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Everything posted by wierd_w

  1. The phenomenon that drives the demand for "Pay to win" coincides with the "Wages too low; People working side jobs for basic quality of living and barely getting by" problem; If you are working that side job, that is the time you would have previously invested in "Getting Gud", but you still want entertainment. You crave the chance to win, even if you lack the skill to do so--- Enter the microtransaction-- "Hey-- If you pay me 5$, I will help you WIN!". Most people do not do rational calculations about their time's value, and so do not make a proper calculus. They know they have an innate need to have social entertainment, the mobile device platform can be used discretely on the side job when the boss is not looking, and that 5$ lets them WIN, and scratch that psychological itch. So they do it. (And since that is where the new money is, because of this actual reality, that is what every damn publisher does now.) However, it discourages anyone who actually would otherwise have engaged with the game to Get Gud, because there is no high from success, as you rightly point out. In all cases, the correct solution is for employers to pay actually living wages, instead of trying every bit of chicanery they can to "BOOST SALES!!" and "MAKE THIS QUARTER BETTER THAN THE LAST, NO MATTER WHAT!!". You can only trim fat until there is no fat left. Pretending that there is always fat, is how you end up with a skeletal economy, which we are on the verge of having. An economy only exists when money is changing hands in exchange for goods and services. When all that money is tied up in stock options, buyback programs, overseas bank accounts, and golden parachutes, the economy withers and dies. You would think that people who profess an insatiable love of the market would comprehend how this tragedy unfolds, and be loud proponents of ensuring high levels of common liquidity, such that the economy is strong and healthy, but that does not seem to be the case in practice. In practice, the bottom line is all about hoarding as much currency as possible to attract the investor class, and the wider economy be damned-- OR-- to ignore the situation of the economy, and go through the "bargaining" stage of denial about the problem. (EG, "We can keep going as we have been, if we just buckle down, cut every expense to the bone, and weather it out", or in the case of Hollywood "If we JUST increase the length of copyright another 100 years, we can milk the long tail and make up for it in the future, even though all our metrics say otherwise!!", and "We gotta lobby for even more draconian DRM protections to stop those evil pirates that are clearly undercutting our sales, regardless of what Netflix's data says!") rather than go to the acceptance stage of grief, and honestly admit to themselves "We cannot continue to pour all of our financials into AAA titles, because the economy cannot support it, because people do not have sufficient disposable income to support that kind of business model." People do not have the money, or the time (because they traded the time to get the bare minimum of money to survive, because of how pronounced the problem is), to consume that content legitimately, at the pricepoints demanded. That is the hard reality. We either fix that as a society (globally), or we watch the content industry die on the vine, and get despotic copyright laws as it tries desperately to survive through denial in the process. That's all the further down the politics hole I want to go. Since it relates intimately with modern gaming is the only reason I am bringing it up here. You do in fact have to address the elephant in the room, since it is parked on top of the game controller, and is blocking the TV.
  2. If the data is safe to lose, you could also try reactivating the iron oxide in the diskettes/break up the domain boundaries, by subjecting the diskettes to a degaussing wand/bulk eraser. That would remove any bias the coating has developed from storing a pattern for a very long time, and make it more useful again after a good format. Did that with a few of the 360k IBM PC diskettes I inherited. (they had attenuated so bad from sitting for 40 years, that the data was not recoverable-- so I reformatted them. Most were fine. Some that showed 0 signs of media damage insisted they had bad sectors after a format with aggressive test-- so I degaussed them a few times, then formatted them. Work just fine now.)
  3. This is skirting dangerously close to politics-- but still needs stating. The "Wages have not grown in proportion to productivity or with inflation for 50+ years" thing is starting to actually have fangs instead of small nagging nibbles it's had in the past. Alarming numbers of people cannot endure the loss of a single paycheck without risking a debt spiral that ends in their being impoverished. Is it really... Sensible?... to be in a business that believes people can make flippant financial decisions about entertainment, when the above is true? I would think not. Yet, there you have it-- with the entertainment industries of the world in abject denial of this reality, focusing instead on their own personal realities-- that the costs of producing modern content are high, and mandating high prices. The lack of sales is attributed to any number of things (Piracy, et al-- despite the clear data that Netflix provided about pricepoints) except what really needs to be accepted--- People do not have sufficient disposable income (in aggregate), to support a large entertainment industry with large AAA properties being produced. The content that is popular is the "Free* content", no matter how shitty. (as evidenced by the presentation). People still want entertainment, but they cannot justify the 60+$ pricepoint for a AAA title, or the 5 to 10$ pricepoint for mobile, without some very serious value being offered. This is why these industries are suffering so bad. I would personally say that unless the generating situation is changed, and soon, then the handwriting is on the wall for paid content, in any form.
  4. A TIPI might actually work... (CRU bus is exposed on the tutor "expansion port".) Does anyone know if 99/4A DSRs can work unmodified on a tutor?
  5. No. If anything, extra waitstates were introduced to deal with the slow speed of extending the bus that far, and dealing with the repeater baked inside the PEB interface card. I just feel that a round (and properly shielded) cable would be easier to have effective cable managment with, and that you can get 50 conductor cables that are already industry standard, with standard connectors. Devising a proper port adapter dongle for either end would solve the problem neatly.
  6. It's real hard to get the cats to leave the monitoring equipment alone. Also, despite being notoriously difficult to corral, their migratory paths follow predictable patterns, (at least when the monitoring equipment is not ditched within seconds of installation.) Cats really are not a good source of random--It's a common mistake to think "does not comply with ordered environments" == "Chaotic". Rather, the cats simply have no desire to comply with an externally applied source of order-- they are rather orderly within their own behavioral domain, and simply refuse any externally imposed ruleset.
  7. The CL chipsets could really rock that 2D performance, for sure. The 486 was not really powerful enough to do true 3D. Hell, a 486 DX could *BARELY* play an MP3 file. (there was contention at work one day about if a 486 could play MP3s or not-- The boss was of the opinion that you needed at least a pentium 90 to do it, but I dug up a 486 DX 2/50, and fired up winamp on it. Sure, it COULD NOT multitask while doing it-- but it COULD in fact play MP3s without dropping out-- just barely.) For the majority of games that were available at the time though (with the exception of things like Quake, or Unreal, which were real 3D) it was plenty good enough. By the time I was building my own systems though, I was using Trident cards. The better CL chipsets were faster, but it was hard getting an affordable discrete graphics card with CL chipset in appropriately large memory sizes. (Needed at least 1mb vram to do anything modern, for the time-- Most CL offers that were in the same price range as the tridents were 512kb, and that was not acceptable. Of course, the Trident offer pool was saturated in 512kb vram offers too-- you had to dig to get one of the 1 or 2mb cards. Eventually I migrated to an Nvidia Riva TNT. (but first got a voodoo2, to go with my aging Trident card. STILL have that 8mb voodoo 2!!) It was amazing to feel that silky framerate on Unreal. For a long time, when people would ask about running a second monitor, I would always suggest an S3 Virge PCI. They just played nice with every other card out there, and had solid 2D performance. (and very few people needed 3D on both heads.) I installed so many of those things back in the day for that purpose. (Customers would see me through the window in the techroom, driving two displays-- with one display showing file copy operations, and the other showing various other things going-- and they were all enraptured by the idea of having two heads like that. Looking back on it, I think the shyster boss I worked for left the blinds open for that very reason... At the time, I thought it was because he was convinced I was slacking off back there, but in retrospect-- I installed a SHITLOAD of S3 Virge cards to drive secondary displays.) I also have fond memories of setting up ethernet networks for local businesses on service calls. I remember one deployment that needed a massive kluge to get going-- A local aerospace company had two engineering labs that were physically too far apart for un-shielded ethernet. I hunted, and dug up a local switch that could do both 10base ethernet, and 10base-2 coax ethernet. Used a coax drop to link the two labs, and advised to keep traffic on the link to a minimum. (I remember suggesting that fiber would be a better choice, but the cost was exorbitant back then. For the budget they quoted, 10base-2 was the only viable offering with the distance involved. It was not "just a little over", it was more "2x the max cable distance of 10base-T ethernet", which is why it needed the shielded coax drop to even remotely work.) I often wonder when they replaced that, and what they replaced it with.
  8. Jeeze.. My land line gets blown up like clockwork at noon every damn day. How do I know? Because I am trying to sleep at that time. Always some chicka saying she is "From the HR department". I hang up. I have not been applying for jobs, and the opening is always 100% the same, so totally a scam anyway. I have noticed that they seem extra thirsty for suckers lately. I just wish I could get them to stop blowing up my landline.
  9. Aren't reverse-biased zener diodes cheaper, and faster? https://hackaday.com/2020/05/23/a-4-bit-random-number-generator/ The circuit could be scaled up to any size bit-depth.
  10. beige controllers you say... https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-2600-Suncom-Tac-3-Totally-Accurate-Controller-Commodore-64-works-100/123807206029?hash=item1cd37c0a8d:g:v6wAAOSwPHZdCZir
  11. Verb is totally legit too. Fun use of language to piss off the grammar Nazis: "The builders were building a building. Some scaffolded the exterior, while others walked on the scaffolding to lay brick and mortar."
  12. Why not just cast a resin gear replacement? It's what I did for my large format printer, after the goons from UPS dropped it. (The gear for the ink servicing station got shattered. I superglued it together, then cleaned it up with a file, then made a silicone mold out of some bathroom grade silicone caulk. Used the UV resin and the UV light to fill the mold, and produce a new gear.)
  13. OK. I have them both at more or less "High gloss" now. I am not terribly happy with the normal speech synth box though. Those letters really irk me. While I will send the unit, I am thinking I will make another one to send to replace it later. (you have waited enough, and I am super picky) I AM however, rather happy with the one with the door, cosmetically speaking. I am gonna go hit up the local walmart, and get some rubber feet to stick on them.
  14. The issue I see is the "Being available" to service an incoming packet event. The TI is already living behind a wall of waitstates. Throw into that it having to do actual work behind memory that is hobbled, and then having to do strange things with the data bus and a signal line to access the CRU interface... and then try to throw in "fast network response" on top of it. The more users you have, throwing data into the hosting TI, the worse it will be. That's why I suggested moving the server portion into the PI itself, and just using the TI as the presentation interface. It gets pre-processed data streams that way, and does not have to have multi-user contention issues.
  15. So, how shiny do you want these? I have some 2000 grit paper that is able to put "Glossy shine" finish on this plastic. (got a few spots that has happened in accidentally while trying to get all the rough sanding marks out, but I was going to go over with a melamine sponge to get satin finish afterward.) It will just take longer. I aim to please, so let me know. I need to scrape together some packing materials to send these.
  16. The cassette index program is very useful for people without any other kind of permanent storage, and who have cassette decks without a minute counter. (see the Cassette Power thread)
  17. When I get home from work, I will see if I can get a debug trace with normal Classic99 and this fancy new 64bit build. However, "32bit software inside 64bit prefix acts in unexpected ways" is still kind of "That is entirely expected", as far as WINE support is concerned at this point. WOW64 is not that great in WINE. Avoiding it entirely, and using a 32bit prefix, which is much more mature, and has many more code-fixes for 32bit applications, is just cleaner, neater, faster, and easier.
  18. I am looking at that very site.. several Atari 2600 systems so far. A few 386 and IBM 5150s. A small spattering of old Macs..
  19. Not ENTIRELY true... Again, (since I have brought this idea up before), all you need to do is pass either a set of wave patch files, or an .SF2 file to the PI, then have a small python or other handler, that accepts network connections on some reserved TCP ports, and then accepts simple midi messages from them, and sends them to an appropriate midi device. Since the midi devices the PI has are all software wavetable synthesizers, if the PI already has the samples (because your program shits them down the PI's throat during the loading stage, then instructs the PI what instrument patch set to use-- specifically, the instruments you just provided it), then all you have to do is blurp out a bytecode message to play it, designating the sample, the pitch, the duration, etc-- in the form of a midi message. The PI does the needful and makes the sound, You just vomit up a midi bytecode message to instruct playback. That is not showstopping by any means. It WOULD however, require somebody to run some wires from the GPIO header strip of their PI, to the AUDIOIN line of the sidecar slot/JediMatt connector.
  20. My recent foray into running classic99 on WINE demonstrated quite clearly to me that it works just fine, as long as the wine prefix is 32bit. It crashes right away in a 64bit prefix. Since most systems these days are 64bit, the default WINE has is to make a 64bit prefix. Delve into the WINE documentation (or just google search), and use the necessary console-fu to generate and use a 32bit prefix for use with classic99.
  21. 32kTop_WITHDoor.stp32kBottom.stpTop_32k_door.stlBottom_32k_door.stl OK. Here is the "Current working" revision of the "with door" enclosure. The built in support material is kinda expensive, so you might want to revise. This is ordinary PLA, with a layer height of .1mm Because the supports are baked-in, turn support generation off in your slicer. I baked the supports in, because my slicer wants to incorporate supports inside the holes for the M3 stand-offs. The actual materials used, are "Desert Tan" PLA from GLRobotics, and "Wood" PLA from Lee-Fung The Desert Tan is a good, hard, and rigid PLA. Sands beautifully. The "Wood" PLA is NOT "Wood fiber", it is just "Wood colored". It is actually a somewhat "Gummy" PLA, that sands kinda poorly. However, I have not found a suitable colored replacement.
  22. Okiedoo.. Give me a bit, and I will package up some STP and STL files. I think they still need some prodding here and there, but if you want to play with them...
  23. For something that might be doable natively though-- Networked "The Omega Virus", (shameless copy of the Milt&Bradley board game), with 4 players and TI speech. The amount of data needed to be synced would be low, and the board game itself was pretty simple in its graphical elements.
  24. There really isn't another way to do this though; The TI just isn't up to having that many users hammering it with state data. Hell, it would have a hard enough time dealing with all the digested state data the client on the PI will be throwing down at at it.
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