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Nicholatian

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About Nicholatian

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Profile Information

  • Gender
    Not Telling
  • Location
    ??owl?? City
  • Interests
    JavaScript, web development, and (formerly) reverse engineering
  • Biography
    Computer scientist, PC enthusiast, freelancer, traveler, double-jointed, Autistic, bipolar, Zen Buddhist, cat worshiper, awkward, and lover of compassionate intelligence. I have a white spot on the back of my head :0
  • Occupation
    Makin' bacon

System

  • CPU
    Intel Core i3-6100 @ 3.7GHz
  • Motherboard
    ASUS Z170I Pro Gaming
  • RAM
    1× 16GiB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4, 2400MHz/CL12@1.35V
  • Case
    Xigmatek Nebula C
  • Storage
    240GB Intel 535 Series SSD; 1TB 2.5” WD Black HDD
  • PSU
    SeaSonic SS-400FL2 80+ Platinum fully-modular fanless unit
  • Display(s)
    ASUS PB278Q 27” 1440p IPS LCD; AOC i2267fw 22” 1080p IPS LCD
  • Cooling
    Silverstone Tek NT07-115X low-profile CPU cooler
  • Keyboard
    Qisan Magicforce 68-key keyboard, white
  • Mouse
    Lenovo wireless optical mouse, white
  • Sound
    V-MODA Crossfade M-100 headphone; Scarlett Solo 2nd gen audio interface; DBX 231SV dual-channel 31-band EQ
  • Operating System
    Arch Linux

Recent Profile Visitors

17,959 profile views
  1. Pubg vs fortnite

    For what it’s worth, the following response is completely from my perspective as a businessman, a software engineer and game engine developer. My partner-in-crime and I have talked a lot about this, so to some extent I share his views on this as well, what with mutual interests and all, so here goes… Him and I read the history of Fortnite’s development together, and all things considered, Fortnite probably didn’t actually exist in its current form until 2016 or so, with past renditions from their idea phases dating back to around 2013. This is judging from their press attitude, and the lack of content to show off as well as the excuses they lodged for its delays being because of ‘improvements to Unreal Engine’ and ‘acclamating the engine for Games-as-a-Service’. There is undoubtedly a lot going on behind the scenes with this, and I think understanding Fortnite requires some extent of understanding the nature of Epic itself and why things have turned out the way they have. Around 2012, Epic sold what amounted to a 48.2% stake at the time (now 40% even) to Chinese conglomerate Tencent, for $330 million, in reaction to which several higher staff vacated the company over the following months. Around this same time, Epic announced Fortnite to be a PC exclusive slated for a 2013 release at the San Diego Comic Con, and Epic used the money they raised from the sale to Tencent to acquire the Polish studio People Can Fly, also that same year. Something very important to note about Tencent’s purchase of their massive stake in Epic is the premise Epic sold them about migrating to capitalise on the “games-as-a-service” model – this sales approach is what Epic supposedly needed $330 million to invest in and profit from in 2012. But what happened in all of that time within the company? What was going on that caused Fortnite to end up in development hell? It’s kinda hard to say, but a good portent showing what was probably going on can be found in the Glassdoor reviews of Epic Games. Sifting through all of the reviews, there was a drastic shift in company culture that came to a head some time in 2015 – after which the tone of reviews by pretty much everyone who hasn’t worked there forever shifting from favourable to markedly critical. Turnover rates had taken a hike, people struggled to maintain any kind of cohesion for teamwork, and there were lots of complaints about impossible expectations from management that would be shortly followed by legal coercion for the employee’s termination. There’s almost no doubt that in this time, Epic suffered a massive hemmorhaging of talent and skill, which likely cascaded from the management exodus spurned by the purchase from Tencent. It’s pretty likely that Epic had almost nothing to show for the time they had spent so far, and ended up in very hot water as Tencent learned of the state of affairs and demanded recourse. Not only had they no successful games to speak of, but Unreal Engine was still as unprofitable as usual and they had nothing serious to say in regards to the ‘games-as-a-service’ talk they talked to Tencent years before. They needed to come up with something, and come up with it fast, or they would be in serious trouble. It was just Epic’s luck that something like PUBG came along into early access in 2017. Epic took the name and shreds of IP they called Fortnite and overnighted the production of the game to take after the aspects of PUBG that were making it so successful. Both in early access and in full release, the entirety of Fortnite’s marketing and development were 100% reactive to PUBG, with enough menial differences put in place, along with the façade of Fortnite having existed since 2011 to avoid suit. At this point everything Epic is depending on is competence in their marketing and their existing clout in the industry to carry them forward into the black, and that’s exactly what happened. Moving forward with this, it is abundantly clear that Epic is incapable of manifesting innovation or profitable bouts of creativity in any sense. Their copycat strategy will continue to work for them for as long as they cling to relevance in the industry, until somebody strategises to make it impossible for Epic to steal their thunder. In the beginning of this post I mentioned that I’m a businessman and a game engine developer – all of these things matter to us because we hope to do exactly that in competing against them. Killing Epic’s relevance is as simple as releasing a good product that is impractical for them to steal, which is not as impossible to do when you’re not making a video game whose entire clout is out in the open. If a software feature is kept under wraps well enough, and used to great acclaim in public productions, you can drum up hype for months on end leading up to its release – this hype will prime the public to want your product, and starve other businesses from all the info needed to react to you until it’s too late. Because of how much harder it is to engineer software than to make video games, the best they can hope for is to throw several man-months at cloning it, and by that point they have lost the fight, and you can keep them down by marketing your original product as superior, because of course it is.
  2. Right. At this scale, it’s virtually never as simple as what the PR syndications say. Generally, the workplace isn’t an environment that’s going to foster relationship genesis anyway. The expectation is, if you’re enough of an adult to be managing others as a career, you have enough maturity and sense to keep it to your other circles, or already have a stable relationship/marriage formed in school. This makes the answer to “if it’s not fraternisation, then what?” pretty easy to guess: him dumping shares is an act of selfish disloyalty to the company, and the investigation led into his affairs returned a reason to go ahead and axe him. So it’s the end of a three part play here!
  3. Show off your latest purchase!

    My new 4K monitor arrived today.
  4. Oh wow, that is tempting. Really smart move from them here.
  5. Apple Deprecating OpenGL

    The performance impact is negligible, and you’re more than welcome to show me your prowess in engineering and demonstrate otherwise. Honestly you sound so full of yourself I’m sure you’ll try anyway. You’ll want to leave out the melodrama and show some real research about that, though! What is a native implementation to you? Something that doesn’t involve information translation? Do you have a concrete definition of what constitutes translation? If not, then nothing but machine code is truly native because it has to be translated from source. LLVM has to translate IR into machine code which can come from any one of hundreds of languages. Hell, the function of Vulkan itself is to translate user actions into commands for a device to go and execute. Everything is translated by that logic, and that means everything has a greater than zero overhead. This is very true, and very meaningless without any real context.
  6. Apple Deprecating OpenGL

    What public relations is saying and what’s actually feasible for developers are two different things. Vulkan is supported on macOS and iOS just the same as it is supported on Windows – third party support is still support. I really don’t understand why there’s this need to hold apple to some higher first-party ethic than Microsoft, Nintendo or any other OEM… it’s really silly.
  7. Apple Deprecating OpenGL

    From the MoltenVK readme: Thus, macOS has Vulkan. Save the pedanticism for somebody who cares. Wrong again. Read what you quoted: As I said, “Old engines that can’t move forward with the tech will suffer.” I know very well how Vulkan operates, so save the schooling for somebody who doesn’t do this for a living, OK? And in case it escaped you, Apple has deprecated OpenGL, not removed it. It will be there for a time window like all deprecated software is, until it is eventually removed.
  8. Apple Deprecating OpenGL

    https://github.com/KhronosGroup/MoltenVK
  9. Apple Deprecating OpenGL

    macOS has Vulkan. If you’re concerned about game ecosystems, API support is honestly the last thing you should care about. These things matter to engine developers for targeting systems like macOS, and with the Vulkan abstraction layer being hoisted by Valve I doubt it’s going to be a killer in the long run. Old engines that can’t move forward with the tech will suffer. All of this is as transparent to game developers as the list of advertised platforms supported.
  10. As ambivalent as I am to the news, I really gotta say the knee-jerk hostilities are getting just about cringeworthy at this point. This isn't the only place, it's all over Reddit and whatnot too, and it's just goes to show feeble-mindedness and how scared people really are over the nothings in their lives. I stopped using GitHub a while ago in favour of GitLab, and the main reason for that is cost. The price of a server will be constant regardless of how many websites I run on it, or how many domains I have, or what services I use and to what extent. It makes business sense to ditch an enterprise subscription with GitHub for that reason alone, in our case, and it has nothing to do with ethics or paranoia. That said, I wasn't born yesterday either, and I know full well what Microsoft, like any skilled company, is capable of doing. It's nothing particular to them, but for our business there are always certain things that we can trust no one with, even if "it would be totally illegal for them to steal it." Have fun proving that in court, especially when the thing they stole would've made you the millions you need to protect it and now you're SOL. Also, ask Xerox and IBM how they're doing since Apple and Microsoft rolled on by. As I've said before, you either eat or get eaten in the business world, and even indie game studios had to learn this lesson the hard way sometimes (Vlambeer). You get the rest of it.
  11. Github about to be Miscrosofted?

    Consumers have no reason to care about that. It does what their customers want it to do, and it does it well, and consistently so over the course of decades. If you’re going to do B2B with Microsoft, these are very important concerns! Most people aren’t doing business-to-business with them, though. Whether their software is the best depends on the context you’re talking about, and that’s pretty important as you can see people love to conflate context here to tell you how bad Microsoft is. Technically speaking, Microsoft’s software was absolutely terrible until somewhat recently, and this is reflected in their older extant APIs, but in the past 5 years or so they have cleaned up their act tremendously and make some pretty decent stuff. From a business sense they’re a ruthlessly successful company that made billions of dollars by being savvy and cutthroat to deliver a prevailing product that consumers will want and need. In the business world, nothing is really personal, so while you may find it ‘unfair’ or whatever some of the things they did, most of it was legal and totally normal, rational behaviour for a competitive business. After a point in business, either you eat or get eaten. It’s basically warfare without bloodshed and sovereignty, and as they say, “All is fair in love and war.” From a consumer’s standpoint, there is even less to say about it. They make nice products, a lot of time their failures are due to misgauging the market (e.g. Teams, Windows Phone, etc), or other forms of mismanagement (e.g. Skype) that lead to products flopping. If anything their Achilles heel is in marketing and management, two things that are nowhere to be found in code.
  12. Github about to be Miscrosofted?

    Microsoft is being very careful about how they approach FOSS. I wouldn’t say it’s EEE, necessarily, but it is most certainly an incredibly calculated business strategy that they have a long-term plan to profit from. It’s pretty important to remember that targeting Windows with 64-bit code still requires some extent of Visual Studio, at least in a practical sense. You can technically target Windows via cross-compilation, but you would need Windows for testing anyway and it’s not sensible in any business sense. If you want to avoid Microsoft completely you can only make 32-bit code for the time being (using something like the linker made by Digital Mars). Either way, Microsoft is very self-aware of their ecosystem surrounding Windows, and I doubt these moves are anything but in-line with their strategy to ensure and expand this.
  13. Just another sign that Epic Games is chronically behind the curve here. With the encroaching corporatism that has caused massive turnover and a destruction of workplace culture since 2015, it is no surprise that everyone with talent has left for greener pastures so EG’s old guard of senior artists and administrators don’t have to feel the heat of people who are younger, bolder, more hardworking and more skilled than them. It will eventually be their downfall if these reactive trends continue.
  14. This is a wonderful testament to the fact that bigotry never pays. When you have concern for things from that point of view, you end up embroiled in a mess that you only have yourself to blame for. It's hard to sympathise with people who are called out by left radicals for not liking the push for female PCs. Unfortunately, that's not why most people are angry at BFV. A lot of people are pissed off about it because of the obviously political and bigoted pandery that's happening in the name of whatever beliefs its developers are holding at the herald of MSM outlets like Kotaku. They're angry at the politicisation of yet another popular media franchise, and it is much the same frustration looming around Disney's Star Wars, recent Marvel movies, and even cartoon shows like the much-berated Thundercats Roar. They consume these things to get away from the negativity and bigotry surrounding much of modern society, and are obviously furious that their only refuge is being threatened by unlearned, closed-minded, cowardly pseudointellectual radicals with psychological hangups who want to tear the world apart for the sake of an ideology. Unlike with Star Wars and friends, it seems that their mission to manipulate public opinion so they can double down is turning out to be successful. As always, most people aren't kidding themselves about this, and you can probably take all of this nonsense to the bank next quarter and see what it really amounts to.
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