The scaling zones of GW2 were not very popular for those of us that played in the beginning. Traditional MMOs allow your character to gain power. The power gain of your character is a large reason for many of the game systems to exist. To develop a system that takes away all this character power that you've gained felt boarderline 'slap in the face' like. Stripping character power is never a proper solution for an MMO.
GW2's scaling zones were exactly what got my friend group playing the game, and kept them playing. With every other MMORPG we'd played up to that point -and every one of the very few we've played since GW2-, our group would inevitably do one of three things:
1) Never start playing together, as the level gap between the newbies and the more veteran players meant that challenges were either impossible, or impossibly easy.
2) Rarely ever play the game because a) the group wants to avoid 1) and b) it's hard to get five friends spread across four timezones together on the regular.
3) Play the game as often as we want, as we each have "regular" solo characters, and "play-with-the-friend-group" characters, but get far less than the regulation amount of fun out of the group games, as all-too-often there's only like one set of low-level story content, so playing with the group causes to to re-run stuff for like the billionth time anyway.
And, really, even with the level scaling, your skills don't go away. Having a character in the party that's five or ten+ levels higher than the zone content makes it substantially easier than a character that's at-zone-level or just a few levels higher. (It remains quite satisfying to drop an offensive golem on some level one goblin and splat it in two hits.)
I agree with you. This is one of the main reasons why I enjoyed Guild Wars 2.
However I'd like to add that the scale-down isn't at all that dramatic! I can kill a Moa or a bandit in Queensdale with 2-3 hits on my level 80 Mesmer (and he is a condition-based build), while it takes much more effort as a level 3 Thief.
Also the traits, and gear stats remain, to an extent; they are maybe scaled down but they are still present.
Furthermore, it also depends on the class you're playing. If you're a heavy-armour character with attack-centric stats you'll easily 1-hit anything, but if you're a healer engineer, you'll need to invest more effort.
I agree that one's scaled-down is a fair bit more powerful than the effective character level would lead one to believe. Indeed, that was the point that I was trying to get across. :)
But you've got to admit that the scale-down is substantially more dramatic than in pretty much every other MMORPG, no? I mean, if you've forgotten, like spend a week or so with Firefall, then come back to the starting area. :P
Moreover, a scaled-down level 80 will get level 80 gear when killing creatures. For folks who are invested in gear collection, but have low-level friends, this makes them far more likely to play together. (Wish I'd mentioned this in my original post. :P )
If I'm level 100, I should be able to go into a level 5 area and kill everything with one hit, but I wouldn't get any XP because it wasn't challenging.
However, if my low level friend is playing and they want a buddy to help them with low level content, it would be nice to have the option of scaling my character down to my friend's level where I would be challenged by level 5 content alongside them (and even gain some degree of proportional XP or maybe scaled loot from it)
AWS just announced a few days ago that their latest Xen patch will be deployed through a live update to their hypervisor kernel, and that going forward they expect patches like this to be rolled out live.
The real upside of AWS is that they have relentlessly pursued and killed off reasons for you to care about things like this. They've eliminated points of failure in their infrastructure and given operators a wealth of tools to ensure their apps stay up through any update or event (AZ-affine ELBs and autoscaling groups, single-IP ELBs, continuous improvements to EBS and S3, etc.) Given the scale of their infrastructure in us-east-1, it's now also highly unlikely that any customer will manage to overload it on their own.
I can't resist reminding you that 1 command from a sysadmin routing traffic to the wrong network was the cause of the last major outage there :)
They are getting much better, as all providers are. They're still just not a fit for many people because of performance requirements that are either impossible or too costly to meet on that type of infrastructure.
I've always said this: the cloud isn't a good fit for us; do what works for you.
As Kyle says, we were helping our sister company Fog Creek keep their servers online (as well as other people in that facility like Squarespace) because we cared. Our traffic was not being served from that data center and in fact we shut down most of our servers during that to conserve generator fuel. Our traffic was flowing just fine from Oregon. A decision Kyle and I made the night before when concluding they would probably shut down power to lower manhattan in preparation for flooding.
When your neighbor's house is on fire you don't argue over the price of the hose. You help. Our remote people that couldn't come help in person also helped them replicate their entire network in AWS as a backup plan.
I don't usually post pissed off comments, but you're dead wrong here and intetionally or not demeaning a good company and good people whom, because they cared, came to help in a time of emergency. I take it you weren't in New York during Sandy; it looked like a post-apocalyptic war zone afterwards.
I feel that it can be argued that paying for a font library is a good idea. It is far cheaper than buying individual fonts, which can get expensive quickly. I feel that the Typekit library is ahead of the Google library. The Google library always has felt very stale and bland to me. The Typekit library has a better variety if they dont have as many available fonts as the Google library.
Also their systems to include the fonts into your pages also eliminates the headache for many people of how to include the various font files for a particular family, as well as by which method to include them.
That github link is very useful for people getting their feet wet in typography and seeing how things work together.
You're not wrong - its just that most people aren't THAT serious about it. People that pay for it, or even think about paying for it, give more focus to that area. But for many devs that's simply not going to happen. They'll just go with whatever is free, and to be honest thats perfectly fine.
I would say, if you want to take your sites typography to the next level... pay for a font library. But if you just want it to be better than defaults, plenty to be had for free.
I would say, if you want to take your sites typography to the next level... pay for a font library.
That was the theory, but I'm still waiting to be convinced about it in practice. I check in on all of the major rent-a-font services from time to time, and I'm rarely impressed by their results.
Consider TypeKit's home page. Personally I would not consider some of the fonts and typography they use themselves to be acceptable for professional work.
For example, they're currently using Adobe Clean for a lot of the text, but it has more hinting glitches than an excited child the week before their birthday. They get away with it -- up to a point -- because many visitors probably still have a default browser font size of 16px, but if your default is a bit larger or you zoom the page, the text rendering is awful. (Actually, their whole layout breaks if you set your default font size a bit larger, but that's a separate problem.)
Notice how in the font showcase section, under "THE BEST ARE ON TYPEKIT", all the examples are actually screenshots and almost exclusively of very large text? What happens if you actually look at the samples of a popular Adobe font, say Minion Pro, which they feature there? Well, in tests based on TypeKit's own specimen screen, 3 out of 3 main Windows browsers render it with nasty weighting issues, and even significant gaps in the letter forms in narrow areas. This isn't a problem with either Minion Pro or the hardware I'm using to display it; it renders just fine at the same physical size in InDesign or Adobe Reader. It's a problem with Minion Pro served as a web font by TypeKit.
The quality of web fonts from Cloud.Typography generally seems to be better, but again, even their own home page shows plenty of fonts that either appear blurry or have hinting problems and appear with uneven line weights, uneven spacing, counters closing up, etc. The blurring might be acceptable to Apple users who are used to that style of rendering, but unless your target audience doesn't include anyone who uses other platforms, it's going to look very odd to a lot of people. The other hinting glitches might be unavoidable results of trying to render fonts designed for print faithfully on screen, but they are glitches all the same.
I just don't understand why anyone who cares about the quality of their work would voluntarily choose these options, and pay for them, when you can have similar or better looking rendering for free with native system fonts on most platforms these days and with several of the standards from Google Fonts if you want a change.
Continue to build out and improve the default image hosting platforms for one of the largest sites on the Internet (Reddit) as well as maintain it's status as one of the top 50 most visited sites on the Internet?
That was an interesting article to read. I have many fond memories of the very early days of Freshmeat and my introduction to OSS and Linux. Freshmeat helped people share their products and was a great place to find new and upcoming projects to check out or even help on.
I feel like the late 90s was such a Wild West time for Linux. Linux is in a great spot now, best it has ever been, but for whatever reason the community just feels incredibly different for me now. It's probably just me aging.
There was definitely a feel of do-it-yourself, especially when installing Linux meant either wiping a partition, or trying to resize an existing one with very primitive tools. I remember using a weird variant called DOSLinux for a while, because my 486 couldn't handle the "real" distros, and then getting a new 350MHz machine and getting RedHat 6 installed. Then realizing I could use X, spending endless hours on themes.net, tweaking WindowMaker and finding new themes, and doing the Web 1.0 by learning perl to write a simple blogging engine.
You're right, though. Different times, and the community feels very different. The feel I get when I'm browsing web forums for answers to questions is a lot of kids who use Linux because it's somehow "cool", and certainly it's ridiculously easy to install these days. But I might just be making assumptions based on the terrible grammar and incomplete sentences.
Can someone link to this story or copy/paste it somewhere? Linking to social media sites on Hacker News is bad news for people that work at companies during the day that block all social media but would still like to read the news here.
Think of a prime number other than 2 or 3. Multiply the number by itself and then subtract 1. The result is a multiple of 24. This observation might appear to be a curiosity, but it turns out to be the tip of an iceberg, with far-reaching connections to other areas of mathematics and physics.
This result works for more than just prime numbers. It works for any number that is relatively prime to 24. For example, 25 is relatively prime to 24, because the only positive number that is a factor of both of them is 1. (An easy way to check this is to notice that 25 is not a multiple of 2, or 3, or both.) Squaring 25 gives 625, and 624=(24x26)+1.
A mathematician might state this property of the number 24 as follows:
If m is relatively prime to 24, then m^2 is congruent to 1 modulo 24.
One might ask if any numbers other than 24 have this property. The answer is “yes”, but the only other numbers that exhibit this property are 12, 8, 6, 4, 3, 2 and 1; in other words, the factors of 24.
The mathematicians John H. Conway and Simon P. Norton used this property of 24 in their seminal 1979 paper entitled Monstrous Moonshine. In the paper, they refer to this property as “the defining property of 24”. The word “monstrous” in the title is a reference to the Monster group, which can be thought of as a collection of more than 8x10^53 symmetries; that is, 8 followed by 53 other digits. The word “moonshine” refers to the perceived craziness of the intricate relationship between the Monster group and the theory of modular functions.
The existence of the Monster group, M, was not proved until shortly after Conway and Norton wrote their paper. It turns out that the easiest way to think of M in terms of symmetries of a vector space over the complex numbers is to use a vector space of dimension 196883. This number is close to another number that is related to the Leech lattice. The Leech lattice can be thought of as a stunningly efficient way to pack unit spheres together in 24 dimensional space. In this arrangement, each sphere will touch 196560 others. The closeness of the numbers 196560 and 196883 is not a coincidence and can be explained using the theory of monstrous moonshine.
It is now known that lying behind monstrous moonshine is a certain conformal field theory having the Monster group as symmetries. In 2007, the physicist Edward Witten proposed a connection between monstrous moonshine and quantum gravity. Witten concluded that pure gravity with maximally negative cosmological constant is dual to the Monster conformal field theory. This theory predicts a value for the semiclassical entropy estimate for a given black hole mass, in the large mass limit. Witten's theory estimates the value of this quantity as the natural logarithm of 196883, which works out at about 12.19. As a comparison, the work of Jacob Bekenstein and Stephen Hawking gives an estimate of 4π, which is about 12.57.