John L. Miller's Blog: Networking and more

John L. Miller's weblog covering his work, research, and programming-related interests

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  • Blog Post: Interesting Cheating Talk

    Jon Crowcroft pointed me at an extremely interesting talk by Dan Ariely on Cheating . Take a peek if you're interested in cheating and cheater behavior, especially as influenced by group dynamics, it'll be 15 minutes well spent.
  • Blog Post: Crashing WoW servers

    Yesterday I was forwarded a link about retirement of a long-time player from World of Warcraft. While that in itself might be interesting, the really juicy bit was the way he went out: with a mighty 'crash' from the server. Scalability issues, or something else? Check out Boom's Goodbye Blog , where...
  • Blog Post: Distributed Virtual Environment Scalability

    In the previous post I parrotted scalability figures for World of Warcraft. While investigating DVE's, I tripped across interesting figures for WoW and several other environments. Halo-3 From this press release , we can see that in the first week of Halo-3's release, 2.7 million people played...
  • Blog Post: World of Warcraft hits 9M + active subscribers!

    The holidays gave me a chance to re-acquaint myself with World of Warcraft (WoW). I have to say, it's still the single most impressive online game I've ever seen. For my money, it does everything right. It literally *is* for my money, since I'm one of those paying 9 million subscribers. I'm researching...
  • Blog Post: Second Life - Reality sets in?

    Earlier I commented about the disparity in numbers quoted for Second Life's population. It's not that any of the numbers are wrong - for what's being expressed, they're no doubt correct. Rather, it's a question of what's being measured. For my money, steady-state population, and those willing to pay...
  • Blog Post: May the best bot win...

    There are two broad areas in gaming I want to take a closer look at. The first is distributed games, and models for ensuring fairness and cheat-proofing. The second is issues which affect game play quality, such as latency and jitter in network connections. As part of this research, I need a way of reproducibly...
  • Blog Post: Halo3 Beta - you TOO can play

    I just tripped across news that the Halo-3 Beta is going to be opened up to public applications to join. One of the ways you can apply is by playing Halo-2 online between Feb 1 and Feb 3, and then registering on a specific website. Another is to buy a copy of Crackdown for the 360 that's appropriately...
  • Blog Post: Fiddling with Second Life

    I downloaded Second Life yesterday and played with it some. I was impressed with how good it looked given the relatively small size of the installer. It must be doing some significant texture transfer in the background to flesh out the world, depending upon where you go to. The application was easy...
  • Blog Post: And now for something completely different...

    So far I've mostly written about issues that come up in my day-to-day development life, and not very often at that. Starting with my next post, most of what I write about will be related to my research efforts, and I should be posting more frequently. So what are my research interests? So glad you...
  • Blog Post: Halo3 Announced!

    Halo-3 has been announced! I was a rabid Halo-2 fan for ages, playing around 2,000 matches online, so this is welcome news. Halo-2 had a lot of great features. The offline game was great and looked very nice. It had very good balance for online matches, a good ranking system, a nice selection of weapons...
  • Blog Post: Games for a living?

    I've done games-related development off and on for the last twenty years. In 1985 I quit my job and worked four months trying (unsuccessfully) to make a game for the Apple II, "NinjaQuest". In the early 90's I made a Windows SDK sample of a multiplayer game using the then-new multimedia API's. In the...
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