Going traitor: Avatar versus Imperialism

“How does it feel to betray your own race?” These are the infamous last words of the mercenary colonel Miles Quartrich, snarled at the hero Jake Sully in the final minutes of James Cameron’s Avatar; set a century and a half into the future and 25 trillion miles from our planet. But Sully and the tiny minority of humans who change sides to fight alongside the Na’vi people in the 3D sci-fi epic were far from being the only ones who became traitors.

In the here and now of Earth in 2010, in the darkness of thousands of movie theaters, though purely passively and for the brief period of two and a half hours, more than one hundred and fifty million people (so far) have enthusiastically betrayed their ‘own race’, cheering on in their hearts- and often out loud- the defensive war of the imaginary blue-skinned Na’vi of the planet Pandora against the predatory corporate, militaristic, and environmentally destructive forces of homo sapiens.

And how did that feel? It felt very good; even, apparently, for the millions of people in the USA who have watched the movie. Under the headline ‘Avatar: the most expensive piece of anti-American propaganda ever made’, Dr Nile Gardiner wrote in the Daily Telegraph, a British Conservative newspaper:

When I saw the movie last night in a packed theater, I was disturbed by the cheering from the audience towards the end when the humans – US soldiers fighting on behalf of an American corporation – were being wiped out by the Na’vi. Washington is one of the most liberal cities in America and you come to expect almost anything here – but still the roars of approval which greeted the on-screen killing of US military personnel were a shock to the system, especially at a time when the United States is engaged in a major war in Afghanistan.

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Windows Media Center Running on Windows 10

According to the Vice President of Windows and Devices Group, Gabriel Aul, Microsoft parted ways with WMC because of “decreased usage.” That actually left a lot of people scrambling for a way to keep WMC alive. Thanks to some dedicated users at the My Digital Life Forums, a quick download and a couple command scripts will get WMC running on your Windows 10 machine in a jiff. Here’s how to do it:

  • Download the WindowsMediaCenter_10.0.10134.0v2.1.rar file
  • Then, with 7-Zip, extract the folder to your main system drive and open it.
  • Right-click on the file _TestRights.cmd and select Run as administrator.
  • Then right-click on the file Installer.cmd and select Run as administrator. Press any key to exit the installer when it’s finished.
  • Make a quick Windows search for Media Center and it will be your top match, but you can also find it under Window Accessories in the Start menu. You should be able to run WMC normally from there.

Windows Media Center Running on Windows 10 was originally published on Something Different

Open Source Project killed by Drama

Simple Intro

I played Tremulous obsessively when it first came out. It was a really fun and unique game. However the drama caused by the community of both players and developers killed the game successes. The game originated as a Quake III mod however when the source code was released in 2005 many Quake III mods (Tremulous) became standalone games. The standalone version was released in 2006 and aside from third party mods adding features the game hasn’t really been updated since then. There was a 1.2 “beta Gameplay Preview” however in my opinion nothing of value was added. There is some hope for Tremulous however. Unvanquished is a fork of Tremulous that has received constant updates on the path towards a stable client. It uses and updated game engine called the daemon engine. This engine is a fork of OpenWolf engine with updated code from other quake based engines. New features are being added to the engine/game.


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How to Play Games with SafeDisc or SecureRom DRM on Windows 10

What Happened with SafeDisc?

In November 2007 an “elevation of privilege” security vulnerability in SafeDisc was discovered, which enabled attackers to take complete control of a Windows PC. While later patched by Microsoft, it was one of many nails in the coffin of this form of DRM. Back in the mid-2000s, DRM security vulnerabilities were often used as an attack vector by hackers.

Asked for their opinion concerning its removal from Windows 10, developers Rovi Corporation observed:

Safedisc DRM hasn’t been supported for a few years now, and the driver has consequently not been updated for some time. Microsoft should have migrated the existing software since Windows 8. We don’t know if that’s still possible with Windows 10 or if they simply didn’t care about it.

SafeDisc relies on the SECDRV.SYS file, which isn’t present in Windows 10, and attempts to import and run it in the new OS have failed.

Self-Sign the SafeDisc Driver

This is more or less straightforward, but requires you to get your hands a bit dirty. It involves self-signing the SafeDisc driver so that Windows 10 will detect it as a trusted file. The easiest way to do this is to employ the Driver Signature Enforcement Overrider tool, which, when run as administrator, enables you to sign a previously untrusted file.

Once you’ve acquired a copy of the SECDRV.SYS file (either by downloading it or copying it from the c:\windows\system32\drivers directory on Windows Vista, 7 or 8, and saving it to the same location in Windows 10), run the DSEO tool by right-clickingdseo13b.exe and selecting Run as administrator. Work through the subsequent dialogue boxes until you see the main menu and select Enable Test Mode then click Next, and browse to the SECDRV.SYS file in c:\windows\system32\driver. Click OK, and wait while the driver is signed.
Once you have followed the instructions to restart and then run DSEO again with Test Mode enabled, the driver should now be loaded by the game you’ve had trouble with, restoring your ability to play it.

How to Play Games with SafeDisc or SecureRom DRM on Windows 10 was originally published on Something Different

Space invaders

[Found this on Reddit in a emulation focused subreddit a while ago.]

Spaaaaaace invaders. Originally the game was intended to all be played at one speed. However, due to the limits in the hardware processing speed, only so much information could be processed at a time. This meant that with more enemies on the screen, the game ran slower. Then, as enemies were destroyed and didn’t need to be rendered, the game literally sped up because more processing power was made available, meaning enemies moved faster increasing the difficulty of shooting them. The speeding up of the aliens was not coded into the game itself, it was a hardware limitation, however it is a defining characteristic of the game. It had to actually be coded into ports of the game because with more processing power the game would just run at full speed the entire time.

Space invaders was originally published on Something Different

whizzpast:10 Female Revolutionaries That You Probably Didn’t Learn About In History class

I was looking through my bookmarks and found this article from last year. Out of the 10 there was only one revolutionary that I knew of before reading this article.  Kathleen Neal Cleaver served as the spokesperson and press secretary for the Black Panther Party.


By Kathleen Harris / whizzpast.com

We all know male revolutionaries like Che Guevara, but history often tends to gloss over the contributions of female revolutionaries that have sacrificed their time, efforts, and lives to work towards burgeoning systems and ideologies. Despite misconceptions, there are tons of women that have participated in revolutions throughout history, with many of them playing crucial roles. They may come from different points on the political spectrum, with some armed with weapons and some armed with nothing but a pen, but all fought hard for something that they believed in.

Let’s take a look at 10 of these female revolutionaries from all over the world that you probably won’t ever see plastered across a college student’s T-shirt.

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