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Dr. Zin

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Everything posted by Dr. Zin

  1. Dr. Zin

    Good use of delibrate HOMs?

    https://www.doomworld.com/idgames/levels/doom2/a-c/barracks Is an early showcase for a bunch of other vanilla visual tricks as well.
  2. Dr. Zin

    What happened to Post Hell?

    No post hell = no will to live.
  3. Consider yourself lucky you didn't buy that car new. Chrysler products during that era (particularly the Jeep line) were notorious for having transmissions that self destructed after only a few tens of thousands of miles. I'm not a gearhead so don't quote me on this, but I believe the problem was that they took a shortcut on finish machining the internal components, which caused them to wear out prematurely. I know relatives who had a Grand Cherokee and a Dodge Caravan from the mid nineties that had to have the transmissions replaced after only a couple of years.
  4. Dr. Zin

    Solar Frickin Roadways

    As someone who has worked in an R-1 research university (and still has a couple months left on his contract), there is a lot of grant money that gets funneled into impractical or useless projects that anyone with even a cursory understanding of the field would reject outright (though, as Gez pointed out, pennies compared to the money thrown down the toilet by the military). While academia wants to give the impression that research is funded based on merit and potential outcomes, the reality is that the two most important aspects of getting grants are "who you know" and "how big is your name." Neither is necessarily correlated with the quality of the work. I could go on in more detail about all of the problems with grants and other aspects of the modern academic system, but I've got to go to work tomorrow.
  5. Dr. Zin

    2014 Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Discussion

    What, no gold option for those of us stuck in the 1890s politically and economically?
  6. Dr. Zin

    old fashioned p2p programs... your thoughts ?

    One thing that hasn't been mentioned is that someone (probably the RIAA or MPAA) figured out how to obfuscate the search results of the Gnutella based P2P services (and possibly others). I don't know exactly how these services worked, but from what I remember the user's machine would send out search requests to other machines it was communicating with on the decentralized network. Those machines would send back any matching results to the originating user, as well as forward the request to any other machines they were connected with, which would then repeat the cycle. The search request had some sort of decay counter to ensure that it wouldn't circulate across the network forever. What someone must have figured out was that you could take these search requests and spoof a filename or description based on the search, and furthermore you could then have this spoof machine direct its search request to other spoof machines (or simulate other spoof machines), thus clogging the search results with garbage files. Thus originating user gets flooded with spoofed files and the service is essentially unusable. You can test this, just type in random text into your old p2p program's search function and watch as it retrieves thousands of examples of "sdkjfhskfjuhsr - GREATEST HIT." Of course, the suits ended up screwing themselves because they drove the copyright infringement from the easily traceable p2p networks to anonymous filesharing websites. And shutting down those sites makes exterminating a roach infestation in Manaus, Brazil look easy in comparison.
  7. I haven't been around here in like... four years. Grad school will do that to you. How have things been going? Any good wads worth playing?

    1. Obsidian



      Heh, worth a flick. Here's some of the more notable recent stuff:

      -Doom II the way Id did.
      -Unholy Realms
      -Mayhem Mansion

    2. Memfis


      map21 from cchest4 is the best in the last 4 years I think

    3. dew


      Speed of Doom is better.

  8. Dr. Zin

    What's your favorite Personal Gun?

    As a revolver shooter, I dispute a few of these. Not nessecarily. Revolvers are actually mechanically quite a bit more complex than a semi-automatic. With sufficient use (or abuse) they can go out of time, which can lead to a hazardous situation where the bullet being fired actually grazes the side of the barrel, spitting shrapnel out of the sides of the barrel/cylinder gap. You mostly see this on old Colts, which had fairly delicate lockwork requiring hand fitting. Also, while semiautomatics a suseptible to poor quality ammution that fails to feed or eject, revolvers are actually more vulnerable to debris getting in the action. If the hand or locking bolt get gummed up good luck getting the gun back into action. Finally, revolvers are much more susceptible to physical damage than semi-autos. If struck hard enough on the cylinder the crane that supports it can actually get bent, and prevent the gun from closing. Most DA/SA or DAO semi autos function the same way. The only real difference is that the DA/SA semis use a decocker to safely lower the hammer after chambering. If you are talking about having a round chambered, all modern handguns (whether revolvers or semi-automatics) have safety mechanisms that prevent a chambered round from firing without a trigger pull. Actually, the .50AE is marginally more powerful than the .44 Magnum. Most people don't realize that the bulk of Desert Eagles manufactured have not been in .50AE, but .44 Magnum. The Desert Eagle was actually built as a .44 Magnum semi, and after a few years of production the .50AE model was added to sell to the "bigger is better" demographic. I think I have seen a .50AE Desert Eagle at a gun shop or show maybe twice, but the .44 models are fairly easy to find. Of course, that doesn't change the fact that the Desert Eagle is a completely impractical handgun touted by idiots as the best gun ever. The damn thing weights near as much as a far more practical Ithaca pump shotgun. For the most part correct, with the exception of the 10mm Auto, which sits between the .357 and .44 in power. The 10mm also tends to be manufactured (with the notable exception of the Glock 20) in premium semis with price tags north of $1k. It is true that a revovler will go longer without maintenance than a semi, but as said above they are actually more susceptible to physical damage. That is mostly an academic point, any well manufactured semi-auto or revolver will shoot better than the average shooter. For those who are master target shooters, semis are actually easier to accurize than revolvers. See, while the barrel on revolvers is fixed the cylinder alignment with it is not static. If you take a revolver and put it at full lockup (hammer down, trigger held back) you will note that the cylinder still has a small amount of rotational play in it. This is to allow the bullet to align itself with the bore (there is a small forcing cone that is hardly noticeable at the breech end of the barrel). This is one of the reasons that the old Colt lockwork is so fiddly, because it actually holds the cylinder still at the right alignment. As a side note, that is the reason why people rave about Colt Pythons, they were essentially the last of the Colts manufactured with this action. Oh, and both the Luger P08 and (I assume) Mauser C96 do not have fixed barrels. The barrels are screwed in (in the Luger) or integrally machined (for the Mauser) as part of a slide that recoils atop the frame to cycle the action on each. Anyway, that despite those criticisms I still find revolvers (particularly Smith and Wessons) to be some of my favorite guns. To get back to the point of the thread, I would find it impossible to choose one favorite gun, as rifles and pistols are so different in function and application. Starting on the rifle side, my favorite rifle is the FAL, particularly the "metric" Belgian pattern rifles. The things are reliable, tough as nails, and are a joy to shoot. They also show a craftsmanship not seen in later rifle designs. As for handguns, I would say that while I appreciate the craftsmanship of a Smith and Wesson double action revolver, if I ever actually needed a handgun I would grab a Browning (or licensed production) Hi-Power. I find the Hi-Power easier to shoot accurately, quicker to reload, and just as reliable as a revolver.
  9. Dr. Zin


  10. Dr. Zin


    Yeah, sure.
  11. Dr. Zin

    SyFy Channel Movies

    That movie was funnier than 90% of the "comedies" at the theaters these days.
  12. Dr. Zin

    Super Jamie?

    Don't worry, Phml is only jealous because no one would notice if he disappeared.
  13. Dr. Zin

    Life Hacks

    Even subject specific "advisors" tend to suck. My advice: when entering a major look over the course requirements, and get a general plan of what courses you will take each year. Many colleges have electronic enrollment, where you can choose whatever classes you want, but some still require you to meet with an advisor to register (the school where I got my undergrad was this way). In such a situation, when the time comes to register for a semester look through the schedule and choose all of your courses, and just hand the list to the advisor. Don't let them change anything. There is pressure on academic advisors to ensure that all courses offered in a term at a college are above an enrollment cutoff. Thus the vast majority of the time a suggestion outside of your required coursework IS NOT IN YOUR BEST INTEREST. Classes don't fill up for two reasons, either they are of interest to only a small audience or they are unreasonably difficult. Anyway, other random college tips: 1. The course number does not correspond to course difficulty. As an undergrad I took 100 level courses that were far more challenging than 400 level courses. The general rule in course numbering is that low number courses are primarily based around rote memory, while higher number courses have more abstract conceptual content. In fact, the 100 and 200 level courses are often the most painful in a particular field. This is why taking "Fundamentals" courses as electives often backfires (I cringe when I think of all the non-majors who took "Biology of Cells" as their natural science elective when I was doing my undergrad). 2. Pre-requisites can often be ignored. Generally a course that has a pre-req will cover all of the nessecary material from the previous course in the first week or two of class. As a general rule of thumb, if the pre-req course has no pre-requisites itself you will probably be OK taking the higher course. However, if a pre-req has its own pre-reqs the higher level course would probably be overwhelming (as it would assume you grasp the most important concepts of the most basic coursework). 3. If you ever feel uncomfortable with a class, drop it (the earlier the better). Its almost impossible to catch up if you fall behind in a college course, and jackass teachers only get worse as the term drags on. 4. Get to know your professors. Professors who know you can give you excellent help (even if they aren't teaching the course you are studying), can give you opportunities such a research or independant study, and also make great references. 5. Independent Studies/Research are the best kept secret of college. They are an easy way to get credits, you generally get to work on a topic you are interested in, and they look awesome on a CV/Resume. Most professors love to work with students on independant work, as it makes them look good too.
  14. Dr. Zin

    Pen Spinning?

  15. Dr. Zin

    Modern Gameplay Handicaps

    I think your giving him too much credit.
  16. Dr. Zin

    SimCity 3000 mathematically perfect city

  17. Dr. Zin

    President of Poland killed in plane crash

    While I don't know the specifics on the particular model involved here, multiple models of Soviet passenger jets had a terrible safety record. James Oberg relates in "Uncovering Soviet Disasters" that the Chinese (during the '60s or early '70s), despite being having their jet production set up by the Russians, bought a license to manufacture the Boeing 707 and scrapped all their Russian aircraft due to frequent accidents. I think it says something when the Maoist Chinese bought a license to produce an American aircraft because the Russian design was too dangerous.
  18. Dr. Zin

    Defining the decade [Csonicgo said it sucks]

    Yeah, but I think that most of the people doing the obsessive world-building are building imposing their vision upon someone else's creation. To carry your analogy, the reason they are obsessed with the sewers is because the originator had alreadly laid out the streets. I think that is the allure of Lovecraft, however. He both embodies and is the opposite of the classic horror movie conundrum (i.e. the monster is scary until you see it is just a man in a rubber suit). Even if the monsters he created can't live up to how they are hyped they are still scary. It isn't just the fact that a monster is threatening to rend the character apart, rather it is the fact that even if he can manage to get out of the current situation he is still stuck in a universe where humanity is just an afterthought. To put it more coherently, when the man is confronted by the monster it becomes his whole existence, but the man hardly even registers on the monster's concioussness.
  19. Actually, cephalopods are well known as being the most intelligent of the invertebrates, with some species displaying learning capabilities equal to some mammals and birds.
  20. Dr. Zin

    Defining the decade [Csonicgo said it sucks]

    I disagree with this: Most post-LOTR author's don't engage in world buildling. They just take someone else's vision (Tolkien, Lovecraft, Stoker, etc) and try to write their own stories within. Not that there is anything nessecarily wrong with a well executed derivative work, mind you, so long it is explicitly stated that it was written in an established universe and respects the unique character and feel of that setting. However, most of the people just rip off someone else's world and make their own hamhanded tweaks and revisions to cram in their own "style" (if it is even worth dignifing it as such). Then many of them have the gall to claim that they have produced an original work that should be held up with the very material it has been shamelessly lifted from. Furthermore, even more witless authors plagiarize from this secondary material to create their own works, which is how we end up with garbage like "Eragon" and "Twilight." While there are some authors more obsessed with detailing the settings they cultivate than producing an interesting story, I would say that they are a breath of fresh air compared to the multitude of hacks rewriting the same material but adding their own watered down philsophies and transparent plot threads that make up most of the industry. Its shocking to think that Lovecraft was thought as a pulp author in his day, when he had more talent in his little finger than any number of syncophants making award and best seller lists today.
  21. Dr. Zin

    Defining the decade [Csonicgo said it sucks]

    When all is said and done I don't think there will be ANY labels. At least not in the sense of a middleman between the artist and the audience.