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FAA Says No More Minesweeper Or Solitaire In Cockpit

the_tsi Re:They need something to do (342 comments)

Autopilots aren't infallible.

But they *are* inflatable. Or, at least, Otto is.

more than 4 years ago
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FAA Says No More Minesweeper Or Solitaire In Cockpit

the_tsi Re:They need something to do (342 comments)

"No, I was thinking of that mountain goat over there."

more than 4 years ago
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We Rent Movies, So Why Not Textbooks?

the_tsi Re:Some colleges are renting textbooks as well. (398 comments)

^^^^^ THIS.

The online material for textbooks is how the textbook publishers assassinated the second-hand market. The one-time-use codes for Mastering Chemistry/Mastering Calculus/Mastering Physics/whatever are the biggest racket these criminals could have added to their already-a-racket.

Textbooks are turning into extortion.

about 5 years ago
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DJ Hero Planned For Later This Year

the_tsi Re:What's the fascination? (54 comments)

Guitar Hero, etc. are not guitar simulators. They are rock star simulators. People play guitar rhythm games for similar reasons to playing e.g. flight sims or military games -- immediate access to a role that would otherwise take years of training and luck to get, combined with the ability to use resources that even learning "The Real Thing" wouldn't get you to.

You can take flying lessons on your own, but you're never going to get to fly an F16 and blow shit up. You can enlist in the Army and be trained as infantry, but you're (very likely) not going to get to go on covert missions on a disputed island stealing Russian tanks to use against them.

You *can* learn how to play the guitar, but the vast majority of people who know how to play are never going to stand in front of a crowd of 30K people and wow them by tipping your guitar up at the right time.

The wide array of rhythm games have very little to do with music. The sooner that elitist amateur musicians like yourself get over that fact, the sooner you can accept that these games can be *fun* while not diminishing your hobby at all. Those who don't accept it can continue to feel threatened by these games and make the same tired argument you posted.

more than 5 years ago
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How Many Hours Of Work Do You Do Per Workday?

the_tsi Average day? (354 comments)

I'd say about 20-30 minutes of work. I sure hope my employer never figures it out.

more than 5 years ago
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Of childhood "building" toys, my favorite is ...

the_tsi It's way late in the thread (785 comments)

...so I know no one will read this far down, but here goes anyway:

Ramagon.

Here's an example of something built with these toys: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/145640

I'm not saying they were the best or even top-5 but they certainly opened up some construction that wasn't possible with Lego or Erector Sets. I haven't even thought of them for years until the discussion threads in this poll reminded me.

These had 26-sided (non regular) polyhedral hubs ( http://discuss.jarretthousenorth.com/2008/03/10 has a good picture of the hub, and some more nostalgic waxing about the toys) into which plastic rods snapped. 24 of the positions on the hubs were oblong, holding the rod in a fixed position. The two at each "pole" were round and allowed the rod to rotate. There were a variety of panels that could be inserted into a 2-D frame -- some of which had Lego-sized buttons on them for combining play with your other construction toys.

They had a lot in common with organic chemistry modeling sets and some more modern modeling "toys" like Zome, which I found in a fit of googling trying to find the name of Ramagon. There don't appear to be any sites selling them (either new or vintage) and the manufacturer's site doesn't resolve. There's one hit for an engineer's online portfolio where consulting was provided toward the connectors.

more than 5 years ago

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