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User information for Roger Norris

Real Name Roger Norris   
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Nickname The Pyro
Email Concealed by request - Send Mail
ICQ None given.
Description Software developer, long-time Blue's reader
Homepage None given.
Signed On Jul 10, 2000, 20:19
Total Comments 252 (Amateur)
User ID 6134
User comment history
< Newer [ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 ] Older >

News Comments > Out of the Blue
40. Re: No subject Sep 9, 2003, 15:11 The Pyro
A follow-up to my anti-gravity post...

One question that might occur to you is "If the object is really flying why do we care if it's using real anti-gravity or not?"

Because a primary application of anti-gravity technology would be space travel / propulsion in a vaccuum. Any system that isn't REAL anti-gravity isn't going to work in space. There's no air in space to provide an ion wind, and there's no ground to push off of with magnets. So it does matter what phenomenon is really causing the object to fly.

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News Comments > Out of the Blue
39. Re: No subject Sep 9, 2003, 15:05 The Pyro
Laugh if you will, but I have seen testings of US anti-grav aircraft. It wasnt glamorous, but it was real.

I have no doubt that they can get stuff to fly using non-standard propulsion systems, but I DO doubt that it's anti-gravity - even if they THINK it's anti-gravity. In every recent case (and there have been more than one) where some scientist has claimed to discover anti-gravity the effect has been shown to be caused by some other phenomenon, such as magnetism or ion wind. NASA was investigating at least one such claim recently, without any luck.

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News Comments > Out of the Blue
12. 'Black World' technology Sep 9, 2003, 08:52 The Pyro
Anti-gravity propulsion? Haha. This "Nick Easen" from CNN should do a little more digging... While I can believe that a company like Boeing might have thrown a few dollars in the pot to investigate the issue, I'm extremely skeptical that "mysterious U.S. military craft using this kind of technology have been skirting the skies since the 1980s."

Anti-gravity would take an incredible amount of energy to work, if it could be done at all. Otherwise you could violate the law of conservation of energy by just turning on your anti-gravity shield and then "giving" a massive object a ton of potential energy for free as you lift it off the ground effortlessly.

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News Comments > America's Army 2.0 Soon
13. Re: No subject Sep 4, 2003, 20:16 The Pyro
The rational of my college is that it uses too much bandwidth

Well then I certainly hope that they've blocked all those nasty peer-to-peer file sharing programs, since they use about 100x more bandwidth than games.

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News Comments > DX2 & Thief 3 Movies
19. Matrix Revolutions Aug 19, 2003, 23:22 The Pyro
Did the Matrix Revolutions trailer seem a little odd to anyone else?

Between Morpheus not narrating and the lack of the stanard Matrix-esque music, it was almost hard to recognize the trailer as a legitimate part of the franchise. I was almost left with the feeling that some fan had gotten hold of the footage and peiced together a 3rd party trailer from it.

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News Comments > DX2 & Thief 3 Movies
13. Re: w00t! Aug 19, 2003, 22:48 The Pyro
ok...what the hell is this torrent mean? I've seen it a few times, but have no clue.

BitTorrent is a great little program that takes the load off of file servers by letting everybody who is downloading a file share the parts they've already downloaded with other users. When more people download a file, instead of the download speeds getting slower, they actually get better.

I definitely recommend using BitTorrent to download stuff whenever possible. The fastest download speeds I've ever had on my connection were achieved while downloading stuff with it.

This comment was edited on Aug 19, 22:49.
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News Comments > Out of the Blue
19. Where is thy sting? Aug 13, 2003, 12:25 The Pyro

Odd, wasn't there just recently a different scientific article arguing that life expectancy still isn't expected to exceed 120 years in the near future? Their claim of 5000 years by the year is 2100 is just absurd, IMO. Even if they manage to address critical organ failures, etc... there's still the problem of brain deterioration and memory loss. And I wouldn't want anyone replacing my brain with pig innards...

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News Comments > Out of the Blue
59. Re: Misc. Aug 6, 2003, 13:55 The Pyro
#2. Mini-nukes. *sigh* Just when I think it can't get much worse with this administration, I am painfully reminded how consistently wrong I am on that presumption. No nukes is good nukes.

How so? IMO, it's always good to have more options. You want to achieve your objectives while causing as little collateral damage as possible. That's the whole point of mini-nukes. Extreme power, but contained within a much smaller radius. It's a weapon that has actual tactical uses, as opposed to "regular" nukes - which are pretty much only used as insurance against other people with nukes.

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News Comments > DOOM 3 at QuakeCon
40. Re: Hmmm Jul 25, 2003, 08:24 The Pyro
I wonder how much the interface of Radiant (the mapeditor) has evolved to make creating so much detail a bit easier than it would in the Quake3 version (GtkR 1.3).

Good news for you on that front. The map editor is now built into the game. You can drag objects around inside of the game engine and see the actual in-game lighting effects in real time.

This comment was edited on Jul 25, 08:24.
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News Comments > DOOM 3 at QuakeCon
36. Re: Hmmm Jul 24, 2003, 23:47 The Pyro
Modding in Doom3 will be harder. NOT because of programing, but because of the ammount of work that needs to go into the levels/models/textures.

Exactly. I believe there's a minimum of something like 5 pieces of artwork that go into making just a single texture or skin in the Doom 3 engine. Texture map, bump map, normal map, specular map... can't remember the last one. Point is, creating content for this game is a LOT of work.

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News Comments > DOOM 3 at QuakeCon
24. The 4 player limit Jul 24, 2003, 15:28 The Pyro
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought the 4 player limit was because they were leaning more towards a peer-to-peer style network model rather than use a client-server model.

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News Comments > DOOM 3 at QuakeCon
9. W00t Jul 24, 2003, 11:48 The Pyro
Only three weeks...

I strongly suspected that id would have something playable for QuakeCon this year. That's why the rumors of a Doom 3 delay seem so odd to me. Having seen the game in person at _last_ year's QuakeCon, the engine and development tools (I just LOVE the in-game-engine map editing) should have been quite polished for at least a year now. Surely they can have this guy ready to ship by Christmas?

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News Comments > Out of the Blue
22. Re: FrontPage Jul 2, 2003, 15:36 The Pyro
But I get all my stuff from - good prices, great service, I've never had a problem with any of my orders.

I'll second that recommendation. I've ordered stuff from them twice now (quite a lot of stuff, I might add) and haven't experienced any problems. My current system is 95% components from newegg, I believe

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News Comments > UT2003 Deathball
7. Re: bah... Jun 30, 2003, 12:51 The Pyro
I went back to the original UT recently and still think it’s better then UT03. If only they’d done more of the same instead of reinventing and thereby fucking up a great game.

Ah, but then it would get bad reviews for just copying the old version of the game and failing to innovate

This comment was edited on Jun 30, 12:52.
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News Comments > Out of the Blue
12. Re: Do Not Call list Jun 27, 2003, 17:40 The Pyro
Gees, how many times have you switched carriers in the last 18 months? But if you have never done business with Sprint, they won't be calling you.

A poster on Slashdot mentioned that the following types of businesses were exempt from the Do Not Call list:

- long-distance phone companies
- airlines
- banks and credit unions; and
- the business of insurance, to the extent that it is regulated by state law.

(see this post: )

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News Comments > Out of the Blue
9. Re: Do Not Call list Jun 27, 2003, 14:12 The Pyro
Unfortunately, I get the feeling that the National Do Not Call List is going to be almost completely useless to me. I was discouraged to learn that it does not apply to the vast majority of telemarketing calls that I get: mainly long-distance companies wanting me to switch.

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News Comments > NWN Beta Patch
5. Re: The concept of the beta patch Jun 15, 2003, 00:45 The Pyro
The logic behind this has always eluded me:

"Okay, we've got some software out there with problems. We've figured out how to fix them (or, at least, most of them), but they have the potential to introduce additional problems. Let's release it anyway."

They're taking advantage of technically competent members of the community in order to get additional testing and feedback without exposing themselves to too much risk.

There are two main types of users that are being considered here:

1) Technically savvy individuals who are comfortable installing patches manually.

2) "Gamers" who feel a real sense of accomplishment if they can stick the CD in the drive for the first time and successfully install the game by clicking "Next" repeatedly.

Group 1 is generally competent enough to use the reverse patch if a problem prevents them from enjoying the new beta code. Group 2 is more likely to call Bioware support and run up a huge phone bill.

Group 1 may appreciate being able to test the new features before most other people see them, and is more likely to be understanding of issues. Furthermore, in the event of a problem, Group 1 probably knows enough to get on a Bioware message board and let others know about it in the proper forum. Group 2... does not.

The last thing the company wants is to release buggy code to Group 2. Support costs = bad. Potentially thousands of people that all of a sudden can't play their new game and don't know how to uninstall the patch = very bad.

But at the same time, the team wants to be able to release these fixes/new features as quickly as possible. For that, they need testing hours. LOTS of testing hours - and as large a variety of different computer configurations as possible. A public beta is the best way to achieve that. Hiring dozens of full-time testers and putting together a zillion different machines to test on is _expensive_, and hard to justify once a game has already been released.

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News Comments > Carmack on DOOM 3
9. Save games May 15, 2003, 10:34 The Pyro
I was just wondering about how saves would work yesterday. Seems to me that being able to save anywhere, anytime takes away from the mood of the game. Why be afraid of dying if you can always just reload from 20 seconds ago?

Some people argue that limited saving makes a game frustrating... I COMPLETELY disagree. One of my favorite games is Angband and its variants ( ). The game takes dozens and dozens of hours to complete, and death is permanent. One mistake and you could lose 20 hours of work.

Of course many players choose to bypass the system and "cheat death" by backing up their save files... but if you ask me, that takes away all of the tension.

Perhaps some sort of hybrid save file scheme is needed? By default, only let players save at the ends of levels. But allow players to turn on a "Cheat death" option or something that lets them save anywhere.

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News Comments > Dungeon Siege II Announced
30. Dungeon Siege, etc... May 13, 2003, 21:29 The Pyro
First, a couple thoughts on the original game:
I found Dungeon Siege to be extremely addictive. I suppose the lack of loading screens did contribute a bit to that. There's always the push to go just a little bit farther.

Having said that, the gameplay could be extremely frustrating at times. If you want a half-decent nature mage in your party then you HAVE to take them off on their own every now and then and level them up, just so they can catch up with the rest of the party. Like a previous poster said, magic was pretty much crap until you get to the end of the game - and since experience gain is based on how much damage a particular character is doing (not shared among your party), your mages are pathetic unless you babysit them.

The other lousy part about the game (sorry GPG, it was lousy) was the complete lack of RP in this RPG. Surely there must be some balance between a NWN style game and DS?

A few more pros: you have NOT seen this game until you've played it with some 3D glasses A feast for the eyes. And the sound is amazing.

However, I can't say I'm terribly enthusiastic about Dungeon Siege 2. It's not that I don't think it'll be a fun game - it probably will be, and I'll probably buy it shortly after it comes out. But... Dungeon Siege 2 means that I'm going to have to wait that much longer for Chris Taylor to start working on the spiritual successor to Total Annihilation. The original TA offered some of the best gameplay the RTS world has seen.

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News Comments > Out of the Blue
6. Vertical Keyboard Apr 22, 2003, 10:25 The Pyro
Is it just me or does that vertical keyboard seem like a horrible design?

I use the arrow keys VERY frequently when typing. Mostly I use them for navigation in source files when programming. I can't imagine having the arrow keys positioned in the absolute most uncomfortable place (the very center of the keyboard), and having to move by hand around an obnoxious vertical barrier every time I want to use them.

Interesting idea, but it definitely needs another round or two of refinement before I would even consider trying it.

This comment was edited on Apr 22, 10:26.
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252 Comments. 13 pages. Viewing page 10.
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