* Posts by sanbikinoraion

6 posts • joined 22 Dec 2014

MasterCard adds fingerprint scanner to credit cards for spending sans the PIN


Aside from all the dedigitification, there is one meaningful use case for fingerprint readers on cards, and that's as the activation method to make low-value contactless payments, which at the moment are totally unsecured (and as some Oystercard users discovered, liable to paying when you didn't mean to). No-one's going to cut off your finger for a chance at £20...

Buses? PAH. Begone with your filthy peasant-wagons


Re: The best urban transport

... and because some days are no good for bikes, that means no-one should ever bike anywhere, eh?

Google's first stab at control-free ROBOT car rolls off the line


People may be slow to "give up" what they've got, sure, but the advantages of driverless cars are so enormous that uptake will still be huge. Who wants to actually have to concentrate on the road on their commute to work, when they could be reading a book or watching TV instead? Who wants to struggle to find a parking space at the office, the supermarket, the event? Who wants to slog several hours down the motorway on Christmas Eve with two whining children in the back? All of these experiences will be radically better with driverless vehicles. New experiences will be possible: you can book a car for your kids to go to a friend's, or to a childminder, or to do the school run. Those who struggle with mobility, typically older people, will be able to get door-to-door car service at the click of a button, allowing them much more freedom to get around and enjoy life. You'll be able to book an overnight car to the south of France, and it'll have airline-style reclining or pull-out beds in it so that you can wake up practically anywhere in Europe for your holidays. Who cares if a few dinosaurs want to hold on to their own vehicles? We're looking at the most impressive revolution in personal transport since the invention of the bicycle.


Re: No just no

I don't understand why people persist in thinking that they are going to own their own vehicle in an era of driverless cars. What would be the point? A car service that can improve on the 4% usage of the current motor vehicle even by a factor of two will be significantly cheaper to use. We'll all have a car contract like we have a phone contract and an app to summon a vehicle of a specific grade at the touch of a button. No more finding a parking space, the car will just drop you at the door, wherever you go. No more cleaning or maintenance or insurance or road tax to worry about, just a monthly fee that costs less than you pay now to run your car.

Hipsters ahoy! Top Ten BOARD games for festive family fun


Re: Can anyone recommend a starter gamer for 9yr old?

There's a junior version of Settlers of Catan, too, IIRC.


There are tons of very good games out there now -- clearly the author of this piece likes his miniatures games, which do hew towards the expensive end of the market. If you're looking for extremely cheap but interesting games for Christmas, try:

* Dobble, a quick card game of visual acuity

* Love Letter, a hidden-identity game of smuggling a love letter to a princess

* The Resistance, an accusatory hidden-identity game of rooting out the spies in your cadre

* King of Tokyo, where everyone plays giant monsters laying waste to that metropolis

* Articulate, a decent and snappy variant of charades

If you want something a bit more in-depth than a family game, but lighter weight than many of the options here (Carcassonne and Settlers are lightweight, the others not so much), have a look at:

* 7 Wonders, multi-award winning card drafting game that plays extremely quickly

* Dominion, a card game where you build a deck through the course of the game to give your deck interesting new powers, and hopefully victory points, as you expand your kingdom

* Libertalia, a game of choosing pirate characters to win you the most booty without getting stabbed by your neighbour

If you're looking for something long and in-depth, I would recommend:

* Agricola, the best game. It's a worker-placement game where you compete to build the best farm, with a great mix of strategic planning and ruthless opportunism. And cows.

* Twilight Struggle (2 player only): a long, deep world-spanning game for domination and influence set during the Cold War years. Not complicated to play but looooooooong.

* Battlestar Galactica: if you loved the recent TV show this is worth a go around but be prepared for a 3h time investment.

... and here are the omnipresent games in boardgame stores I would avoid at all costs:

* Pandemic: "co-operative" yawn-a-thon. Might be entertaining the first time you play but it's effectively a 1-player game

* Munchkin: tedious D&D parody that takes far too long

* Zombies!!!: there are much better zombie games out there


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