Author Archives: delimobile

Hunger Games themed semi-iterated prisoner’s dilemma tournament

Hunger Games themed semi-iterated prisoner’s dilemma tournament

With all the talk surrounding it, crowdsourcing science might seem like a new concept and it might be true for citizen science efforts, but it is definitely an old trick to source your research to other researchers. In fact, evolutionary game theory was born (or at least popularized) by one such crowdsourcing exercise; in 1980, Robert Axelrod wanted to find out the best strategy for iterated prisoner’s dilemma and reached out to prominent researchers for strategy submissions to around-robin tournmanet. Tit-for-tat was the winning strategy, but the real victor was Axelrod. His 1981 paper with Hamilton analyzing the result went on to become a standard reference in applications of game theory to social questions (at least outside of economics), agent-based modeling, and — of course — evolutionary game theory. Of Axelrod’s sizeable 47,222 (at time of writing) citations, almost half (23,370) come from this single paper. The tradition of tournaments continues among researchers, I’ve even discussed an imitation tournament on imitation previously.

The cynical moral of the tale: if you want to be noticed then run a game theory tournament. The folks at Brilliant.org— a website offering weekly olympiad-style challange problems in math and physics — took this message to heart, coupled it to the tried-and-true marketing technique of linking to a popular movie/book franchise, and decided to run a Hunger Games themed semi-iterated Prisoner’s dillema tournament. Submit a quick explanation of your strategy and Python script to play the game, and you could be one of the 5 winners of the $1,000 grand prize. Hooray! The submission deadline is August 18th, 2013 and all you need is a Brilliant account and it seems that these are free. If you are a reader of TheEGG blog then I recommend submitting a strategy, and discussing it in the comments (either before or after the deadline); I am interested to see what you come up with.

I will present the rules in m

Google Nexus Ready to Use Android 4.3

Google Nexus Ready to Use Android 4.3

California – Google announced the Android 4.3 operating system in a Google event in San Francisco on July 24, 2013. Android 4.3 will be used on the Google Nexus 7 new and old.
Since the announcement of Android 4.3, the operating system on a tablet computer Google Nexus 7, 10 and Nexus smartphone Google Nexus 4 and Galaxy Nexus will be upgraded to Android 4.3, said Hugo Barra, vice president of product manjemen Android.
While the mobile operating system of the Samsung Galaxy S4 edition of Google Play and HTC will also be enhanced, Barra stated.
Barra did not say when the other Android devices can get Android 4.3. At the operating system is not much change. There is only a little extra on the software. For example, the profile Multi-User Restricted, Smart Bluetooth technology and the higher graphics capabilities thanks to Open GLES 3.0.
Officially, Android 4.3 Jelly Bean is still in version. In accordance with the changes only slightly. This means, the fans still have to wait for Google’s Android operating system Key Lime Pie.

First prize of the Microsoft Bug IE11 So Google Employee Owned

First prize of the Microsoft Bug IE11 So Google Employee Owned

You might remember the prize program offered by Microsoft for anyone who finds a bug in his software? One of the applications included in the program is IE11. And interestingly, the first to earn prizes in finding bugs in IE11 program turned out to be one of the Google employees.

In a statement through the official blog, Microsoft said that they had paid out prizes for IE11. But they did not mention who the person is beruntuh. Furthermore, in another day, one Microsoft employee named Katie Missouris revealed that the lucky person is engineer from Google named Ivan Fratric. It was not clear how many gifts given to Fratric Microsoft.

IE11 program to offer cash prizes worth 11 thousand USD for a finding bugs and ends in late July. Meanwhile, a similar program aimed at Windows 8.1 still ongoing with no time limit.

Digital Storm VELOCE, 13.3-inch Gaming Laptop With Intel’s Haswell CPU & GPU NVIDIA GTX 765M Plus 8GB RAM

Digital Storm VELOCE, 13.3-inch Gaming Laptop With Intel’s Haswell CPU & GPU NVIDIA GTX 765M Plus 8GB RAM

Soon the market will be the arrival of a new gaming laptop models known as Digital Storm VELOCE.
With stretcher panel 13.3-inch screen that supports a resolution of 1920 × 1080 pixels, 1.25 inches thick laptop weighs 4.6 kg and is fully supported by an Intel Core i7-4800MQ who collaborated with NVIDIA GTX 765M GPU and 8GB of RAM.
And even to support jitunya storage solutions, gaming notebooks running Windows 8 has been providing hard drive plus 750GB 7200RPM 8GB SSD. Not only that, this powerful gaming laptop has also been supported by the 3 USB 3.0 ports, a DVD burner, HDMI, VGA, WiFi, Bluetooth, and much more.
Concerning the availability and price, the Digital Storm gaming laptop VELOCE which will soon be released on July 17, 2013, is reportedly going to be priced at $ 1,535 or the equivalent of 15.34 million dollars per unit.

Application Encryption VSEncryptor

Application Encryption VSEncryptor

File Protector Portable Applications

VSEncryptor is an application that can be petrified our encryption protects files and text by scrambling the contents and form of the original will only display such content if the correct password is entered.

Portable VSEncryptorVersi this application is free. However, although it does not require installation, by default it has several options to change the entries in the registry. If you choose to install this application, note that it will replace the search engine and homepage in Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox. Unless you choose a custom installation, you can prevent these changes on your browser.

Although the application user interface is so simple and less attractive, but its function is quite good. In the main window there is a list of “encryption algorithms” which is quite interesting. You can select AES (128/192/256-bit) RC2/4/5/6, DES and Triple DES, Blowfish, Twofish, Serpent, Camellia, Skipjack, CAST-256, MARS, IDEA, SEED, GOST, XTEA, and SHACAL-2.

VSEncryptor can use these algorithms to randomize the plain text and other types of files. As soon as you press the encryption button, this app will ask you to enter a password that will also be used to decrypt the data.

It does not take long to encrypt the plain text, as well as encrypting other types of files. To file size of about 20 MB, it only takes a few seconds. Encrypt speed also depends on the chosen algorithm. By default, the encryption result is stored in the same location as the original file, but we also can change it as you wish.

By default again, VSEncryptor add a new file extension that is <. Encrypted> for encrypted items. The same option is also available to decrypt the file, only the extension form <. Decrypted>.

Launch of Remodeled Website by limoserviceoakland.net

Launch of Remodeled Website by limoserviceoakland.net

Limoserviceoakland.net, a premier ground transportation provider, has recently launched their remodeled website. Their remodeled website aims to improve the user experience and offer better insight of their business model. Their remodeled website has tons of new features and user-friendly navigation structure to benefit the customers.

“Any business has to keep up with the improving technology in order to stay in the business. The basic idea behind remodeling the website was to make our services and fleet information available to the customers with utmost ease. The customers will find complete specifications and technical details with the images of the fleet in the new website for determining the profitability of the vehicle. Additionally, we have included many features that can help the customers in comparing the vehicles and choosing the best one for the tours. Of course, the best search engine optimization was also the main aspect behind the remodeling of the website.” – said Ruben, a manager of limoserviceoakland.net

They have used dynamic approach to remodel the website to make it visually appealing and informative for the customers. The remodeled website offers the benefit of accessing the required information with only a few clicks. Their remodeled website includes complete information about the services like wine tour, casino trips, airport transfers, concerts, sports events, night on the town and corporate events. Their website has dedicated pages focusing on the luxury transportation options for the occasions like wedding, birthday parties, proms, bachelor parties and bachelorette parties. Their new website has state-wise recommendation about the most popular destinations, hotels and restaurants for the benefits of the customers.

They have showcased their wide ranges of limo collection that includes Escalade Limo, Lincoln Stretch Limo, Rolls Limo, Hummer Limo, Range Rover Limo and Chrysler 300 Stretch Limo in their fleet. Some other fleet information like features available in 20 passenger party bus, 28 passenger party bus and 45 passenger party bus are also listed on their website with the high-definition images. The information about their wide range of exotic cars such as Bentley Flying Spur, Mercedes-Benz S500, Ranger Rover SUV, Rolls Royce Phantom, Ferrari and Lamborghini Gallardo are now available on their new website.

They have also included the complete information about the different tour packages and their features in the website for better understanding. The customers can now subscribe to their newsletter to know about the release of new packages, deals, services and fleet. They have also included the online vehicle reservation facility on the new website to offer the convenience of booking the most appropriate vehicle with utmost ease. The customers can visit http://www.limoserviceoakland.net to check out the new features of the remodeled website or book a limousine for tours and travels.

Adobe’s Kuler beta site resurrects photo-color picker

Adobe’s Kuler beta site resurrects photo-color picker

Adobe Systems has launched a beta version to try out changes to its color-picker Kuler service, including the restoration of an earlier feature to extract dominant colors from photos.

Kuler lets people assemble quintets of colors into a color scheme that’s saved into their own archive; people can browse others’ schemes as well. The colors can be imported into Adobe’s Illustrator software, too.

The photo tool is available by loading the new Kuler beta site. Adobe said Monday it’s seeking feedback on the changes, which it may or may not keep. Adobe also provided an option to use a less obtrusive color wheel and to shrink borders around colors so designers can better judge how they look together.

Kuler is useful, though hardly a heavyweight app like Photoshop or After Effects. But it’s interesting to watch since it’s got new-era online, collaborative, and social aspects that seem to be a priority for Adobe as it tries to convince skeptics that its $50-per-month Creative Cloud subscription is more than just a new way to pay for the old Creative Suitesoftware.

When Adobe cut over to its Creative Cloud subscription program, it introduced an iOS app that also can pick a color scheme from a photo.

Adobe once had a Kuler app for Android, but scrapped it and is channeling its resources toward the Kuler Web interface at present.

In response to a request for a Kuler Android app, an Adobe staff member had this to say:

While the iOS app and the discontinued Android app do have similar capabilities, they are actually quite a bit different. We have found that people use tablets and mobile phones very differently. So, we created the iPhone app with a different focus in mind — which translated to different features, UI, and interactions.

We have also found the tasks most people wanted to accomplish with Kuler, on a tablet device, are very similar to the tasks people undertake with the Kuler website. So, we’ve invested a lot of time and effort into updating the site to embrace the latest Web standards (also announced at MAX). And, it should work really well on Android and iOS tablets. We look forward to getting these updates in the hands of users to hear what they think.

We understand there are many Android phone users who may find an app like the Kuler iPhone app useful, and we’ll monitor demand for that over time.

In my tests on a Nexus 7 tablet, I was able to use the normal Kuler site, but the photo upload and color-wheel shrinking features had some problems. I could use photos I took on the spot and from the photo gallery, but imports from Google+ galleries, Dropbox, and Google Drive failed. Worse, the color wheel for picking colors by hand didn’t work with my touch screen.

Acer Launches Aspire Z3 AiO PC-605 with 23 inch Full HD Screen

Acer Launches Aspire Z3 AiO PC-605 with 23 inch Full HD Screen

Taiwanese electronics company, Acer has just introduced its PC all-in-one new, the Acer Aspire Z3-605. AiO PC this one was relying on a large screen and has a high resolution.

Acer Aspire Z3-605 has a 23-inch touch screen with full HD 1080p resolution. AiO PC offers an Intel Core i3-3227U to support 1TB HDD and 4GB of RAM. In addition, Acer is also preparing AiO PC with Intel Core i5 processor options and 8GB of RAM.

AiO PC was launched with the Windows 8 operating system. This computer also comes with an HDMI port and audio output using the optimized Dolby Home Theater v4 technology. AiO PC is also noted as the first with Harman Kardon speakers. In addition, the computer can also be tilted to the position of 10 to 30 degrees.

Regarding the price, this AiO PCs sold at prices ranging from 699.99 USD or about 7 million dollars.

Review: First 8-inch Windows tablet is a device that shouldn’t exist

Review: First 8-inch Windows tablet is a device that shouldn’t exist

My dissatisfaction with PC OEMs is something I have documented in the past. They offer a confusing array of products and tend to cut corners in the worst ways imaginable. The OEM response to Windows 8 has been to produce a wide range of machines sporting novel form factors to fit all sorts of niches, both real and imagined.

One niche that the OEMs haven’t tried to fill, however, has been sub-10-inch tablets. That’s not altogether surprising. Microsoft designed Windows 8 for screens of 10 inches or more, and initially the operating system’s hardware requirements had a similar constraint.

That decision looked a little short-sighted after the success of tablets such as the Google Nexus 7 and the iPad mini. Accordingly, Microsoft changed the rules in March, opening the door to a range of smaller Windows tablets.

The Acer Iconia W3 is the first—and currently the only—8-inch Windows tablet. That attribute alone makes it in some sense noteworthy. Sadly, it’s about the only thing that does.

Spec-wise, this is another Intel Clover Trail tablet, and its internals are basically the same as the devices that launched last year (such as its bigger brother, the Acer Iconia W510). This means 1.8 GHz, dual core, four thread Intel Atom Z2760 CPU, 2 GB RAM, 64 GB flash storage (which with Acer’s default partitioning leaves a little over 29 GB usable), front and rear cameras, Bluetooth 4.0, and 802.11b/g/n (no 5 GHz support). There’s a micro-HDMI and micro-USB port for external connectivity (a separate cable converts the micro USB port into a full-size one), along with an SD card slot. The tablet has a speaker adequate for notification sounds but little more.

As a result, performance and battery life are similar to what we’ve seen before. The Iconia W3 comes equipped with full-blown Windows 8, unlike ARM tablets, so it can run any 32-bit Windows application—should you really want to. Clover Trail’s GPU performance is such that games and other graphics-intensive programs won’t run well, however.

Eight inches of horror

The new bits on this tablet are really the screen and the size.

Screens are important. We spend essentially all our time interacting with devices looking at screens. Cost-cutting on screens is unforgivable, as a bad screen will damage every single interaction you have with the device. This goes doubly so for tablets, where the screen works not only as an output device but also as the primary input device.

The Acer Iconia W3’s screen is a standout—because it is worst-in-class. I hated every moment I used the Iconia W3, and I hated it because I hated the screen. Its color accuracy and viewing angles are both miserable (whites aren’t white—they’re weirdly colorful and speckled). The screen has a peculiar grainy appearance that makes it look permanently greasy. You can polish as much as you like; it will never go away. The whole effect is reminiscent in some ways of old resistive screens.

It’s hard to overstate just how poor this screen is. At any reasonable tablet viewing distance, the color of the screen is uneven. The viewing angle is so narrow that at typical hand-held distances, the colors change across the width of the screen. At full arm’s length the screen does finally look even, but the device is obviously unusable that way.

Acer has clearly skimped on the screen. I’m sure the panel in the W3 was quite cheap, and that may be somewhat reflected in the unit’s retail price ($379 for a 32GB unit, $429 for this 64GB one—putting it at the same price as the 32GB iPad mini, which has a comparable amount of available disk space), but who cares? It doesn’t matter how cheap something is if you don’t want to use it at all.

This poor screen quality isn’t a question of resolution, either. 1280×800 is not a tremendously high resolution, but text looks crisp enough. At 186 pixels per inch, 1280×800 feels more or less OK for this size of device.

The low resolution does, however, have one significant drawback: it disables Windows 8’s side-by-side Metro multitasking, which requires a resolution of at least 1366×768. The W3’s screen is 86 pixels too narrow, so the Metro environment is strictly one application at a time.

This is an unfortunate decision. The side-by-side multitasking is one of the Metro environment’s most compelling features. Keeping Twitter or Messenger snapped to the side makes a lot of sense and works well. I’ve never used Windows 8 on a device that didn’t support side-by-side Metro multitasking before, and I don’t ever want to again.

Size-wise, the W3 may be small for a Windows tablet, but it’s not exactly small. It’s fat. The W3 is 11.4 mm thick. The iPad mini, in comparison, is 7.2 mm thick. The Iconia W3 is also heavy at 500 g; the iPad mini, in comparison, is 308 g. That makes the W3 more than 50 percent thicker and more than 50 percent heavier.

The thickness makes the lack of a full-sized USB port on the device more than a little confusing. There’s certainly room for a full USB port, and a full port would be more convenient than the dongle. But for whatever reason, Acer didn’t give us one.

The device itself feels solid enough, albeit plasticky. It doesn’t exude quality, but it’s a step or two up from the bargain basement.

Keyboard non-dock

The W3 also has a keyboard accessory. As is common for this kind of thing, the keyboard has no electrical connection to the tablet. It’s a Bluetooth keyboard powered by a pair of AAA batteries. It has a groove along the top that can hold the tablet in both landscape and portrait orientations and a clip on the back that lets you use the keyboard as a kind of screen protector.

The keyboard has to be manually paired to the tablet. It’s more or less full-size, with a reasonable key layout. It’s a typical mediocre keyboard. The feel is a little on the squishy side, lacking the crispness of, for example Microsoft’s Type Cover for its Surface tablets. It’s better than any on-screen keyboard, and to that extent it does its job. But it’s a long way from being an actually good keyboard.

The groove does hold the tablet up, and on a level surface the unit doesn’t topple over, but it’s not as satisfactory as some of the hinged keyboard/docks we’ve seen on other devices. Tilt the base while carrying it or using it on your lap and the tablet is liable to fall out.

Seven signs of dysfunctional engineering teams

Seven signs of dysfunctional engineering teams

I’ve been listening to the audiobook of Heart of Darkness this week, read by Kenneth Branagh. It’s fantastic. It also reminds me of some jobs I’ve had in the past.

There’s a great passage in which Marlow requires rivets to repair a ship, but finds that none are available. This, in spite of the fact that the camp he left further upriver is drowning in them. That felt familiar. There’s also a famous passage involving a French warship that’s blindly firing its cannons into the jungles of Africa in hopes of hitting a native camp situated within. I’ve had that job as well. Hopefully I can help you avoid getting yourself into those situations.

There are several really good lists of common traits seen in well-functioning engineering organizations. Most recently, there’s Pamela Fox’s list of What to look for in a software engineering culture. More famous, but somewhat dated at this point, is Joel Spolsky’s Joel Test. I want to talk about signs of teams that you should avoid.

This list is partially inspired by Ralph Peters’ Spotting the Losers: Seven Signs of Non-Competitive States. Of course, such a list is useless if you can’t apply it at the crucial point, when you’re interviewing. I’ve tried to include questions to ask and clues to look for that reveal dysfunction that is deeply baked into an engineering culture.

Preference for process over tools. As engineering teams grow, there are many approaches to coordinating people’s work. Most of them are some combination of process and tools. Git is a tool that enables multiple people to work on the same code base efficiently (most of the time). A team may also design a process around Git — avoiding the use of remote branches, only pushing code that’s ready to deploy to the master branch, or requiring people to use local branches for all of their development. Healthy teams generally try to address their scaling problems with tools, not additional process. Processes are hard to turn into habits, hard to teach to new team members, and often evolve too slowly to keep pace with changing circumstances. Ask your interviewers what their release cycle is like. Ask them how many standing meetings they attend. Look at the company’s job listings, are they hiring a scrum master?

Excessive deference to the leader or worse, founder. Does the group rely on one person to make all of the decisions? Are people afraid to change code the founder wrote? Has the company seen a lot of turnover among the engineering leader’s direct reports? Ask your interviewers how often the company’s coding conventions change. Ask them how much code in the code base has never been rewritten. Ask them what the process is for proposing a change to the technology stack. I have a friend who worked at a growing company where nobody was allowed to introduce coding conventions or libraries that the founding VP of Engineering didn’t understand, even though he hardly wrote any code any more.

Unwillingness to confront technical debt. Do you want to walk into a situation where the team struggles to make progress because they’re coding around all of the hacks they haven’t had time to address? Worse, does the team see you as the person who’s going to clean up all of the messes they’ve been leaving behind? You need to find out whether the team cares about building a sustainable code base. Ask the team how they manage their backlog of bugs. Ask them to tell you about something they’d love to automate if they had time. Is it something that any sensible person would have automated years ago? That’s a bad sign.

Not invented this week syndrome. We talk a lot about “not invented here” syndrome and how it affects the competitiveness of companies. I also worry about companies that lurch from one new technology to the next. Teams should make deliberate decisions about their stack, with an eye on the long term. More importantly, any such decisions should be made in a collaborative fashion, with both developer productivity and operability in mind. Finding out about this is easy. Everybody loves to talk about the latest thing they’re working with.

Disinterest in sustaining a Just Culture. What’s Just Culture? This post by my colleague John Allspaw on blameless post mortems describes it pretty well. Maybe you want to work at a company where people get fired on the spot for screwing up, or yelled at when things go wrong, but I don’t. How do you find out whether a company is like that? Ask about recent outages and gauge whether the person you ask is willing to talk about them openly. Do the people you talk to seem ashamed of their mistakes?

Monoculture. Diversity counts. Gender diversity is really important, but it’s not the only kind of diversity that matters. There’s ethnic diversity, there’s age diversity, and there’s simply the matter of people acting differently, or dressing differently. How homogenous is the group you’ve met? Do they all remind you of you? That’s almost certainly a serious danger sign. You may think it sounds like fun to work with a group of people who you’d happily have as roommates, but monocultures do a great job of masking other types of dysfunction.

Lack of a service-oriented mindset. The biggest professional mistakes I ever made were the result of failing to see that my job was ultimately to serve other people. I was obsessed with building what I thought was great software, and failed to see that what I should have been doing was paying attention to what other people needed from me in order to succeed in their jobs. You can almost never fail when you look for opportunities to be of service and avail yourself of them. Be on the lookout for companies where people get ahead by looking out for themselves. Don’t take those jobs.

There are a lot of ways that a team’s culture can be screwed up, but those are my top seven.