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the lack-of-creativity online game ecology February 7, 2007

Posted by TSAI HONG-BIN in Misc.
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funny, online MRPGs available nowadays are so much alike. The settings of these games can be divided into only 2 categories, western and eastern. For western style, race options are only human, elf, half-elf…etc. job options are only knight, warrior, archer, wizard…blah. As for eastern style, they are all human, and you can only choose which martial gang to join. What the hell…. (btw, WOW is a great game, just my heat to that is diminished by repeating group missions)

I always think, if people can’t make up any of a new story from things we’re already familiar with, why don’t they invent a whole new one? Especially, when there’re great works in novels, movies, among the whole online game industry does there no one feel like to “imitate” their idea? Can’t MRPG include aliens, robots and ships? can’t MRPG map become a jungle and the “roles” we play are animals? can’t MRPG weapon system don’t use sword, knife, arrow and wand anymore but gun, laser, missle or torpedo? There’re so much fun creating a world that players can enjoy the transformation of his nature into someone/something else, why is it at current stage, things we can choose are ones that copy from another.

Maybe I’ll shift to do game industry someday :p

is Documentation skill a requirement? December 28, 2006

Posted by TSAI HONG-BIN in Misc.
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One of the most “geek” impression about software engineers are their “remarkable communication characteristics:” jargon, jargon and jargon (this should apply to other fields with proficiency anyway). Actually, two (software) engineers can communicate very efficiently and effectively if they both speak jargons. It helps quickly identify the essence of the topic, or, the problem (engineers don’t communicate if and only if they receive a bug report), however, never a good way to social. 

(murmur) Weird … why is that lawyers and doctors speaking jargons always receive admiration?

Anyway, I got a feeling that most engineers dislike to do documentation. Maybe one of the main reasons is that “my writing plus your reading cost much more time than asking me directly.” .. well, the other main reason may be “source code is the best documentation.” They are both true and popular execuses for engineers denying to do documentation. The question is, the reason they reject to do documentation is really what they claimed, or what they don’t want to admit that they are not good at it? The latter, I figured.

Engineers, unfortunately, are linguists in machines’ world. hey, wait, plz don’t shush me.. I got my theory~…

(to be continue…)

some nonsenses tech. events December 18, 2006

Posted by TSAI HONG-BIN in Misc.
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  1. Google bought YouTube for 1.6 billion USD
  2. Yahoo Taiwan bought Wretch (無名小站) for 0.7 billion NTD
  3. Some “analyst” “predicted” that Micro$oft won’t evolve new version of Windows after Vista

Before making any comment on these 3 tech. news, I have to say something in advance: I believe my sense about information technology. Here are few evidences. I had predicted the vaporization of E-Commerse, including the degradation of Amazon 3 years earlier before it happened. No one bought my words, until they saw EC websites disappeared one by one. There once was a media website called “明日報,” selling news online. Right after seeing its establishment, I had made a prediction that it must fail. Three years later, it closed. Did I look good on anything and it turns out to be good? Yes, micro-payment. We used to worked with CHT (中華電信) to build a website that collects your bill (phone, utility, adsl … blah) on “PDA,” called e-Kato. I told my boss, no one will use something like this, PDA is not as popular as cell phone, if you want to do micropayment, do it on cell phone. Unfortunately, no one listen to me. e-Kato died and some other ISP succeeded in micro-payment by integrating trivial billing into cell phone system.

Now I made three predictions about the events listed above.

Google will regret to buy YouTube because one day, they’ll encounter legal problems with media providers such as TV channels, movie producers, music industry …etc. and lose money on those lawsuits. Wretch is never a community website with high quality, its main users have suffered from the lack of security (confidentiality), low-speed connection (availability), and the growing amount of ads. Besides, I believe Yahoo Taiwan did not buy it for the community system, but for the data, I mean, photos. From this aspect of view, the builders of Wretch don’t deserve the whole income, the object of purchase should be photo providers: users. Did users earn anything from the 20 million NTD? the answer is : NO. What a group of people so lack of morality. Ye know what even worse? those disgraces earned money. They shall be damned. And my prediction about Wretch: as soon as Yahoo has integrated the photos into its community system, the original system shall disapper, except for its domain name.

The last is Windows Vista. I once said that Vista is not at all a complete OS in previous articles. It immitates Access Control mechanism from Linux, but has not learned the spirit. It tries to promotes hibernation to users but does not aware that users have been suffered from the “true dead” of windows hibernation. The Micro$oft empire won’t collapse for this little crap, they got whole lots of product lines to feed this stupid monster, not telling that this monster is still making money. They must not give up evolving Windows so that they can keep earning money by introducing newly invented craps to innocent consumers. Besides, anything that doesn’t improve itself won’t sell. Apparently Bill Gates knows this principle, he just got confused with the definition of “improve.”

My apology for incorrect critics about Micro$oft December 7, 2006

Posted by TSAI HONG-BIN in Misc.
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Last week I complained about M$’ lousy hibernation for disallowing user to save hiberfil.sys in another partition. This statement is not entirely correct. At least, it’s true that M$ offers no control panel for setting hiberfil.sys save path.

Yesterday Roy asked me to reopen the investigation about Windows hibernation and I finally found an article describing the hibernation mechanism. (check it out here http://www.mcse.ms/message1158414.html) it says that the hiberfil.sys under %systemroot% could be a text file describing the ARC path to the real hiberfil.sys. by this key word “linkmulti” I got a M$ document here http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/winxppro/reskit/c29621675.mspx 

Check this line,


doesn’t it look so much like lines you’ll find in boot.ini? See what I’m trying to imply?

Usually, in any kinds of software design, we keep every component in the system “modulized.” It suggests that each module in the system plays like a blackbox with standardized interface. Thus when we want to upgrade, fix or re-design the module, we don’t have to deal with the whole system, but only the blackbox itself. The functionality of this blackbox is kept simple. If this function is dealing with drawing a dot on screen, all tasks of drawing a dot on screen goes to it. If it plays as a configuration of boot, al boot configuration should be found there.

Apparently M$ doesn’t think it this way. At least when a Windows system is hibernated, ntldr then will not act as whatever boot.ini is configured, it goes to hiberfil.sys first. hibernation is just like a mistress to ntldr, when it shows up, it always steps upon normal boot.

Micro$oft: crap maker November 23, 2006

Posted by TSAI HONG-BIN in Misc.
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Why M$ can always piss me off so easily so much, I’m not a man of anger at all…

Hibernation? No, that’s “Play dead, Oops, it becomes true” feature of Windows’ Power Management. Have you ever failed to resume from hibernation and let the reboot process kill all opened documents, saved or not, with helplessness? I DO! every other time. Now Vista is suggesting people to use HORM (Hibernation once/ Resume many) and it sets Power off process to hibernate by default. Maybe this tuning makes people forget how slow it boots from S5, for a very short period. Then its users shall start to suffer from the “true dead” instead of hibernation.

Don’t let the stupid Ad confuse you, Microsoft won’t be able to boot off quickly and stably. If you put expectation on its resume, you’ll soon be disappointed. Why doesn’t Micro$oft hibernate itself and see what will happen? It’s such a terrible waste to put one’s effort on solving problems made by M$.

By the way, there is another crap thing about M$ Hibernation, it cannot be saved on another partition. Do you see what’s wrong? Windows boot loader is able to recognize different disks and partitions on the box and put the boot process to a specified boot sector, but not capable to load a hiberfil.sys anywhere else than C:\? Does this sound reasonable? I don’t want to criticize M$’ engineers because I’m an engineer too. But making fool of all Windows users in such an obvious way is against the morality of engineering. No wonder why they need to sue so many company. Because they just cannot bear to see engineers smarter, imaginative, more innovative and considerate than they are.