Like everything related to AI, with the ability to mimic human-sounding voices coming to the forefront, audiobook narrators now also feel threatened and, while I understand being afraid of something new and misunderstood, I see it mostly as an extension of our existing abilities and doing more with less. First of all, I’m sad that the first thing I see in that article is “circling the wagons”. You can’t avoid new technology. It’ll come no matter what. Some form of legislation can be made to restrict research and development but if the technology is not immediately or excessively harmful (like nuclear weapons or engineered viruses), a lot of people will work towards it and, as a person affected, what you really should do is find how to adapt and where you fit in in the new order. Secondly, if we move towards an industry in which voices are largely AI generated, the voice templates will still have to come from somewhere. Those providing the templates will still be a part of the process. They will be licensing their vocal likeness, like you do with a visual likeness. It will be up to them and their agents to make sure the contract benefits them and that they may have some right of refusal on projects that might not align with their views. And those around the narration will still be required. A director will need to make sure the reading is what the client wants, an audio editor will be needed Continue Reading →
Posted in Practice, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
Recently, some clueless joe on Twitter said he will pay 10,000$ to the person who adds a multiplayer aspect to Zelda: Breath of the Wild. If he was going to donate to a modder who was working on it, that would have been fine but it seems like he was thinking that he could hire someone to do something like that for that kind of money. Here is a long, detailed response to this which you should read but here’s the summary: 10,000$ would pay for about two work months of the average+ programmer. Also, networking is hard. The hardest networking challenges in gaming usually arise in fighting games because they usually need to be exactly per pixel and per frame accurate and, probably over distances where network traffic takes more time to go back and forth than it takes pro players twitch reflexes to react. You can see how important this is if you go back and read about the network woes of Street Fighter V. Now, the demands of a PvE, open world, action RPG would probably be a lot less strict but these are still difficult problems. Especially if you’re talking about tacking on something like this onto a game that was definitely not designed for it. You want a more current example? On the one hand, Battlefield 2042 is out now and it’s buggy as hell. On the other hand, Halo Infinite’s multiplayer is also out and it’s much better. Probably because the team is backed Continue Reading →
Posted in Gaming, Less Interesting News, Practice, Programming, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
Portugal recently passed a law they fondly call “Right to Rest”. It contains various measures to help employees have a better work-life balance such as the ability to work remotely when you need to take care of a child or companies contributing to household bills when an employee is working remotely a lot. But the nicest thing about it is indeed the ban on contacting employees after work hours. I’m guessing there is a stipulation about emergencies or people like server administrators and doctors who are supposed to be on call but the fact it’s enshrined in law is just amazing. Kinda makes me want to move to Portugal. :)
Posted in High-Tech, IT, Less Interesting News, Practice, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
Let’s say you have a bunch of code you want to drag around with you to every new Unity project, or maybe just the next project you’re doing for the same company. Don’t just copy and paste the same directory over and over again forcing you to also copy changes and updates. Create a package instead! Unity has switched over to a package model for a lot of the engine’s capabilities. And it also allows you to import non-Asset Store packages straight from GitHub or even locally. So how do you take what you have and make it an easily distributable package? Follow these steps. In your Project window, below all your regular files is a Packages folder. Right click on it and select Show in Explorer. In that Packages folder, create a new directory and name it however you like. This will be the root of your package. Do remember that the folder name can not contain spaces. Create a new “package.json” file. This page right here explains everything about the structure of the file. And here is an example file. Back in Unity, your new package should be visible with the name you gave it. Clicking on package file will open it in the Editor UI, allowing you to edit it more conveniently so you don’t have to go back to the JSON. In that Inspector window, you can also easily add Dependencies if your package requires it which is a much easier workflow than typing them out. Continue Reading →
Posted in Practice, Programming, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
I’ve heard and read a lot recently about how companies structure their payments, which employees get what and how much should a CEO be paid. For one thing, I agree with California trying to enforce a maximum difference between a CEO’s salary and lowest paid employee. I don’t think it should be compared to the average salary but the median but it’s a good direction. I know that the community sharing type of structure isn’t for everyone but I like the idea of employees sharing in the benefits of a company like the way pirates divvy up treasure: everyone gets one part. Maybe team leaders get two or three parts. Higher management gets five or six parts. The chief officers might get eight or even ten parts. The point is, after you determine how many parts there are, you divide the revenue. This way, even the lowliest employee benefits when the company is doing better. The top brass earn the most because they do the hardest work, but every employee is invested — and rewarded — in the company being successful.
Posted in Humanity, Philosophy, Practice, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
Hi. My name is Eran and I like podcasts and audiobooks. Recently, I found out about the term Podfasting. No, it’s not about abstaining from listening to Podcasts. The average person types at 40 words a minute, speaks at 150 words a minute but thinks at about 400 words a minute. I know I type at 70 words a minute, I probably speak at closer to 200 words a minute, and I think my thinking speed is also higher by a similar percentage (Probably around 450-500). So, I think it makes sense that I like watching TV and listening to podcasts at very high speeds (My current rate is 1.8-2.1x). I even like to speed read, which is how I calculate my thinking speed. Roughly 30,000 hours of content are uploaded to YouTube every hour. More and better content creators are currently creating more and better content. I want to have as much of it as I can. And, as your brain processes information about twice as fast as a person speaks, this problem is a solvable one. Creators can record their content at their own speed and today’s tools can speed it up without losing the pitch so it still sounds human. It’s only logical for someone with a huge backlog. Another thing they say in the article above is that understanding drops as you go up in speed but I think that’s entirely variable and dependent on the individual. I only aim for the speed in which I Continue Reading →
Posted in Me, No Category, Practice, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
With the pandemic on going, and large tech companies telling their employees to stay home for, possibly, the next year, and many realising that having an office to work out of is not a necessity, what I’m mostly thinking about is… What are the odds the pandemic will just be ever present? Or, what if it will stick around long enough so that the general urbanisation of the planet over the past few decades will just stop and people will start spreading around so that we end up with small rural communities that are more spread out? Reference: Lake Tahoe real-estate brokers are running out of homes to sell.
Posted in High-Tech, Humanity, Less Interesting News, Practice, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .
Idan Zeierman said this on The Last of Us Part II: אני קצת לא יודע מה להגיד. ביחד עם המשחק הראשון, מדובר כנראה ביצירות שהן מהטובות שיצא לי לחוות. אבל הן מגיעות בצורת משחקי הישרדות/אימה קשוחים שנמשכים 30 שעות ומכילים הרבה זומבים. זה רף לא קל בשביל לחוות אותן כהלכה. — Idan Zeierman (@idan315) July 5, 2020 Translation: I don’t know what to say. Along with the first game, they are probably two of the best works of art I ever experienced. But they come in the form of tough survival horror games that take 30 hours to complete and contain a lot of zombies. It’s not an easy bar for experiencing them properly. I replied: מצד אחד, זאת הסיבה למה הרבה אנשים לעולם לא יחוו כמה מיצירות האומנות הטובות ביותר שנוצרו (כי הן משחקים). ומצד שני, היצירות האלו לא יהיו אותו הדבר אם לא תחווה אותן על בשרך. — Eran Arbel (@SabreRunner) July 6, 2020 Translation: On the one hand, that is the reason why a lot of people will never experience some of the greatest works of art ever made (because they’re games). On the other hand, these works won’t be the same if you don’t experience them for yourself. This got me thinking about difficulty in games. I think the subject of inclusion and exclusion through difficulty has been tread enough but I think it mostly referred to gamer culture. Some Dark Souls fans would like to think that the game won’t be the same unless it was Continue Reading →
Posted in Art, Gaming, Practice, Thinking Out Loud by Eran with .