Archive

Posts Tagged ‘lot’

Company Turns Your Android Smartphone Into a Game Console

December 7th, 2012 12:04 admin View Comments

Handhelds

MojoKid writes “The time we spend making calls on smartphones pales in comparison to the other activities we use it for, like surfing the web, logging into Facebook, streaming music and video, and of course playing games. It’s that latter functionality that a startup called Green Throttle wants to tap into, and given the horsepower of today’s smartphones, it makes a lot of sense. The company envisions harnessing the power of today’s well-equipped Android smartphones and tablets in order to play console-like games on your HDTV. Right now the concept is limited to select devices — Google Nexus, Samsung Galaxy S II and S III, HTC One X, Kindle Fire HD, and Asus Transformer — though the company says it’s adding to the list quickly. The system is fairly simple. You load Green Throttle’s Arena app on your compatible device and start gaming using the company’s Bluetooth-enabled Atlas controller, which looks a lot like an Xbox 360 controller, then push your phone’s HDMI output to an HDTV.”

Source: Company Turns Your Android Smartphone Into a Game Console

Just Say No To College

December 3rd, 2012 12:30 admin View Comments

Education

Hugh Pickens writes writes “Alex Williams writes in the NY Times that the idea that a college diploma is an all-but-mandatory ticket to a successful career is showing fissures. Inspired by role models like the billionaire drop-outs who founded Microsoft, Facebook, Dell, Twitter, Tumblr, and Apple, and empowered by online college courses, a groundswell of university-age heretics consider themselves a DIY vanguard, committed to changing the perception of dropping out from a personal failure to a sensible option, at least for a certain breed of risk-embracing maverick. ‘Here in Silicon Valley, it’s almost a badge of honor,’ says Mick Hagen, 28, who dropped out of Princeton in 2006 and moved to San Francisco, where he started Undrip, a mobile app. ‘College puts a lot of constraints, a lot of limitations around what you can and can’t do. Some people, they want to stretch their arms, get out and create more, do more.’ Perhaps most famously, Peter A. Thiel, the billionaire co-founder of PayPal, in 2010 started his Thiel Fellowship program, which pays students under 20 years old $100,000 apiece to bag college and pursue their own ventures. ‘People are being conned into thinking that this credential is the one thing you need to do better in life. They typically are worse off, because they have amassed all this debt.’ UnCollege advocates a DIY approach to higher education and spreads the message through informational ‘hackademic camps.’ ‘Hacking,’ in the group’s parlance, can involve any manner of self-directed learning: travel, volunteer work, organizing collaborative learning groups with friends. Students who want to avoid $200,000 in student-loan debt might consider enrolling in a technology boot camp, where you can learn to write code in 8 to 10 weeks for about $10,000. ‘I think kids with a five-year head start on equally ambitious peers will be ahead in both education and income,’ says James Altucher, a prominent investor, entrepreneur and pundit who self-published a book called ’40 Alternatives to College.’ ‘They could go to a library, read a book a day, take courses online. There are thousands of ways.’”

Source: Just Say No To College

A Fun Slashdot 15th Anniversary Get-Together in St. Petersburg, FL (Video)

November 1st, 2012 11:55 admin View Comments

News

A lot of people in a lot of places celebrated Slashdot’s 15th anniversary by getting together with other Slashdot readers in person. In the Tampa Bay part of Florida, a small and humble meeting was sponsored by an open source company called Fextel at their St. Petersburg HQ. The catering was excellent, and it was a fun group of 12 or so who showed up, about half of whom knew each other from the Suncoast Linux Users Group (SLUG). So we had good food and good people. What else did we need? Remote control helicopter battles, of course! In retrospect, we now believe remote helicopters crashing into each other should be required at any event with a Slashdot theme. We may may just be saying this because we live someplace where the NFL won’t let us watch any home games, so we are more entertainment-deprived than most Americans. Then again, maybe helicopter wars are just plain cooler than watching football, and the USA should have fewer NFL games and more Slashdot-based parties.

Source: A Fun Slashdot 15th Anniversary Get-Together in St. Petersburg, FL (Video)

Rob Pike on Go at Google

October 27th, 2012 10:58 admin View Comments

Not a lot here on Go at Google really. Mostly a general overview of the language, whose major selling point seems to be that it was designed by famous people and is in use at Google.

Source: Rob Pike on Go at Google

Why One Person Thinks Raspberry Pi Is Unsuitable For Education

September 25th, 2012 09:18 admin View Comments

Education

An anonymous reader writes “Raspberry Pi was designed for education. As any popular product is bound to, Raspberry Pi has been criticized a lot for things like lack of a box, absence of supplied charger or even WiFi. Raspberry Pi has a much more fundamental flaw, which directly conflicts with its original goal: it is a black box tightly sealed with patents and protected by corporations. It isn’t even remotely an open platform.” The author thinks that patents on ARM are a serious threat to the openness of the platform (among other things like the proprietary GPU blob needed to boot). But even the FSF doesn’t go that far. Wired had an editorial with the foundation justifying “selling out a little to sell a lot” that has a lot of info on the choices they had to make to hit their cost target.

Source: Why One Person Thinks Raspberry Pi Is Unsuitable For Education

Texas Opens Fastest US Highway With 85 MPH Limit

September 7th, 2012 09:19 admin View Comments

Transportation

Hugh Pickens writes “Most highways in the U.S. top out at 75 mph, while some highways in rural West Texas and Utah have 80 mph speed limits. All that is about to change as Texas opens a stretch of highway with the highest speed limit in the country, giving eager drivers a chance to rip through a trip between two of the state’s largest metropolitan areas at 85 mph for a 41-mile toll road between Austin and San Antonio. While some drivers will want to test their horsepower and radar detectors, others are asking if safety is taking a backseat. A 2009 report in the American Journal of Public Health found that more than 12,500 deaths were attributable to increases in speed limits on all kinds of roads and that rural highways showed a 9.1 percent increase in fatalities on roads where speed limits were raised. ‘If you’re looking at an 85 mph speed limit, we could possibly see drivers going 95 up to 100 miles per hour,’ says Sandra Helin, president of the Southwestern Insurance Information Service. ‘When you get to those speeds, your accidents are going to be a lot worse. You’re going to have a lot more fatalities.’”

Source: Texas Opens Fastest US Highway With 85 MPH Limit

Book Review: Think Like a Programmer

August 31st, 2012 08:41 admin View Comments

Image

MassDosage writes “After nearly 15 years or of writing code professionally it was refreshing to take a figurative step back and read a book aimed at people getting started with computer programming. As the title suggests, Think Like A Programmer tries to get to the core of the special way that good programmers think and how, when faced with large and complex problems, they successfully churn out software to solve these challenges in elegant and creative ways. The author has taught computer science for about as long as I’ve been programming and this shows in his writing. He has clearly seen a lot of different people progress from newbie programmers to craftsmen (and craftswomen) and has managed to distill a lot of what makes this possible in what is a clear, well-written and insightful book.” Read below for the rest of Mass Dosage’s review.

Think Like A Programmer
author V. Anton Spraul
pages 256
publisher No Starch Press
rating 8/10
reviewer Mass Dosage
ISBN 978-1-59327-424-5
summary An Introduction to Creative Problem Solving

Source: Book Review: Think Like a Programmer

Welcome to the University of Michigan’s Computer and Video Game Archive (Video)

August 28th, 2012 08:38 admin View Comments

Emulation (Games)

After watching this video, a lot of you are going to wish you were Dave Carter, who works at the University of Michigan’s Computer and Video Game Archive. He deals with video games, from the oldest hand-helds and consoles to the newest Xbox and PC games and controllers. A lot of his time is no doubt spent fixing things that break, finding obscure games, being generally helpful, and making sure nobody breaks the games, consoles, computers, controllers, and even board games and memorabilia in the collection. But still, this has got to be the ultimate job for a game junkie. And it looks like a great place to visit, because this museum is part of a library, and just as a library encourages you to pick up books and read them, this is a place where you can actually play the games, not just stare at a ColecoVision console in a display case. You can play in a cubicle or, for games that take some space, there are a couple of big gaming rooms with soft-looking sofas and big flat-screen TVs, where you can jump up and down like crazy while you’re doing Guitar Hero or using a Wii or Kinect. And if you can’t make it to Ann Arbor, MI, there’s an informative blog that’s all about video games past and present that’s must reading for almost any serious gamer.

Source: Welcome to the University of Michigan’s Computer and Video Game Archive (Video)

Neal Stephenson On Fiction, Games, and Saving the World

August 21st, 2012 08:10 admin View Comments

Sci-Fi

An anonymous reader points out an interview with Neal Stephenson at The Verge in which he talks a bit about his upcoming “research-heavy” novel, his Mongoliad project to reinvent the fiction novel as an app, what he thinks about saving the world with sci-fi. He says, “It would be saying a lot to say that SF can save the world, but I do think that we’ve fallen into a habitual state of being depressed and pessimistic about the future. We are extremely conservative and fearful about how we deploy our resources. It contrasts pretty vividly with the way we worked in the first half of the 20th century. We are looking at a lot of challenges now that I do not think can be solved as long as we stay in that mindset. This is more of an ‘if you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail’ kind of thing. My hammer is that I can write science fiction, so that’s the thing I’m going to try to do. If I had billions of dollars sitting around, I could try to put my money where my mouth is and invest it. If I did something else for a living, I would be using my skills – whatever they were – to solve this problem, but since I’m a science fiction writer, I’m going to try to address it through the medium of science fiction.”

Source: Neal Stephenson On Fiction, Games, and Saving the World

Neal Stephenson On Fiction, Games, and Saving the World

August 21st, 2012 08:10 admin View Comments

Sci-Fi

An anonymous reader points out an interview with Neal Stephenson at The Verge in which he talks a bit about his upcoming “research-heavy” novel, his Mongoliad project to reinvent the fiction novel as an app, what he thinks about saving the world with sci-fi. He says, “It would be saying a lot to say that SF can save the world, but I do think that we’ve fallen into a habitual state of being depressed and pessimistic about the future. We are extremely conservative and fearful about how we deploy our resources. It contrasts pretty vividly with the way we worked in the first half of the 20th century. We are looking at a lot of challenges now that I do not think can be solved as long as we stay in that mindset. This is more of an ‘if you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail’ kind of thing. My hammer is that I can write science fiction, so that’s the thing I’m going to try to do. If I had billions of dollars sitting around, I could try to put my money where my mouth is and invest it. If I did something else for a living, I would be using my skills – whatever they were – to solve this problem, but since I’m a science fiction writer, I’m going to try to address it through the medium of science fiction.”

Source: Neal Stephenson On Fiction, Games, and Saving the World