pirate sanity

finally found someone in the video games industry saying the sensible thing about software piracy:

For example, it is said that in Spain it is currently more difficult than in other nations to take effective legal measures…. I hear people say that, as the result, Nintendo’s market there has shrunk significantly due to rampant piracy. In fact, Nintendo DS software could not make it to the hit software sales chart in the country for sometime. However, when we launched the Nintendo DS software “Art Academy” in Europe this summer, which shows you how to draw pictures, it was ranked No. 1 on the software sales chart covering all the video game platforms in Spain. If one software can attract many people and can become a social topic, that software can sell regardless of piracy.

Satoru Iwata (Nintendo President) from Nintendo Conference Q & A Session – September 29, 2010 (my emphasis)

what a relief!

so, don’t keep claiming software pirates are killing games sales and bashing the homebrew scene in the process – just write better games!  (maybe you should start by getting inspiration from the cool stuff made for free by the homebrew people).

another mini idea for computer thinking

based on another overheard user comment. treat the computer screen like it’s a telly and the keyboard/mouse like a big remote control. the screen gives you a view into ‘computer space’ – the user doesn’t identify what they see as “my computer” or “my files” or “my programs” .. it’s just “stuff in another ‘world'”.

obviously i need to think this out a bit more – just needed to make a note really.

desktop UI ideas

just a few of thoughts .. how about this:

  • on the desktop or in another nautilus window:
    • clicking on the background creates a new file
    • dragging a box (only) on the background creates a new folder
    • default object names contain the date/time
    • alternatively, dragging a box on the desktop background starts a new application with a window with that geometry. when you let go of the drag you get a window frame and a gnome-do.
  • opening/closing folder windows zoom in and out of the relevant icon in their parent folder if that’s open.
  • a transparent (animated, glowing slightly?) connection of some sort between the window and the place it came from (and will go to) might be helpful.
  • the dock only shows applications which are minimised.
  • apps auto-minimise when they’re more than 90% obscured.
  • modal dialogs grey out (and possibly zoom out slightly) the desktop … erm, a bit like vista. urk. should only be done if it doesn’t make everything freeze for a moment!

death of a(nother) land rover

those who know me will be amused and faintly relieved to hear that i’ve finally given up on being a Land Rover owner having killed another one.

this one had a slightly fiery end as i attempted to get the LPG system working properly.  i carefully followed the instructions given and twiddled the appropriate knob in the engine.  engine stalls.  engine can’t be re-started.  re-adjusted knob. still can’t start but can still hear and smell gas escaping.  eek!

managed to stop the gas smell by switching the system back to petrol but couldn’t be sure it wasn’t just reduced.   clearly i was a bit ill at the time because my next trick was to wave a lighter at it.  KIDS, DON’T DO THIS!!  small fireball and fire in the air filter.  no phone (sorry – no picture) and no fire extinguisher!

luckily that small fire went out after a minute or so.  presumably it really was just burning off some residual gas.  but again i couldn’t be sure so i ended up calling out the fire brigade on new years day.  and they weren’t sure either.  in the end we all agreed it was probably okay but i should stop fiddling.

this is more stress than i want to deal with.  this morning i arranged for it to be scrapped.  never again!

give it a name

in response to hughsie’s post about “refresh cache” in PackageKit (but not in the reponse comments as i don’t have or want a livejournal account) here’s some name suggestions:

Suspend: “Pause computer” (would be better when we can have those zero-power LCD displays)

Hibernate: “Switch off” (possibly this shouldn’t be available at all – it should just happen automatically if the battery’s getting low.  if there’s energy-usage issues about leaving systems paused then the hardware people should improve their suspend facilities.  or this happens automatically after an idle timeout.)

Power off: “Log out and switch off” (we shouldn’t need this anymore)

Reboot: “Log out and restart computer” “Apply system updates” (that’s the only time this should be needed – the option shouldn’t be available otherwise)

Refresh cache: “Update software list now”

i know they’re a bit wordy and the changes to ‘suspend’ and ‘hibernate’ rather depend on those functions (and their associated resume functions) really, really working properly! still,maybe it makes sense. annoyingly, it looks like, once again, Microsoft might have actually got a lot of this right in Vista.