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Proposition on progressing with Gideros — Gideros Forum

Proposition on progressing with Gideros

ar2rsawseenar2rsawseen Maintainer
edited September 2014 in Roadmap
Hello folks,

lots of you have been posting on the forum and PMing me about Gideros, what should happen next and what would you want/expect from Gideros.

Some are even offering compensation for adding specific features, or offering to keep paying a licensing fee for Gideros being updated. After discussing it further, we came to the conclusion that it would be more appropriate for the majority to pay a little rather than one paying for a feature everyone will use. Thus coming to a crowdfunding idea.

Unfortunately me and Atilim are too busy to accomplish everything we want, thus we would need to assemble a team who can participate adding specific major features.

The first person we talked to is @john26 (creator of Longford) who already has experience adding WinRT (Windows Store "Metro" Apps and Windows Phone 8) support to Longford and can do the same to Gideros.

Currently we are discussing the approach to this and how much time it might take to estimate the costs, so we could make it as transparent as possible. So adding WP8 support could be the first experiment for crowdfunding specific major features.

But before we do that, I would want to hear your opinion on this.

1) Would you participate in funding?
For now, the main feature is WP8 and Windows Store support (same code base can be used for both), but later it might be other features depending on skill sets of people who would participate.

So would you fund the WP8 support? if not would there be another feature you would want to fund?
Any recommendation on organization, should we use kickstarter, or might it be better to do something internally? Basically we would like to hear your opinions.

2) Would you want to participate in the team?
Of course me and Atilim would help in any way we can, providing technical support, answering questions, etc.
Again currently the main feature is WP8 support, so if you have any skillsets and time that would help us, let us know.
And in the future there might be other features, such as HTML5 support etc, or maybe even external tools, so if you have any knowledge and skillsets in those directions, please let us know what features you would like to work on :)

For now it is mostly at the idea level and we wanted to discuss it with you to see if that is something that could work? Community driven and funded feature list? :)
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Comments

  • Crowdfunding is a good idea, sure, i would spend some money on win/mac support. i don't know if win executable is part of the wp8/winstore support you propose, if yes, then i'm interested. Also many of my friends are desperate to use my animation app on win/mac, so perhaps i can persuade them to add to the funding too.
    If first funding goes well and people see that their money goes to the right place, i.e. the feature is indeed added, later you can try some other funding solutions, e.g. regular income with this:
    http://www.patreon.com/
    I don't have expertise in the skills needed, so i cannot help much on the technical side, except beta-testing perhaps.

    i hope it will work out.

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  • Yes! We want WP8 support as soon as possible! Crowd funding is a good idea!
    Coming soon
  • I think we can found for WP. It'll be ok to not use kickstarter.
  • bali001bali001 Member
    edited September 2014
    WP8 support:

    1) Would you participate in funding?
    Yes! WP8 support would be great! With or without kickstarter/indiegogo/etc., doesn't matter IMO

    2) Would you want to participate in the team?
    What skills are needed?
  • john26john26 Maintainer
    I think I can answer the question about skills: You will need to be a good C++ programmer with knowledge of Direct3D 11.1 (for graphics) and either FMOD or XAudio2 (for sound, not decided which to use yet). It will help to have some familiarity with the WinRT API and also with MS Visual Studio Express 2013 for Windows.

    You will also need access to a Windows 8.1 computer.
  • ar2rsawseenar2rsawseen Maintainer
    edited September 2014
    And to clarify this will provide WP8 support and "Metro" style apps on Windows 8.1
    It will NOT provide a total Desktop support for Windows and Mac.
    But Desktop support can be next feature, if there are developers who would want to participate on adding it
  • Is it not possible to do win desktop support at the same time? that would be much more comfortable (and surely i ask because that's what i need more, as metro apps can only be used in win8+).
  • It would be possible to also do Windows support, but not Mac.

    But since I assume Mac support would also be needed, it would probably make more sense to do Win/Mac support through different approach (through QT).

    We will try to evaluate how much more work would be needed to provide adding General windows support while adding WP8 support, but honestly adding Desktop support through QT (Mac/Win) should be easier than adding WP8 support. We just don't have anyone willing to do that for payment through community funding.
    If anyone wants to accomplish it, we can do that together in parallel with WP8
    :)
  • @ar2rsawseen, sure i don't see the difficulties behind.
    all in all i just emphasize that what i want to fund primarily is win (/mac) support.
    and i hope/push that it's somehow possible in the first round. but if qt is the way for desktop and it seems wp8 is important to more people than win (/mac) than i will hope for the second round.

  • I think WP8 should definitely give Gideros a competitive edge over other frameworks. While I cannot participate in development, I would like to fund.
  • phongttphongtt Guru
    edited September 2014
    This is my very humble opinion:

    1. Windows Phone 8 (or could be just "Windows" soon accordingly to some article on the internet talking about Microsoft considering using it to replace WP8 name): I don't have interest for now.

    2. Gideros' improvements:

    + The folder structure should be re-organised (i.e. currently there are too many folders at the top level)

    + Code architecture: is it currently "open-source friendly" enough? i.e. Splitting into components such as: renderer, input, system, network, etc. with good level of abstraction so that, for example, we can have GL Render, DX renderer, etc.

    + GL ES 2.0

    + Particle system

    + Shaders

    + A universal IDE . The current GiderosStudio is too basic and not good enough. By "universal" I mean something like Unity or GameMaker - a "Game Editor", not just code editor.

    + Could using libsdl as a backend be an option? Afaik it supports Windows, OSX, Linux, iOS, Android, and even WP8.
    This could help reduce a lot the cost of developing and maintaining cross-platform work in long term (though on the other hand it means dependency from SDL, of course)

    "Simple DirectMedia Layer is a cross-platform development library designed to provide low level access to audio, keyboard, mouse, joystick, and graphics hardware via OpenGL and Direct3D. It is used by video playback software, emulators, and popular games including Valve's award winning catalog and many Humble Bundle games."
  • Before going too far in the future, I would say Gideros needs at least to come to a level where new developers (and not only) can adopt it quickly and without pain. What I mean by this is:

    1. Clean the source code in git. There is still quite a mess there. Obsolete folders, scripts with invalid paths etc.

    2. Create a clear documented and simple mechanism to build Gideros, IDE, plugins etc. Or fix the current one and make it work like "for dummies".

    3. Update documentation. This is one of the biggest pain in the "wiggle" for developers, old and new.

    4. Update the website. At the moment Gideros "is not free". New developers look at the website first, maybe not all are looking at the forums to see that it was open sourced.

    5. Update the code to work with the latest OS/SDK changes for iOS and Android: in app purchase/billing, game centers, ads etc. Make it work, compile without errors and put some more short and clear samples where is needed.

    6. Create a folder for game templates. Few types of game templates would be a great start point for new developers.

    Once these points are done, then we can think about adding new features like other people mentioned before. One urgent and important thing I would say is to integrate a particle engine, preferably the existing TNT from GregBUG (it's very good), if he accepts this, of course. Then, another important aspect for new developers to join easily is to improve the current IDE, not making perfect, but at least bring it to the level of Zero Brane ;)

    In another words, I would say "clean your garage before bringing a new car inside", that's what Gideros needs to do now. And then upgrade the car from a good yellow Lamborghini to a nice red Ferrari ;) Kickstarter or indiegogo are worth to take a look for Mac/Windows support.
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  • i think for newcomers it's nice that there is an ide but as we have good enough alternatives (zerobranestudio, etc), it's a waste of energy to develop it further, considering how much else must be done.

    Likes: bali001

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  • Gideros just needs a good poke thru with a Christmas tree to tidy it all up and keep it working and current download 'Gideros 2014.01' needs updating again for iOS8 perhaps.

    I knew about the Longford thing because I am already working with John to bring it to Gideros, rather he is doing the hard work and I am paying him some money to do it. If this result of this experiment benefits everyone then that is cool because I personally am close to leaving Gideros behind now since supporting further versions is somewhat up in the air.

    X-platform is the most import feature of any engine in mobile now and without WP8 at least it's becoming kinda useless to make actual money from other than Droid for me at least. iOS has become the poor mans option IMHO as there is not much money in it compared to 18months ago both paid or free (adwrap).

    I've been waiting almost 2 years for WP8 Gideros integration, so I'd still like to to see it happen hence the effort with John thus far.

    My 2p anyway.
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  • @grotly your point is totally valid and it will all be done eventually.

    I am already basically spending one day of my weekend, answering on forums, publishing plugins, updating them, and reordering website, updating the wiki, finding solutions for community document management, etc
    unfortunately I can't move much faster (as I'm not even working for Gideros anymore :) )

    And what I proposed is only an idea for now and will take time to grow on and accomplish

    So
    1) if I were to finish all the things you mentioned and only then started discussing this, it would take even more time to get things accomplished, thats why I want to start discussing it now :)

    2) most of the code restructures are actually also part of this idea, as discussing internally for @john26 to implement support, @atilim would need to wrap graphics api, etc
    All the code clean ups will happen naturally working with more developers.

    And I can't promise IDE improvements, templates, etc, as that is again would depend if there would be anyone willing to participate.

  • @ar2rsawseen I didn't say you should do all these things :) I just enumerated what needs to be done :) Now, it can be done by a core team, selected by you, Atlim etc, or/and/plus other volunteers, again, selected by you, Atilim etc. That's is why is called now open source, so that everyone can contribute. And a roadmap is good, I agree, I just wanted to point out that "the 6 burning topics" must not be forgotten, so that the roadmap has even a chance to happen in the future.

    I for one really appreciate what you are doing for Gideros, I am even amazed how you can handle so many things, and I suppose you also have to deal with a daytime, cubicle type of job :)
  • @grotly, @ar2rsawseen

    I agree with the list that you put. Only to the issue of FDI also think it would not be a priority, while others can be used, such as Zero Brane.

    What we can do is create some teams for each major task to achieve both, forward with new features and organization of everything that exists today.

    I'm studying the Gideros code, do not know much C++ but am getting turn around with some features in the player.

    (:
  • john26john26 Maintainer
    My opinion on these points:

    "1. Clean the source code in git. There is still quite a mess there. Obsolete folders, scripts with invalid paths etc.

    2. Create a clear documented and simple mechanism to build Gideros, IDE, plugins etc. Or fix the current one and make it work like "for dummies". "

    I think the intention is the majority of people will continue to install Gideros as a binary package and will not compile from sources. Compiling from source is not intended "for dummies" as it is always going to be complicated partly because Gideros depends on many libraries which you must install/compile first.

    The new WP8 enabled Gideros be released as a binary and will install and run much the same as the current version. But there will be extra options in the Export menu allowing exports to the new target(s).

    So the fact that it's open source doesn't mean you have to compile it!
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  • 1) Would you participate in funding?

    For me it's less about one feature, but to see Gideros as a whole stay up to date and evolve. If my funding would help that end goal, I'm in.
    My Gideros games: www.totebo.com
  • I'm in as far as the funding goes. Not good enough of a C++ dev to contribute there but perhaps down the road.
  • The money thing didn't work out before. What makes you believe it will work out now? And who will fund the ongoing maintaining of new and old features?
    Imho it should not be about the money and someone should do it because they want to and can work on it for a while.
  • @MikeHart because model is now completely different.

    If before the payment was to sustain the team, now the payment is for specific features that user needs. And it is a one time payment and not a subscription.

    Of course it is not applicable for smaller fixes etc, but for major features like adding new platform, it seems to fit well, so the idea is to just try it and see how it goes, if community sees it fit, then Gideros could progress very fast on adding missing major features, if not, we will think on another plan :)

    By the way, would you be willing to join on the team for adding Mac export? :)
  • @ar2rsawseen, the latest binaries published on gideros page are for 2014.01, you sent me in pm the 2014.04 version at some point, as it contained some important bugfixes. perhaps it would be good if the latest stable build would be available to everybody without the need for compiling the source code.

    Likes: MobAmuse, Scouser

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  • @keszegh, hear hear. As a user who is looking to save time, compiling source code for Gideros is not ideal for me. I'm keen to hear how new versions can be made available to the public, as my guess is the majority of Gideros users use it like me, and not like a low-level tool they themselves change.

    Likes: hgvyas123

    My Gideros games: www.totebo.com
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  • I was trying to build Gideros for Linux. I have install Qt5 libraries but I get the error:

    /usr/bin/uic-qt4 mainwindow.ui -o ui_mainwindow.h

    It seems Qt4 for Linux must be installed, but I am not sure.

    I think the main important issue is a build system to get Gideros binaries for Windows, Mac and Linux.
  • @keszegh yes you are completely right, even though there were lots of fixes there, they I think are still outdated, I don't have access to amazon so I can't upload builds, will ask @atilim, but if anyone is interested to try them before:

    http://giderosmobile.com/downloads/gideros_2014.04.exe
    http://giderosmobile.com/downloads/gideros_2014.04.dmg
  • ar2rsawseenar2rsawseen Maintainer
    edited October 2014
    And yes build system is important and if anyone has any suggestions on how to approach it, we are all ears
    I already examined travis.ci and while it can build and upload a build to github, issue is that Gideros needs different operating systems to make builds and then share binaries between them, which makes task much more harder, so any suggestions are good at this point
  • keszeghkeszegh Member
    edited October 2014
    @ar2rsawseen, thanks for sharing the installs.

    and, just to be sure, the version of the gideros install you shared with us now
    is exactly the same what i already have, right? (at least it has exactly the same size)

  • @ar2rsawseen sorry i have not much time these days. Just browsing the forum at break time.
  • ar2rsawseenar2rsawseen Maintainer
    edited October 2014
    @keszegh yes they are the same, Atilim is building new ones

    @MikeHart ok, no problem, but if you will have a time someday and you are willing to do it, we can discuss it, you can propose the amount of money you want for it, and we can try to raise it ;)
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