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Do Free-To-Play Games Get a Fair Shake?

grimJester What happened to Freemium? (181 comments)

"Free-to-play" does not literally mean "free to play." It means a game that is specifically designed around microtransactions.

"Freemium" used to be used for games where it's free to play but you could buy premium content for cash. Why call the new ones "free-to-play" if you have to add a footnote saying they're not free to play?

about a week ago

Last Month's "Planet X" Announcement Was Probably Wrong

grimJester Will you forget they lost Pluto? (44 comments)

Just go "My Very Easy Method, Just Set Up Nine ... oh."

about a week ago

Japanese Firm Proposes Microwave-Linked Solar Plant On the Moon

grimJester Mod parent up, only one with correct numbers (330 comments)

that results in a total production of 286 TW, which is 19 times the world's current total energy use

compared to

so this project could supply roughly 7% of the worlds electricity

A pretty significant difference.

about 2 months ago

Physicists Claim First Observation of a Quantum Cheshire Cat

grimJester No (148 comments)

It's a lot simpler. They had one neutron in two places and measured different properties of it in the different places.

The new thing is that it's a bit more "real" that it's the same particle in two places than has been done before. I'd guess it's theoretically impossible to measure the same thing in two places, but I really don't know that much about quantum mechanics.

about 3 months ago

Largest Bitcoin Mining Pool Pledges Not To Execute '51% Attack'

grimJester Also the only thing that keeps mining profitable (351 comments)

If ASICs were available to anyone, the price of bitcoins would be capped by the price of electricity (+ some investment costs for the hardware). Of course, it would be capped by the lowest price of electricity anywhere, so mining would become unprofitable for most current miners. It would be interesting to see what happens then.

How long until someone starts using bitcoin mining instead of storage for temporary overproduction of solar power?

about 3 months ago

4K Is For Programmers

grimJester I don't use fullscreen @ 30" (520 comments)

I've had a 30" 2560x1600 monitor for maybe five years now and don't even use fullscreen for Eclipse. I don't tile windows which sounds like what you want; I just have a bunch open, some side by side, others behind the ones in front but usually with some part visible I can click on to bring them to the front.

I've used two screens before and think that's pretty good for some uses as well. I just don't see a need for extra screens if the main one is large enough. I suspect "large enough" means no commonly used application needs the whole screen. For me 24" is still below that limit.

about 3 months ago

Parents' Campaign Leads To Wi-Fi Ban In New Zealand School

grimJester Re:Insane (294 comments)

The articles about this keep saying that "recent international research has shown there may be a link" without providing the source of that data! I can't find it anywhere, all the studies I can find show no evidence of a link. What the hell are these assholes talking about?! Why don't these journalists think this is an important piece of information to include with their articles?

I don't care if a bunch of nuts half a world away banned wifi for their elementary students. I but do care if they had a good reason to do it!

Someone has falsely claimed that "recent international research has shown there may be a link", the press keep quoting it, and are of course unable to give a source since there is none.

about 4 months ago

Tech Startup Buffer Publishes Every Employee's Salary, Right Up To the CEO

grimJester Re:"job type"? (229 comments)

If all salaries are public, you can probably figure that out.

about 4 months ago

Tapping Data From Radio-Controlled Bus Stop Displays

grimJester Any existing apps that give the same info? (75 comments)

I'd like an app that shows the arrival predictions for the stop(s) nearest my current location.

about 5 months ago

1.2% of Apps On Google Play Are Repackaged To Deliver Ads, Collect Info

grimJester Opt-in though? (131 comments)

That's outdated, since we don't enforce that policy. As long as the feature is opt in, it is acceptable to introduce it in an update.

about 5 months ago

Why Not Fund SETI With a Lottery Bond?

grimJester Re:Why make it that complicated? (191 comments)

I've bought precisely ONE lottery ticket my whole life (knowing statistically that my likelihood of winning is the maximum at that point*).

How do you figure? Each ticket has the same chance of winning, the more you buy the more likely you are to win. But the odds are such that the expected return over the long run is less than what you would pay in.

I find it pretty funny that people who never gamble are completely clueless when it comes to statistics and probabilities, while those who waste loads of money gambling know exactly what they're doing.

about 5 months ago

Google Patenting Less Noble Use of Project Loon Tech

grimJester Consider how patents work (87 comments)

Patents prevent others from doing the thing outlined in the patent, no more and no less. So, companies other than Google are now prohibited from charging money for balloon wifi during concerts, while Google may or may not charge money for the same? Oh, the horror!

about 5 months ago

GCHQ Created Spoofed LinkedIn and Slashdot Sites To Serve Malware

grimJester I had almost forgotten what it was like... (335 comments)

...when Americans were allowed to play on the net.

As a poker player, I never release my trump card early in the game.

We miss you guys! Please come back!

about 5 months ago

Expansion of Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant Suspended

grimJester Just 10% of current production though (114 comments)

A couple hundred years quickly turns into decades if nuclear is ramped up.

about 5 months ago

Scientists Invent Urine-Powered Robots

grimJester I for one... (123 comments)

welcome our new beer-serving overlords!

Another? Don't mind if I do!

about 5 months ago

Don't Fly During Ramadan

grimJester What if he was white? Need evidence then? (1233 comments)

There are heaps of news stories daily that are just first hand accounts. Only when the person telling the story is non-white do we see demands for evidence.

about 8 months ago

Wikileaks Releases A Massive "Insurance" File That No One Can Open

grimJester There are limits (394 comments)

to what people are willing to give up for a good cause.

about 8 months ago

All Bitcoin Wallets On Android Vulnerable To Theft

grimJester Some details (137 comments)


The problem is this: the elliptic curve digital signature algorithm, which Bitcoin transactions rely on for security, has three inputs: the transaction, the signerâ(TM)s private key and a random number. The algorithm then outputs two values, denoted r and s, where s is calculated with the formula k-1(z+rd), z being the hash of the message, k the random number and d the private key. r is dependent only on k. Thus, if the owner of an address signs two transactions with the same random number (and of course the same private key, as every address is linked to one private key), one can extract two s values from the two signatures, subtract them to make the rd terms cancel out, and extracting the private key from there becomes a simple division problem (a more detailed writeup can be found here). Normally, this is not a problem; given a true random number generator, the first âoecollisionâ should take place roughly at the same time as the heat death of the universe. As it turned out, however, java.security.SecureRandom proved to be not so random, generating the same âoerandomâ number twice on many occasions.

I just noticed the "found here" link goes to an article from January. That makes me both unsure they've got the right bug and annoyed it hasn't been fixed already.

about 8 months ago

PIN-Cracking Robot To Be Showed Off At Defcon

grimJester Double the delay every failed attempt (114 comments)

I'm always amazed when passwords are locked out after just three or five attempts. Allowing a hundred would still protect against brute force, while never being a problem for an actual human being. Even better would be to start with a one second delay, doubling it every time, so a brute force attempt would take ages but a human only gets some time to think.

about 9 months ago


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