://phoronix.com/forums/showthread.php?77039-Alan-Cox-Calls-Fedora-18-quot-The-Worst-Red-Hat-Distro-quot/page4)

To which someone immediately pointed out the obvious:

Adam, that really doesn't cut it as an excuse. Yes, it's a new installer, and this fact is well advertised. But if you have so little faith in the installer that you're cautioning people not to upgrade to F18, why the hell would you even release it?

This is becoming too common in the Linux world, with distros being released with half-implemented pet projects of its developers (Unity, PulseAudio, Fedora's new installer) under the guise of a final release. Rough rough rough, and not something people coming from say OS X or even Windows 7 would expect. Yes it's free, but it's also very off-putting and tends to reinforce the idea that you get what you pay for.

about a year and a half ago
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Alan Cox: Fedora 18 "The Worst Red Hat Distro," Switches To Ubuntu

atomican Re:Recent Linux updates... (380 comments)

Yup. Like I said in the previous story about Fedora 18, the state of Linux these days is appalling and I find no reason to suggest it to a happy Windows 7/OS X user at all. Windows 8 user, maybe, but I'd rather learn and teach said user the new way to do things in Windows 8 rather than switch to a completely different platform with its own quirks.

about a year and a half ago
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Robot Serves Up 360 Hamburgers Per Hour

atomican Re:Fatter? (299 comments)

and leaves one job for some guy that fixes the machine

Nah. Eventually someone will come up with a robot that can perform maintenance on the burger robot, removing the human element completely. As for the maintenance robot, another robot will take care of that robot, and so on.

Eventually humans will be removed entirely from the design and manufacturer of said robots once they are designed with the appropriate skills. Once this happens, we'll all die in a nuclear holocaust as Skynet is born. All because of a simple burger robot.

about a year and a half ago
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Fedora 18 Installer: Counterintuitive and Confusing?

atomican Re:What happened to you Linux... (458 comments)

It sounds like somebody needs to try linux mint. It's silly to judge the entire linux ecosystem by the follies of one or two distros.

Whenever someone presents an issue they're having with Linux, someone always tends to pipe up and says"oh try instead, it's much better!" Another distro might indeed be better... but it likely has its own quirks that another distro doesn't, and another distro which doesn't have THOSE quirks ends up having ANOTHER set of quirks, and so on. There's no one perfect distro in terms of trouble-free operation.

Having said that, I too am a fan of Linux Mint and wouldn't touch Fedora even out of curiosity as I know it's bleeding edge. But... my issues with Linux still exist no matter which distro you try, even the ones targeted at a friendly desktop use.

about a year and a half ago
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Fedora 18 Installer: Counterintuitive and Confusing?

atomican Re:What happened to you Linux... (458 comments)

Oh I know the difference. It's just that no-one really cares; if I was really fussy I'd say GNU/Linux (just to keep the Stallman fanboys at bay), but again, no-one really cares. We're just discussing things here, casually, without having to worry about what is really a nitpicky thing you've just noticed. Everyone knows I'm talking about distros - only certain people who have few actual problems in their lives get twitchy if someone says Linux instead of distro. :)

about a year and a half ago

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