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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 2:43 am 
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I've often wondered how to get Cyan past this stalemate, where they need to spend all their time keeping their company afloat, yet they're the only ones who can make Myst Online available to the community.

So, what if there were some devoted fan developers out there who would be willing to put in an intense week's work into preparing the code base? These folks would pay their own way to Spokane, footing the bill for room and board, and work the entire week for free. All they would need from Cyan is accounts on their machines, an NDA to sign (so that they don't walk away with the code), and a half hour a day from the Cyan development team to learn what to do and to provide status. [The idea behind working on site as opposed to tele-working is that the code can stay in-house, putting Cyan's mind at ease.]

Just think: if there were enough kind souls out there to volunteer for this, and if Cyan was willing to have them come in, they could theoretically have MO ready for the public possibly as soon as Mysterium. What an astounding announcement that would be!

Are there any of you out there who would be willing to do this - effectively, attend a "boot camp" for Myst Online development? You could even sleep in a tent for the week, if that helps keep costs down. ;-)

[DISCLAIMER: There have been absolutely no requests by Cyan for doing this. This idea is totally out of the blue and not approved (currently) by Cyan. I'm just curious if there are enough willing and capable people out there.]

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 3:12 am 
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It's a good idea, but I don't see why they couldn't do it as a remote internship instead of requiring a trip to Spokane. :)

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 7:45 pm 
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If Cyan were to put out such a request, I'd at least give it some serious consideration. On the one hand, I'd love to help as much as anyone - on the other hand, flying to the US for a week, while I could probably afford it, would be a bit crazy. I would also want to know what exactly there is to do before making a decision, to see if it matches my skills and interests (in fact, I'd love to know that in any case, independent of any hypothetical community involvement :)). Chances are that if it's something that can be done in a week by a bunch of people with no previous knowledge of the code, it's going to be a pretty boring job.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 10:15 pm 
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I'm sure there are a few people who'd be willing to do this. It's a lot to ask for people to fly out, so if it could be remote, I think there would be more support... But I imagine all it would take is 3-4 talented people to assist Cyan in order to move things forward. From what I understand, only 1-2 people are working on it in their spare time over there (if at all), so having dedicated hands for a full week could certainly help.

The down-side is the risk; how would Cyan know the helpers have enough coding experience? How does Cyan know they'll do a good job, or that it won't be more effort on Cyan's part than the helper's part? How much "training" with the code will be required for the helpers to be sufficiently productive to justify the expensive trip and time?

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 10:59 pm 
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Why not coordinate it and contact Chogon about this?
Worth to try, is'nt?


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:03 am 
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A single week doesn't make a lot of sense. Make it a month, two months, whatever it takes to get the job done.

If we can find dedicated Myst fans who have relevant programming skills and who are within a reasonably close range of Spokane, why not do this? It's a great idea and worth submitting to Cyan.

The rest of us (who don't know the programming stuff) can help pay the travel expenses of the volunteers so they can afford to get to (and stay in) Spokane for the duration of the project.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:23 am 
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Count me out on account of my non-existent programming skills. I'd be no help.

I always assumed (probably wrongly) that perhaps Cyan's need to protect their own technology assets came into it. But the delay was mainly because they would be setting up their own centralized CVS, correct?

A very interesting idea, kudos for thinking of it.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:37 am 
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Count me out because
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2. Too expensive.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 20, 2009 12:09 pm 
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One week to get the code ready? :lol:
Unless you messed up with uru's code before, you barely have time to understand how the code works, so changing it ?

I don't know how many changes are needed, but it's probably not that easy, or it would have been done already.
And then, it seams that Cyan is waiting for someone to do some charges, because they can't do it themselves. That more likely means that this part of the code is understandable only by the one who made it...

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 20, 2009 1:11 pm 
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Right now, Chogon is waiting on one person to make a change, that obviously only he can make. If Chogon can't do anything, then I'd say there's nothing anyone of us could do at this stage. There are a lot of good programmers in the community and there are also quite a few with good knowledge of Plasma and how Uru works, but I presume there are still things that only Cyan can do.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:33 pm 
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Agreed. Some things can only be done by Cyan.

That said, there's no reason why we couldn't (potentially) help in some way.

If we're working for free as a labor of love, it's hard to imagine why Cyan wouldn't be willing to hand off assignments to us, at least whatever assignments we are capable of doing, both in open-sourcing Uru and in developing it once it's open source. If not that, once Uru is open source we could hand paid assignments to Cyan and become, in effect, publishers like Ubisoft or Gametap.

I suggested that should Cyan ever wish to continue their story for Uru, they could always have a token group of designers send us designs, concept art, puzzle ideas, story elements, etc, every so often as a part-time piece of their work at Cyan, and have us flesh them out into actual ages and content - thus allowing an official Uru that costs much less to run and develop than previous incarnations because most of the development work is being done by people who aren't paid.

I wasn't trying to push anyone away from open-sourcing Uru - far from it! - but I see no reason there could not eventually be an official shard of Uru in addition to the fully fan-run ones. I think such a thing could probably be done for under $500,000 per year, so if we ever get to a point where there are 10,000 fans, willing to pay $50/year for an official Cyan Uru, it could happen. I think it's unlikely, but if Uru ever grows beyond a niche game in its freeware open-source form, and becomes popular, there's always the chance that a semi-official Uru could happen, and that fans who are willing to commit to working on such a project could do so. Alternatively, Cyan could send us directives about what they want us to do with our Uru shards and not set up an official shard themselves, or we could set up our own shards with monthly fees and use whatever surplus we can scrounge to pay Cyan and ex-Cyan persons to make designs for said shards and organize teams to develop them into full-fledged content.

I.e. "Join our shard, we have a new exclusive age based on a piece of concept art from an actual Cyan artist/a puzzle designed by a Cyan designer/a story from a Cyan writer."

There could be several larger shards doing that sort of thing every once in a while. Paying a Cyan artist a few hours' wages to make a concept art piece is not impossible for a shard owner, it'd be only in the $100-$200 range. If the shard is charging $20 per year per member, and the new age generates sign-ups from 25 or 30 new members, then the shard turns a decent profit on the exchange.

As for a Gametap/Ubi-style Uru, that's out of the question. Partially Cyan-run Uru or Open Source Uru with some continuing influence from Cyan in some form is unlikely but possible (eventually) and I'd like to have Cyan continue to develop the Uru story somehow, at least a little bit, but it may never happen.

Then there's open-source Uru, which at this time is going very slowly and seems somewhat unlikely as well; we're all hanging here waiting on an ex-Cyan employee and wishing we could do something, anything to make Uru open again.

If Cyan told us there were something we could do to help, I think we'd do it. But as is, I don't see any clear answer from Cyan on how we can help. If there is something, Cyan, please tell us.

We're getting tired of waiting but a lot of us are still here, and even those who aren't may still come back if Uru ever actually opens again as an open-source game.

We want to help. We still believe in your creative vision, Cyan, and we're obsessed with your work and your story. We'll work to bring it about. One way or another, we'll make Uru thrive if we're ever given the chance to, and while we want to develop Uru ourselves, truth is, we still want your input to. We'll help in any way possible. The question is, will we ever get the chance to do this?

Can we help you? Can we, the fanbase, find some way to work with you to bring Uru to an open-source form, and to develop it further once it's there? We'll pay for it if that's what's needed. We'll work for free if that's what's needed.

You don't need to accept donations, BTW - I know you can't do that - but if there's an open-source Uru fund of some kind, we can put money into said fund, or some such thing. We'd act (collectively) as a publisher paying you to do a certain project (that is, creating an open-source version of Uru).

We'd be paying you salary to work on a specific project and create a specific product (open source Uru), not giving you a donation. If you can't bother to set up the payment system, we can set it up.

But what it comes down to is, we want Open Source Uru and we want it to thrive! And we'll do whatever we can to make that happen!

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2009 2:20 pm 
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unlikely that Cyan will be willing to allow help.

why would i say this?? years and years of thoughts very similar to this floating on these forums and others. Yet, never any action and always some mysterious reason it is denied by Cyan.

offers of donations from money to time to experience have historically been denied. Usually citing some odd legal reason without ever giving any specifics.

my guess ... Cyan has little to no faith in the abilities of the fan base . .....this may also be the reason that Open Source has not come about. to take one of their babies and release it into the wild, where someone may undoubtedly twist it into a first-person-shooter or create Ages with clan wars and "leveling-up" of ambiguous skills, may be enough to sit protectively on the whole thing until "El Neno" brings in the proper winds for it to fly on it's own.

Sorry, to be so negative. I love the idea and the aspiration behind it. Should something like this ever leap from words into reality I would do what i could to support it.

Just saying,.. good luck...... and hope that someone may actually have the time and gumption to see it through and make it happen instead of just posting about it then fleeting away from it at the first opposition.

................time to go back to the shadows now............



.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2009 3:17 pm 
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Soup_Fork wrote:
my guess ... Cyan has little to no faith in the abilities of the fan base .

I must respectfully disagree with you on this as I believe that, in the past, they have accepted a few bug fixes from fans who, admittedly hacked into the code during Until Uru in order to make these repairs. But, because they were good repairs, they were accepted by Cyan and incorporated into MOUL. I don't recall the specifics, but perhaps one of the veterans could offer an example or two.

Soup_Fork wrote:
.....this may also be the reason that Open Source has not come about.

I believe them when they say there is simply a hold up beyond their control at this time.

Soup_Fork wrote:
to take one of their babies and release it into the wild, where someone may undoubtedly twist it into a first-person-shooter or create Ages with clan wars and "leveling-up" of ambiguous skills.

While it might be possible for someone to do this (actually, if they were a good hacker, they could probably do it right now), it would be illegal. Cyan will retain the rights and control over the content: the ages, images, puzzles, story, etc. To my knowledge, all they're releasing is the code that makes it all work.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2009 4:40 pm 
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Tai'lahr wrote:
Soup_Fork wrote:
my guess ... Cyan has little to no faith in the abilities of the fan base .

I must respectfully disagree with you on this as I believe that, in the past, they have accepted a few bug fixes from fans who, admittedly hacked into the code during Until Uru in order to make these repairs. But, because they were good repairs, they were accepted by Cyan and incorporated into MOUL. I don't recall the specifics, but perhaps one of the veterans could offer an example or two.


You believe incorrectly... The fixes to UU were pushed to the UU dataserver. This was in the D'mala Era. I'm pretty sure that these fixes were never applied to UU. I could drone on about how the hacks needed to be submitted and such to further give evidence, but that is neither here nor there.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2009 6:19 pm 
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Soup_Fork wrote:

my guess ... Cyan has little to no faith in the abilities of the fan base .

.


As far as the abilities of the fan base is concerned all Cyan hasta do is set up a PC with Uru CC, Drizzle and an offline KI and they can get themselves a good overview of the what there getting themselves into. If after looking over what the fan base hasta offer they say "we have no faith after what we saw" well then keeping this site open is just a money pit that will soon be abandon. Well the sites still here and the economy still sucks, that must say something????????

the more impressed they are with the skills of the fan base the more likely (I assume) they are to trust the fan base, and as artist themselves surly they must be interested in what the fan base is doing to there art work

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