Four short links: 30 December 2016

Westworld as Game, Sensor Batteries, Topic Matching, and WeChat's Networking

By Nat Torkington
December 30, 2016
Four short links
  1. These Violent Delights (Emily Short) — Westworld from an interactive fiction designer’s point of view. But there are other things you’d need in a system like this that I didn’t see. For instance: tracking player knowledge. What information has been revealed to which players? Does everyone know what they need to know in order to get a satisfying arc from this story? A multiplayer experience combined with real-world scope/hearing issues makes this extra tricky, because you can have players walking in and out of one another’s scenes or telling one another plot information, and you have to somehow account for all that and make sure everyone understands what’s going on well enough to have a good time.
  2. AI and Unreliable Electronics (Pete Warden) — fascinating details about energy use and energy need. I’m convinced that smart sensors are going to be massively important in the future, and that vision can’t work if they require batteries. […] These sorts of applications will only work if the devices can last for years unattended. We can already build tiny chips that do these sorts of things, but we can’t build batteries that can power them for anywhere near that long, and that’s unlikely to change soon.
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  4. Fast Topic MatchingA common problem in messaging middleware is that of efficiently matching message topics with interested subscribers. […] This is frequently a bottleneck for message-oriented middleware like ZeroMQ, RabbitMQ, ActiveMQ, TIBCO EMS, et al. Because of this, there are a number of well-known solutions to the problem. In this post, I’ll describe some of these solutions, as well as a novel one, and attempt to quantify them through benchmarking. (code on GitHub)
  5. Marsa cross-platform network component developed by WeChat.. Interesting because WeChat works well across unreliable networks, whereas other systems often struggle even on reliable networks.
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