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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

cfalcon Re:On the other hand... (697 comments)

I'm actually shocked that any other opinion than yours has any traction at all.

about a week ago

New Music Discovered In Donkey Kong For Arcade

cfalcon Re:Haiku is more interesting than the MIDI (74 comments)

By putting the caps like that, you make it look like they thought each of those was a sentence.

Here's direct from the binary (c_5k_b.bin). It uses byte aligned 8 bit ASCII, which is not super common back then, but it was the actual standard. (and still is!)
This is UNIQUE, however- the REST of the file uses binary 0x00 (null) to map to numeral zero, up to 0x09 for numeral 9, then 0x0A for A, 0x10 for G, etc. That means that unlike all the other text in the game, this was rendered in ASCII, in another language, and burned to the ROM just so that maybe some hacker, somewhere, would answer their call- or at least feel cool.

It is most properly rendered:


The string begins with a null character. It has two spaces after "ANALYSE" and "THIS", and four spaces after the telephone 2141, and three spaces after the 304 and the "SYSTEM DESIGN". The entirety of it is exactly 160 bytes. There are no line feeds or other characters.

So, no, they did NOT type:

"If you analyse
Difficult this program,"

This represents around 1% of their total space on their final shipped product. 1% of their product to put this call in a foreign language to hackers across the world. Granted, Donkey Kong has a bit of spare space in the ROM, but... still.

about two weeks ago

New Music Discovered In Donkey Kong For Arcade

cfalcon This made my week (74 comments)

Seriously, this is fucking metal. Aces link.

The Pauline scream is great, and the lost melodies are amazing. A lost section of Nintendo history? What a prize. A view into the hearts of those inspired to make an amazing game, a secret buried all these years. Impressive.

Though much older (and not part of this story), the long lost line hidden from Ikegami:


Made chills go through my spine. Hacker ethos full charge, mothafuggas!

I had never seen it before, in any event.

I'd upvote the wiki and the story, but thankfully this website has none of that drek. In fact, I'm sure if this was a website with upvotes it would just be people saying the same thing over and over again and maybe occasionally linking a cat pick.

about two weeks ago

Warner Brothers Announces 10 New DC Comics Movies

cfalcon Out of tone, mile of origin (187 comments)

One of the big problems DC comics has had since they no longer were, you know, about detectives, is that they generally tell the large stories like Marvel, but in a similar universe with fewer characters and often crazier origin stories and power sources.

I would argue that this difference has been a key to their success, but also has hurt them badly. Superman's origin story- the lone orphan survivor of an amazing race- resonates pretty ludicrously well, but the frequently paired Amazonian warrior or Galactic Cop both presuppose the existence of an entire universe of other stuff. Suddenly you need to have Amazonians in the modern era, and suddenly you need a galactic everything in place, and etc.

The Marvelverse, meanwhile, just takes random events and decides that they just happened to make a super hero now. Gamma radiation, radioactive spider bite, radiation in the upper atmosphere, random genetic powers- these are all "more realistic", but importantly, they don't drag a bunch of bullshit into the story from the sidelines. While Krypton conveniently self destructed, meaning that you can have as much or as little Krypton in your superman story as you need, most of the DC guys bring with them a whole wide world of junk you need to wade through and consider.

Even the divine characters are much more tied to reality for Marvel, with the Norse Gods being a fine set of guys to throw on screen any old time. Meanwhile, the "new gods" of DC are alien, bizarre, and require much devotion to understand what the heck is going on.

The Marvel universe has given us a ton of X-Men, Spiderman, the Hulk, Iron Man, Fantastic Four, Thor, Captain America, and they are all very well loved. Soon we'll see Dr. Strange as well. To explain these we have:
"Some people are mutants", "Radiation can give you powers", "there's some magic", "super serum, one time only offer".

Meanwhile, just to get us to Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Martian Manhunter, and Aquaman, a reasonable superfriends crew, you end up needing Themyscira, a modern Amazon place, a whole race of Amazons to go with it, Atlantis as a living and actual kingdom under the sea, a whole race of martian (or alternately, several of them left with a destroyed race and a host of badguys that killed them), a whole lot of crazy stuff in Gotham, a bunch of alien superpower guys doling out willpower rings, meaning, oh yea, a galaxy spanning set of everything imaginable.

The other thing hurting them in a movie format is that they have a relatively light tone in many of the comics, and when they do not, they don't try to avoid whatever they are talking about. The race of goofy green aliens with the dumb rings are meaningful if they are being exterminated, and you feel bad for them, etc. Is a movie going to make you feel bad for these CGI freaks you learned about 15 minutes prior, in the space of two hours? Unlikely.

Instead, they will often darken everything, and just leave out most of the lore, trying to make them more marvel-like. Wonder woman is going to look like she's dressed as a robot, superman couldn't even keep his actual outfit and had to straight up murder some dude, etc.

about two weeks ago

The ESports Athletes Who Tried To Switch Games

cfalcon Re:Stop fucking calling it e-sports (146 comments)

and email isn't mail. what's your point?

This got modded troll? It's a perfectly valid comparison! He's saying that putting e- in front of something to denote that it's electronic means you aren't even claiming its the same thing. Would the post office come around in 19XX and be all "You can't call it email, it's just a bunch of beared unix guys transmitting a few bits. There's not even any trucks!"

about 3 months ago

The ESports Athletes Who Tried To Switch Games

cfalcon Re:Non transferable to another game, (146 comments)

Playing real sports with friends can harm you for life as well, so be sure to put that into your equation. After all, presumably the casual football players are fucking unhealthy idiots in your world too, as after all, the casual videogamers are "swilling red buff, munching on funyuns".

about 3 months ago

Pseudonyms Now Allowed On Google+

cfalcon Re:Youtube Comments (238 comments)

The "youtube herp derp" chrome addon (a joke addon that literally replaces all the youtube comments with a stream of "herp" and "derp", allowing you to right click the comment to revert to normal) has...

Really improved the youtube experience. I often would catch a glimpse of comments, and they were normally awful. Conspiratorial, racist, ludicrously political, wildly insulting, whatever. TERRIBLE.

There are a couple videos with acceptable comments, but you mostly know those going in, and unherping them is trivial.

Anyway, google+ doesn't stop that, and you've always been able to youtube account comment, and whatever. This is actually nice because I've never understood why google felt the need to copy suckerberg and his fucking palace of shit. Now I can actually use Google+- I'd never tolerate my real name returning everything I ever write about anything and to anyone to an employer. The idea that this is ok or reasonable is a laughable mid-2000s idea. We knew it sucked in the 80s, the 90s, and now. Good riddance to bad fucking rubbish.

about 3 months ago

Mass. Supreme Court Says Defendant Can Be Compelled To Decrypt Data

cfalcon Re:I lost the password (560 comments)

If a brain scan is "reliable", rest assured it will be mandatory, and amendments will be ignored to make this happen.

about 4 months ago

Scientists Successfully Grow Full Head of Hair On Bald Man

cfalcon Terrible title (109 comments)

Others have said it too, but this guy isn't "bald", he has an autoimmune system that attacks his hair follicles.

Definition of "bald": "having a scalp wholly or partly lacking hair."

This guy lacked: eyebrows, eyelashes, facial hair, body hair, pubic hair, and all head hair.

The treatment fixed it all, because it was autoimmune in nature.

This is huge for the sufferers of this disease- who are very rare, and not linked to sex.

It's worthless to the many bald men who find sometime after puberty that their head hair just retracts. Those men are actually bald. This guy was something else entirely.

about 4 months ago

Scientists Successfully Grow Full Head of Hair On Bald Man

cfalcon Re:title should be... (109 comments)

Mod this up. While this is a great discovery, the autoimmune form of this is super rare compared to any of the male pattern baldness things.

It won't help most men at all. But, still, good news.

about 4 months ago

The Upcoming Windows 8.1 Apocalypse

cfalcon Re:Lamepocalypse (293 comments)

For the Windows gaming PC, I went with the 250 for an operating system. Mostly because at least it's an operating system, not some crazy mock up like Windows 8. Windows 8 just made me think that Microsoft is fucking insane- the few things written by the GUI designers about how it's for these users and not for these users and they have this model of user types and they want to get their casuals off the desktop or whatfuckingever- just go to hell, guys. Everyone who wants to innovate can be divided cleanly into two camps: people who jump through legal and technical hoops to prevent you from opting out of their bullshit, and those that don't. The folks in the second group normally have something to sell you. The folks in the first group- and that includes Microsoft on all counts and fucking GNOME on some- are arrogant pricks not worth the time of day.

Quite honestly, the moment I can play games natively under Linux, I'll be full Linux again. And no, WINE and derivatives are not adequate for all of gaming, and very much not the section I use.

about 6 months ago

Twitter Turns 8; May Drop Hashtags and @replies

cfalcon Re:Only thing I hate about Twitter (96 comments)

Agh, my kingdom for a mod point. This is a very very good point that gets almost no play.

about 7 months ago

Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

cfalcon Re:ruined long ago (253 comments)

Probably haven't killed any heroic raid bosses eh? The grouping part is still there, but it's not as present at the lower levels, or for the simpler things. But if you want to group, there's three tiers that make that mandatory and reward accordingly.

Currently the pve game is: Levelling and dungeons -> dungeons, scenarios at 90 -> LFR -> Flex -> Normal -> Heroic.

Everything from Flex up takes a premade group to succeed with. Heroics take a lot more effort and dedication, etc.

about 8 months ago

Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

cfalcon Re:Is this fun? (253 comments)

As you would expect, some people really like leveling, and that is mostly what they do. Others view it as a regrettable grind that comes with the genre, a cockblock before they can get to the part they like.

about 8 months ago

Blizzard To Sell Level 90 WoW Characters For $60

cfalcon Level 100 is the cap (253 comments)

On live, level 90 is the cap. The for-sale 90s are intended to be brought to the new expansion, which goes up to level 100. Since all the content is at level cap, this move makes some sense. The summary should at least mention that level 100 will be the cap when these things are for sale. Pretending that "the game is the experience of leveling, after which you have won" can be forgiven, but leaving out the actual level cap? Shenanigans.

about 8 months ago

Dogs' Brains Have Human-like "Voice Area"

cfalcon Dogs are best (139 comments)

I love all these studies that constantly come out showing that dogs are, well, loving, loyal, and built to hang around humans. Of COURSE they are. Dogs are domesticated, and like, are the best thing ever.

I would like to see more studies about how flexible these relatively large changes are, and how fast they can occur. We all know about the Russion project to make "dogs out of foxes" by domesticating foxes by choosing them based on friendliness:

Do these little foxes have a section where they are mirroring the dogs? In other words, is this morphological change something that happens when an animal is domesticated into a pet, or are dogs just special because awwwww doggie?

about 8 months ago

E-Sports Gender Gap: 90+% Male

cfalcon Are we supposed to be shamed? (320 comments)

That we like something that other white dudes and asian dudes are into? Fuck no. It's fine. Not everyone has to like every thing. If only white guys like it, that doesn't mean that something must be WRONG with it, or white guys, or that the whole institution is sexist and/or racist.

The NBA isn't very racially diverse, and has 0 sexual diversity. Who gives a fuck?

about 8 months ago

E-Sports Gender Gap: 90+% Male

cfalcon Re:Huh? (320 comments)

Played at high level, sports don't really increase fitness beyond a point, they increase your ability to play in your role. Football players shorten their lives in many ways, and no, not all of them are related to head banging injuries. Is that fitness? For a quarterback, likely. But plenty of the team is about fulfilling a role. Sumo wrestlers don't live long either- sustaining that much muscle (and of course the famous fat) is hard for any body.

Played at a casual level, of course sports offer benefits. Play football with your other sedentary buddies and you will all increase health.

Played at a high level, e-sports don't really increase cognition beyond a point, they increase your ability to play in your role. Starcraft players don't go on to make vast maps in their head, or use their extraordinary decision making skills in some manner, because a role for those explicit cognophysical tricks just doesn't exist outside of video games. Is that intelligence?

Played at a casual level, of course e-sports offer other benefits. Play starcraft with your other non-computer aware buddies and you will all get better at computers, reaction time, decision making, planning ability, and other facets of cognitive health.

about 8 months ago

Slashdot Tries Something New; Audience Responds!

cfalcon Noscript (2219 comments)

I didn't see anything up there about not needing the perpetually insecure javascript to comment. That's a pretty big deal.

about 9 months ago

Designer Seeds Thought To Be Latest Target By Chinese

cfalcon Surprisingly shitty (164 comments)

I just got the "hey go check out beta" alert. I figured it would be the same with with different underhood. WOW this is shit. And sure enough, I had to enable scripting. Bro, it's fucking COMMENTS. It doesn't need java, or script, or javafuckingscript.

This could be the death of this site. Sad. Been browsing this since early college.

about 9 months ago


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