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Old 04 April 2004, 16:52   #21
Antiriad
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Im not a free loader as some insinuate, call me antiquated or naive but I believe in an Emulation community where people pull together sharing - giving and taking in order to preserve the memory of once cherished systems that are no longer supported. And its something to be done in spare time as a hobby - not a business.

Thats Emulation consumerism. If I want that, Ill goto the shops and buy remakes from the companies who have the rights to do so.

Just as I believe you shouldnt emulate systems that are commercially viable (still in the shops in case you want to split hairs for the umpteenth time) either - something I know many people also disagree with. Well, thats what I believe and I have the right to do so.

Frankly extending my stance on emulators to legitimate work is ridiculous. and utterly fecitious. And since when did I say reverse engineering was easy? And just because it isnt - does it make it right and therfore worthy of payment? Its like paying a thief or a pirate the same price for a good i can buy in the shops and if i complain they'd say "it took effort to steal that you know".

And I very much do pay for things, I buy movies, I buy music, Ive paid for shareware products. But in these instances I know that the person has the right to sell it.

When an artist covers someone elses record, if they decide to sell their version the writer of the original song gets royalties. If they dont sell it, they dont. And that to me makes sense.

Well, Ive said enough. Im out of here.
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Old 04 April 2004, 17:56   #22
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So from what Antiriad said:

Programming any emulator is theft plain and simple if you charge for it in any way?

Programming an emulator and releasing it for free is the right thing to do, suppports a comunity of decent law abiding people, and should be praised?


All I can add is that the act of programming an emulator is either legal and should be done or illegal and should be stamped out, so which is it? You cant have it both ways just because money chages hands or not, thats not how the law works.
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Old 04 April 2004, 18:16   #23
CodyJarrett
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Take it to Judge Cody
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Old 04 April 2004, 20:00   #24
Marcuz
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i think emulation as many others things here pointed to and others not entered in the discussion are just luxury goods... well is there something that is not? air? not even that. television is another instrument you need to display a third part work and you are charged for both. everithing has a kind of price even if it's not on money. the point is that we put conventionally limits to our perceptions and we say: ok this i'm going to pay for, no that i will not spend a dime for.
this case is not different for me. the maker of a no matter what work may charge is piece of what he does think is reasonable for his time, fatigue, whatever. that does not imply it has to be money. for instance, no matter what were the expectations of tony wilen, he gets repayed in kinda of fame-affection-respect for winuae. everything in a society is a commerce.
to the ones of you thinking that this of emulation is a different case, i say: i understand that most of the stuff that is played now wouldn't be enjoyed at all if not of the work coders have done on emulation programs; tons of code lines written 20, 10 years ago would be lost to the masses. long gone games and even the ones no more under redistribuition prohibition (idsa and whatever) would be unaccessible. so what? is the enjoyment you take fby playin an old game to be considered somewhat of second class just for the time passed from its conceivement? so that any effort to make it again happen would be just an unmeritory and unimportant doin?
the point is: you want to work for make other people exercise. that's all and doing that they take their enjoyment. you take your own , by proving your skill at solving the problem that in this case is program engineering and succeding.. you want to charge too your work for money? ok do it who can really blame you? you are giving it for free because you want to take it to the most large array and number of people? ok you'll have your repay alsoo in this. fine.
as much i'm not going to pay money for emulation, not even for winuae, nor for maintaining the sites that allow spreading it, not for groups that maintain it ordered (as tosec), and this is my choice, i find a little hypocritical to state that it is WRONG to do as the coders that want money for their emus.
please mind that i've spoken mine as i'm very interested in that kind of society language but i care little for the things that are traded by it... and i'm sorry if i can't explain myself better in english.
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Old 04 April 2004, 23:25   #25
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I understand that making emulators is tricky business in all aspects being it the mere creation of it, or the legal implements of it. I'm not quite sure how the legal thing stands with it (well Nintendo have patented emulation of handhelds (or was it emulation on handhelds) now, so if that holds the law would be clear there).

I can clearly understand why someone who put a lot of work into an emulator would like some sort of compensation. It's about ideology. Some people can afford to do the work for free because they care about the thing a lot, have a financial situation which allows them to continue with it, and would rather see their software used and have made a lot of people happy.

Others are in it purely for the money. Then there are the people inbetween. Maybe they really need the money and won't take a chance on donations. Maybe they feel that they've put a lot of work into it and that they should be compensated, not just by donations. Whatever the reason I respect that but they shouldn't start bitching if people aren't using their emulator but an alternative. Once you start charging you are entering into a competition and you'd better be certain your product is well enough to compete.

A lot of the programmers working with Linux/open source software in general do the work because they really want to, not because their economy depends on it.

For systems like the PS2 and PSX and Xbox emulation could be an actual plus to them. Some people do go out and actually buy the games instead of copying them. I think most of us know that Microsoft isn't exactly making money off their system, but from the games. Same goes for many other consoles, it's the games they make money from. If there were to be a way for people to get access to play the games for their system without having to shell out the money for the system itself it'd only be a plus since that'd gain them a customer they wouldn't have had if the hardware had been nescesary.

Companies like Nintendo who use a propriatary format to store the games on would be much harder pressed with emulation. To play the emulated games there's no way but copying the games. You just can't go buy one of their old carts and plug it into your computer and have it play it, neither will their GC discs work with a PC CD-rom drive (as far as I know).

Again back to paying for emulators. If the product is good enough I wouldn't have a problem paying a small fee for the emulator if I was going to use it anyway. If I were playing on my Amigas more I'd buy WHDLoad... I know that's not exactly an emulator, but I like to think of it close enough. It allows you to play older games with the convenience of them working on your new system, faster and at times with more features. There are old games which do not work on a stock A1200 unless you use WHDLoad. For upgraded amigas this problem only gets bigger. WHDLoad solves this problem. The most different thing about WHDLoad in comparison to most other emulators (from a copyright holder's point of view) is that most WHD installs check that you're in posession of the original disks, something which you just can't get an emulator of the old NES system to do.

Emulation is mostly connected with pirate software, and as such it might not be a good idea to openly make money on the emulator since this will make them a target of a copyright holding company. If you look at emulators for the Amiga and the PSX you'll notice that they require you to have the rom from the system to actually use the emulator. This is a good security measure to take to reduce the risk of getting hit by a lawsuit.
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Old 05 April 2004, 10:47   #26
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I've paid for emulators in the past especially in the Amiga. I don't see a difference between an emulator and say IDEFix. They are both computer programs aimed at different users (or the same one if he/she is interested). Same goes for shareware games. A while ago, I had an argument in these forums about a game being shareware instead of being free. Why should a game be free, when the developer spends some time to get it going? Sometimes, such development efforts, have the developer devoting his free time in the project. Regardless of what kind of software this is, the author is given the right to release it as open source, freeware, shareware and so on. If winUAE was released as shareware, I would have paid for that simply because it's a lovely program that I use very often.

I would be more concerned to have all IDEs for free rather than having all software for free.
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Old 05 April 2004, 14:14   #27
fiath
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Quote:
Originally posted by Antiriad
i dont charge for my retro related activities!

Neither do you!

Neither does CAPS!

Neither does HOL!

Neither does RCK!

And thats how it should be
Well here are my thoughts:

o Cody (+others + meaning APoV) - original work - perfectly okay to charge
o RCK (meaning this board) - GPL'ed software, supplies "service" - perfectly okay to charge
o HOL - reproducing covers/screenshots - should be free - however, if it was just the data, it would be collectively classed as an original work (a collection of data) and so that would be okay
o CAPS - purely content produced by other people - should be free

Lastly:

Emulators - completely legal (though reverse engineering, so unless using stolen resources to make it, it is legal), an original work, not reproducing any content.

Therefore it is perfectly okay legally to charge for an emulator. I can't see anything morally wrong with it either, even next-gen systems. After all, bleem! successfully won their court case, and they were claiming that Sony had a monopoly on the "platform" (meaning hardware).

If you charge for an emulator then it should be pretty good or have no competition, because otherwise people won't buy it and it will be pointless. Other that that - I fail to see a problem with it.

Having written a few (partial) emulator systems myself, I know how much work it is. Pure intellectual challege. Lovely stuff. However, I did it on relatively small 8/16 bit systems where there was plenty of documentation - even the ASM source code to the OS in one case - which was legally obtained from the author btw .

Reverse engineering stuff can be a chore, and can be a very boring case of producing tests and recording results - so it is not like you can even say it is done for the fun of it. Sure, some reverse engineering might be fun, but only when you are looking for something specific.

Reverse engineering is widely accepted to be legal, there is no grey area of the law here. Sure, some companies don't like that very much when used in the entertainment domain - but that doesn't change the fact that it is a very much needed right. Imagine what the world would be like if you were not allowed to look at (for example) Microsoft network protocols...

Why do people think the world is any different when it comes to playing games? I remember when there was a load of bad feeling against Marat and his emulators. I just don't understand it...

If all that has not made you think:

What is the difference between WHDLoad and an emulator? Conceptually nothing! WHDLoad still provides a virtual machine for games to run in, it even needs a ROM in some cases! It is original content, the reverse engineering is legal... And they do charge for it. Is that wrong?

Anyway, just my 2 Euro dollars

No offense intended here Antiriad - I just disagree.

Last edited by fiath; 05 April 2004 at 14:19.
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Old 05 April 2004, 17:46   #28
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Had to pop in for a little
Quote:
Originally posted by Unknown_K
I would think its easy to emulate a simple system like an early mac, c64,
Hmm, just because they are older doesn't mean they're easier to emulate. The C64 is quite a beast which is not 100% emulated yet, and so is the Amiga. The Mac is a simple machine.
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Old 05 April 2004, 21:36   #29
Marcuz
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Quote:
Originally posted by fiath
No offense intended here Antiriad - I just disagree.
yep me too. sorry not to have mentioned it

btw i agree with fiath also that it would be perfectly reasonable to charge winuae, eab, apow, hol etc, and i say again that i would not pay money for it. even if i would be sorry (and i hope not to offend here the very cool people that work for it all) because i intend all of them luxury goods, not primary needs.
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Old 07 April 2004, 22:45   #30
Antiriad
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Well, having been shouted down both here and on GP32x, I guess Im wrong then. Popular opinion and logic is that emulators are legal, and as such their authors are entitled to charge for their hard work on them.

And I should put my hand in my pocket more often for them.

Fair enough. My apologies if ive offended anyone and in future I shall avoid preaching my opinions in such a manner as its innappropriate and disruptive.
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Old 08 April 2004, 00:33   #31
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Quote:
Originally posted by Antiriad
Well, having been shouted down both here and on GP32x, I guess Im wrong then. Popular opinion and logic is that emulators are legal, and as such their authors are entitled to charge for their hard work on them.

And I should put my hand in my pocket more often for them.

Fair enough. My apologies if ive offended anyone and in future I shall avoid preaching my opinions in such a manner as its innappropriate and disruptive.
I don't have a problem with anybody stating their opinion (as long as you say its an opinion and not a fact). You just have to understand that each country has very different laws and what is legal in your country might not be legal here (morals are the same way). BTW popular opinion doesn't make anything legal or not, its all up to the courts and posted laws.
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Old 08 April 2004, 10:41   #32
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Quote:
Originally posted by Antiriad
My apologies if ive offended anyone and in future I shall avoid preaching my opinions in such a manner as its innappropriate and disruptive.
If everyone only posted opinions everyone else would agree with, this'd be a pretty quiet board.
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Old 08 April 2004, 11:03   #33
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'Opinions' are the problem here and are usually the cause of most flame wars. That's not to say that there shouldn't be opinions, but most folks seem to start with the belief that they are 'right' no matter what and the facts better damn well fit that belief, even if they have to be twisted into place. Instead of, say, starting with all the facts and then formulating an opinion from them. Or picking a viewpoint to argue from (even if you don't firmly 'believe' in it) and taking it from there.

Then there is a widespread use of fallacies (errors of logic) on the Internet, a subject which deserves its own thread/website/encyclopedia.

This thread started on the wrong footing entirely. With a subject of "Paying For Emulators Is Just Plain Wrong", we are being told what the outcome should be before we've even read the actual text of the thread itself.
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Old 08 April 2004, 18:36   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by Unknown_K
You just have to understand that each country has very different laws and what is legal in your country might not be legal here (morals are the same way).
That's so right.

Most everyone here would be of the thought of the thread, that paying for emulators is just being wrong. That's what happens in a culture that has grown up on software piracy.

Luckily I have learned, despite having the same background (Only way for me to get games as a lad was to pay to a guy who filled my disks with games for a little sum), but most people in theis country, specially the new generations, are still very fond of piracy and not paying for shit.

Check the irony though: these kids are as willing to pay for ROMs CDs as unwillling they are to pay a shareware fee to an emulator author. That's how it works here and I'm conpletely against it.
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Old 08 April 2004, 20:56   #35
Marcuz
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Quote:
Originally posted by CodyJarrett
'Opinions' are the problem here and are usually the cause of most flame wars. That's not to say that there shouldn't be opinions, but most folks seem to start with the belief that they are 'right' no matter what and the facts better damn well fit that belief, even if they have to be twisted into place. Instead of, say, starting with all the facts and then formulating an opinion from them. Or picking a viewpoint to argue from (even if you don't firmly 'believe' in it) and taking it from there.
very interesting thought.

i just want to make clear that this is a guideline that we ALL must keep in mind when posting and i've stopped by to point at it this only because i feel that this way can really generally open any conversation/debate, lead to some more useful information and improve comunication, and Anti: not to state in any way that i felt any offence
no reason at all
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