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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 3:19 am 
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Tai'lahr wrote:
Both of these are good ideas. However, they don't mesh due to the fact that OpenUru doesn't allow discussion of illegal activities. But, perhaps Cyan would be willing to authorize a legal shard now specifically for testing. I would recommend taking that discussion to OpenUru and see what can be done.


Well, when Uru actually becomes open source it won't be against the ToS to run another server. That's a major point of going open.

Whilyam wrote:
You are making more work for Cyan because you are frightened about what the community will decide if you let people think for themselves and give them options.


What? Your whole stance has been 'screw the community as a whole!'. You haven't been proponenting any decision at all except on the part of individuals.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 3:19 am 
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Marten wrote:
The objective recommendations put forth by Whilyam are our best option at this time. I understand some people are concerned that Whil's criteria are too loose, and some people have proposed some rather outlandish examples of submissions that technically meet the criteria.


Except for the fact that whilst Whilyam has been very large in terms of his volume of posts and drowing out a lot of this thread, most people posting here disagree with him. And more importantly, it has been explained by people who actually understand things that it's technologically impossible.

In my opinion, the best option at the moment is to go with the widely-used only open source large-scale-community-driven model that works as demonstrated by thousands of other projects


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 5:10 am 
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Marten wrote:
The objective recommendations put forth by Whilyam are our best option at this time. I understand some people are concerned that Whil's criteria are too loose, and some people have proposed some rather outlandish examples of submissions that technically meet the criteria.

I'm sick of having these "outlandish examples" shot down due to their outlandishness. Whilyam's initial argument was that we don't subjectively judge an idea (for example, by its outlandishness), but instead objectively follow a set of criteria, and that's it. Therefore, these "rather outlandish examples of submissions that technically meet the criteria" would, by Whil's definition, be accepted without further discussion. If you say, "yes but those examples are obviously too crazy" then you are applying a subjective judgement. If you agree with Whil, then you must accept all ideas which "technically meet the criteria", and reject all others. That is what objectivity means.

Marten wrote:
However, most of those examples ARE straw men, despite matching the criteria, because they are such incredibly unlikely scenarios. No-one that I know of in the community wants to add a spreadsheet calculator to Uru.

No, but eventually someone will seriously suggest something equally ludicrous, and your community guidelines will have to deal with it. Why have guidelines which produce stupid results in edge cases, because "edge cases will never happen"?

A straw man is a "misrepresentation of an opponent's position". If I make a ridiculous suggestion which is technically within the proposed criteria, then that is not a misrepresentation.
Marten wrote:
A far better example, and one that is not a straw man, is if someone wants to patch flymode directly into the online MOUL game. That could happen. So... what if?

Good example. So... what? This is not a trivial problem. People do want to fly in Uru -- I've done it in single player, and it's cool. So we don't necessarily want to say "you can't fly in Uru". But on the other hand, it's heavily non-canonical (D'ni never had the power to fly), so we can't just put a "fly" button on the Ki. Nor do I want to walk around the city and see half a dozen people flying through the air -- it ruins the aesthetic of the city. So this is a good example of a problem that can't be neatly placed in the "in" or "out" basket by the proposed "objective criteria".

Whilyam suggested that if you fly in the city you have to go invisible. Okay. That's working towards a solution (but: notice the discussion, the compromise... that's what I'm saying we need when someone suggests a feature!) But there are still issues with that. How do you cope with the people suddenly becoming invisible as they activate fly mode? The fact that there are a bunch of people you can chat to who have no visible avatar? Let's not have a design discussion now -- this is just an example. Each non-trivial patch to the game will present design decisions that will need to be discussed, implemented, tested and then accepted or rejected based on consensus. That is how all other open source projects decide things, and that is how we will decide things.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 5:18 am 
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I've never claimed while supporting Whilyam's position that I agree with his social approach. However, his attitude or methods in conveying his ideas are not the real topic of discussion. Let's please not dismiss someone's idea because we don't like they way they present the idea.

I have yet to see any evidence in this thread that the proposal to test against objective criteria is not technologically feasible. And honestly, if there are people who are saying that it is impossible to test against objective measurements, I would quickly argue that those people don't "actually understand" much at all.

Every open source model ultimately has someone who has final call on whether a change goes in or not. Every. Single. One. When a disagreement arises, someone has to be the person who makes a final decision. Organizational models that lack this key design - whether by authoritarian means or by majority vote - fail. In the Myst Online model, we are not the someone making the final decision. Cyan is.

All we are being asked to do is to cull down the number of entries that Cyan has to look at. We are not being asked - at least, not yet - to try to predict which patches are "truly worthy." Nor are we talking about a fully open sourced server at this point, with an option for other people to run other servers. Though I look forward to the day where that happens, Chogon very clearly said that this is for patches against MOULagain.

By testing patches against measurable criteria, we can accomplish what was asked of us. It may or may not reduce the load upon Cyan sufficiently. But we can be certain that starting out simple, with only a few highly measurable rules, that we won't over-cull. This is an excellent opportunity to begin out cautiously and then, if we need to trim more at Cyan's request, we can discuss how to meet that need.

We are not going to succeed if we insist on making this more complicated than it needs to be from the very start. An over-engineered solution at this point will sink us. As the landscape changes - as more code becomes open sourced - we'll adapt.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 5:20 am 
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Eat_My_Shortz wrote:
How do you cope with the people suddenly becoming invisible as they activate fly mode?

Simple. Detach the camera from the avatar and fly the camera, not the avatar.

Before you say this is off topic, when solutions seem too outlandish, there are often simpler solutions that fit the criteria better.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 5:28 am 
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Eat_My_Shortz wrote:
...eventually someone will seriously suggest something equally ludicrous, and your community guidelines will have to deal with it. Why have guidelines which produce stupid results in edge cases, because "edge cases will never happen"?

Because it isn't our problem to worry about at this point. We've been asked to reduce the number of patch entries submitted to Cyan. We have not been asked to decide what is canon or what is reasonable or what is right. But a large number of people in this discussion seem to be convinced that must be the end result. These are possible results, but they are not the only options on the table.

It is safer... and OUGHT to be less controversial... to start out with the loosest, most accepting of filters. Let flymode be submitted as a patch. If it doesn't crash the server and doesn't violate the Terms of Service, it passes on to Cyan to judge. And remember, the Terms of Service are something that Cyan can revise at any time, to help provide clarity to our filtering.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 6:13 am 
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Okay, I have an idea.

Set up a website. On this site, people can submit their patches. Code, description, and relevant tags (e.g. ki, emote, nexus, city, etc).

People going to the front page are given a list of the most popular patches. By searching or by clicking on a tag, users can find other patches.

Users can vote for or against a patch. This way we can have our "users can fly around Ae'gura" patches as well as "detachable camera" flymode patches. The community decides which patches it prefers. There is no central authority.

Each week (or month, or whatever), the top patches are sent to Cyan. If they approve of those patches, great. If not, oh well. We'll get a better idea of what patches Cyan will and will not accept without them having to say a word, and proceed accordingly.

A separate list of submitted patches could be made available, with a note on whether a given patch was accepted, declined, or pending.

Otherwise, the patches are available for anyone to look at, or even to use for their own shards down the road. Maybe Cyan doesn't want the "bunnies" Relto page, but it's scored very highly among users, so a shard owner may be more willing to consider it for addition.

The idea could use some refinement, but at its core I think it works well.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 8:07 am 
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There is a lot of wisdom expressed in here, and I'm greatful for that. And ultimately I am confident that Uru in the hands of the fans will succeed or fail when the explorer community "votes with their feet." And I think, at the heart of it, this is what Whilyam believes. But....

I'm a storyteller, not a programmer. And Uru is a story. It is also a program. But -- and this is key -- the people who have stuck with Uru through multiple incarnations, multiple concellations, and multiple re-births, have not done so because they admire the programming. From what I understand there are game engines out there that are much more sophisticated and advanced, and have much more potential from a coding standpoint. The people who have stuck with Uru have done so because of Community, Story, and a deep sense of Loyalty to both.

Now having said that, I am aware that the vast majority of fan-created content that will be proposed will not really ever even touch on established canon, because it will be NEW Ages, written by contemporary exporers who have learned the Art and Written their own worlds totally independant of anything ever done in the past by the D'ni. And nobody that I know of is even suggesting that any such content should be permitted to contain material that conflicts with canon. But in here we're talking about making changes to the very foundation of the Uru experience, the engine itself. And while I have no immediate issues with new emotes and faster Nexus loads and so forth, it is because none of those things affect canon.

But people started talking about adding features to the KI. I'm sorry, but a lot of explorers like to play IC as much as possible, and Uru is one of the best games out there for letting this happen -- the design of the interface and the nature of the storyline make suspending one's disbelief close to effortless. But if you disregard canon as any kind of criteria for how changes are made to that interface, you're likely to shatter that fourth wall and the whole house of cards will soon follow.

While you're working on changing the core build, are you planning to make changes to the layout of the Cleft, too? I wouldn't think so -- it would never occur to me that you would -- but if not, then why not? If not that, then why do you feel justified in re-inventing established D'ni artifacts WITHOUT ANY IC EXPLANATION? As I pointed out, maybe it could be that such changes are possible as contemporary modifications to the lattice and the KI dispensor hardware. It just means you have to actually take canon into account and acknowledge that some body of individuals needs to be able to determine if canon is violated or not.

Whilyam, the only things I really object to are your statement that canon should not be considered at all, and the supposition you use to justify it that only a tiny minority of exporers care about canon. My opinion is ... you're just wrong. Nothing personal.

Look, I might be dead wrong about this, but this whole argument smells like you don't want anything to interfere with you're ability to muck about with an entire open-source game engine. But it's that whole "this job would be great if it weren't for the darn customers" concept. If you want to use the core open-source Uru game engine as a foundation to build a game/universe to your exacting specifications, I hope you get the chance. I would love to see the results, or talk to you about some ideas of my own. But if you want to tinker with Uru, you sort of have to play by the rules of Uru ... or it ceases to be Uru. Star Trek with light sabres isn't Star Trek anymore. It might be better. But it isn't Star Trek. And people who like Star Trek aren't, for the most part, looking for "better" if it stops being Star Trek.

I know that facing this reality is scary, since it means that your efforts are going to actually get judged by other people who might find a reason and posess the authority to reject them. But if you're not prepared to face that, then perhaps a different outlet for your creativity would suit you better. One with a smaller audience.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 12:27 pm 
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Montgomery wrote:
But people started talking about adding features to the KI. I'm sorry, but a lot of explorers like to play IC as much as possible, and Uru is one of the best games out there for letting this happen -- the design of the interface and the nature of the storyline make suspending one's disbelief close to effortless. But if you disregard canon as any kind of criteria for how changes are made to that interface, you're likely to shatter that fourth wall and the whole house of cards will soon follow.

While you're working on changing the core build, are you planning to make changes to the layout of the Cleft, too? I wouldn't think so -- it would never occur to me that you would -- but if not, then why not? If not that, then why do you feel justified in re-inventing established D'ni artifacts WITHOUT ANY IC EXPLANATION? As I pointed out, maybe it could be that such changes are possible as contemporary modifications to the lattice and the KI dispensor hardware. It just means you have to actually take canon into account and acknowledge that some body of individuals needs to be able to determine if canon is violated or not.

Whilyam, the only things I really object to are your statement that canon should not be considered at all, and the supposition you use to justify it that only a tiny minority of exporers care about canon. My opinion is ... you're just wrong. Nothing personal.


I'm going to comment plainly on the whole concept that we can never change the KI interface.

now, I'm sure many of you will find me rude, and abrasive, but, really, what I often do, is just comment plainly, and say things like I see them.

For one thing, the DRC had found multiple different versions of the D'ni Communications Device. The one we often use in the Cavern today, is the version they got to work best. This, however, does not stop there being other versions of the device, in the cavern.

That said, the objection to KI-to-internet (for example, twitter) bridges, is entirely senseless, that ship flew in 2003, I believe. The DRC have had internet access through the KI, for years. Prominent IC-players, often the defenders of canon, have used KI-to-Internet bridges for years, like the DRC. Some even specifically posting on twitter "through their KI."

Regarding interface changes, again, that ship flew years ago.

For example...

Image

(sadly, I do not know who took this shot, but I do know it comes from Choru)

Image

(this one, again from Choru, this time, I'm fairly certain this one came from Lonelyto25)

And, lets not forget the DRC translated the ENTIRE interface into english, and on top of that, changed the numbering system to base-10. =)


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 1:01 pm 
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Eat_My_Shortz wrote:
OK let's look at this one more closely. You're saying that having the imager showing random YouTube videos, is not per se an issue, unless it slows down the game? So let's assume that I managed to find a way to show YouTube videos without slowing down the game. How many people would be happy walking through the city (at perfectly normal speed), with an imager every 30 feet showing a dog chasing a sprinkler, or a Star Wars parody? Don't you think that this impacts on the aesthetic of the game?

This would be a violation under "disrupting the game experience, yadda yadda." Also, it doesn't appear to be optional.
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WHOA. ... hold on. You're making up a new rule now?? Your stance the whole time has been "legality and stability, and NO OTHER CONDITIONS" and now there is a third condition? You've stated previously "we need optional add-ons", but have never mentioned optional as a rule. You said there were no more rules other than legality and stability allowed.

That add-ons would be optional was an idea I introduced early in this discussion and which you agreed with, you fraud!
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Now that we have a better understanding of your proposal, Whil, ironically I think now your rules are too restrictive. I think that anything which is "legal, stable and optional" should be allowed. But we need scope for wider changes as well. You can't say "all changes must be optional" because that means developers can't do any changes to the (default) UI or gameplay at all. That limits Uru development solely to adding new optional features.

Yes, they can. Just like Firefox add-ons can manipulate the interface. You can make changes optional and still have them completely re-work the interface. Now, here's where your consensus comes in. Just like most (intelligent) Firefox users have the ad-blocking add-ons installed, some add-ons will be wildly popular/necessary for a good experience and people will install them almost by default. Some shards may mandate popular add-ons (perhaps even Cyan, though I'd prefer Cyan's shard stayed 100% optional).
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--these changes, once made, will not be optional. And they will change the game. That doesn't mean we shouldn't make them. It means that we shouldn't be making them lightly. They need to be discussed and designed and have mock implementations proposed, and tested on test shards, and finally accepted if they're good enough.

But any of those could be optional. People who, for example, wanted to start in the Cleft, could do so with the "Start-in-Cleft" add-on.
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No, no ... you are still conflating core game features with add-ons/mods.
- The add-on infrastructure is a core game feature,
- The add-ons themselves (custom KIs, private fly mode, etc) are the add-ons.

No, I'm not. I'm saying the Add-on structure is the only core feature that needs to be added, with the optional add-ons coming in afterwards.
Quote:
Please limit this debate to the changes that will actually be implemented in the game itself -- i.e., the changes to be submitted to Cyan, the topic of this thread.

Those two criteria (and optionality) are the criteria which I would use to send add-ons to Cyan for inclusion in their add-on database.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 1:36 pm 
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Since this seems to be a focal point of the discussion (and not only of the somewhat OOT arguments):

Whilyam wrote:
This would be a violation under "disrupting the game experience, yadda yadda."

Is there a way to define "game experience" objectively? All the discussions about canon, fan-made ages, and this very thread seem to imply that there is none, apart from what we collectively (and subjectively) agree constitutes the Uru gameworld.

Moreover, it needs to be technically proven that any modification to the game can be made optional (without reaching a point where different explorers are eventually playing substantially different games on the same server).

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 2:13 pm 
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IanWatson wrote:
Okay, I have an idea.

Set up a website. On this site, people can submit their patches. Code, description, and relevant tags (e.g. ki, emote, nexus, city, etc).

People going to the front page are given a list of the most popular patches. By searching or by clicking on a tag, users can find other patches.

Users can vote for or against a patch. This way we can have our "users can fly around Ae'gura" patches as well as "detachable camera" flymode patches. The community decides which patches it prefers. There is no central authority.

Each week (or month, or whatever), the top patches are sent to Cyan. If they approve of those patches, great. If not, oh well. We'll get a better idea of what patches Cyan will and will not accept without them having to say a word, and proceed accordingly.

A separate list of submitted patches could be made available, with a note on whether a given patch was accepted, declined, or pending.

Otherwise, the patches are available for anyone to look at, or even to use for their own shards down the road. Maybe Cyan doesn't want the "bunnies" Relto page, but it's scored very highly among users, so a shard owner may be more willing to consider it for addition.

The idea could use some refinement, but at its core I think it works well.


This, to be honest, is probably the only suggestion that'd make everyone happy, sorta.

However, its pretty much impossible to make it work, without a way to test things, individually.

But, then again, this entire discussion is pointless, until Cyan finally alters the ToS to allow us to actually /do/ anything.

Yes, that's right, anyone actually using the released files, is somewhat breaking the ToS. But hey, welcome to the club. ;)

This is the best thing about it, game alterations/additions have not yet been legitamised, and will not be, until the ToS has been fixed, to represent reality.

Its not to say that there's anything /wrong/ with them, mind you.

But, until we get both a license, and a change in the ToS, all this is still useless.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 3:22 pm 
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Ok. There is some really good ideas in this thread. And I'm thinking there is not just one solution.

I think everyone has expressed their ideas and before the good ideas get lost in the fray, I'm going to lock this thread.

Thanks for everyone's input!
Chogon


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