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> (De/Ha)cking, some thoughts
GrinderTheTroll
post Apr 14 2005, 04:46 PM
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So I just realized that by removing the term and technology of "the deck" from SR, Fanpro is not only removing a SR cultural stronghold but a tie to a big part of the Cyberpunk world. I know the CP references in SR have always existed on many levels, but I think the whole Matrix/Cyberspace connection was one of the biggest running a close race with Cyberware.

I know this topic has been beat to death, I just wanted to share my thoughts.

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blakkie
post Apr 14 2005, 04:48 PM
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It has been hinted by playtester(s) that decks have NOT been removed from SR4.
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Phantom Runner
post Apr 14 2005, 04:53 PM
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QUOTE (blakkie)
It has been hinted by playtester(s) that decks have NOT been removed from SR4.

From what I remember of the FAQ, it was stated that the reliance on a "large clunky piece of equipment" (know as the Cyberdeck) has been removed. Although I have not yet seen a statement saying that the 'deck has in its entirety been removed (just way too many posts to wade through) then if what you are saying is true, I immagine that the 'deck has most likely been replaced by something more along the lines of a complex palm pilot or in SR terms a sup'ed up Pocket Secretary. I mean, if you seriously think about it, we currently have the technology to have powerful pieces of computer equpiment in miniature size. With the huge advances in technology that would be possible in 2070, it really would make no sense that a decker (hacker) would need to carry around anything big...
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GrinderTheTroll
post Apr 14 2005, 05:02 PM
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QUOTE (Phantom Runner)
QUOTE (blakkie @ Apr 14 2005, 11:48 AM)
It has been hinted by playtester(s) that decks have NOT been removed from SR4.

From what I remember of the FAQ, it was stated that the reliance on a "large clunky piece of equipment" (know as the Cyberdeck) has been removed. Although I have not yet seen a statement saying that the 'deck has in its entirety been removed (just way too many posts to wade through) then if what you are saying is true, I immagine that the 'deck has most likely been replaced by something more along the lines of a complex palm pilot or in SR terms a sup'ed up Pocket Secretary. I mean, if you seriously think about it, we currently have the technology to have powerful pieces of computer equpiment in miniature size. With the huge advances in technology that would be possible in 2070, it really would make no sense that a decker (hacker) would need to carry around anything big...

Also funny that at the time when the developers chose SR's technology base (which as I mentioned borrowed some ideas from CP) personal computes (even laptops) where rather clunky and nothing like the powerhouses they are today. At the time, the idea of a keyboard sized computer was still a whiz-bang idea. Laughable by today's computing size and power.

Someone mentioned early on that in 15-years all this technology shift is going to seem silly by SR4's standards too. Hopefully Fanpro takes a visionary enough stab at an "the new computing" model to get maybe a closer simulation for computing in 2064. Hell even looking at Moore's Law might atleast give them some basis for comparison.
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Solstice
post Apr 14 2005, 05:09 PM
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SR tech flavor isn't an extension of OUR perception of technology in 2060-70. It's an extension of the 1980s-90s perception of what "bleeding edge" tech would be in 2060-70. I think it's important that we and the devs understand that distinction, because it is an important distinction that lends SR some of it's unique flavor. Granted some of that will change to a certain extent but the cyberpunky flavor of the tech shouldn't be really heavily influenced by the real world less it become vanilla..i mean it is fiction/fantasy.
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Moon-Hawk
post Apr 14 2005, 05:15 PM
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I would expect that the standard cyberdeck would shrink to PDA sized. I mean, this was already an option just by making a standard cranial deck and rather than implant it, put it in a pocket secretary case. (Okay, maybe a touch of GM sayso in there, but quite reasonable, I feel) Cranial parts only cost 20% more, IIRC.
And while there is a certain need to keep ahead of a technology curve so that the tech doesn't look silly in five years, I really don't think they need to shrink past palm sized. After a certain point, you're not limited by the technology, you're limited by the user. Palm sized is about as small as it needs to be. Ever crack open a modern graphing calculator? It's a bitty little chip, with all kinds of space used for the screen and buttons, because of our stupid, low-rez eyes and clumsy fingers.
Of course, if you're planning on running DNI anyway.......hmmm.............
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blakkie
post Apr 14 2005, 05:20 PM
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QUOTE (GrinderTheTroll)
Also funny that at the time when the developers chose SR's technology base (which as I mentioned borrowed some ideas from CP) personal computes (even laptops) where rather clunky and nothing like the powerhouses they are today. At the time, the idea of a keyboard sized computer was still a whiz-bang idea. Laughable by today's computing size and power.

Someone mentioned early on that in 15-years all this technology shift is going to seem silly by SR4's standards too. Hopefully Fanpro takes a visionary enough stab at an "the new computing" model to get maybe a closer simulation for computing in 2064. Hell even looking at Moore's Law might atleast give them some basis for comparison.

You have to keep in mind that a single cyberdeck's computational power appoaches something that in our current state is a buildin full of racks. Sure it's still being used for a text board on Shadowland. But think about the huge leaps in computational concepts and power going from a modern PC an old IBM 3278 terminal....and we are still using that modern PC for a text based board here. Many of us are still using copper wire all the way back to the telco/cable switching equipment, where the new copper (fibre optics) take over.

So it wasn't that illogical that hardlink communication based lugable be used for cyberdecks.
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Vuron
post Apr 14 2005, 05:26 PM
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While keyboard sized cyberdecks might be a thing of the past I tend to think that thier crazy essence alternative the cranial cyberdeck will be the standard format for decks in SR4. They are portable concealable and still maintain the matrix plus they might fit with the WMI a bit better than the old decks.

Considering hardly any decker actually uses the keyboard part of the deck when actually decking you just need to hook up a keyboard when you are doing a programming test etc.
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blakkie
post Apr 14 2005, 05:32 PM
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You don't even need it implanted. Just a small brick in a backpack with a cord running into your head.

Note that much bigger things than deck size are going to change if they want to try mesh deckers with other runners. You know the old drill of sending the rest of the group out for pizza....and a movie whenever the decker headed off into the Matrix. The biggest is the decker not becoming a total limp noodle.

The Matrix surrounds us all, and we walk through it. But only the jacked in see it and interact with it in a HUD-like overlay.

EDIT: That's where Wi-fi really starts to make sense. You walk past the components of the Matrix and deal with them as you do.
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DrJest
post Apr 14 2005, 05:33 PM
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QUOTE
While keyboard sized cyberdecks might be a thing of the past I tend to think that thier crazy essence alternative the cranial cyberdeck will be the standard format for decks in SR4.


I never got around to making one - never been a big player of deckers, tbh - but I always thought using the parts of a cranial cyberdeck to make an externally wearable deck would be a logical thing to do for a shadowrunner. Power, mobility, concealability.
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MYST1C
post Apr 14 2005, 06:23 PM
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QUOTE (GrinderTheTroll)
Also funny that at the time when the developers chose SR's technology base (which as I mentioned borrowed some ideas from CP) personal computes (even laptops) where rather clunky and nothing like the powerhouses they are today.  At the time, the idea of a keyboard sized computer was still a whiz-bang idea.

Yet at the same time the makers of Cyberpunk 2020 envisioned book-sized cyberdecks (no keyboards, DNI all the way!).
Or cellphones that were cheap, didn't weigh much, didn't need "boosterpacks"...

IMO the SR makers (at least in the early years) were extremely conservative und unimaginative concerning future technological development.
Of course, there's the Crash of '29 that set back technology and science by destroying the internet and computers (and, though I can't figure out how, was able to burn books and wipe the memories of scientists, engineers and technicians all around the globe).

The only fields were it was truly visible that cyberpunk is a SciFi-subgenre were cyber-/bioware and matrix.
Yet the equipment resulting from these technologies was (is) so obscenely expensive - where is the market for body enhancements costing hundreds of thousands of Nuyen or single-user computers with a million pricetag (and illegal components)?
Why is supposedly mass-produced stuff that has been on the market for decades still so expensive?
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Solstice
post Apr 14 2005, 06:29 PM
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Because it's a fantasy/sci-fi world that doesn't really exist? It's not real? That may have something to do with it.
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post Apr 14 2005, 06:41 PM
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QUOTE (DrJest)
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While keyboard sized cyberdecks might be a thing of the past I tend to think that thier crazy essence alternative the cranial cyberdeck will be the standard format for decks in SR4.


I never got around to making one - never been a big player of deckers, tbh - but I always thought using the parts of a cranial cyberdeck to make an externally wearable deck would be a logical thing to do for a shadowrunner. Power, mobility, concealability.

Because there aren't really rules for effective Wi-Fi like wireless.

About a decade ago, a CS student showed me how far light travels in a nanosecond. I was rather impressed, but his point was to indicate why miniaturization was such a big deal. The more wires you add, and the further the light has to travel even in a nanosecond makes a big difference in the Matrix where actions take place on the nanosecond level, and to do this would (IMO) require one to impose I/O and reaction penalties.
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blakkie
post Apr 14 2005, 07:02 PM
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QUOTE (Crimsondude 2.0)
Because there aren't really rules for effective Wi-Fi like wireless.

About a decade ago, a CS student showed me how far light travels in a nanosecond. I was rather impressed, but his point was to indicate why miniaturization was such a big deal. The more wires you add, and the further the light has to travel even in a nanosecond makes a big difference in the Matrix where actions take place on the nanosecond level, and to do this would (IMO) require one to impose I/O and reaction penalties.

That isn't Wi-Fi/hardwire difference. Light/EMF doesn't travel any faster in a wire than via airwaves. In fact it generally travels much slower.

When you were Decking the bandwidth between your deck and the host wasn't carrying back and forth all that was happening. Your Icon had to be using cycles on the host to exist.
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Vuron
post Apr 14 2005, 07:27 PM
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Also note that while in SR1 and SR2 there was the idea that you were decking at the speed of thought and a entire matrix run through SAN SPU CPU yadda yadda was all taking place in at most a handful of seconds it seems that SR3 matrix is more taking place at roughly the same speed as reality.

So instead of the Samurai character calling in matrix support and the decker having fulfilled the request before the samurai finishes talking you assume that a combat round in the matrix and reality are taking place at the same speed.

In terms of bandwidth yes wired rocks the hell out of wireless as one individual fiber optic cable could use Wave Division Multiplexing to seperate out multiple channels over a in theory infinite number of axises on the cable. In contrast Wireless would need to have buttloads of slightly different frequencies to handle anywhere near the same composite bandwidth. Fundamentally though wireless and fiber optics pretty much are limited to the electronics on either end more than the transmission media so you could assume that WMI and Wired Matrix are roughly bandwidth compatible.
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Guest_Crimsondude 2.0_*
post Apr 14 2005, 08:01 PM
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That was two disparate thoughts. One, there weren't rules for wireless. Two, that a distributed model could be treated as being slower given the speeds of actions while decking.
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Vuron
post Apr 14 2005, 08:08 PM
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QUOTE (Crimsondude 2.0)
That was two disparate thoughts. One, there weren't rules for wireless. Two, that a distributed model could be treated as being slower given the speeds of actions while decking.

Ahh I understand of course I've always been of the mind that the cyberdeck should borrow alot of it's processing power from the host that the icon is currently located on. In a sense a log on to host or to LTG/RTG is actually the process of loading the decker's icon into the hosts operating system.
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Pthgar
post Apr 14 2005, 10:05 PM
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If you check out the cover art for the new book here, you can see that the dwarf de- uh, hacker is holding a small box that he is jacked into. Maybe the new "palm-decks."
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Vuron
post Apr 14 2005, 10:11 PM
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I try not to assume anything given a piece of Zug artwork. It certainly is evocative and fun but if you use past paintings as a guidebook then you might need to assume Aerodynes are already here!
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Pthgar
post Apr 14 2005, 10:16 PM
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True, but it is the main book, so maybe he tried extra hard to keep it under control.

I saw a devil rat!

This post has been edited by Pthgar: Apr 14 2005, 10:18 PM
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MYST1C
post Apr 14 2005, 10:19 PM
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QUOTE (Solstice)
Because it's a fantasy/sci-fi world that doesn't really exist? It's not real? That may have something to do with it.

Suspension of disbelief is a nice thing but one shouldn't be forced to do it all the time due to an illogical/unbelievable game world.
I do not demand absolute realism from a cyberpunk/fantasy game. But the stuff should be believable.

In Cyberpunk 2020 many 'ware is way too cheap, granted. But it fits the genre/atmosphere where cyberware is supposed to be common. Not so in SR where you could buy several cars or even houses for one piece of 'ware...
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MYST1C
post Apr 14 2005, 10:20 PM
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QUOTE (Pthgar)
True, but it is the main book, so maybe he tried extra hard to keep it under control.

I saw a devil rat!

But again the troll is too small...
(280cm, not 210 dammit!)
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Vuron
post Apr 14 2005, 10:30 PM
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QUOTE (M$T1C)
QUOTE (Pthgar @ Apr 15 2005, 12:16 AM)
True, but it is the main book, so maybe he tried extra hard to keep it under control.

I saw a devil rat!

But again the troll is too small...
(280cm, not 210 dammit!)

Of course rather than assume that Trolls remain 2.8 meters in SR4 and continue to put out art that says overwise they might just say screw it and revise the heights and weights again.
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Wireknight
post Apr 14 2005, 10:42 PM
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Yeah, but a lot of troll players would probably take exception to a sudden "your character is nearly three feet shorter now" mandate. Of course, it would solve all of the necessary suspension of disbelief with regard to trolls being able to intermingle with and live in normal society. When you're a generally demonized metarace that's a pretty small minority in any given census count, and you're 50% taller than anyone else, you're probably going to have problems driving cars or using elevators.
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Pthgar
post Apr 14 2005, 10:47 PM
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Maybe the troll is, like 14 years old? At least there's an elf ninja, (a hot lesbian nympho, no doubt) some SR traditions never change.

Also I notice that the dwarf is wearing wraparound glasses. VR gear, maybe?
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