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This page contains particularly useful, informative or interesting quotes, mostly from people who worked at Indrema. Most were gathered off of the numerous Indrema Developer's Network mailing lists.


SDL
IDN "Discuss" List, John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.08

SDL is not required to develop for IES, therefore it will not
be included in the runtime engine on the L600. You can include
the SDL libs with your compiled game and distribute them
together if you wish. So far we do not see any problems with
doing this.

For MPEG playback we will be providing the OpenStream API
which will offer hardware accelerated performance. You could
use SDL, but you will not get anywhere near the performance of
OpenStream on IES. For game controller support without SDL,
you may simply use the standard USB interfaces which are currently
available on Linux. We will support them.

SDL is a great library, but currently not necessary in the IESDK.
If we find ways to integrate the features of SDL and OpenStream,
in the future we may include an SDL-like layer in the IESDK.

As always we encourage all developers to actively voice their
suggestions for future IESDK technologies. As for Mesa,
OpenAL and Linux, we encourage you to become involved in
the open source projects for each. Once we release OpenStream
and Xtrema, we would hope that you become involved in those
open source projects as well.

Regards,

-John T. Gildred
CEO, Indrema
Entertainment Systems


Controller
IDN "Discuss" List, John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.08

Yes, there will be one controller included with the L600. As for
controller support, our current specification includes the following
features for the standard controller:

-dual analog joysticks
-one digital directional control (on left side)
-four command buttons (on right side)
-L+R trigger buttons
-three feature buttons
-force feedback

Much of this information will be added to the next FAQ version
coming soon.

-John Gildred
CEO, Indrema
Entertainment Systems


GPL and Certification
IDN "Certification" List John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.10


In the case where a developer wishes to keep their
game code closed, the certification program offers
copy protection and validation of an authentic and
reliable IES game program.

In the case where a developer wishes to GPL their
game code, the certification program offers only
validation of an authentic and reliable game program.
Copy protection would be inconsistent with the GPL.

The following certification information will be included
in the Certification Guide to be posted very soon:

-The Standard Certification Program offers developers
the ability to get certified for Indrema and publish
their game to be sold for profit.

-The Freeware Certification Program offers developers
a path for their code to be certified to run on all IES
consoles, in the case where they do not sell the code
for a profit.

-The decision to submit a game or other application
for IES Certification is independent of the code license,
unless there are specific restrictions of use on IES in
the license of that code. We don't see any reason why
GPL'd code could not be certified for Indrema and 
distributed for sale (sale of support) or as freeware.

-The IES Certification signature is simply a hash of
the entire binary set. It is encrypted in such a way
that only the IES console may decrypt the hash and
compare it to the original binary set. If it matches
then the console will execute the game. The IES
Certification signature is separate from the compiled
code as it is much like an MD5 signature.

-Indrema Certification, either standard or freeware,
does require developer acceptance of the IES
Certification Agreement. The terms of this agreement
will be published in addition to the Certification Guide
very soon. The Certification Agreement ensures that
the party submitting the code for certification has a
legal right to do so, and intends to sell the product
(or not, in the case of freeware) and adhere to any
applicable royalties. As well the developer assures
Indrema that the code does not contain executable
components created with malicious intent such as
a virus, etc.

-If you GPL a game and get it certified, there is
nothing in the agreement that prohibits you or any
other person from distributing the compiled code
and/or source code according to the provisions in
the GPL.

-If you develop a game, keeping the source closed,
and get it certified, you have many options for
distribution. Indrema may elect to assist in publishing
the game, or you may have an established game
publisher do it, or you may want to become your
own publisher. A freeware closed source game
may be published on the Indrema Game Channel
which allows users to download games online over
a broadband Internet connection.

Hope that clears up a few questions.

Regards,

John T. Gildred
CEO, Indrema
Entertainment Systems


Blessed binaries and the GPL
GNU Licensing List Richard Stallman 2000.Nov.12

> If I manage to get a piece of modified GNU software running on the IES,
> and I get it certified (for a fee), and I then distribute the binaries
> (and the certification, if it happens to be in a separate file), with
> source, have I violated the GPL?  People can't rebuild the same binaries
> that they were given - Even I can't do that - I don't have Indrema's
> private key.

After some thought, my conclusion is that this does not violate the
GPL.  It is a matter of using a non-free linker to build an executable
of a free program--something that many people have done, including us.

The basis for this conclusion is that the source code really is free
software: you can redistribute it, and you can change it, and you can
run the changed software on other machines of your choice.

I find the certification requirement somewhat obnoxious, just as I
expect you do, but I don't think that it does the kinds of evil that
the GPL is designed to prevent.


Certification Pricing
IDN "Certification" List John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.15

We will be announcing certification pricing before the
end of the year. The certification fees will be structured
as follows:

A) Standard Certification: NRE + Per Copy Fees

B) Freeware Certification: NRE Only

The NRE (Non-Recurring Engineering Fee) for
Standard and Freeware Certification will be the same.
The NRE will be priced to allow anyone an opportunity
to certify the fruits of their labor and get it out there.

The per copy fees for Standard Certification will be based
upon the Publishing Agreement for each developer.

Best regards,

John T. Gildred
CEO, Indrema
Entertainment Systems
jgildred@indrema.com


Indrema USB architecture
IDN "Discuss" List, John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.15

On the USB front, we will support 1.1, but there is the
possibility of 2.0 support. We will have more details on
2.0 support early next year.


Personal TV
IDN "Discuss" List, John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.15

The Personal TV features of Indrema will include broadcast
recording and scheduling, time shifting of live TV such as live
pause and replay, and broadband search of Indrema certified
digital syndicated content (like EVERY episode of the Simpsons).
We are not promising specific video content as of yet, but it
is in the works.


Persoanl TV feature
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2000.Nov.16

My takeaway from a conversation I had with John Gildred:

For now the Personal TV feature's development is closed and being worked
on by Indrema programmers.  We hope that in the near future, there may
be work that we can put into the open source arena.  However, if
developers are interested in contributing to the project, we'd like to
talk to them about it.


Remote Control
IDN "Discuss" List, John Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.19

The TV remote and the wireless keyboard will be sold separately.
The L600 will ship with one standard game controler (wired).


CD-Rs
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2000.Nov.22

Information from John Gildred on this issue:

Indrema is currently embracing DVD-9 as the standard for the pressing of
games.

However, they are considering also supporting the CD-R technology.


International Launch
IDN "IESDK" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.27

I hate to say it, but I don't think you'll be seeing the Indrema launch
internationally this Spring.  I know that totally sucks, but the fact is
that they're a very young company and I think they just not able to allocate
the resources for an international distribution/marketing campaign right off
the bat.  I'm in the US, but this totally bums me out too, cuz a lot of our
strongest supporters have been outside of the States.

On the bright side, there's a good chance you'll be getting the L600 when
Indrema does its wide-scale launch, late next year.  And, of course, savvy
people can always import the US version in advance and see what they can do
with it, modification-wise.

Also, on the other bright side, you can still develop a game for Indrema
even before the console's available in your country . . .

~karen


Certification
IDN "Certification" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.28

If your game was submitted for Freeware Certification,
and it passed, then you have the following options:
-You can have us post it on the Indrema Game Channel, which
will allow IES users with broadband access to download freeware
games for free and commercial games at a standard price. This
is not a web-based UI, as it will be integrated into the navigational
interface of the L600.
-You can press freeware DVDs and have them handed out in
stores, as promotional give-aways

If your game was submitted for Standard Certification,
and it passed, then you have the following options:
-You can have Indrema distribute the game on the Indrema
Game Channel direct to IES users online. This is a very low cost
option for independent publishers, and a very dynamic additional
sales channel for the larger game publishers.
-You can press commercial DVDs and distribute them yourself,
or have another publisher distribute them.
-You can discuss with us the possibility of having Indrema assist
with the distribution of your DVD media.

This post is after hours. My favorite time.
I don't sleep anymore. It's not very productive.


Certification Cost
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.28

The cost of certification has not been definitely set yet. What I can tell
you right now is that a range of 50 - 200 dollars is being considered.  Let
me explain what we're dealing with right now:  On one hand, we obviously
want to make certification fee low enough so that any amateur developer is
not priced out.  On the other hand, we also need to be able to recoup some
of the administrative costs of certification (i.e. the manpower its going to
take to get a game certified.)  Most importantly, however, we want to raise
the bar high enough so that our certification department doesn't get deluged
with (as an earlier post said) all 40 copies of Tetris.  So right now we're
trying to figure out what the magic number that will meet all these goals
is.  (We're definitely open to suggestion on this, so let us know what y'all
think.)

I know that range is broad and doesn't tell you much, but we'll let you know
as soon as a number is decided on for sure.


Re-Certification
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.28

As John explained, when a title is re-submitted with changes, the
certification team will look at the changes and decide if the changes are
minor (i.e. a bug fix) or major (a largely expanded game or an entirely new
game), or if it's somewhere in between.  The fee will then be adjusted
accordingly.  If it's a major alteration, then the developer will have to
re-pay the certification fee, or a large part of it.  If it's something
minor, s/he won't have to pay anything, or will only have to pay a very
small fraction of the fee.


Development Unit Price
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.28

Unfortunately, the 500-1000$US is all we know right now.  The price just
hasn't been set.  I'd like to stress, however, that this is not Indrema
gouging the development community -- it's quite the opposite.  Even the
upper end of that price range is a bargain compared to the 20,000$US that
(for example) Sony charges for the PS2 developer console.  The only reasons
that Indrema is selling the developer console for more than the user console
are 1) the developer console will not be sold at a steep loss, like the
consumer console is, and 2) the dev console needs to be more expensive to
prevent consumers from just buying the dev console to play uncertified games
(thus cannibalizing our revenue stream and forcing us out of business.)

Again, when we have a definite number I'll let you know. 


Developer Consoles
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.28

I believe that the developer console will be available around February.
This, actually, should leave people with a comfortable amount of time, since
all of the debugging and most of the beta testing can be done on a standard
PC (especially if it's specs are what Indrema recommends for a dev box.)
The dev console is only needed to make sure that everything will look the
way you think it would -- if you've done your work on the PC-side well,
anything you learn from running the game on the console should be minor to
fix.


Upcoming Launch
IDN "Games" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.28

The upcoming launch (late-Spring 2001) will be limited launch--think of it
as a seed-sowing launch.  So, that means grass roots marketing and limited
availabilty.  This is preparing for the wide-scale launch in late 2001.  It
is during this launch that there will be a major marketing push and you will
be able to buy the L600 at your neighborhood Wal-Mart or Circuit City or
whatever -- anywhere where you would expect to find other next-gen consoles.


DV Linux
IDN "IESDK" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.28

Here's the official blurb on DV Linux, which has some info:
"DV Linux is an Open Source distribution of the Linux operating system
specifically designed for consumer electronics -- that is, digital
multimedia applications targeted a the television as the default view port.
Indrema has partnered with Red Hat to initially manage the development of
the DV Linux distribution.  Open Source technologies such as Mesa 3D and
OpenStream will be included in the DV Linux distribution.  A streamlined X
windows compatible display interface will allow for display of high
performance graphis without the UI overhead of the desktop Linux
implementations."

What I know is that Indrema has taken Red Hat disto 7.0 (which is based on
the 2.4 kernel), stripped it down to the kernel, and then (with RH's help)
rebuilt it to be optimized for gaming and multimedia.  Unfortunately, I
don't know more than that, 'cuz I'm not an engineer or a programmer (I'm
just a lowly publicist!)

I will ask John to respond on this issue (since the man knows everything
about everything) so if you can hold on 'til he gets the time to respond,
you'll get your answers.


Certification of Apps like StarOffice
IDN "IESDK" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.29

If someone ports it, Indrema will certify it.  Basically, Indrema will
certify anything that people want to develop or port for the IES (assuming,
of course, it meets the technical requirements.)

PR-wise, we're not really pushing that possibility right now, because we
want people to think of this first-and-foremost as a gaming console-- not a
set-top box or an internet appliance or anything like that.  But, yeah, it
definitely is possible.


Memory
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.29

The L600 will have 32 MB DDR dedicated video memory, as well as 32-64MB
additional for texture swapping.


Memory
IDN "Certification" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Nov.29

[When asked about Indrema using SDRAM or DDR RAM]

Production plans are to use DDR.

[Later...]

GPU card memory as well as main memory
will be DDR.


Graphics Card
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Nov.30

Just so you guys know, Indrema recommends the GeForce2 only because it is
the closest approximation which is currently available.  The gpu which will
actually be in the IES will be a nVidia chip which has not yet even been
announced by nVidia -- and it will be of the same generation as that in the
Xbox.


Java
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2000.Nov.30

Applications cannot be written in Java for Indrema.  There is no JVM
included in the DVLinux distribution.


Audio
IDN "Discuss" List, Eric Rutter Indrema, 2000.Dec.01

We have not disclosed the audio chip design as of yet.
You will be compatible if you support OpenAL. The
hardware interface to OpenAL will do the rest.


Auto-Updates
IDN "Discuss" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Dec.4

It will only update itself if an update pack
has been released by Indrema. The update
packs typically will include general enhancements,
not patches to specific games or 3rd party
products. We expect a tuning pack released
every 3-6 months. It is really a function of
quality assurance testing. The end user will
not be notified of such enhancements, unless
they request it.


Limited ability to run uncertified games
IDN "Certification" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Dec.06

You're correct in saying that the most important reason for certification is
to prevent uncertified games from being sold, and thus undermining our
profit stream.  Now, all of the modifications you both have proposed would
introduce a potential vulnerability to this profit stream.  That's bad
enough in itself-- any vulnerability we leave is likely to be exploited, I
believe.  

But, there are further more important implications to this as well.
Indrema's not Microsoft, it's not Sony; we don't have money coming out of
our arses -- we're funded by private investors.  And we're going to need to
be able to continue securing this private funding until we're profitable.
In order to secure this funding (especially in this start-up skeptical
market), John needs to be able to make a presentation to investors which
shows a solid and impenetrable revenue stream.  Without that, there's not
chance of funding and all of this doesn't even make it off the ground.

The certification process which is currently in place accomplishes this.  We
know it's not perfect from y'all's standpoint, but it's really the best that
can be done.  And it's here to stay -- the only thing left to be decided is
where exactly in the 50-200$US range the fee will be placed.  If that means
that we lose the benefit of your talent, Steve, well I can say that we will
all sincerely miss it, because we'd love to have you on board.  But, at this
point, there's really nothing that can be changed, so I hope you'll change
your mind.

As for the future of "release early, release often," you can still do that.
You'll just have to do it on a desktop DV Linux machine.  Just about
everything can be tested and debugged in this way.  But when you get the
game certified, and release it as an IES program, it should be a complete
and debugged as humanly possible.


Limited ability to run uncertified games
IDN "Certification" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Dec.6

The idea of letting users of consumer units self-certify a
game specifically for their box has been considered. This
scenario requires that Indrema include a CD with each
shipping consumer unit. The CD would include the
self-certifier tool specific to that box.  The cost of mass
producing such a solution is prohibitive. An option
would be to require that the box be connected to the
Internet and registered online. This would allow Indrema
to make a self-certifying tool for each registered unit,
and that tool could be downloaded from an Indrema
server to your PC. This is also an additional expense to
support, yet one that is easier to scale.

In any case, if Indrema were to offer a form of self-
certification, the user would be required to accept the
terms of the IES Certification Agreement. Under these
terms the developer and/or distributor of the certified
program would be liable for any damages resulting from
non-compliant functionality. Non-compliant functionality
is anything that makes the program operate outside the
requirements of IES Certification.

Our primary concern is that self-certification of games
will allow a very low barrier to entry for users to acquire
pirated product or non-compliant programs. We are always
open to new ideas, but that one poses a problem.


Multiple Out-put
IDN "Games" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Dec.6

The video outputs run in parallel. They will display
the same video signal, unless you are running in
HD mode where the stanard video outputs will
not display a signal during that time.

There is only one graphics engine in the L600,
but with support for multiple output formats.
You would need more than one graphics engine
to power each video output, in the case where
you want to have two TVs side by side with
different contents in each.

Hope that clarifies the issue somewhat.


Updates
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2000.Dec.11

The certification process will take care of *most* of what you are
talking about here.  Certification is a minimum set of technical
standards that the game must meet before it can be released as a game
for play on the Indrema console -- the L600.

The certification should take care of the need for huge online patches.

In terms of the OS, etc.  Patches will take place, but they will be
minimized by the need for backwards compatibility for all the games that
currently exist for the platform.

Remember, Indrema can't release an OS patch that renders existing games
unplayable.  This stability of environment is arguably the best feature
wrt a console platform.


Memory Cards
IDN "Discuss" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2000.Dec.19

The L600 will not include a memory card interface.
There will eventually be USB support for an inexpensive
memory card attachment for saving game state and
other portable data. Support for game state saving
onto a memory card is not required for certification
as this feature is not standard on the IES.

To avoid fragmentation of standards, we plan to include
a standard method for memory card support in a
future version of the IESDK (after launch).


Release Titles
IDN "Discuss" List, Karen McNeil Antenna PR, 2000.Dec.21

Just for the sake of honesty (and to avoid any unrealistic expectations) I
should tell you that we're not talking about 30 brand new first-party games.
A lot of them will be ports of existing games.  Some of them will be new
games that are also coming out on other platforms.  And a few of them will
be Indrema only.  But even though it's not thirty exclusive titles, it's
still a kick-ass line-up (I know I'm looking forward to it.)

Here's the deal with the developer stuff:  Indrema does have deals with big
development houses (as well as little development houses and also
medium-sized ones), but we're sitting on the announcements.  I know that may
seem weird, but the developers/publishers require it.  The IES is, of
course, an unproven platform and the houses don't want to be associated with
something new until they're absolutely positive that it's going to happen
and is not just vapourware.  (They're obviously making an exception with M$
because of the 'made of money' thing.)  So that's why we're waiting until
closer to launch to make announcements.  But the support from the big guys
is there.

So, in other words, I know what the games are . . . and I could tell you,
but then I'd have to kill you. ; )


GPU / Slide Bay
IDN "Discuss" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2001.Jan.11

The Slide Bay uses a proprietary connector and card design. The GPU card
contains the GPU and video memory. The connector includes AGP Pro pin
compatibility with a bunch of other video buses.


Disc/download pack layouts
IDN "IESDK" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2001.Jan.12

...there is
an equivalent to the system.cnf file which will tell the
system where to start program execution, where to
find the loadtime image, what to name the gamestate
directory on the system disk, etc.

The DRM will have two main services: authentication
and copy protection. Authentication will only ensure
that your code is untouched prior to execution by the
system. Copy protection will ensure that your code
cannot run on any other system. In the scenario you
mentioned regarding a proprietary song for a game,
that can be secured by using copy protection
recursively within the execution of your game. That
is, you can have the song saved in an encrypted
format, and your game will use the DRM to retrieve
it as necessary. This is similar to how the DRM will
use copy protected music and video.

The only mandatory use of DRM is to have the game
code IES certified or self-certified. Other use of the
DRM by any application is optional.


GameXchange content
IDN "Discuss" List, John T. Gildred Indrema CEO, 2001.Feb.02

There is no requirement that the projects hosted on gamexchange be exclusive
to IES. We would like to see that they present some value to the IES
platform, but they can be Linux game projects with the expectation of
eventual certification. You can use gamexchange for your Linux game
development, even if your game never gets certified, but we'd like you to
try.

The most important purpose of gamexchange is to promote the standards
adoption behind the IES. We want to provide a robust developent resource to
those who wish to make games using the Indrema supported APIs: OpenGL,
OpenAL, etc. What you do with it is your business (or everyone's business,
if open sourced)


Mouse
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.Feb.12

Right now peripherals besides the gamepad and an external modem (instead
of the standard ethernet port) are not lined up, AFAIK.


Mouse and Keyboard
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.Feb.13

Just to correct, an optional wireless keyboard and mouse is in the
works, but I don't know the status of those and haven't heard much about
it in the past couple of months.


Keyboard Emulation in Browser/Email
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.Feb.13

> As to using the web browser or e-mail features _without_ a keyboard,
> should we expect that the interface is similar to that of a WebTV?
> (ie, a pop-up keyboard where you hunt-and-peck using the directional
> controls of the game pad)

Those details will be coming out of the Potato project which has been
renamed due to the Debian connection to Popcorn (don't ask me why).

Randal Walser is the one working on this project.


GameXchange Proxying
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.Feb.26

One of the things that you can do with gamexchange is to set up a proxy
project that points to your own website but still gives you visibility
on gamexchange so that people can find you.


Certification Cost
IDN "Discuss" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.Feb.28

[T]he cert fee that
has been bandied about so far is in the range of $199 for
certification.  Not thousands of dollars.  Not by a longshot.

And the royalties are all fixed through consultation with Indrema.  Its
out of everyones' interest to prevent a title from coming to market at a
price the market will bear.


IESDK Update
IDN "Core" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.Mar.30

You can update the IESDK APIs to the latest stable builds.
ecifically the kernel to 2.4.3, and any others which have
been updated since v0.3.  The version should change to
IESDK v0.4. Please keep the package as a tar.gz file.
Your initiative is greatly appreciated.

If all goes well in the next week or two, we will update the
timeline with new info on releases for popcorn, etc.


Hope on the Horizon for IDN and GameXchange!
IDN "Announce" List, Keri Carpenter CollabNet, 2001.May.08

CollabNet is in talks with a large company who is very interested in
continuing the sponsorship of the IDN and GameXchange community!

The sites will likely morph into more generalized open source
gaming sites (with a special focus that I'll tell you about later).

I'm really jazzed about it so far.  This company has everything I want:
firm commitment to Linux, thorough understanding and sees value in open
source collaboration, has alot of resources to back up their talk and
is using all the aforementioned in their overall "business strategy".
Basically, nothing rubs me the wrong way ideologically in my talks with
them and I can see where sponsorship of this site would be a match for them
ideologically and business-wise.

The ink is not on the paper, yet, but I'd say there is much more than
a 50/50 chance of this working out.  I *should* know more by the end of
this week, May 11th, 2001 and I'll shout as soon as I know.



Page last updated: 2001.May.08 14:40:48
Copyright Bill Kendrick, 2000-2017.
"Indrema," "L600," etc. are trademarks of Indrema. Linux is a trademark of Linus Torvalds.