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Friends, people and how politics is no different..

Posted by MisterGee on Jun 2, 2017 in Ideas, Life, non-scientific, Random thoughts

Judge people by what they do, not what they say.

Ignore all name calling and slander as that is just misdirection.

Believe only by what they promise in the light of what they have done.

Imagine if next year you are going to be either suddenly rich or suddenly poor, but you don’t know which, will they help you regardless?

Decide what direction you want your world to go in, for you and those you love, then choose who will take you there.

 
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Why Microsoft may succeed with Windows 10

Posted by MisterGee on Jul 22, 2015 in Games, Random thoughts, Technology

I’ve had Windows on both on MSDN from first beta release, and both my eldest daughter (10) and I have been using the preview release for the 6 months or so it’s been available.

I would also note 2 thing:
1) Under the hood it’s not that different – infact everything from Vista-Win10 is kinda the same thing under the hood (albeit vista was wracked with bloat)

2) Micro$oft need win 10 to be a success because they are in danger in the OS market.
Mac + Linux are getting into work and home. SteamOS has the ability to completely take the need for windows out of the gaming market (If I didn’t play games, I personally wouldn’t touch windows)

So Windows 10 is micro$oft at it’s best (strangely when it’s loosing), they get the products right, and incentivise well.

Vista is what happens when M$ are on top and think they are untouchable.

So with the free upgrades in the first year (to persuade rather than force people to upgrade), it being stable and like an upgraded version of Win7, people will like it.

Then add in DirectX12 and PC/xbox exclusives, were they try and win back developers and gamers to stay with windows.

Anyway, sorry for the long text, ultimately there is a lot of evidence that Win10 will be a success and great for Windows.

If you are worried, practice separating data and OS, but using the following 6 technologies:
1) Windows Live login (so your profile is stored in the cloud)
2) Data storage on Dropbox (or any cloud storage)
3) IMAP email – again so mail is kept on the server
4) mklink destination source /J  – which is a hard directory link. I use this for say Ubisoft games to store the directory in drop box and make it appear to games like it’s still in its original location
5) Store the OS on the c: drive and all your games/data on D:
6) Browser cloud sync (firefox and chrome both have this

If you manage this, you can easily reinstall the OS etc without loosing data

 
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The Terminator stole my job…..time to get creative

Posted by MisterGee on Jun 13, 2015 in Ideas, Life, My Day Job, Random thoughts, Technology

.. Well not yet, but soon I would imagine, and I will tell you why.

Artificial Intelligence, or AI for short, is going to happen at some point – though it technically has happened, it’s just going to get smarter.

While I was thinking about the impending Apocalypse that is on its way, I also realise that long before we need a precocious saviour, there is something else that will go, way before then – jobs in IT.

Currently I look after all the UNIX systems for a company called Nanopore, where I make sure that servers are provisioned, systems run smoothly and no-one really notices. This is a good thing by the way, as if nobody notices the systems, it means you’re doing a great job and you are making sure everyone can just get on with their job.2015-03-15 17.45.54

What I found though is that I write more and more automated systems. It’s not possible for a person to look after hundreds of servers and know every detail, so bit by but it all gets automated.

That’s when I realised though that what you then need is a system to look through all this data, link the monitoring scripts to the self healing scripts. In short to do what computers do best make sure everything is efficient, correct and doing what it’s supposed to. This is the perfect place for a low to medium level AI. An artificial conductor of sorts to do all the constant checking and re-checking that computer systems do so well and people generally complain about.

Of course that is how it started in films like The Terminator and The Matrix. Computers running everything suddenly see us as in efficient.

Long before th2015-01-29 10.17.58at though comes a system that means I’m no longer needed. Maybe if I’m lucky, it will be after I retire, but it also means that I need to make sure that my daughters go into a different field.

Fortunately both of them are very creative, and I think this it probably one of the only safe areas from our potential overlords. It’s something people do very well, and machines don’t.

Funny yes, crazy possibly, but it really does make me think about what’s coming down the line and which jobs are the first to be terminated.

 
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Disney Infinity and the limitations of real toys in video games

Posted by MisterGee on Feb 9, 2015 in Games, Ideas, Random thoughts

I thought of a great way to have digital characters on consoles (see below for reasons why you may need/want digital only characters).

Have “Holo” characters
Basically, have a physical character that looks like a hologram Mickey (or similar).
You then “load” this with a digital character from a menu in game.
This way you can still swap out digital characters like real ones, without the need for all available characters to be toys.
You could buy lots, and have one for each digital character, or only one and sway via menu everytime you want a different one.

DisneyInfinity2

Why don’t they make all the characters “real figures”?
This is purely down to cost. For each physical figure they make, it needs to be manufactured, shipped, stored and sold in a shop (that needs stock).

All of this is a huge investment, and if a character isn’t all that popular, they could loose money.

Why digital “only” characters could be a good thing
With a digital only character, it just costs money to design and animate the character. You only need to sell enough to cover this cost, so making a niche character makes far more sense.

The downside is it breaks the current console model – hence the idea of Holo figures (the cost is way lower because they all look the same).

Then if any digital characters are really popular, they could decide to release them – it would be a great way to see who is really liked.

Just imagine Disney infinity with 100s of different characters to choose from….
It’s not perfect, but in the real world I couldn’t think of a better way to keep the advantages of both methods.

What do you think?

 
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Our Trove Football Pitch

Posted by MisterGee on Jun 21, 2014 in Random thoughts

2014-06-21 160623Hey Trovians,
On Sunday The 22nd Of June, at 11:00am, (EDT) We are going to hold a football match with party pinata balls.

Come and join us and, if you want, Save your Sunday Party Animals and join us on the pitch to play a game of football, Where scoring a goal! Could Win You A Donkey!

It Is Being held in Twilight’s World, So Friend One Of Us, and come to Twilight’s football pinata party!
Many Thanks, Twilight, MisterG and Lucy.

 
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Sorry if you were deleted

Posted by MisterGee on May 25, 2014 in Random thoughts

Once upon a time, a high number of subscribers was a good thing, it meant people were interested.

Now it seems to be either to post spam, or worse, to compromise a site and use it for spam.

 

So after someone tried to cause problems with my site, I noticed that almost everyone was a non-sensical email address.

If however you were one of the few that were reading the site, and I deleted you by accident, please accept my appologies, drop me a line and I will restore your membership.

Cheers

“:)

g

 
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Children, Penguins and a Disney club

Posted by MisterGee on Jan 23, 2014 in Games, Life, My Day Job

“Daddy, you have to wake up right now, this is a major importance” was how my morning started today.

 

Club Penguin, the children’s game website from Disney, had just told both my daughters that if there account wasn’t activated “in the next hour” their accounts would be deleted.

 

So at the threat of loosing 6 years of activity and the current paid for account, they were understandable upset when seeing the message below:

 

one_hour warning

 

Now, when you try and activate your account, it says please reply to an email sent to your address email@email.com.

 

This is where I breathed a sigh of relief, although only because I understand how software works. I imagine millions of parents around the globe are going through the same problems.

 

As of writing this, I have no idea if this is a software release slip up, or some time based error , but it really is one of those high profile slipups that at best does, real reputational damage and at worst, could result in the loss of millions of accounts and the folding of the company.

 

You see, if the system is fully automated, then the “require authorisation by email” should delete unactivated accounts. It saves space, and people have been warned.

 

If, as seen here, you incorrectly identify existing accounts then they may be deleted with the same disregard as accounts created by spam bots.

 

This isn’t one of those times when I could say “Astor would have saved this” because the answer is way more complex, and backups and archiving data can’t help. This would be the worst kind of data loss imaginable – something called data tainting.

 

Most people these days have (or should have) backups, disaster recovery and archiving solutions. What happens though if only some of your data is lost. Backups normally restore all or nothing for a database. How do you restore a single Penguin? How do you even identify the millions that have been affected.

 

main

Fortunately for me, Club Penguin is owned by Disney, so they can’t just go bust and disappear. However, when your child looses the 6 years they poured into sites like this one, even getting your money back doesn’t compensate.

 

Now imagine that’s Dropbox, Gmail, World of Warcraft or Facebook. Imagine it’s something you rely on to store photos, keep info about friends etc.

 

The question is would the £10 per year back for the service really compensate you? Or how about the £0 you paid to Facebook?

 

Data is worth so much more that any direct monitory value. Make sure you think about the possibilities of partial loss, complete loss and total disaster separately. Have a plan for each scenario, as you never know when the IT gremlin, or in this case Polar Bear will come knocking.

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If I was an egg…

Posted by MisterGee on Jan 13, 2014 in Ideas, Life, Random thoughts

I would not yield when my chick first strikes the shell

nor the second

nor the third

It is not going to be easy for my chick to get out

but get out she will

 

It is not through stubbornness, unfairness or obstinance I do this

but for strength

for life

for love

 

For when my shell breaks, and it will

my little fledgling will be ready for this world

eager, hungry and triumphant

to find the strength and courage when it needs to

and to rest

 

Only then will I know i did the best I could for my chick

and no matter how many pieces my shell lies in

how scattered my parts

it was worth it to let my chick soar

 
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The Arkivum Handbag

Posted by MisterGee on Jan 13, 2014 in Ideas, Life, My Day Job, non-scientific

Every fortnight someone in the office writes a blog post for the company website, this was mine:

For work I carry a rucksack, which is weighted down by pretty much everything. I am just one of those people that carries all sorts of things “just in case”.

Although some things are required, laptop, keys and ID. Others are classic “I just might need this today” and consist of:

  • Power supply – even though I drive to work and don’t need it
  • 2 mice – one for normal work, one for spare
  • Batteries
  • Screwdrivers of various types
  • Redbull – in case I need to drive tired
  • Tablets – for headaches etc
  • Video cables – HDMI, thunderbolt
  • Thunderbolt LAN Cables – cheers for requiring these Apple
  • Headphones

well you get the picture….

Now imagine that you can have a bit of magic in the form of a Mary Poppins box fitted to the bag. One that has no weight, almost infinite size and will hold everything you need.

I would then be left with my laptop, keys and ID – which makes a much lighter and easier to carry bag. I may even be able to get a fancier and less practical carrying device.

This is what A-stor does for your data. It looks like it’s all there, so it’s easy to locate, but only the most recently accessed stuff is kept on-site. This means you don’t need the excess weight of all that data that never changes – no need to worry or back it up.

Your servers can be smaller, your backups take less time, yet finding things is much, much easier.

So anything that can and will change stays in the bag, or on the server. Anything that doesn’t change, and is only needed “just in case” goes in the magic box.

Sadly Arkivum don’t make handbags, but if we did, every single one we made would have a magic box to put the stuff you want to keep but don’t want to carry.

Instead, our magic box is inside every A-stor appliance and will just make life easier.

– See more at: http://www.arkivum.com/posts/2014-01-07-the-Arkivum-handbag#sthash.rJOmV55w.dpuf

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Shove your data in the wonder wardrobe

Posted by MisterGee on Dec 11, 2012 in Life, Technology

Imagine if you had a magic wardrobe, someplace you just lobbed everything into. Now imagine it transports it out of your house, leaving a flat hologram to press when you want it back.

That is what the company I work for does with computer data for companies. If you want to read more, look here

Obviously I’m biased, but trust me, if you have loads of data you never want to loose, this is the easiest solution you’ve ever seen 😉

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