Incredible Mod Recreates SimCity 2000 Cities In Minecraft
The year is 1994. You’re playing Sim City 2000 and you’re thinking, man, wouldn’t it be amazing if I could somehow get down into the game and walk these streets.
The year is 1997. You’re playing SimCopter, which says on the box that you can explore the streets of the city you’re created, but it sucks and looks like shit. You keep dreaming of a seemingly unattainable future.
The year is 2022 and, finally, you can do it. You can take the Sim City 2000 save that you have lugged around nearly 30 years, convert it into a modern video game and walk its streets as though you were born there and were on your way to work. The only catches are that it’s very hard to do it. And that you are actually playing Minecraftnot SimCity.
Jernej Gosar, a software developer from Slovenia, is the man to thank for this mod, which reads a Sim City 2000 save file and recreate it as best it can Minecraft. “The main reason why I decided to create this project was that I thought it would be really cool”, he tells me. “Sim City 2000 has been one of my favorite games since I was a child and one day I thought that it would be extremely cool to go down into the streets and explore them.”
In 2014, having gained enough coding experience through his education and various IT jobs, he got to work fulfilling this childhood dream. Having also got very into Minecrafthe saw a few mods where folks had worked out ways to import Sim City 2000 terrain maps into Minecraftbut not the buildings and city itself.
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“So then I decided to make it myself”, he says. “If I remember correctly the core idea was implemented in a few weeks. I was really lucky that somebody wrote a detailed specification of the SimCity 2000 file formatotherwise this project couldn’t even get started.”
“The biggest challenge was probably digging through the bytes of both file formats and finally creating something that could actually be opened in Minecraft”, he says. The next big obstacle was simply the amount of time it took recreate the buildings, as even the simplest could take hours, although with the added bonus that because this was a first-person adventure, Gosar’s work was generating an interior (and sometimes even basic furniture) to go along with the building’s exterior.
“I still haven’t finished all of the buildings, and doing the most complicated ones (such as the Arcologies) would be a huge effort”, he says. “In general the smallest buildings take just a few hours to complete, including some interior furniture that makes sense for the building type. And the biggest ones can take a few days. The most complex building I have done so far was the big corporate tower which was quite a big effort.
While the actual workings of the mod are incredibly complex—Gosar says “right now it’s not usable at all for people who are not software developers”—when you break it down, what it’s doing in principle is actually pretty simple. It’s essentially taking a Sim City 2000 map and matching each pixel to a Minecraft block. That helps the mod communicate between both games, and also helps keep everything to scale.
That’s not to say the conversion process is always smooth sailing. In addition to the complexity issues above, Gosar says “in some cases I have encountered 2D building structures that weren’t actually possible to recreate in 3D”, with one example being that some buildings were actually drawn like Penrose stairs instead of functional 3D spaces.
“Another problem is that Minecraft is limited to 256 blocks in height, so if there are lots of hills in the city, the highest parts can get cut off”, he adds. “Otherwise the accuracy is supposed to be close to 100%, and rendering the Minecraft world with a tool that generates an isometric representation of it should show something very close to the original from Sim City 2000.”
Here’s an example. Pictured below is a Sim City 2000 metropolis built by Gosar:
And here is that same city, translated into Minecraft and fully walkable. Note how it even manages to grab the little individual trees and bushes from out the front of some buildings:
While this video highlights some of the basic interiors that the mod generates for some of the game’s buildings:
Moving forwards, Gosar says he’d like to “make the project more usable”, lowering the bar for people to be able to use and understand it, ideally in the form of an online tool that would let users upload a Sim City 2000 save and he gave a Minecraft world in return.
For now, though, given he has a hectic day job to attend to he “doesn’t have the time to work on it much, but I guess that the recent attention the project has received is a good motivation to move it forward”. If you’re brave and want to try it out for yourself, you can find the project here.
A/C Repair in Coral Springs, Florida – Don’t Sweat the Heat this Summer!
With summer coming up quickly, you may be concerned about your air conditioning unit not working well enough to keep you and your family cool on those hot Florida days. If this sounds like you, don’t sweat it! We’ve got you covered with tips on how to prepare your unit and get it ready for the long summer ahead! Let’s get started!
Central A/C vs. Window Unit
Central A/C is a more expensive option than a window unit and needs professional installation. However, it is more powerful and efficient than a window unit and will do a better job of cooling your home. Window units are cheaper to purchase but are less efficient and may not cool your home as effectively. If you’re looking for an inexpensive option for occasional relief from the heat, consider purchasing a portable air conditioner that can be moved from room to room or placed in windows. Remember that portable air conditioners won’t be as effective if they don’t have enough fresh air circulating around them so make sure you open doors and windows when using one.
The Right System for You
Choosing an A/C system for your home can be overwhelming with all of the options available. Here are a few things you should consider when it comes to deciding which system is right for you.
-Your budget and how much you want to spend
-How often do you need service?
-What type of home do you live in?
-How many rooms are there? -Do you want a cool room or something that will keep the entire house at one temperature?
-Is energy efficiency important to you?
-What type of weather patterns does your area experience throughout the year? These are just some things to think about before making any decision. With so many choices, choosing the perfect AC unit can seem daunting. Luckily we’re here to help! We’ll help you find the perfect AC unit for your home and make sure it’s installed correctly so that you can stay cool during these hot summer months.
Good Signs That You Need Air Conditioning Repairs
If you notice that your air conditioning is struggling to keep up with demand and you’re feeling warmer than usual even after a few minutes of running, it might be time for an A/C repair. A technician will come out and diagnose the issue to find out what needs to be fixed and how much it will cost. And if there are some things that need to be done right away, they may be able to get someone out on the same day. But don’t wait until it gets worse; make sure you contact them soon as possible so they can take care of any problems as soon as possible. They’ll also work with you to find affordable options that fit within your budget. So call now for A/C repairs today! The sooner you act, the sooner we can fix your unit and get you back to cooling off again. Give us a call at 754-498-1280 or fill out our form here to schedule an appointment or just chat with us about all our service offerings.
Bad Signs That You Need Air Conditioning Repairs
Your air conditioning system is an essential appliance that keeps you cool and comfortable. And like any other system in your home, it may need repair from time to time. Watch for these signs that point to problems: 1) You notice a musty or moldy smell when the system turns on. Mold can thrive in damp conditions, so this indicates potential leaks due to improper insulation or water damage. 2) The unit makes unusual sounds such as rattling or popping noises when turned on. 3) It seems like the unit has started up more often than usual but doesn’t seem to be doing its job as well as before. 4) The house feels stuffy even though the thermostat is set at a cooler temperature. 5) When standing near your air conditioner, you feel vibrations coming from it.
As with any appliance, if you notice something wrong with your AC, call someone qualified to inspect and diagnose what needs fixing right away!
Tips to Save on Air Conditioning Costs
One of the most important ways to save on air conditioning costs is by installing a programmable thermostat. These thermostats allow you to set your home’s temperature at a specific time of day so that it never goes above or below your ideal setting. Programmable thermostats are also very easy to use and can be customized for individual preferences. It may take some trial-and-error for those who aren’t accustomed to using them, but once the settings are dialed in, the savings add up quickly.
Another way to cut back on air conditioning costs is with insulation and weather stripping. By sealing drafts around doors and windows, as well as improving attic insulation, homeowners can see significant savings in their energy bills every month. It’s always a good idea to take advantage of low-humidity days during the summer months.
Key Questions to Ask an HVAC Company Before Agreeing to an Estimate
- What is your experience with my HVAC model?
- Have you worked with any of my specific problems before?
- How long will it take to complete my repair?
- How much will it cost?
- What are some other items that I should be aware of when looking for a professional A/C repair company? 6. Will you provide me an estimate over the phone or do I need to visit your location? 7. Can you offer me some references from previous customers like myself? 8. Is there anything else we should talk about today? If not, would you like to schedule your appointment? If so, please feel free to contact us at _ if we can answer any additional questions.
TECNO plays a leading role in the premium evolution of the 5G Smartphone industry in Global Emerging Markets
In the 5G era, consumer preference and market growth drivers are evolving towards the premium segment in the smartphone domain
Every era has new brands emerging, and TECNO seizes great opportunities in the premium smartphone segment in the 5G Era
TECNO keeps steady growth globally and has consistently held a top-10 position in the global smartphone market since Q4 2020.
TECNO upcoming flagship PHANTOM X2 plays a pivotal role in the company’s journey towards premium, featuring MediaTek’s Dimensity 9000 5G chipset to deliver an unparalleled experience for users.
LONDON, Dec. 6, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Counterpoint Research, a global research firm specializing in products in the TMT (technology, media, and telecom) industry released its new industry whitepaper named “The Rise of TECNO”. The paper highlights how the smartphone market has been moving towards premium products in recent years, fueled by demand and technological advancements in various components and consumers’ willingness to pay more for their devices, especially in emerging markets. Counterpoint believes that different eras have produced varying leading brands and when considering the current 5G era, TECNO has become a new force, driving new markets, innovation, and premium development.
According to the white paper, new brands emerged as new forces and during each generation of cellular technology development, the main reason for their success is foresight on the opportunity and the innovative product offering adapting to consumer demand. Counterpoint also highlights that the main features consumers seem to be focusing on are a phone’s camera, memory, display, battery and SoC capabilities. This is proven by the statistics of global smartphone feature share change which the data in recent years exhibited in the reports. Currently, to attract the broadest potential market share for profitability, OEMs are pushing flagship features into more portfolios and providing consumers with more upgraded features to achieve a better life and work experience. Among all the global smartphone OEMs, TECNO is a brand that has shown vision and capitalized on emerging markets’ growth opportunities. This can especially be said regarding the premium segment of emerging markets as the company has demonstrated tremendous ambition by seizing any opportunity to invest in the quest for continuous evolution.
Commenting on TECNO’s success from afar as a new driving force of premium evolution in new markets, Counterpoint referred to the ambition for global success as well as its glocalization strategy supported by a strong R&D ecosystem. “TECNO offers smartphones customized to meet specific needs of regional users aside from pricing competitiveness. This will greatly help the company explore the higher-value markets.” As per the statistics, TECNO achieved at least double-digit growth from 2020 to 2021 in these markets.
As Russell FlanneryEditor at Large of Forbes Magazine mentioned that “Global competition is complex, and resilient supply chains have been a core building block for China success smartphone. Yet looking deeper into this, the core of that is technology know-how.” The development of premium camera technology has always been valued by Chinese brands. The report analyst witnessed the increasing uptake of more great cameras with AI capabilities in mid-to- high-end smartphones from OEMs. TECNO is also monitoring the premium trend to ensure market and consumer relevance. The upcoming PHANTOM X2 plays a leading role, featuring MediaTek Dimensity 9000 5G chipset, together with the ultra-fast night scene algorithm and super night video algorithm, users’ experience on the dark-field image and video will be unbelievably improved.
Furthermore, the report believed that TECNO’s ambition towards a more premium brand does not stop in the smartphone domain. The story is set to continue with the brand essence of “Stop At Nothing”. Hailing the launch of TECNO’s first laptop product “MEGABOOK” as an impressive milestone, TECNO is gradually building a new ecosystem, focusing on two key categories of “Personal and Home” which includes multi segment products.
“Growth of higher spec devices highlights the consumer pivot towards premium – and brands like TECNO have evolved to meet that shift”, said Tarun Pathak. He also points out that TECNO is becoming an essential force in the premium segment. More examples of innovative strategies and actions that push TECNO to gradually expand in premium smartphone markets and other segments are shared in the white paper, readers who may be interested in it can download it via https://www.counterpointresearch.com/white-paper-brand-study-the-rise-of-tecno/ where more detailed information can be found.
ChatGPT Explained: Why OpenAI’s Chatbot Is So Mind-Blowing
There’s a new AI bot in town: ChatGPT. And you’d better take notice.
The tool, from a power player in artificial intelligence, lets you type questions using natural language that the chatbot answers in conversational, if somewhat stilted, language. The bot remembers the thread of your dialogue, using previous questions and answers to inform its next responses.
It’s a big deal. The tool seems pretty knowledgeable if not omniscient — it can be creative and its answers can sound downright authoritative. A few days after its launch, more than a million people are trying out ChatGPT.
But its creator, the for-profit research lab called OpenAI, warns that ChatGPT “may occasionally generate incorrect or misleading information,” so be careful. Here’s a look at why this ChatGPT is important and what’s going on with it.
What is ChatGPT?
ChatGPT is an AI chatbot system that OpenAI released in November to show off and test what a very large, powerful AI system can accomplish. You can ask it countless questions and often will get an answer that’s useful.
For example, you can ask it encyclopedia questions like, “Explaining Newton’s laws of motion.” You can tell it, “Write me a poem,” and when it does, say, “Now make it more exciting.” You ask it to write a computer program that’ll show you all the different ways you can arrange the letters of a word.
Here’s the catch: ChatGPT doesn’t exactly know anything, though. It’s an AI trained to recognize patterns in vast swaths of text harvested from the internet, then further trained with human assistance to deliver more useful better dialogue. The answers you get may sound plausible and even authoritative, but they might well be entirely wrong, as OpenAI warns.
Chatbots have been of interest for years to companies looking for ways to help customers get what they need and to and AI researchers trying to tackle the Turing Test. That’s the famous “Imitation Game” that computer scientist Alan Turing proposed in 1950 as a way to gauge intelligence: Can a human judge conversing with a human and with a computer tell which is which?
What kinds of questions can you ask?
You can ask anything, although you might not get an answer. OpenAI suggests a few categories, like explaining physics, asking for birthday party ideas and getting programming help.
I asked him to write a poem, and he did, although I don’t think any literature experts would be impressed. I then asked it to make it more exciting, and lo, ChatGPT pumped it up with words like battlefield, adrenaline, thunder and adventure.
One wacky example shows how ChatGPT is willing to just go for it in domains where people would fear to tread: a command to write “a folk song about writing a rust program and fighting with lifetime errors.”
ChatGPT’s expertise is broad, and its ability to follow a conversation is remarkable. When I asked it for words that rhymed with “purple,” it offered a few suggestions, then when I followed up “How about with pink?” it didn’t miss a beat. (Also, there are a lot more good rhymes for “pink.”)
When I asked, “Is it easier to get a date by being sensitive or being tough?” GPT responded, in part, “Some people may find a sensitive person more attractive and appealing, while others may be drawn to a tough and assertive individual. In general, being genuine and authentic in your interactions with others is likely to be more effective in getting a date than trying to fit a certain mold or persona.”
You don’t have to look far to find accounts of the bot blowing people’s minds. Twitter is awash with users displaying the AI’s prowess at generating art prompts and writing code. Some have even proclaimed “Google is dead,” along with the college essay. We’ll talk more about that below.
Who built ChatGPT?
ChatGPT is the computer brainchild of OpenAI, an artificial intelligence research company. Its mission is to develop a “safe and beneficial” artificial general intelligence system or to help others do so.
It’s made splashes before, first with GPT-3which can generate text that can sound like a human wrote it, and then DALL-E, which creates what’s now called “generative art” based on text prompts you type in.
GPT-3, and the GPT 3.5 update on which ChatGPT is based, are examples of AI technology called large language models. They’re trained to create text based on what they’ve seen, and they can be trained automatically — typically with huge amounts of computer power over a period of weeks. For example, the training process can find a random paragraph of text, delete a few words, ask the AI to fill in the blanks, compare the result to the original and then reward the AI system for coming as close as possible. Repeating over and over can lead to a sophisticated ability to generate text.
Is ChatGPT free?
Yes, for now at least. OpenAI CEO Sam Altman warned on Sunday, “We will have to monetize it somehow at some point; the compute costs are eye-watering.” OpenAI charges for DALL-E art once you exceed a basic free level of usage.
What are the limits of ChatGPT?
As OpenAI emphasizes, ChatGPT can give you wrong answers. Sometimes, helpfully, it’ll specifically warn you of its own shortcomings. For example, when I asked him who wrote the phrase “the squirming facts exceed the squamous mind,” ChatGPT replied, “I’m sorry, but I am not able to browse the internet or access any external information beyond what I was trained on .” (The phrase is from Wallace Stevens’ 1942 poem Connoisseur of Chaos.)
ChatGPT was willing to take a stab at the meaning of that expression: “a situation in which the facts or information at hand are difficult to process or understand.” It sandwiched that interpretation between cautions that it’s hard to judge without more context and that it’s just one possible interpretation.
ChatGPT’s answers can look authoritative but be wrong.
The software developer site StackOverflow banned ChatGPT answers to programming questions. Administrators cautioned, “because the average rate of getting correct answers from ChatGPT is too lowthe posting of answers created by ChatGPT is substantially harmful to the site and to users who are asking or looking for correct answers.”
You can see for yourself how artful a BS artist ChatGPT can be by asking the same question multiple times. I asked whether Moore’s Law, which tracks the computer chip industry’s progress increasing the number of data-processing transistors, is running out of steam, I got two answers. One pointed optimistically to continued progress, while the other pointed more grimly to the slowdown and the belief “that Moore’s Law may be reaching its limits.”
Both ideas are common in the computer industry itself, so this ambiguous stance perhaps reflects what human experts believe.
With other questions that don’t have clear answers, ChatGPT often won’t be pinned down.
The fact that it offers an answer at all, though, is a remarkable development in computing. Computers are famously literal, refusing to work unless you follow exact syntax and interface requirements. Large language models are revealing a more human-friendly style of interaction, not to mention an ability to generate answers that are somewhere between copying and creativity.
What’s off limits?
ChatGPT is designed to weed out “inappropriate” requests, a behavior in line with OpenAI’s mission “to ensure that artificial general intelligence benefits all of humanity.”
If you ask ChatGPT itself what’s off limits, it’ll tell you: any questions “that are discriminatory, offensive, or inappropriate. This includes questions that are racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, or otherwise discriminatory or hateful.” Asking it to engage in illegal activities is also a no-no.
Is this better than Google search?
Asking a computer a question and getting an answer is useful, and often ChatGPT delivers the goods.
Google often supplies you with its suggested answers to questions and with links to websites that it thinks will be relevant. Often ChatGPT’s answers far surpass what Google will suggest, so it’s easy to imagine GPT-3 is a rival.
But you should think twice before trusting ChatGPT. As with Google itself and other sources of information like Wikipedia, it is best practice to verify information from original sources before relying on it.
Vetting the veracity of ChatGPT answers takes some work because it just gives you some raw text with no links or citations. But it can be useful and in some cases thought provoking. You may not see something directly like ChatGPT in Google search results, but Google has built large language models of its own and uses AI extensively already in search.
So ChatGPT is undoubtedly showing the way towards our tech future.
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