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What Major World Cities Look Like at Night, Minus the Light Pollution smithsonianmag.com
107 points by bcn  6 hours ago   41 comments top 12
danso 3 hours ago 7 replies      
If you were in New York City during Hurricane Sandy, in the lower half, at least, you got a taste of this first hand.

I had to walk home into the unpowered section of Manhattan every night from work. I took some photos during that time. Unfortunately, as it was still overcast, we never did get a chance to see the stars from downtown Manhattan:


Camillo 1 hour ago 1 reply      
They would look nothing like those photos.

The city would look much, much darker. You can really tell that those are day shots of the cities with the brightness and saturation reduced.

The sky would look much, much less impressive. Photographers like to perpetuate a fantastic idea of the night sky by taking overexposed pictures, and this one is no exception. I have been in the middle of the savannah in Africa, with no light around for miles, and I don't remember the sky looking anything like that.

jcr 4 hours ago 3 replies      
I doubt I'm the only one who read the article with the hope of finding
some new technique to remove light pollution from images to show off the
stars... and was mildly disappointed to find out the beautiful images
were just cut-n-paste jobs (albeit outstanding ones).

I'm wondering what kinds of techniques exist for removing light

Spectrum sensitivity? Spectrum filtering on exposure? Post processing?

quasque 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I find it rather an epiphany to realise that our distant ancestors must have seen the sky like this all the time, rather than the vague haze most of us experience. No wonder then that the movement of the stars and planets played such a cultural and religious impact on their lives.
duck 3 hours ago 2 replies      
After living in Alaska for several years, I don't really think that is how cities would look at all. With just stars and even the aurora borealis, it is incredible how pure darknesss looks. I really didn't know how much light pollution effected the sky until living there, but even in small towns and other less populated areas the light from various sources changes the skyline.
zobzu 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"minus the atmosphere and with eyes that will absorb stars luminosity for 20s straight"
let's not confuse it.
wladimir 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Even though they look a bit fake, I like these photos. The atmosphere reminds me of Alan Weisman's book "the world without us". The cities appear as ghost cities, everything dark, allowing natural light to be visible again. It's like the early stages after humans deserted it, before the forces of nature (combined with lack of maintenance) break through and crumble the buildings.
zwegner 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is somewhat of a repost: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5205058

Kinda surprised nobody else said that yet...

victorhn 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Reminds me of the dialogue in Kurosawa's Dreams movie in the part where there is a conversation with an old man in a treadmill village (I wouldn't like night so bright you could not see the stars) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1FIps--PGg
ryan-allen 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Is that what the sky literally looks like with no light pollution, or are they time lapsed at all?
jneal 3 hours ago 0 replies      
These are beautiful. I would love to have one of these framed in my house.
superkarn 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I've always wondered what it would be like if there is a total black out in a big city. Now I can see it in these pictures. If the blackout isn't exactly simultaneous, would the stars slowly emerge one by one? How cool would that be!
Introduction to Guitar coursera.org
35 points by interconnector  3 hours ago   22 comments top 3
codewright 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
Really? No appearance from Zed Shaw? This is like a perfect storm of his interests.
tutysara 1 hour ago 9 replies      
Which guitar model would the community recommend to a beginner who is used only to computer keyboards ;-). Can we start with an electric guitar or an acoustic guitar will work better for learning.
icewater 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This is fantastic, I love the content moocs are creating.
Two Letters from Steve Jobs davidgelphman.wordpress.com
137 points by dwynings  7 hours ago   43 comments top 13
austenallred 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I was looking for a second letter. It took me a minute to realize the two letters were "OK."
jyap 2 hours ago 0 replies      
On a related note I did quite like the email replies that Steve Jobs would write when he was still around. I started to collect them at one point in a web site.


At the time it felt like an interesting meme but over time I began to really feel the philosophy of the man and Apple not having previously been a fan of Apple.

To me the interpretation was that Steve always was product focused and wanted to put out the best user experience possible. I began to appreciate this customer focused approach. So I can see why he said 'OK'.

aridiculous 3 hours ago 1 reply      
This is the minimal response I would expect from anybody in the company. We shouldn't applaud this behavior as some kind of exemplary gift from the corporation.

Why? Because it normalizes the chain-of-command, rules-are-rules way that we typically see. It makes it seem OK that someone wouldn't grant this request.

In fact, he probably shouldn't even have to ask.

utopkara 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Brilliant title.
euphoria83 4 hours ago 2 replies      
I think SJ found it natural to just say "OK" because he thought that the person mailing him knew him enough and was mature enough to just need that permission.
vowelless 6 hours ago 4 replies      
The thing that amazes me the most is that Jobs responded within a couple of minutes.
mkoble11 6 hours ago 0 replies      
There's something really awesome when you start reading something on the front page of HN and realize the blog post is from someone you know :) Good stuff, David!!!
joering2 5 hours ago 1 reply      
It was interesting short story that put a tear in my eye (seriously) but since you knew Steve (even little bit), why did you put "SJ R.I.P." at the end?
jmotion 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Legend. It's all that was needed.
HelloWorldClub 2 hours ago 0 replies      
zw123456 7 hours ago 7 replies      
Honestly, I am not sure I like this story or hate it. I like that you shared it, but my reaction to Jobs only saying "OK", my read on that is that he was too busy to say much more and therefor a jerk or if he, in a Jobs-like minimalist way just though that in a serious situation like that, less is more and not much more needed to be said. Either way, thank you for sharing an interesting and thought provoking story.
vingt-2 2 hours ago 3 replies      
Did your dying friend really had to see an iPad? I mean, in her last moments, who cares about a bigger iPhone? I'm not trolling, I'm myself a tech enthusiast, and I'm not quite sure I'd expect from a friend to come tell me goodbye and show me his "latest toy he's been working on lately".
justin_vanw 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Steve Jobs was an amazing person, but who cares that he let someone show somebody an iPad?

Basically, this story boils down to: "Billionaire CEO lets employee talk about work with a friend." Not really some super amazing thing, unless you are just honored and in awe that Steve Jobs momentarily knew who you were.

Windows Blue under the hood: MinKernel and BaseFS zdnet.com
48 points by snaky  6 hours ago   8 comments top 2
jervisfm 58 minutes ago 0 replies      
The recent articles on ZFS made me wonder if MS had anything planned for Windows. I was curious so I checked and they apparently have ReFS[1] in Windows 8 Server.

I think it's separate from the BaseFS referenced here though. ReFS is not likely to be in the client release until the next version of the OS.

[1] - http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/01/16/building-the-n...

ajross 3 hours ago 3 replies      
FTA, about "MinWin": "A severely stripped down version (almost 20MB) of Windows 7 was able to run a http server"

Last I checked a smallish kernel + uclibc/busybox with most applets (an httpd is in that list) is around 8MB or so. Even glibc only adds 2MB or so more if you throw out the locale stuff. Windows is just a different world.

tmux 1.8 Released sourceforge.net
198 points by jterenzio  13 hours ago   144 comments top 29
danielweber 12 hours ago 1 reply      
I love web pages like this. The top of it reads:

"tmux is a terminal multiplexer"

"What is a terminal multiplexer? It lets you switch easily between several programs in one terminal, detach them (they keep running in the background) and reattach them to a different terminal. And do a lot more. See the manual."

That's awesome. So many times someone posts on HN "CaffBook.ly.errr 0.98 now released" and I have no idea what it is or why I would want it.

irahul 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
If you are moving from screen to tmux, it's very easy to configure tmux to behave like screen. Also, for split panes, I like vim bindings('C-a l' for left pane, 'C-a r' for right pane, 'C-a <' for resize pane...). I have bindings for copying tmux buffer to and from clipboard(needs xclip).


jscheel 12 hours ago 5 replies      
If you like tmux, also check out teamocil (https://github.com/remiprev/teamocil) to really enhance your use. It enables you to define tmux sessions via YAML, which is great for programmatically setting up a complex dev session. Mine, for example, fires up six panes in my preferred layout, and starts up a particular part of our project in each pane.
cturner 12 hours ago 9 replies      
I realise you can rebind them, but both screen and tmux do themselves a disservice by choosing binding keys which overlap with prominent keys in emacs and for users who use emacs mode in their shell.

First impressions count.

If you want to configure tmux to use just a backtick as the escape, create ~/.tmux.conf

    unbind C-b
set -g prefix `
bind-key ` send-prefix

When you need to type a backtick just press it twice.

For screen, I used to do this:

    escape ``

.. in ~/.screenrc, but I've just tried it and it seems that there's now no easy way to type a backtick when you need one.

Query: in screen I can switch between two buffers by doing ctrl+a, ctrl+a. This doesn't work in tmux. How do I configure this to work in tmux?

VaucGiaps 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Incompatible Changes

* layout redo/undo has been removed.

Normal Changes

* Add halfpage up/down bindings to copy mode.

* Session choosing fixed to work with unattached sessions.

* New window options window-status-last-{attr,bg,fg} to denote the last
window which was active.

* Scrolling in copy-mode now scrolls the region without moving the mouse

* run-shell learnt '-t' to specify the pane to use when displaying output.

* Support for middle-click pasting.

* choose-tree learns '-u' to start uncollapsed.

* select-window learnt '-T' to toggle to the last window if it's already

* New session option 'assume-paste-time' for pasting text versus key-binding

* choose-* commands now work outside of an attached client.

* Aliases are now shown for list-commands command.

* Status learns about formats.

* Free-form options can be set with set-option if prepended with an '@'

* capture-pane learnt '-p' to send to stdout, and '-e' for capturing escape
sequences, and '-a' to capture the alternate screen, and '-P' to dump
pending output.

* Many new formats added (client_session, client_last_session, etc.)

* Control mode, which is a way for a client to send tmux commands.
Currently more useful to users of iterm2.

* resize-pane learnt '-x' and '-y' for absolute pane sizing.

* Config file loading now reports errors from all files which are loaded via
the 'source-file' command.

* 'copy-pipe' mode command to copy selection and pipe the selection to a

* Panes can now emit focus notifications for certain applications
which use those.

* run-shell and if-shell now accept formats.

* resize-pane learnt '-Z' for zooming a pane temporarily.

* new-session learnt '-A' to make it behave like attach-session.

* set-option learnt '-o' to prevent setting an option which is already set.

* capture-pane and show-options learns '-q' to silence errors.

* New command 'wait-for' which blocks a client until woken up again.

* Resizing panes will now reflow the text inside them.

* Lots and lots of bug fixes, fixing memory-leaks, etc.

* Various manpage improvements.

AlexanderDhoore 12 hours ago 2 replies      
Tmux + Vim = Pure Awesome.

I use vim-slime[1] to send strings to other panes in tmux. I never type anything directly into a REPL. I just send my code from Vim to it. It's amazing with lisp or python. (A little less amazing with php, as the php repl IS AWEFUL)

[1] https://github.com/jpalardy/vim-slime

Cthulhu_ 12 hours ago 4 replies      
I want to like tmux, I really do, but my main gripes are scrolling in panes with the scroll wheel and selecting / copy/pasting text. iTerm (osx) or Terminator (linux) handle that much better, although I admit they can't really be compared technology-wise.

Alternatively, I never figured out how to select / copy text just as fast in tmux / vim / etc as with the mouse.

sasvari 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Here [0] is a nice introduction to the newly introduced zoomed panes feature in tmux 1.8 by Tom Ryder.

[0] http://blog.sanctum.geek.nz/zooming-tmux-panes/

snitko 4 hours ago 0 replies      
One thing that I really want is the ability to set different background colors for panes and windows. Sadly, it is a feature of a terminal app, not tmux. One can only imagine tmux would integrate tightly with various terminal applications to accomplish that.
thelarry 13 hours ago 7 replies      
Should i finally switch from screens to tmux?
ludwig 10 hours ago 0 replies      
For what it's worth, here is my carefully crafted ~/.tmux.conf file. I was used to screen, so I carried most of the keybindings along when I switched to tmux.


eslaught 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Does this release have better performance than previous releases? I enjoy using tmux, but for some applications (i.e. with large amounts of text spewing to the console) it just hasn't (historically) performed as well as GNU screen.
andyl 13 hours ago 5 replies      
What is the simplest way to install tmux 1.8 on Ubuntu 12.04?? Running `sudo apt-get install tmux` puts tmux 1.6 on my system...
luser001 13 hours ago 3 replies      
Anybody know if it's possible to move between terminal windows (panes in tmux lingo) "clockwise" and "anti-clockwise"?
akurilin 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Don't know if I'm the only one in this boat, but I often feel pretty conflicted about upgrading to a newer version of a tool where I have had a lot of configuration and shortcuts defined for ages. If any of them break, you'll have to go back and dig through the arcane tmux config file, figure out what changed.
srik 12 hours ago 0 replies      
tmux status bars are customizable(no surprises there I guess) and the powerline is one of the nicer status bar arrangements - https://github.com/erikw/tmux-powerline
mcrittenden 12 hours ago 3 replies      
Is there any compelling reason to use tmux if you're already using a tiling window manager?
christiangenco 7 hours ago 0 replies      
To install/update on a mac, install Homebrew[1] and run `brew install tmux`.

1. http://mxcl.github.com/homebrew/

ZeWaren 5 hours ago 0 replies      
For the lulz I use neercs. It's the same as screen and tmux, except you get thumbnails of your panes in some kind of taskbar; and most importantly, you can switch between panes with a cube ascii animation, compiz style.


q_revert 6 hours ago 0 replies      
the new choose-tree commmand is superb, for anyone who regularly uses tmux and already understands how great it is, you should consider upgrading for this alone..

with several sessions running on most of my machines, i frequently found myself `detaching` and `reattaching` to a different session... as the `choose-session` command gives you a full list of all the windows, which tends to obfuscate exactly what's going on, particularly if you have a bunch of sessions and windows..

however, the `choose-tree` gives you a session tree, which you can expand and easily identify... meaning that instead of sending `^a d`, followed by tmux attach sessionname you can comfortably do a `^a s` and get where you want to be (presuming you've remapped ^b to ^a)

also, you should be using the tmux buffers, `^a =`!

alepper 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Two things I missed from screen last I tried tmux: an equivalent of 'screen -xRR' and an orthogonality between terminals and windows so that distinct terminals connected to one session can display different windows. Especially the latter of these is integral to my workflow.
Sikul 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Does anyone know where to find a good introduction to tmux?

I attempted to start using it a couple of weekends ago but wasn't able to find any good documentation with my google-fu.

bjliu 11 hours ago 3 replies      
n0mad01 12 hours ago 0 replies      
i've switched from tmux to screen to byobu ( which is a wrapper for screen ) because of its simplicity.
screen also has very little problems, with tmux i always had time costly issues.
Keyneston 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Anyone know if it is possible to do single combination keybindings? Currently all of the keybindings are things like 'Ctrl+W L', whereas I'd like to do things like 'Command+L'?
nachteilig 12 hours ago 0 replies      
tmux has been a great recent upgrade for me -- switched from a bunch of nested screens. really highly recommended.
sunyc 12 hours ago 1 reply      
i suggest new commer give byobu a try, a wrapper of tmux.
Stanford's 2017 acceptance rate hits record low: 5.7% stanforddaily.com
26 points by aroman  4 hours ago   25 comments top 10
mjn 1 hour ago 2 replies      
I'd be interested in reading something about what they're doing to keep the process working in that case.

I'm involved in various academic conferences, and acceptance rate is a big sticking point, which gets more problematic as the number gets lower. It's very easy to put on a symposium with a 60-70% acceptance rate: you just filter out the stuff that is clearly not good, and is not going to contribute. It's not much harder to go to 40-50%: you raise your bar for how well thought out something needs to be, how well it needs to ground itself in the existing research, and how good the prose itself needs to be.

But once you start going south of that, things quickly get problematic. Now you start rejecting decent stuff, for reasons that depend on random assignment of reviewers: some reviewers are harsher than others, and if you don't correct for it, that impacts things. You have not easily comparable factors: is borderline contribution in area A better or worse than borderline contribution in area B? How precisely do you weight every possible factor? Is interestingness, rigor, or clearness of communication more important? You also, as you get towards 10-20% acceptance rates, easily end up slipping into a mode where papers get accepted more because of "can't find a reason to reject it" rather than "would actually want to accept it". Reviewers become very critical (since most papers need to be rejected), and look for any reason they can find to reject a paper. So what survives is not the best papers, but the papers nobody could find a good enough reason to reject. What that usually means is either 1) airtight incremental work; or 2) blockbuster media-friendly work.

More generally, I think it gets exponentially harder to make any kind of review process meaningful as you accept a smaller and smaller percentage of applications. I believe I can honestly set up a screening system for accepting the top 30% of an applicant pool with at least acceptable error. But the top 5%? It starts looking like rolling dice. If Stanford does it better, I'd love to know how!

rkaplan 45 minutes ago 0 replies      
I'm fortunate enough to have been included in that 5.7% today. Nonetheless, the statistic is highly misleading and the entire college process is becoming increasingly arbitrary. With so many talented candidates, it is often simply a crapshoot for all but the very best applicants.

Admission to an individual school in particular is extremely difficult to predict. I have friends who were just accepted to Harvard and rejected from Stanford, vice versa, accepted to Yale and neither Harvard nor Stanford, etc. It's similar to an earlier discussion today here on HN about the applicability of group statistics to an individual situation: even if you're an exceedingly qualified applicant, your essays just might not click with a particular school's screener. Or perhaps you're not fully qualified, but someone in the admissions committee really connects with your personal story. These kinds of things happen all of the time in college admissions; with such a competitive pool, getting into any particular school often comes down to chance.

As for the acceptance rate itself, it's as much a measure of how good a school is at marketing as it is of its competitiveness. Harvard (and many others) sends pamphlets by the thousands trying to bait almost-certainly-hopeless students into sending an application, just to drive down their acceptance percentage. Many schools also reject candidates that are "too good," ("Tufts syndrome") because an admissions office will gamble that such candidates will matriculate at a better school. They would prefer to get their acceptance percentage lower than accept a student who probably wouldn't matriculate.

nextstep 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
This is just like any highly-selective admissions process. They (Stanford, but it could be any Ivy, or a company like Google) has accepted the fact that they will turn down many good candidates. It doesn't really matter as they can't accept more than a certain number anyway. Hiring/acceptance policies are more about guaranteeing low false positives, not preventing false negatives.

However, with college admissions, the schools have a lot to gain by increasing the number of applicants. Colleges charge $50-$100 per application, so some revenue is generated to cover the application process's costs. Schools like Stanford can brag about how low their acceptance rates are, just by increasing the number of applicants.

jonemo 1 hour ago 3 replies      
Similar news just came out here at Cornell: http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/March13/Admissions2013.h...

The real news both in Cornell and Stanford is that more people applied but more or less the same number of places as always is available. My first guess was that this might be simply because there were more births in the years that have now reached college age, but that seems to not be true (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_the_United_Sta...). Or it could be an economic effect, namely that people who couldn't afford sending their kids to college during the crisis years now can. Or maybe universities really just did better PR and therefore get more applications. Would be nice to have this data for every university to see if the same effect applies everywhere.

reader5000 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
Do these ridiculous accept rates hurt society? That is, is there any measurable difference in human capital between the top 5.7% that got in and say the next 5.7%, or even the next 20%? But only the particular 5.7% that got in will be able to use Stanford branding to get to the top of the interview heap for the rest of their lives. For everybody else, employers will have to either invest more resources to discern their quality or will forgo the added expense and also miss the opportunity of a Stanford-quality employee that just happened to not get access to Stanford branding due to the increasingly fantastical notion that what Stanford offers is "education" which can only be supplied to a limited number of seats per year.
rkuykendall-com 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I received my letter on Wednesday, so I felt this one personally.

I applied for the masters program, but I'm sure the trend is the same. It's been 3 days since I heard back, and I still think I'm feeling a little down. Interestingly, none of my other declines bothered me much at all, even from amazing schools with programs I may have picked over Stanford. I think it is because Stanford was the first graduate program that I got excited about.

When you start a project, you never know where you will end up, but I think it's important to pick a star to follow, a goal to motivate yourself. After reading about the mobile and internet computing specialization at Stanford, I finally felt like graduate school was a place I could fit in, and I set Stanford at my star. When I was being lazy and not focusing enough, I set the Stanford logo as my desktop. Since then I have found a number of places which would be just fantastic places for me. Picking a star motivated me, and got me where I needed to go, but it's hard not to be sad when it doesn't work out.

maximz 2 hours ago 2 replies      
This isn't surprising. Let's look at how many people applied and how many acceptances were issued over the last few years:

* 2012-2013: 38,828 applied, 2210 accepted

* 2011-2012: 36,631 applied, 2427 accepted

* 2010-2011: 34,348 applied, 2427 accepted

* 2009-2010: 32,000 applied, 2300 accepted

There's a constant amount of spots and they take the same amount of people.

The reason they are now more selective (percentage-wise) is simply that more people applied.

barry-cotter 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Look at how we respond to the US N&WR like all the other universities, by increasing our advertising spend and getting people who aren't even marginal admits to apply.
latj 36 minutes ago 0 replies      
Is anyone with a small child currently planning on how to get their kid into Stanford? My intuition is that Stanford (and the other elite schools of today) will not be so important in 20 years.
theprodigy 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I would be curious to read the applications of the people who got in.
The 16th century computer and the book that kills marianotomatis.it
43 points by triplesec  6 hours ago   4 comments top 3
Scaevolus 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is a 1-dimensional cellular automaton. Apparently John Dee was fascinated by the chaotic patterns such automata are famous for. It reminds me of Stephen Wolfram's love of Rule 30.

Conway's Game of Life similarly intrigued hackers in the 20th century, but without the mystical subtext.

greenyoda 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I can't help thinking that these books might have been keys for encrypting messages. Key-based substitution ciphers, such as the Vigenère cipher[1], were already known in the 1500s. If two people each had a copy of this book, they could send a key to each other by referring to a sequence of characters such as "the third row on page 25". The messenger who carried this message wouldn't be able to reconstruct the key without a copy of the book. If you wanted to give the code to somebody else, you wouldn't have to send them the book: just tell them the "seed" words and the algorithm for generating the pages, which could be sent separately, for security.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vigen%C3%A8re_cipher

triplesec 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I haven't delved into the whole logics, but it seems from the wikipedias (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Soyga) that there's much more to be decoded from the tables. Given their likely magical or esoteric nature, the contents themselves of course are likely to be much less interesting to HN than their encoding... but a challenge remains.
Mystery Malady Kills More Bees, Heightening Worry on Farms nytimes.com
313 points by donohoe  17 hours ago   139 comments top 29
bennyg 16 hours ago 9 replies      
Interesting post by a redditor about the bee collapse:


Ok, beekeeper, non-vegan here. I've got no horse in the vegan race, but I do know my bees and here is the sad truth: beekeeping is responsible for the decline of world-wide bee population for the last (roughly) 150 years, and for the precipitous decline since 1947.

Beekeeping as it has been done since the widespread adoption of the Langstroth hive has been bad for bees. This is mostly because the hive design has movable frames and opens from the top. These innovations led to highly interventionist beekeeping, and copious fucking with the bees.

The movable frame allows the beekeeper to easily remove, inspect, replace, and swap comb, and led to migratory beekeeping. Bees are now trucked by the tens of thousands of hives across the country with the seasons for the pollination business (which is a bigger than the honey business). The results is that diseases and bee pests move too. The biggest colony killer in the US right now is the Varroa mite, introduced from Asia by humans in 1988, and spread by humans to hives across the country.

The opening from the top destroys the bees' carefully maintained nestduftwarmebingdung, the nest atmosphere. Bees maintain a anti-microbial sauna inside the hive, at a contant tempurature with a complex scent. They can go into fever-mode, raising the temp to kill off infection. The scent helps maintain communication and defenses. Opening the hive destroys the atmosphere. It takes the bees days to reestablish, and is a costly expense of energy they need for foraging, building, and preparing for winter. This weakens the bees, compromising their immune system and leaving them susceptible to infection and invaders.

Then there's honey. Bees spend all season making honey stores so that they can survive the winter. The beekeeper comes along and takes it, then feeds the bees sugar syrup in the winter. This also weakens the bees. Honey is a complex, nutritious bee food. Sugar water is a simple, inadequate food. This is something like you farming all season and stocking up for the winter. You've canned and preserved your veg, and filled your freezer with meat, ready for the hard, unproductive winter. Then someone comes along, takes all your food, and replaces it with Twinkies. You'll survive the winter on Twinkies, but you'll be in pretty bad health come spring. (Although, like the bees with sugar, you'll happily eat the Twinkies, because, yum.)

In the pursuit of larger honey harvest, beekeepers have been artificially increasing the size if the bee's comb cell for about 100 years, by using comb foundation. Bigger cells is thought to mean more honey. So the bees you see today (with some exceptions) are "large-cell" bees, bigger than nature made them. Bigger cells means the workers are too big and the drones are too small (bees left on their own will make different sized cells for each type of bee). This weakens the bees. Some bees bred generations on foundation have lost their ability to create comb on their own.

These weak, immuno-compromised bees are then protected by the beekeepers with pesticides and anti-biotics placed in the hive to deal with the disease and pests that the bees can no longer fight off. This poisons the honey (yum!) and the bees, and breeds resistant pests.

Beekeeping is also dominated by artificial breeding of queens, which eliminates the Darwinian battle of the queens which nature uses to find the strongest queen. This weakens the genetics of the bees, for thousands of generations.
Most, in fact almost all, beekeeping is industrial farming, equivalent to factory farming chickens or cattle. And it has devastated the bees.

There are exceptions: look into vertical top bar hives (which open from the bottom except once a year); chemical-free beekeeping; and spring-harvest honey (taken from the surplus after winter is over).

A note about honey: most of the honey you buy at the grocery store is not. It is heated and filtered and pollen-free, removing the extraordinary health benefits of honey, cut eith corn syrup, beet syrup or other sweeteners, and laced with pesticides and anti-biotics. If you want honey, buy unfiltered, unheated honey, from a beekeeper you know. If you want honey and are concerned about the bees, buy from a beekeeper using Warré topbar hives, doing a surplus harvest.
A note about Colony Collapse Disorder: CCD is not a mystery, as is often reported. CCD is caused by industrial farming pesticides, which destroy bees' navigational abilities, and they can't find their way back to the hive. The whole "it's mysterious" thing is a lie promoted by the chemical companies, primarily Bayer. But in the context of bees weakened by generations of industrial beekeeping, trying to forage on thousands of acres of monoculture crops, having been trucked thousands of miles from their home territory, it is an easy lie to sell.



qeorge 17 hours ago 3 replies      
Its not a mystery, its the pesticides. Bayer's been leading the "search for the real killer" in an effort that would make OJ Simpson proud.

My step-dad is an avid beekeeper, and an organic urban farmer. Its been "known" for years amongst that community that the collapse is caused by pesticides. Bayer has done an amazing job keeping this labeled a "mystery".

asynchronous13 16 hours ago 2 replies      
In 2004, The U.S. relaxed restrictions on pesticides, including specific pesticides that were already associated with adverse bee health. Within two years, the reported incidence of CCD rose dramatically. Of course, we all know that correlation is not necessarily causation.

It is nearly impossible for researchers to make a definitive case. Colonies that suffer from CCD have consistently higher concentrations of pesticides than their healthy counterparts. But it's a mix of up to 200 distinct pesticides. If anyone wants to believe that pesticides are not the cause, it's easy to view the available data and say, "see, that's not proof".

In my opinion, one day we'll look back and figure out that bees and bats were our canaries in the coal mine.

robomartin 17 hours ago 3 replies      
Why are all of you commenting out of complete ignorance and near absolute lack of domain knowledge? Taking sides and making accusations from this frame of reference is just plain wrong.

It's like watching a bunch of bee-keepers engage in a heated debate about a memory leak in your iOS app after reading an article and a Wikipedia page --not one of them being a programmer.

I'd love to hear from bee biologists or someone otherwise scientifically qualified in the domain. Everything else is just noise.

As an aside, I pass through Bakersfield a few times a year on our way to one of our camping destinations. It's interesting to learn that all those beehives are rented and trucked in.

sasvari 17 hours ago 2 replies      
Doesn't the independent scientific community agree on the neonicotinoids playing a significant role here [0]? Denying that this is (edit: no not) true on part of the pesticide manufacturers is a pretty big gamble, IMO.

Let's see if the European Commission enforces the ban on this neonicotinoids and what the results of such a ban will be.

[0] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-21958547

negativity 16 hours ago 2 replies      
Gee, seems like there's a lot of rabble rabble rabble going on here.

I have an inclination to disagree with the "No one knows why" part. I was given the firm impression way back in 2011(?) that colony collapse disorder was understood to be linked to neonicotinoid pesticides pretty firmly, albeit through a slightly byzantine mechanism.

Here's an article from early 2012 in wired:

The long and short of it is:

1. Farmers grow CORN, and treat the corn with this class of relatively new pesticides.

2. The corn is used to create corn syrup.

3. The corn syrup, being produced on an industrial scale, retains trace amounts of the pesticides, given the slightly imperfect production processes, with loose tolerances that allow for impurities.

4. The corn syrup is fed to the bees, as part of a normal commercial practice, whereby the bees, being transported to unfamiliar territories need a familiar food source while they acclimate to their surroundings and locate reliable local sources of their normal food (flower nectar, etc, etc).

5. The corn farming is not organic, and the bee keeping is not organic. No one cares how the corn is grown because they're feeding it to bees, not humans. Bees don't read labels, and don't sue for damages.

6. Given that the contaminant is a pesticide, specifically designed to inflict death upon insects, bees are uniquely affected by even trace amounts of the toxin, in ways that humans are not. This is not unlike the unintended side-effect DDT has on ospreys.

7. The side-effect has been described loosely as "getting bees so 'drunk' that they get lost, and wander far away from the hive, aimlessly, and fail to return alive."

8. An individual bee inflicted with the trace quantities is capable of recovering to normal health, when the toxin is administered under direct observation, and can be reintroduced to the hive without noticable effects. So, while the dosage is not immediately lethal to the bee, when applied to many or all in a hive, the effect is disruptive to their cooperative behavior. This would explain why the populations dwindle over time, and the bees don't just drop dead.

That's my amateur understanding. Makes sense to me?

Here's another reasonable article:

ryguytilidie 16 hours ago 2 replies      
tl;dr for comments:
Half the people strongly believe bees are dying because of pesticides and that chemical companies are doing a good job covering this up.
The other half strongly believe that there is no evidence of pesticides being the problem, and at the same time seem completely unable to believe that a company would cover up facts that would lose them billions of dollars in profits.

Everyone is very passionate, and has at least 1-2 anecdotes, though no real evidence.

L0j1k 17 hours ago 4 replies      
"No one knows why" because Monsanto is killing them. Seriously, how many scientists have to declare that bees are being slowly killed by pesticides before we can move ahead in solving this problem? This country is causing me to lose faith in humanity very quickly.
thrownaway2424 14 hours ago 0 replies      
The NYTimes has left out interesting details. First of all, the California almond crop is almost pathological in its demand for pollination. The entire 800k+ acres must be pollinated pretty much on the same week, or the trees don't set fruit. So, that's weird, and it contributes to hive stress as the bee companies transport literally every beehive on the continent to California at once.

Secondly, California's acres in bearing almonds has more than doubled in ten years. It's a classic agribusiness gold rush, where for some reason the growers are unable to restrain themselves from overproducing a single crop. Almond prices actually peaked in 2005. It takes 5 years for an almond orchard to bear fruit, so all the bonanza-chasers who planted after 2005 are just coming online. This will increase the stress placed on honeybee colonies by increasing the demand for pollination services.

Third. It is an established fact that almond pollination works better in the presence of wild pollinators, which for California almond orchards means native honey bees and bumblebees. These pollinators are also capable of pollinating the crop by themselves, without Apis, except the growers have systematically poisoned them with pesticides and herbicides. Growers of organic almonds (which, by the way, market for 2-3x the price of conventional almonds) will eventually win this game by not poisoning their native pollinators, and because they maintain inter-row habitats for beneficial insects instead of the toxic bare soil that stands between the rows in a conventional orchard.

youngerdryas 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Every day exotic new compounds are created, used in various products and disposed of by being burned or deposited in landfills with little or no safety testing when we know very well lots of substances are biologically active at a few parts per billion. This scares me much more than climate change.
omd 13 hours ago 0 replies      

Mystery Malady Kills More Bees, Heightening Worry on Farms

Jim Wilson/The New York Times
A Disastrous Year for Bees: For America's beekeepers, who have struggled for nearly a decade with a mysterious malady called colony collapse disorder that kills honeybees en masse, this past year was particularly bad.
Published: March 28, 2013 101 Comments

¶ BAKERSFIELD, Calif. " A mysterious malady that has been killing honeybees en masse for several years appears to have expanded drastically in the last year, commercial beekeepers say, wiping out 40 percent or even 50 percent of the hives needed to pollinate many of the nation's fruits and vegetables.

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Beekeepers with Big Sky Honey worked with hives used to pollinate almond groves in Bakersfield, Calif.
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¶ A conclusive explanation so far has escaped scientists studying the ailment, colony collapse disorder, since it first surfaced around 2005. But beekeepers and some researchers say there is growing evidence that a powerful new class of pesticides known as neonicotinoids, incorporated into the plants themselves, could be an important factor.

¶ The pesticide industry disputes that. But its representatives also say they are open to further studies to clarify what, if anything, is happening.

¶ “They looked so healthy last spring,” said Bill Dahle, 50, who owns Big Sky Honey in Fairview, Mont. “We were so proud of them. Then, about the first of September, they started to fall on their face, to die like crazy. We've been doing this 30 years, and we've never experienced this kind of loss before.”

¶ In a show of concern, the Environmental Protection Agency recently sent its acting assistant administrator for chemical safety and two top chemical experts here, to the San Joaquin Valley of California, for discussions.

¶ In the valley, where 1.6 million hives of bees just finished pollinating an endless expanse of almond groves, commercial beekeepers who only recently were losing a third of their bees to the disorder say the past year has brought far greater losses.

¶ The federal Agriculture Department is to issue its own assessment in May. But in an interview, the research leader at its Beltsville, Md., bee research laboratory, Jeff Pettis, said he was confident that the death rate would be “much higher than it's ever been.”

¶ Following a now-familiar pattern, bee deaths rose swiftly last autumn and dwindled as operators moved colonies to faraway farms for the pollination season. Beekeepers say the latest string of deaths has dealt them a heavy blow.

¶ Bret Adee, who is an owner, with his father and brother, of Adee Honey Farms of South Dakota, the nation's largest beekeeper, described mounting losses.

¶ “We lost 42 percent over the winter. But by the time we came around to pollinate almonds, it was a 55 percent loss,” he said in an interview here this week.

¶ “They looked beautiful in October,” Mr. Adee said, “and in December, they started falling apart, when it got cold.”

¶ Mr. Dahle said he had planned to bring 13,000 beehives from Montana " 31 tractor-trailers full " to work the California almond groves. But by the start of pollination last month, only 3,000 healthy hives remained.

¶ Annual bee losses of 5 percent to 10 percent once were the norm for beekeepers. But after colony collapse disorder surfaced around 2005, the losses approached one-third of all bees, despite beekeepers' best efforts to ensure their health.

¶ Nor is the impact limited to beekeepers. The Agriculture Department says a quarter of the American diet, from apples to cherries to watermelons to onions, depends on pollination by honeybees. Fewer bees means smaller harvests and higher food prices.

¶ Almonds are a bellwether. Eighty percent of the nation's almonds grow here, and 80 percent of those are exported, a multibillion-dollar crop crucial to California agriculture. Pollinating up to 800,000 acres, with at least two hives per acre, takes as many as two-thirds of all commercial hives.

¶ This past winter's die-off sent growers scrambling for enough hives to guarantee a harvest. Chris Moore, a beekeeper in Kountze, Tex., said he had planned to skip the groves after sickness killed 40 percent of his bees and left survivors weakened.

¶ “But California was short, and I got a call in the middle of February that they were desperate for just about anything,” he said. So he sent two truckloads of hives that he normally would not have put to work.

Precisely why last year's deaths were so great is unclear. Some blame drought in the Midwest, though Mr. Dahle lost nearly 80 percent of his bees despite excellent summer conditions. Others cite bee mites that have become increasingly resistant to pesticides. Still others blame viruses.
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Bees on a honeycomb pulled from a hive at Big Sky Honey.

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But many beekeepers suspect the biggest culprit is the growing soup of pesticides, fungicides and herbicides that are used to control pests.

While each substance has been certified, there has been less study of their combined effects. Nor, many critics say, have scientists sufficiently studied the impact of neonicotinoids, the nicotine-derived pesticide that European regulators implicate in bee deaths.

The explosive growth of neonicotinoids since 2005 has roughly tracked rising bee deaths.

Neonics, as farmers call them, are applied in smaller doses than older pesticides. They are systemic pesticides, often embedded in seeds so that the plant itself carries the chemical that kills insects that feed on it.

Older pesticides could kill bees and other beneficial insects. But while they quickly degraded " often in a matter of days " neonicotinoids persist for weeks and even months. Beekeepers worry that bees carry a summer's worth of contaminated pollen to hives, where ensuing generations dine on a steady dose of pesticide that, eaten once or twice, might not be dangerous.

“Soybean fields or canola fields or sunflower fields, they all have this systemic insecticide,” Mr. Adee said. “If you have one shot of whiskey on Thanksgiving and one on the Fourth of July, it's not going to make any difference. But if you have whiskey every night, 365 days a year, your liver's gone. It's the same thing.”

Research to date on neonicotinoids “supports the notion that the products are safe and are not contributing in any measurable way to pollinator health concerns,” the president of CropLife America, Jay Vroom, said Wednesday. The group represents more than 90 pesticide producers.

He said the group nevertheless supported further research. “We stand with science and will let science take the regulation of our products in whatever direction science will guide it,” Mr. Vroom said.

A coalition of beekeepers and environmental and consumer groups sued the E.P.A. last week, saying it exceeded its authority by conditionally approving some neonicotinoids. The agency has begun an accelerated review of their impact on bees and other wildlife.

The European Union has proposed to ban their use on crops frequented by bees. Some researchers have concluded that neonicotinoids caused extensive die-offs in Germany and France.

Neonicotinoids are hardly the beekeepers' only concern. Herbicide use has grown as farmers have adopted crop varieties, from corn to sunflowers, that are genetically modified to survive spraying with weedkillers. Experts say some fungicides have been laced with regulators that keep insects from maturing, a problem some beekeepers have reported.

Eric Mussen, an apiculturist at the University of California, Davis, said analysts had documented about 150 chemical residues in pollen and wax gathered from beehives.

“Where do you start?” Dr. Mussen said. “When you have all these chemicals at a sublethal level, how do they react with each other? What are the consequences?”

Experts say nobody knows. But Mr. Adee, who said he had long scorned environmentalists' hand-wringing about such issues, said he was starting to wonder whether they had a point.

Of the “environmentalist” label, Mr. Adee said: “I would have been insulted if you had called me that a few years ago. But what you would have called extreme " a light comes on, and you think, ‘These guys really have something. Maybe they were just ahead of the bell curve.'”

omd 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Stinging rebuke for bee conservers

Since neonicotinoid pesticides were introduced in 1992, 10 million honey-bee colonies have died globally.

Bumblebee and bird populations have crashed in every country where "neonics" are used. Researchers at Stirling University fed bumblebees minute doses of neonicotinoids. The colonies produced 85% fewer queens than usual. Professor Dave Goulson said: " Only queens survive the winter, so reducing their number by 85% means far fewer colonies next year - the long-term effects are likely to be profound."

The Bumble Bee Conservation Trust recently appointed Professor Michael Usher as its chairman. Horticulture Week reported: "Professor Usher said that neonicotinoids, implicated in bee deaths, should continue to be used as insecticides. The former SNH chief scientist argued that neonicotinoids have a place in crop protection, despite damning research released this spring from Stirling University."

Prof Usher was quoted as saying: "We need pollinators but we need our crops too."

The Trust itself seems confused; the pesticide issue is not mentioned on its website, even though Prof Goulson was the trust's founder. The impact of neonicotinoids on bees, birds and wildlife is catastrophic; we are facing ecological Armageddon. Usher must resign, or be sacked; if not, the Trust will be dismissed as mere "greenwash". The trustees must encourage staff to actively campaign against these pesticides. If they don't, the Trust may find its membership sliding to extinction faster than the bumblebees.

Graham White, Friends of the Bees

Philip Chandler, Friends of the Bees

Dr Rosemary Mason, life member, BBCT

Palle Uhd Jepsen, past adviser on nature conservation to the Danish Government and life member, BBCT


mratzloff 15 hours ago 1 reply      
So try something. Ban neonicotinoids in some state like Washington. Monitor progress closely.

The current situation is like having a bug that only shows up in production. At first it wasn't so bad, but we're in day 8 and now half the data is disappearing.

You can't identify the cause without getting in there and trying things. Change. Monitor. Repeat. With a solid lead (and we have one with CCD), it is the quickest way to solve this problem.

Lagged2Death 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Experts say nobody knows. But Mr. Adee, who said he had long scorned environmentalists' hand-wringing about such issues, said he was starting to wonder whether they had a point.

That's encouraging and frustrating at the same time. Encouraging to see that minds can change; discouraging to see another illustration that it so often requires being screwed over personally to change it.

eterpstra 17 hours ago 2 replies      
It's inevitable that some enterprising beekeeping conglomerate will eventually produce a pesticide/neonic resistant bee. This will be great, until the entire US is covered in one giant honeycomb.


eterpstra 17 hours ago 1 reply      
“If you have one shot of whiskey on Thanksgiving and one on the Fourth of July, it's not going to make any difference. But if you have whiskey every night, 365 days a year, your liver's gone. It's the same thing.”

Obviously this beekeeper is not from Tennessee.

Terretta 14 hours ago 0 replies      
You'd think with 30% to 50% dying each year, at some point we should start to see some fitness selected.
aethertap 16 hours ago 0 replies      
While I'm greatly concerned about honey bees and CCD (I raise bees mostly as an effort to help keep them alive), I don't think it's the apocalypse that it's widely made out to be. Mason bees [1] are phenomenal pollinators, and are easily kept. The site linked below is actually dedicated to getting people to keep mason bees as an insurance policy against increasing honey bee fatalities.

They don't make harvestable honey, so they aren't a 100% replacement for the current model. However, they might be able to fill the gap for commercial pollination. They are also not colony insects in the same sense as honey bees, so it's possible that they might be more resistant to large-scale die-offs.

[1] http://www.crownbees.com/category/bee-basics-crownbees/bees-...

NoPiece 12 hours ago 0 replies      
It reminds me of a lot of complex systems where you really want it to be one thing, that can be easily fixed, but it end up being a lot of different things all need to be addressed.

Like when your site is going down and you hope it is just that you need more memory in your web serverSo you add it and then you run out of DB connections so you fire up some slaves but then you start having disk i/o problems so you go SSD then the network ports are saturated..

andyl 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I have two hives in my back yard (Palo Alto CA). They are doing great! IMHO, the decline of bees is all related to 'industrial bees', wherein vendors stress their bees by trucking them around the country, and expose their bees to pesticides.

I know for a fact that pesticides are super-deadly to bees. Twice I've had colonies wiped out by poison spread by one of my neighbors - it is really sad to watch the dead bees pile up in a mass die-off.

brador 17 hours ago 2 replies      
With the new news that they communicate using electrical signals through their wings, could it be EM "noise" from cell towers and wifi?
macu 17 hours ago 1 reply      
My own hypothesis comes from an experience I had walking down the street one hot summer afternoon. It was a low-traffic country street and yet all along it, every few feet it seemed, there were dead and dying bees. It struck me as a tragedy.

I figured the bees are flying low across the street, because they fly near the ground following their memories and searching for food, and passing back and forth countless times over the street they were bound to get struck.

raphinou 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Am I the only one to think it is crazy to integrate pesticides in the plants that end up in our food?
andrewhyde 16 hours ago 0 replies      
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9Wachq3IQo is a good watch related to a good point / counterpoint.
Charlesmigli 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Here is an short summary of the article for those who want to catch up the discussion http://tldr.io/tldrs/5155b26accd25bb86000051f/soaring-bee-de...
equalsione 12 hours ago 0 replies      
The documentary Colony [1] is worth watching.
It doesn't offer any answers but does offer a good insight into the way the bee pollination business works, and the rather scary impact of CCD.

[1] http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1480655/

lo_fye 15 hours ago 0 replies      
The film "resonance: beings of frequency" says it is from RF noise like cellular & wi-fi. We can't hear it, but it is there, and if you put a 2.4Ghz phone beside a hive, the bees vacate. Perhaps higher intensities kill them?
FollowSteph3 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Always follow the money trail...
artuk 16 hours ago 0 replies      
To bee or not to bee, that is the question!
Ask PG: Did the "apply to YC without an idea" experiment work?
233 points by maximz  9 hours ago   42 comments top 8
pg 5 hours ago 5 replies      
To be honest, I wasn't sure whether or not the noidea application was live. I had to go look at the source. So it looks like we de facto killed it by never enabling it for s13. Frankly it's not a big deal either way. We only accepted one noidea application last cycle, and IIRC there were only about 50 applications.
polshaw 7 hours ago 2 replies      
It seems to me there would be no benefit to them in allowing it. If you want to get into YC and are smart, determined and all the other qualities they want-- you will come up with something. It may not be right, but PG et al can still decide they want the applicant without liking the idea.

Like problem solving in job interviews, doing the exercise tells you a lot more than just if the applicant can get the right answer or not. It can demonstrate your effort, creativity, intelligence, even if it has flaws.

goronbjorn 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Voicegem was one of the no idea companies in the first YC class it was offered. They've already joined Palantir, it seems: http://www.voicegem.com
gkoberger 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Here's some previous times this has come up:

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4512022 answer from pg)


sherm8n 7 hours ago 0 replies      
If you really want to apply without an idea just do it. No one is forcing you to fill out every single field of the application. Don't fall victim to being constrained by the limits of the system!
niggler 8 hours ago 2 replies      
"Application deadline: March 29"

Today's the last day to apply. How did no one notice or think about asking this earlier?

BSousa 4 hours ago 1 reply      
While not related to the original question, how does YC work for non US residents and Visa related issues? Does it accept/sponsor a few outside the US startups? IS it interested in doing so?
OnyeaboAduba 7 hours ago 5 replies      
I'm a sole founder with a non techincal background who is currently outsourcing the development of my site .I applied for the summer batch what do you guys think my chances are ???
U.S. Health Care Prices are the Elephant in the Room economix.blogs.nytimes.com
25 points by seanwoods  4 hours ago   22 comments top
michaelpinto 3 hours ago 6 replies      
I'm not a twentysomething kid so I have to buy insurance " and at this point I'm now spending about $10k a year. I realize that doesn't sound like a ton of money, but if you're trying to self fund your own projects while living off the income of client projects and while paying office rent in NYC it's pretty damn painful.

Ten years ago I was spending at least half that amount, and what kills me is that I'm a single guy " if I was paying for a spouse or a family plan it would be about double the cost. And the sad thing is that my coverage from ten years ago actually gave me more coverage.

I'm happy to pay for coverage and be responsible, but the insurance companies at this point are pretty much on the level of racketeering mobsters. I had hopes for healthcare reform: But without a public option or killing the insurance companies I don't see much changing any time soon. I really hope that more pressure builds and people demand a real change.

The Ouya works, it's here, and it's heading your way penny-arcade.com
176 points by richeyrw  16 hours ago   94 comments top 12
danso 15 hours ago 2 replies      
According to the Kickstarter page, the Ouya was due out in March 2013:


I'm pretty sure I was one of the many naysayers who said the Ouya would never make that launch date. Hell, I once ordered underwear from a Kickstarter clothing outfit and that came at least three months late. I've supported several Kickstarters and none of them have delivered the physical goods within two months of their promise (I've even had one delayed by a year). The Ouya is late by a couple of weeks, if even that.

Congrats to Ouya for meeting their goal, here's hoping that their system is a success.

Cushman 14 hours ago 4 replies      
Not a comment on the Ouya specifically, but we live in an odd moment in computing history when many of us carry powerful computers with us everywhere we go, but connecting them to our existing peripherals is difficult enough that we'd rather just buy another with the right plug.

I wonder how long this will last.

BryantD 13 hours ago 0 replies      
That's an encouraging review. I am not a backer, because I'm cynical, but that's quite promising.

This paragraph got me thinking: "I can't point to a single game that would make one need to buy a system at launch. Much of the value of the OUYA hardware lies in what you can do with it, from media functions to creating your own games. It's very possible that a breakout game is coming, and we just don't know what is it yet, but at this point it's hard to point to one single game that will get you to buy a unit."

For a traditional console, that would be a huge issue. (Ask Nintendo about the Wii U launch.) Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo spend a lot of cash making sure there will be excellent launch titles. Traditional wisdom is that launch titles drive console sales.

On the other hand, the current generation of smartphones didn't have big launch titles. Possibly the landscape has changed.

On the third hand, smartphones do other things than play games.

On the fourth hand, sounds like the Ouya might be a strong media console, depending on how slick that XBMC integration is. C.f. the number of people who bought Playstation 3s as a Blu-ray player.

In any case, I'm impressed that hardware is shipping and I was wrong to think it wouldn't. I'd keep an eye on those lag reports, though; I would think Penny Arcade and Polygon are smart enough to think about video lag as a possibility.

duked 16 hours ago 4 replies      
I didn't receive mine yet but as a backer I was pretty disappointed to learn only yesterday (in their last email) that I have to put my CC on file to download demos. I know some people may not have a problem with that but even on my Apple Store account I can download free apps without a CC.

From their email:
"You'll need a credit/debit card to download games. All games are still free to try. Your card will only be charged if you buy content you love. We do want valid payment information for everyone. This is to ensure that game developers can get paid when you love their game."

The article mention gift card, but I just don't want to pay a gift card that I may not use just to download demos. Well I guess I'll use the hardware as a MAME box, and video player.

bluetidepro 16 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm really excited to get mine soon! Does anyone have any resources for people who want to dabble in creating a game for Ouya? Is it as basic as just making an HTML5 game with a wrapper of some sort? I would love to see some basic "how-to" type articles.
just2n 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I was initially thinking the Ouya would be cool. But then I actually thought about the console space and realized that what was true of my younger years is no longer the case. In particular, a NES was significantly different than a Windows or Unix workstation. The console was an entirely different platform/ecosystem, and in a time where they were reasonably complex by comparison other computing operating systems.

These days, we're literally running the same software we run on everything else, but in a little box that has an audio/video output and a port for a controller. And then when I realized that, I immediately realized that the console is mostly dead. The only case where this isn't true is where performance metrics are consistent. This is why development on platforms like a PS3 or 360 result in shorter dev cycles and higher quality results: the hardware is all the same. But that matters when you're writing software that isn't shielded from the system, so with Java, that's a non factor, making Ouya nothing special.

I believe the next Playstation, Xbox, and Nintendo will all have their merits -- high-end hardware that is consistent for years, which will allow developers to rapidly build games without having to concern themselves with the lowest common denominator (it's ridiculous to see software designed to run on a 512MB 1 core machine performing horribly on a 24GB machine with 6 cores, 2 GPUs, and 3GB of GPU memory because it was decided by someone that progressive enhancement of features would be too expensive a development cost, or for those high-end features to be completely non-optimized).

For me, I am summarily unimpressed and not excited. For me, this is packaging Java in yet-another-box that I have to buy. Why can't I just download an app and play Ouya games on my PC? That's a -1 for Ouya and a +1 for what Valve is doing with Steam.

xradionut 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Is it wrong of me that I wouldn't mind turning one into a Linux system and not run Android or play games? (After all this is Hacker News...
drawkbox 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Very excited to get mine. It is funny though as I look at OUYA, Steambox, even GameCube of old and other console cubes appear and can't help that Jobs almost called it too early with the Mac Cube a bit before it's time and not targeting the right area of the house yet while GameCube did around the same time (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power_Mac_G4_Cube - probably based on NeXTCube).

Hopefully the game controller for Apple TV isn't really an April Fool's Joke as AppleTV is close to being the next big console possibly.

tenpoundhammer 14 hours ago 1 reply      
I give Ouya 5 million space points for the 'make' option. That's the most incredible part of this whole system. Develop on the box you play on... It's just revolutionary. If this thing can catch it might just revolutionize and destroy the gaming industry as we know it.
codezero 12 hours ago 0 replies      
The opened up controller looks kind of haggard. The controller in the image here looks more abused than ny 6 year old XBox 360 controller, hopefully their production models are more durable than this one looks.
mikec3k 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I can't wait to receive my Ouya, as a $99 backer.
IheartApplesDix 12 hours ago 0 replies      
You can lead a horse to metered water but you can't make him put a quarter in the booth.
To (All) the Colleges That Rejected Me: If only I had started a fake charity wsj.com
3 points by davidroberts  38 minutes ago   1 comment top
brevityness 13 minutes ago 0 replies      
Side note: is the only way to bypass the wsj paywell via a google search?
ZFS on Linux 0.6.1 released: Ready for wide scale deployment groups.google.com
187 points by iso8859-1  19 hours ago   92 comments top 10
dkhenry 19 hours ago 5 replies      
So the two things I don't see are a comparison with BTRFS in terms of speed, and stability. I know ZFS is cool, but while we were waiting for it BTRFS got pretty darn good. I know ZFS has some additional features that BRTFS doesn't have, but If I have to use a unstable or slow filesystem to get those features when I could use by perfectly stable and fast filesystem while I wait for a few nice features I am going to say ZFS has missed its oppertuinity
glabifrons 11 hours ago 1 reply      
I think Oracle's decision to not keep Solaris open source, at least the ZFS portions, is enormously shortsighted.

The fact that there is a ZFS implementation (with so many of the original ZFS engineers behind it) still being developed in the open and used by multiple operating systems, but especially the Linux juggernaut, shows that Oracle really doesn't have any benefit to keeping it closed any longer.

It has forked.

We now have the Oracle ZFS with features and functionality that is not in the open source variant, and the open source ZFS that is apparently adding features and commands that are not in the closed source ZFS.

A huge selling point for the open source implementation is the fact that if you decide to change vendors or OSes, you can easily do so without having a huge data migration (zpool export on the old, zpool import on the new).

Except, for Solaris 11+. You can't go back and forth between them, so once you're on Solaris 11, you're stuck.

Yes, this is most definitely FUD, but I can easily see this being used in the not-so-distant future once Linux vendors start supporting/advertising it for themselves.

I think that if Oracle were to open (and keep open) the newer releases (even if a few releases behind, like they were originally claiming they would), it would eliminate that argument completely.

Personally, I'd be absolutely thrilled with a cross-platform on-disk ZFS (I triple-boot Linux/OSX/Solaris on my notebook).

Professionally, I'd love to see a cross-platform on-disk ZFS simply to be able to throw the appropriate OS behind the data.

runako 18 hours ago 3 replies      
If it's ready for wide scale deployment, I wonder why the team decided against signaling that by calling it 1.0 instead of 0.6.1. A version number < 1 makes me think the developers still think it's pre-release quality. That may not be the case here, but it makes me wonder.
joosters 18 hours ago 4 replies      
Never mind all the promised wondrous features of ZFS, what are the recovery / fsck tools like? If the data recovery tools aren't mature, reliable and useful, then I'd advise anyone to stay away from a filesystem, no matter how world-ready the underlying FS code is.

I'm probably biased; but I got screwed using ReiserFS. It was fast and great, but one day something went wrong and then I found that the reiserfsck program was practically useless. Very little work had been done on it, so any small inconsistencies in the FS meant your data was toast.

Sure, keep backups and all that, but just be aware how important a good fsck tool is.

jeffdavis 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Why is Oracle investing in Btrfs (GPL), rather than dual-licensing zfs as cddl/GPL?
groby_b 8 hours ago 1 reply      
What happened - did NetApp waive their patents? Am I missing something? Wasn't the consensus that ZFS is encumbered, and Oracle might or might not defend it, but who knows?
cpeterso 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I misread this article title as meaning "ZFS has been backported to Linux 0.6.1". :)
atyoung 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I've used both, and prefer btrfs in terms of implementation. For some reason the use maintenance and control feels more Linux to me. ZFS feels more Unix, which makes sense given the lineage.

The raid arguments against btrfs are silly. Raid 5 is quite unnecessary, particularly with these kinds of file systems. I can only assume people making this argument have never maintained file systems of this type and clearly don't understand how to implement it correctly.

Both ZFS and btrfs are the future though. If admins aren't seriously considering one of the two for thier server infrastructure then they probably shouldn't be admins.

reirob 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Here a study of the evoulution of Linux File Systems (post from 5 days ago): https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5431413

While it does NOT contain ZFS it is a great read.

silveira 18 hours ago 4 replies      
What about the license compatibility?
Remapping Caps Lock on OS X Mountain Lion palmer.im
13 points by p_almer  2 hours ago   7 comments top 4
goldfeld 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Is Cmd+R such a hard to reach combination to warrant the precious keyboard real state Caps Lock occupies? Me, I double mine as both Ctrl and Esc by using the excellent xcape https://github.com/alols/xcape on linux, and KeyRemap4MacBook otherwise.

I actually find it more relevant on my mac than on my linux box, since Ctrl on the Mac is in a horrible position, and it opens up a whole world of new easy shortcuts that conflict with little else. Plus Ctrl-C and Ctrl-L (clear) on the terminal.

alex_h 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Remapping Caps Lock to Control is a worthwhile alternative for heavy bash/vim users. Makes shortcuts lie Ctrl-D a lot more natural to type. Besides, it's super simple to do in OSX settings.
naftaliharris 34 minutes ago 0 replies      
My caps-lock gets mapped to escape. On linux, or at least the flavors I'm using, this is super easy: Just drop the following into ~/.Xmodmap

    !! Delete the caps lock key
clear lock
!! Make caps lock map to <esc>
keycode 0x42 = Escape

nukerhazz 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I agree that Command-R is a silly thing to remap to. Remapping to Control (which can be done through System Preferences) helps not only with bash and vim but with emacs keystrokes which are standard throughout the Cocoa text controls. This is one of the very first things I do when I set up a new Mac.
A new blog dedicated to Emacs emacsredux.com
212 points by bozhidar  21 hours ago   43 comments top 13
arocks 17 hours ago 1 reply      
This is how Emacs is different from other editors. Like the blog posts show - you start with a need and try to find how the existing Emacs LISP code is written. Next, you try to customize it to your need. Finally, you assign it to a keyboard shortcut.

You adapt Emacs to your workflow, just like you adapt Lisp to your problem domain.

adefa 18 hours ago 2 replies      
Emacs Rocks is pretty sweet too: http://emacsrocks.com/
paddy_m 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I love emacs, I really do. It is really hard to share customizations with git for emacs in my experience. Right now I'm using prelude + some customizations. I can keep my fork of the prelude repo on my account, and add stuff to /personal . But other than cherry-picks, which would probably get difficult, I really don't know how to contribute back to prelude. pulling the latest version of prelude (or any other preset emacs customization set) requires me to restart emacs, which I normally only do once every other week or so. How do others handle this?
jcurbo 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Many excellent links posted in this thread, thanks to everyone. I also find /r/emacs on reddit interesting.
rustc 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Thanks! This is exactly what I was looking for! Short useful snippets which demonstrate extending Emacs with Emacs Lisp.
ycy 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I never stop discovering features in emacs, for example I found out about embedded calc mode yesterday. I was so impressed by it that I made a screencast demoing its features:
justinhj 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice. I have a similar blog http://justinsboringpage.blogspot.ca
Bootvis 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Already learned a few new things, added to my reader. Thank you!
shenedu 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Quite helpful posts. Try to keep track of them using a RSS reader[1]

[1] http://rssminer.net/a#read/281377?p=1&s=newest

caycep 13 hours ago 0 replies      
emacs makes my vim brain hurt. kind of like dwarf fortress.
jaequery 14 hours ago 2 replies      
with so many emacs users having their own unique setups, a site dedicated to just emacs setups would be great too
rjammala 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Thanks for creating this blog.
Gallefray 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Emacs? Really? xD Why not vi? (Then proceeds to spark a flamewar :3)
Why You Make Less Money jobtipsforgeeks.com
124 points by fecak  15 hours ago   98 comments top 15
michaelochurch 7 hours ago 2 replies      
We're smack in the middle of an uncanny valley between two economic periods. The industrial era gave everyone a mediocre income through repetitive work. The technological era brings much more income volatility and (when it reaches maturity, probably late in this century) will inevitably require a Basic Income. It's about concavity versus convexity: http://michaelochurch.wordpress.com/2013/03/14/gervais-macle...

Concave work is that where the difference between top-notch stuff and mediocrity is small-- maybe 1.2x or 1.5x. Convex work means that excellence is so far superior over mediocrity (10x, maybe more) that mediocre work has almost no value.

What we do is convex because we automate all the concave processes. If the work can be commoditized, a good programmer will automate it away. That leaves the hard, creative stuff. So we have a convex input-output profile. That's part of the fun-- you can add 20% more value by being just a little better-- but it's also pretty terrifying to realize how close we are to a "natural" celebrity economy where a few stars are extremely well-paid and most get nothing.

We, however, have a few things that play differently. First, no one except a superior programmer (who become rare as one moves along) can evaluate us. Most CEOs are not only in the dark themselves, but unable to evaluate a CTO, who's unable to evaluate VP/Eng, who's unable to evaluate programmers. It's a classic Design Paradox. I think it's pretty random whether a non-technical CEO gets a decent CTO. Second, even we are in the dark about what makes a great programmer. Is it talent, or experience? Obviously, it's a mix of both... but the rarity of great programmers suggests that either few have the talent, or quality work experience is thin on the ground. We're unlike most people in the corporate world in that we deeply want to get better at our jobs (independent of being more rewarded) and yet the path to that is very opaque. How do you become a great programmer? Get great projects. How does one do that? It's not easy.

The complete opacity of programmer skill and development helps and hurts us. No one knows what we're worth. We don't even know.

mnicole 14 hours ago 3 replies      
An issue we've talked about here before that I've experienced myself is that recruiters often don't understand that titles in this industry are often meaningless and don't know enough about the lingo and the languages to competently place someone somewhere where they should be making the money they deserve based on their skillset.

I met with a local recruiter that claimed to be the best at what it did -- working with technical people -- and they couldn't parse my résumé except to say that they didn't see anything that said "senior" and therefore they couldn't help me. Given the fact that the types of jobs they were bragging about placing for was icanhascheezburger and other equally worthless entities, I'm fine with the fact that they don't get it, but experiences like that could be damaging to someone that doesn't understand their worth to begin with and would be willing to settle for less because people paid to help them don't actually understand what they can do.

jhartmann 11 hours ago 3 replies      
One thing that is not mentioned is stressing exactly how valuable your skills have been to previous employers. Stating exactly how you saved X amount of money or added X amount of new revenue is a really powerful reason that some get paid more then others. patio11 has a really great post about this: http://www.kalzumeus.com/2011/10/28/dont-call-yourself-a-pro...

Remember businesses are about making money. The way to get paid more is to demonstrate you can make them more money.

chrisbennet 14 hours ago 3 replies      
"As a recruiter I typically handle salary discussions for my candidates, and I know that for most engineers that particular service is considered most valuable. "

When I've worked with recruiters I appreciated the fact that they would negotiate on my behalf. That said, don't forget that when it comes to salary, a recruiter's interest and yours are not really aligned. They don't care about how high a salary they get for you as long as they you get hired.

tmoertel 10 hours ago 3 replies      
The actual reason you make less money is that you were offered less money and said yes. So why did you say yes? Pondering that question will reveal a lot about yourself and what you value, and it will also suggest what you should do if you're not happy with your current situation.
dmourati 14 hours ago 2 replies      
This article misses several key points that help explain why a "geek" might make less than his/her peers:

1. Failure to research the industry. This is the main reason people are underpaid. Sure, talking to friends is great but go broader than that. Glassdoor.com provides anonymized salary information on a per-company basis. Job sites like indeed.com contain salary ranges. LinkedIn can also be consulted. Finally, the stalwart salary.com provides a bell cure of salary for a specific title.

2. No B.A.T.N.A.[a] Best Alternative to Negotiated Agreement. Leverage. Fall back position. Multiple irons in the fire. Call it what you will. Having a good "plan B" gives you the upper hand. Even if the recruiter is negotiating for you, you need to negotiate with the recruiter.

a. http://www.pon.harvard.edu/freemium/batna-basics-boost-your-...

sps_jp 13 hours ago 2 replies      
I recently updated my resume on linkedin and dice and I am shocked by the response. I haven't actively searched for a new job for about 10 years so I didn't really know what to expect both in terms of available positions in my geographical area, Tampa, FL, and salary. In the last 3 weeks I've received 5-10 phone calls and/or emails per day from recruiters with salaries that are all over the board, but higher than my current salary. I have several years of .NET experience, but switched to ROR about a year and a half ago. 90% of the available positions I am contacted about are for .NET, which I don't really want to go back to. However, this makes me wonder if the wise career move would be to go back to .NET and just keep ROR as my side project language. Any advice for someone not living in a start-up or technology hub?
auctiontheory 13 hours ago 1 reply      
"Long tenure at big companies" can result in higher or lower compensation than the market.
just2n 10 hours ago 2 replies      
The taboo about discussing let alone being open about salary information has no impact here?

I believe most people are reasonable. If I see that the people I work with make more or less than me, a decision was made by someone. If that decision is reasonable, the difference is reasonable. I wouldn't be upset, but I would then know what I could do to improve my value, which would make me a better employee.

On the other hand, if employees remain clueless about the compensation of others in their company, they don't know when they could be worth more, and won't be motivated to make it happen. Perhaps companies like this, but they shouldn't, because it removes a very key motivator from your employees. Saving $20k on a few employees isn't worth much if those employees could earn that $20k by providing more of what you want (especially if that nets you significantly more in business value than the difference in their salary).

This is why I don't understand keeping salaries private. Sure, some people are being severely under or over paid, and they'd have to regress closer to the norm or risk upsetting happiness levels of others, but I don't see any serious issues with this.

redmattred 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Great article. Stepping back, I love the approach Dave is taking as a recruiter where he is sharing real career advice that technologists can benefit from without any hard pitches.

Great recruiters are few and far between, but the best ones out there can add a huge amount of expertise and value to your job hunt.

davidvaughan 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I think the chief reason why some people make more than others is because they want more.

The reasons given in this article are interesting but they strike me as rather technical embellishments to the fundamental variable: the desire for money.

I make no moral judgement about that desire; I simply recognise that some people have it more than others.

ritchiea 13 hours ago 1 reply      
He left out communication skills and ability to get along well with your co-workers.
amykhar 14 hours ago 1 reply      
They forgot one. Gender.
jiggy2011 14 hours ago 1 reply      
No mention of price-pressure from outsourcing?
ninjakeyboard 12 hours ago 2 replies      
pretty good article. I've seen some strange things with money and disparity. The one thing that I've always found, though, (common to urban myth) is that effort is reciprocated with more money - I find people have always looked out for me from the higher layers even when everyone around me who worked half as hard complained about no raises. At that time I was a little underpaid relative to my peers. So good resources will get the money balanced out over time if they are really truly good imho. Good will aside - that's a separate issue of course.
Simple Minecraft Clone in 580 lines of Python github.com
365 points by wting  1 day ago   101 comments top 29
rodly 1 day ago 2 replies      
If someone were to make something like this a step-by-step tutorial/template appropriate for a classroom setting it would be huge. Imagine a class at High School where you start off learning the basics of Python for the first few weeks and the rest of the semester is spent writing the chunks of code into a template that has lots of notes for guidance.

I'd image something like :

def setDefaultBlockColor(color):
# recall that this is a function that takes in a variable called 'color' as its argument, write the code that will set the current game files configuration file to either 'red', 'blue' or 'green' (p.s. DONT FORGET TO INDENT YOUR CODE!)

Just writing this function and seeing it work once you load up the game is enough to hook almost anyone that has the potential to enjoy programming but just doesn't know it yet.

ubershmekel 21 hours ago 1 reply      
I wrote down the basic steps to get this running on windows at https://github.com/fogleman/Minecraft/wiki
arocks 1 day ago 1 reply      
Pyglet is vastly more pythonic than pygame for writing games. I have found it much easier to teach pyglet for newcomers and the code is easier to read too. Since it uses ctypes, it is very easy to port pyglet to a platform that supports OpenGL.

Unfortunately there is very little momentum in the project. Last year an alpha version was released after a gap of two years. I truly hope that pyglet gets the popularity it deserves.

j2kun 1 day ago 2 replies      
I used a variant of this code for a project for my students. Just had to clean it up a bit and organize the code into parts they should be reading (game logic) and parts they should ignore unless they're really curious (mostly the OpenGL stuff).
nsxwolf 1 day ago 8 replies      
These seemingly "big" games written in a handful of lines of code always make me feel very, very stupid. I know if I made this, I could easily imagine writing 50,000 lines.

How do people do this? How do their minds work?

moron4hire 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I think everyone forgets that Minecraft's big feature is not its graphics or its gameplay, it's the procedural content generation. Almost anyone could learn to do Minecraft-level graphics in a few weeks, and the level of interactions (combat, crafting, moving things) could be reasonably approximated, too. But its procedural content generation algorithm is quite complex. You're not going to make an algorithm quite as nice as Minecraft's without a lot of research, a lot of hard work, and a lot of tweaking time.
rufugee 21 hours ago 0 replies      
Please...someone put a Udacity course together which backs into the underlying math used to create this (for those of us who didn't have it or don't remember it)...
doctoboggan 1 day ago 0 replies      
This is incredibly inspiring for young kids. I am going to study this so I can teach it to my younger brother who loves Minecraft and is trying to learn Python.
sklivvz1971 23 hours ago 1 reply      
[rant mode on]

1. 80% of the bang takes 20% of the time

2. Writing games is 99% fine tuning and game play

3. It's just a rendering exercise, certainly not a "clone"

FYI: The above is "the internet" in three lines! :-)

[rant mode off]

scottrogowski 1 day ago 5 replies      
More than 100 lines of this are textures!

Got this error though. Any ideas?

OSError: dlopen(/System/Library/Frameworks/QuickTime.framework/QuickTime, 6): no suitable image found. Did find:
/System/Library/Frameworks/QuickTime.framework/QuickTime: mach-o, but wrong architecture
/System/Library/Frameworks/QuickTime.framework/QuickTime: mach-o, but wrong architecture

Millennium 1 day ago 2 replies      
Nice. Next stop: Dwarf Fortress.
javert 1 day ago 1 reply      
Just curious, what is it that makes the performance not so great?

Could performance be significantly improved by doing a re-write in Lua, for example? (Probably not... it's probably something in Pyglet itself...)

(FWIW, it's choppy compared to Minecraft, which is obviously much more complex and has a greater rendering distance.)

inovica 22 hours ago 1 reply      
I have been teaching my 10 year old Python as an exercise. Recently I've noticed he's getting a little bored and I'm being very careful not to 'sicken' him, as this needs to be fun. I've just shown him the video for this and downloaded the code to show him that its possible in Python. He loves Minecraft (we watched the documentary movie about Mojang) and seeing this has given him a bit more of an interest again
JulianWasTaken 15 hours ago 0 replies      
This works on PyPy (Pyglet, and therefore this) by the way.

Just grab Pyglet trunk and install it, and run main.py with pypy instead of with CPython.

mckoss 23 hours ago 1 reply      
A fork for those having trouble getting this to run on Mountain Lion.


craigching 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Hook this code up to redstone (the nodejs server also on the front page) and you'll really have something :) Not to detract from the demo, it's really cool!
breakyerself 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Could someone annotate this and re-release it. This seems like an awesome learning tool. A little more info about what everything does would go a long way.
Janteloven 17 hours ago 2 replies      
Jump speed is too fast... if you slow it it works better and is more like minecraft IMHO

        elif symbol == key.SPACE:
if self.dy == 0:
self.dy = 0.500 # jump speed

orangethirty 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I was thinking of writing something like this to help my girls code. Modding minecraft with Java is fun, but the language gets in the way of beginners. This python version is great for that.
just2n 23 hours ago 2 replies      
Can we get a JS answer to this in the browser? I'm curious if Three.js can match this level of terseness.
frozenport 1 day ago 1 reply      

  building penises out of dirt right now.

I find this comment a bit distracting, and in poor taste. Everybody knows real minecraft users build castles.

  building castles in the sky.

cdelsolar 1 day ago 0 replies      
This is really freaking cool. I can't believe how short the code is.
skot9000 10 hours ago 0 replies      
This is amazing. I've been playing with it all night. From a high level, what would be a strategy for making this multiplayer?
shurcooL 1 day ago 1 reply      
I remember being as excited about Liero as kids are about Minecraft today. Minecraft is great, but so was Liero.
daGrevis 22 hours ago 0 replies      
If anyone are having problems starting this:

* You need Python2 virtualenv,

* You need to install `pyglet` in it,

* Start it with `bin/python main.py`;

josephagoss 1 day ago 1 reply      
How are the graphics being drawn? Is Pyglet being used to so this?
sebastianavina 1 day ago 0 replies      
I remember the times when I had time and readed this things until I digested them...
daGrevis 23 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow! This is so cool!

This proves Python's ability to be RAD.

pit 14 hours ago 0 replies      
This is, in a word, dope.
When simplicity is the solution wsj.com
5 points by anigbrowl  2 hours ago   1 comment top
carsongross 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
Simplicity is always the solution, but for the powers that be money is in complexity. Taxes, law, banking: if all this stuff was straightforward, a lot of very rich and powerful people wouldn't be able to gravy-train on the complexity.

Which is why, if history is a guide, things will continue to get more and more complicated until they finally collapse.

Titan 0.3.0 Released: Geo, full-text, edge indexing on billion edge graphs github.com
58 points by okram  12 hours ago   23 comments top 7
espeed 12 hours ago 2 replies      
Titan is a new real-time, distributed, transactional graph database that can use either Cassandra or HBase as its distributed data store.

Titan 0.3 was stressed tested with Cassandra at 120 billion edges and is capable of loading 1.2 million edges per second on a 16 machine hi1.4xl cluster (https://twitter.com/aureliusgraphs/status/316255164719828992).

This release provides a complete performance-driven redesign of many core components, and the primary new feature is advanced indexing.

Here are the new indexing features:

* Geo: Search for elements using shape primitives within a 2D plane.

* Full-text: Search elements for matching string and text properties.

* Numeric range: Search for elements with numeric property values using intervals.

* Edge: Edges can be indexed as well as vertices.

See http://thinkaurelius.com/news/

eitland 11 hours ago 3 replies      
One of the most interesting part seems not to be mentioned: Apache license.

So far the only real, all-features-included graph database with a permissive open source license, - or am I missing something?

richardjordan 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Really happy to see this. Testing with Titan at the moment and very happy with it so far.
feniv 59 minutes ago 1 reply      
I'd love to see more detailed write up about the performance. I'm working on a natural language parsing problem and have had some success using graphs to perform chunking in the past.

+1 for using Gremlin! Do you know of any python implementations of it?

dubcanada 5 hours ago 0 replies      
The coolest thing about this is the getting started narration. I love Greek mythology!
agilord 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Any plans to support other storage backends? Postgresql and Riak comes in my mind.
Goranek 11 hours ago 4 replies      
Comparison with neo4j?
Things Every Aspiring Entrepreneur Should Know postmasculine.com
52 points by acremades  11 hours ago   7 comments top 6
kirinan 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Honestly if you are starting a startup to get rich, just quit and get a real job because you'll get richer quicker. Unless you are a consultant (and thats not really a startup), you will most likely not end up rich, and stats show this. You may bring in a modest salary of 100k+ (That you can pull in anyways in the valley as an engineer), but you'll work far harder for that cash than that other engineer who just has a job. Find something you are really passionate about, and work towards either working on it or start working on it if its possible. I get it, I'm 23 with a wife and kid, but I don't let it stop me from making things, and I certainly don't complain about the choices I made. Yeah, a kid takes time, but that doesn't mean I can't make time. A wife takes time, but I still have 2+ hours per day at least to work on my ideas/read and workout. Thats with a job that eats up 9 hours a day. Being an entrepreneur is a mindset rather than an occupation. If you want to build something (and I mean really want to build it), nothing will stop you.
websitescenes 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I agree with much of what the OP talked about but there are a few things that I 100% disagree with. For example: "Burn the boats behind you". Absolutely the worst advice I have ever heard. I have hopped around from agency to agency and have good relations with them all and I do sometimes call on those relationships for business reasons. DO NOT BURN YOUR BOATS OR BRIDGES!
awaechter 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I think these are good advises about the mindset you need to be a successfull entrepreneur. But I do believe you need even more luck if passion if your main driver. I admit you need to like what you do but if you want to create something big you need to have a business focused approach and constantly analyse/test how technology can transform your product into the best fit for your clients. To stick to this methodology you need more ambition than passion.
clark-kent 3 hours ago 0 replies      
You lost me at Frank Kern... if you listen those characters then we are from the opposite sides of the business world.
devgutt 5 hours ago 0 replies      
What a silly and misleading article...shame
rikacomet 9 hours ago 0 replies      
actually very interesting and well said; I did read it word by word till the end, and didn't felt like skipping even once. I think a lot of people will feel the same :)

btw, yeah I'm scared to death right now of failing, and I hope it works no matter what for me, what I'm doing.

       cached 30 March 2013 07:02:01 GMT