Sega Dreamcast, Saturn And Mega Drive Hardware Coming From Retro-Bit in 2018

Discussion in 'Everything else' started by Ian J, Dec 19, 2017.

  1. benoitb

    benoitb Very Active Member

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    I don't want to spoil the mood (I'm quite interested in a bluetooth Saturn controller) but I wouldn't want to support Retro-bit until they start respecting the emulator software licences. I think a lot of people on these boards would be concerned as well by this matter.

    See this article from Retroarch, you can look for this string:
    "2017 – Retro-Bit Super Retro Cade"
    https://www.libretro.com/index.php/...-the-new-retro-emulation-industry-in-general/
     
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  2. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    Well, I've got mixed feelings here.
    I know RetroBit IS trying to license everything properly. They even licensed the retranslation of Magical Drop 2 from Aeon Genesis instead of just using it.
    And the link you provided clearly shows that RetroBit tried to license RetroArch itself as well.
    That the one who takes care about it left the company for some reason is pretty unfortunate, and that's probably when all the shit happened, as the other guys probably had no clue and just tried to finish what had been started.
    That's not an excuse for what happened - but more an explanation.

    However, I can speak of my own experience that I think a LOT of that is the fault of (at least some) of the RetroArch developers themselves.

    I can give you an example:
    One of the main developers requested a 1GHz Pandora so he could port over RetroArch. I sent him one for free. The port never happened (well, now it happened thanks to a community member, not him).
    I didn't care a lot, since stuff like that can happened.

    Now, I planned the RetroPi a bit later (you might remember it on www.retropi.de).
    Basically, it was just a new case for the Retrode2 that combines a Raspberry Pi and a Retrode into one case, so you could build your own console with cartridge slots and controller ports.

    I knew I couldn't include a fully preinstalled cards witht he RetroPi (as that would be commercially selling it, which doesn't work with some emulator license) but I wanted to provide scripts that you can simply run on the RetroPie installation which sets up the Retrode2 properly.

    For that, I also planned a link to RetroPie (or Lakka) where users can download the software and install it. For me, a proper solution. Giving a link to the original developers which automatically gives them credits.
    I sent that suggestion to the very same person who received the Pandora back in the days from me.

    The result was devastating. I was insulted, called a thief and liar, as I am just another commercial company who wants to steal their work and make money, etc.
    Geez! Even if he DID understand me wrong (that I would just produce a case and not a closed down system...), that's NO way replying to an email.
    We basically had an email fight back then, as he simply didn't want to understand that I don't plan to include anything...
    It pissed me off enough that I stopped working on the RetroPi case for the time being (I might pick it up and finish it eventually, as it's basically already finished...)

    I've spoken to some other guys who had contact with him and they confirmed that they've seen a similar behaviour.

    I even stopped selling the RetroN5 back then when it happened (even though sales and profit was awesome!) and never even sold the RetroFreak because of that reason.
    And that's how you're being treated then...

    The funny thing is:
    RetroArch mostly provides a wrapper around emulators who have been coded by other people.
    Yes, it works well, and probably most RetroArch devs are nice chaps, but if THAT'S how a company is being treated if it asks for a license or similar, then I can fully understand nothing will happen here, even if only emulator cores would be included that allow a commercial usage.
    Have you ever seen the ORIGINAL devs of the emulators complaining that much about the issue?

    I even talked to some of the emulators devs (like for SNES9x, for example), and they wouldn't really mind if their emulator is included, but the license simply has been set to non-commercial use only, so there's not much that can be done here.

    Seriously, I'd rather donate part of the profit to the original license developers than having to put up contacting RetroArch again...
    I feel sad for the developers, I doubt they all behave like that, but to me, it seems there's at least ONE guy extremely negative and aggressive against anything that has to do with commercial usage, even if you try to get a license...

    So it's a mixed bag.
    I don't support using non-licensed stuff if possible (so I don't sell the RetroN5 and RetroFreak), but I don't really like how aggressive (at least that one guy from) RetroArch behaves against any company trying to officially license it.
     
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  3. matzesu

    matzesu Advanced Member

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    Acording to the Retro Bit "Gameboy", after i got me a Original GBC, a EverDrive GB and a EverDrive GBA for my GB Micro, i ditnt need a Gameboy Clone the next few months,
    I also hope that the Pyra also gets its GB GBC and GBA Emulators short after release,
    But the Retro Bit Gameboy is still on my Wish List :)
     
  4. JDTAY

    JDTAY Half Pepperoni, All Cheese

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    Man, ED's RetroArch story terrifies me.

    It's a good thing he doesn't have to deal with any lunatics like that on these forums.
     
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  5. benoitb

    benoitb Very Active Member

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    Thank you ED for sharing that story. It is enlightening and very important to me to know about this so I don't go defending them at all cost on various places of the Internet.

    And I think that if there is money to be made you should finish the retropi. What you described here of providing scripts is perfectly fine as you would be selling hardware and not a bundle.
     
  6. Ian J

    Ian J Advanced Member

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    I hope you got the Pandora back, hopefully crap like that won't happen with the Pyra.
     
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  7. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    I know it was legally be fine... it was just a really disappointing experience officially asking if they're okay if I link to their website (even if they can't do anything against that legally as well).

    It seems like they completely dislike using anything from RetroArch for anything remotely connected with any commercial usage.
    But instead of politely letting everyone know who asks, you get shouted at.

    I can fully understand they're pissed when a company simply uses their code in their product - but that's still no reason to rant to the ones who actually WANT to license it.
    On the contrary. If they're against that, then they could simply reply "Thanks for asking, but we're sorry, we don't want to license our code to any commercial project" and that#s it.
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 15, 2018, Original Post Date: Jan 15, 2018 ---
    Nope, but I never requested it back anyways.
     
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  8. levi

    levi Still fresh, damnit!

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    I wonder how much of that is due to them not wanting to get into complicated sub-licensing arrangements. They're distributing retroarch under some sort of copyleft license which is compatible in turn with the licenses of the cores they're using. If they ship it under a commercial license, they'll need to deal with all of those authors, which might be more of a pain than just pissing you off. Even agreeing to you linking to their website might mean they're conspiring to breaking the license, if it were ever testing in court, while them letting commercial companies rip them off doesn't involve them at all, and they could happily play the victim if that were ever useful to them. It's a borderline sociopathic way to think, but that's lawyers for you.
     
  9. Autechre

    Autechre Member

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    Yes, what EvilDragon described happened years ago. I am not proud of it either, however, do take into consideration that we were going through dozens, and dozens, and dozens of these same entrepreneurs all doing the same stuff at that time, and us never even seeing so much as a single penny back. I was honestly just extremely paranoid, and as you can see, ever since 2016 this stuff has just accelerated. My initial idea was to do something together with Libretro/RetroArch for the Pyra, and kivutar from the Lakka project thought this was a good idea. EvilDragon then came up with that other idea, and for whatever reason, back then I saw it as some sort of backstab, of wanting to do the same thing Hyperkin had been doing, or whatever. I think that must have been my state of mind back then. Maybe I should have given it the benefit of the doubt, somebody back then was whispering in my ears that moulds didn't cost that much, etc, and hence I started doubting everything that was told to me. That is a honest account here of what happened. In retrospect, I wish we could have avoided that, that you would have catched me back when there was less stressful shit going on, and maybe then I could have seen the value in it.

    We had denied ourselves any kind of income for years really ever since 2010, we only started doing a Patreon since October/November 2016 and at least that has been moderately successful for our aims. So things have been looking up. Back then, it was honestly like the walls were closing in on us, and it was honestly a really depressing period back then.

    Anyway, I apologize to EvilDragon for how I responded back then, but truthfully, I still don't know if it would be the right thing for the project or how we should do that thing so that both parties are satisfied. I guess I would be willing to give it a shot now and try to give this a chance if you were to show me at it now. To tell you the truth, after these numerous examples of what happened in the past with all these random companies, the various ways they have just completely shattered the enthusiasm I had for my project, I simply don't know whom to trust anymore, and I happen to see then an enemy under every rock. As simple as that. I'd really wish you would have gone through the same process since it's always easy to judge, but it's harder to walk in somebody else's shoes for a day. I had the best of intents for the project, and I just regret at where this 'emulation scene' has ended up with. We are STILL dealing with issues right now to this day with Hyperkin/Cyber Gadget, I am still talking with journalists, it is honestly not a fun experience at all.

    As for the Open Pandora, yes, I sometimes promise too much and put too much stuff on the back burner, but the intent is fully there. I am still intend on putting rolling nightlies/releases on the main site, unless you guys no longer want that, but it is still my intent to do that. I am sorry if it took a long time and I do apologize for that as well. Please take a look at what we do each day on our various repos, it is an inhuman amount of work, and yes, I am guilty of sometimes not getting to certain stuff and overpromising too much, or not being able to keep deadlines. It will be a newyear's resolution on my end to not let those protracted delays happen again when somebody takes the time and effort to give hardware so that some port can materialize. I am sorry for that.

    As far as I am concerned, it is possible we can put this behind us, the last thing I want to do at this point is to fight with other independent hobbyists when there is so much stuff going on. Recognize we do the RetroArch/Libretro project not for money, not for fame, we do it for the genuine passion and because we want to give people something nice to enjoy. That is honestly the only reason. Can I tend to lash out in the face of perceived subversion? Maybe I have been guilty of that, but honestly, as I said again, try to walk a mile in my shoes here. It's easy to judge, it's harder to sympathize with one another.

    PS. I hope we can prevent any and all slinging of insults at one another, that is not what I am posting here for. I am posting here for the sole intent of resolving this situation and for showing that I indeed regret what happened in the past but that you must also understand what I was currently going through at the time, and it was hard to distinguish friend from foe. It still is to this day honestly. I would be willing to give things another sincere shot if ED feels like it, but we'd just want to get something back in return as well. Me and my team have spent a ton of time into all this, we still have numerous bounties open on our site, there is still tons of work that could be remaining to be done, if we as an open source scene can have each others' backs, support each other, then these corporations would have less to parasitize off. If we just act like crabs in a bucket and just try to put each other down and prevent each others' success, then yeah, it will never amount to anything. And I will admit that maybe back then when me and ED had that discussion, in my determination not to want to see my project being usurped or used/taken advantage of I might have been guilty of unwittingly falling into that same trap. It has been 2 years, people have changed, the stress and dedication to the project hasn't though, so I hope you guys can accept my roundabout apology and there can be a turning of the other cheek here.

    I hope finally in this scene, despite past misgivings and transgressions, we can leave the past for what it is, and maybe when we make all those new year's resolutions, we actually mean what we say, and we try to undo the mistakes of the past and try to move forward positively. In this scene, we try too much sometimes to harbor decade-long grudges instead of being willing to forgive each other, give each other the benefit of the doubt and understanding that times maybe were tough on both of us. I'd be all willing to talk with ED again and maybe try to see where we can work together on some stuff. I am a very honest down-to-earth guy; maybe temperamental to a fault, but the sincerity has always been there, I don't talk behind people's back, and if I can sense that there is sincere intent, it will be wholly reciprocated. Yes, looking back on it, I was much happier back in 2012/2013 before all this nonsense with Hyperkin and all this stuff happened. It really put me in a downward negative spiral that really started chewing at me and the rest of the project. I hope that with 2018, I will no longer feel like that and things will be moving in a positive direction for us. There is a lot of very nice things I want to do with the project and other projects as well, it has just been a very, very bumpy ride and honestly the abuse over the years has been nothing short of depressive. There were numerous moments in time where my commitment and resolve in open source began to waiver and people wanted to move in the direction of closing it all up, notice I am still here. There is genuine passion and commitment here despite all the crap we went through. I hope that can be recognized as well.

    I also made up with byuu, we have donated to his preservation projects, I have also helped him when he was being disrespected and mistreated by others, etc. I am starting to sense that all of us in opensource land all have a genuine passion for all of this stuff and the only way we will get somewhere is if we all collaborate and work together with each other and put our misgivings to the side, and just treat each other fairly. This has always been my intent since Day One with a lot of people, it just took a long time for people to give us the benefit of the doubt. Anyway, as this is the beginning of this year, I am all for putting the past to bed and starting over with people. I am not a bad person, I simply have been dealing for years on end with these constant struggles, and it just became all too much. I have become battle hardened over the years, and I guess I am more willing now to give people a chance and not dismiss them at face value or paint everybody with the same brush.

    Well, this is once again another Wall Of Text, as I am known for, but honestly, it is well intentioned, and I just try to be verbose and try to explain my position in a lot of detail for the purpose of clarification. In short - I am sorry for what happened, I maybe misjudged or misanalyzed the situation back then because of some pretty depressing shit that was going on at the time, and I would maybe want to give things another shot if you feel like it. I just want us all in open source land to give each other the chance to put the past to bed and to try collaborating and having each other's backs from now on, too much damage has already been done because of infighting and we can all start to see the side effects of that. I realize you have your struggles and you have your grind, but so do I and my project. In my struggles and frustrations with the struggles I went through, I might not have taken yours into consideration which led to the unfortunate incident. And this is where we are at right now. Hopefully we can both get to the stage where we agree we share more in common than what divides us and we leave this in the past and try to still do something positive together. ED can PM me at any time or visit our Discord and I am willing to start over on a completely new page and give ED's projects, site and store the backing it probably deserves.

    Sorry to interrupt here though, but this is simply not the case. One of my colleagues kept tabs on them through an associate for the entire year, they never did due diligence, from what he tells me, they never checked into what their contractor was selling them, they never paid this associate so much as a single penny for his time, no royalties were ever offered, no contract whatsoever. They apparently were interested in knowing what pitfalls to avoid in terms of licensing, but honestly, they never cared, judging by their actions and the final product. But that did not prevent them from keep wasting one of my teammembers' time even though a week or so before they started selling this thing, they still had no idea what emulators they were using in conjunction with RetroArch. They had an entire year to figure this out. They were too busy selling something to Capcom/Jaleco/Data East etc. based on software they have zero rights to, based on software they never lifted a finger on, based on software that is even licensed noncommercially like Snes9x.

    Honestly, from looking back at that situation, there was no sincere intent there. The only 'intent' there, was to basically jerk around some open source volunteers that they know wouldn't ask for much, treat them as free consulting, strike up some deals with game companies, and laugh all the way to the bank. Well, that must feel great, for your valiant efforts of the past 6/7+ years to be recouped in such a way, and for them to just start selling it even though they still don't know what they are selling, and well, you can already guess what the SNES module is going to be...

    And it's because of things that continue on like this, that we are going to start up our own company, because quite frankly, we are tired of this nonsense. We are tired of us putting all the work in and these guys putting out these mediocre slapdashed crap products that even make them rich. Yes, I am upset about that, as I should have every right to. Running an open source project does not mean you should be slave labor, and apparently we need to start thinking of ways so we will be properly respected and treated by companies like this in the future, since morality is not an issue for them, only the least amount they have to give back in order to make the most amount of money off your sweat and labor. It's like communism and capitalism had a baby and called it 'capitalism', but it isn't, it's socialism for the ones that can set up VC-funded companies and screw the pooch, while everybody else (me, ED) is peddling up shit creek.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
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  10. JDTAY

    JDTAY Half Pepperoni, All Cheese

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    Whoa, not only did ED get an apology and a new collaboration offer, he got a free ebook. :)
     
  11. Autechre

    Autechre Member

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    Yes, that is me alright. I try to notch it down a bit, but honestly, it is well intentioned, I mean no ill harm by writing a long winded message, I just want to make sure every specific thing is covered and that I got my full thoughts across. Hopefully it gets seen that way, better to be verbose than to leave out too many details.
     
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  12. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    Wow, thanks a lot for replying here, apology accepted :)
    I never wanted a fight (I'm not the type of guy for that :D), so I'm really happy you replied here :)

    I can imagine it's hard for you - but maybe you're making it a bit hard yourself.
    Yes, you have EVERY right to get angry and pissed of for a company simply using your work without asking... that's totally understandable.
    And I can imagine it's exceptionally complex to do any licensing since you don't own the emulators you include... so you could basically only license out the framework.. which won't really help the company.

    However, if a company DOES ask about licensing, then you shouldn't be too harsh with them... maybe have an answer ready for everyone who tries to get a license explaining why this doesn't work?
    That should make things easier for everyone. Maybe even include an FAQ about commercial licensing someone on your website (as this is where companies look first), like byuu.org has done (https://byuu.org/emulation/higan/licensing).

    There's probably one thing that's special about me:
    I'm both a community member, loving retro games and trying to support hobby projects as good as possible, but I'm also running a company, where I try to sell hardware both for OpenSource or Retro. I want to give people a chance to easily dive into Retro or OpenSource stuff.
    That's why I think devices like the RetroN5 or the Super Retrocade is BASICALLY a good idea (I'm talking about the idea - it definitely wasn't good to use RetroArch without any license on them!)

    Yes, you and me and most people here, we all are capable of buying a Raspberry Pi, putting it into a nice case, maybe even connect the Retrode2 to it (to use original controllers and cartridges) and set up Libretro.
    However, there are a LOT of people out there who'd like to enjoy the classic games, but probably don't have the time or knowledge to set things up themselves.
    So it's important to have a fully working finished hardware ready for them, in my opinion.

    The problem is, as you know, getting the software licensed... which seems impossible with all the non-commercial cores...
    Ideally, you'd have a Libretro-ressource including cores available that CAN be commercially licensed - by only including the cores where such a license is possible.
    But then again, you'd probably have to setup deals with all the developers, as you'd probably feel guilty if you received money for a license and they don't... so that would mean a lot of discussions upfront.

    It certainly isn't easy :/
    But yes, I guess the only solution is: Either decide to create a version which CAN be commercially licensed (together with some emulator devs) or decide to not license it at all.
    And prepare an FAQ / answer template for every company who wants to license it.

    Regarding the Super RetroCade:
    Well, as I'm working together with RetroBit Europe, I know they license everything. As mentioned, they even licensed the retranslation from Aeon Genesis for Magical Drop 2 instead of simply taking it.
    And they licensed all the games on the RetroBit Generation and Super RetroCade. They also made the deal with Sega to produce new controllers.
    I know some of them are Retro-Gamers themselves. They are not bad people, but something went wrong here - and I guess the issue was the missing license information.

    Reading their email on your website, I can imagine what happened:

    One guy was working on the software of the Super Retrocade. He looked around and probably chose to use RetroArch, as it was suited best. He worked on that and then for some reason, left the company.
    Now, someone else was assigned to finish it.
    The release date had already been set and announced, so whoever had to take over, had to look into it, check if there's anything that needs to be licensed and try to finish the product in time for release...
    Whoever was working before on it most probably didn't leave proper notes, which is why the new guy didn't even know what cores have been used... he probably just found out that RetroArch had been used.

    So he had little time to finish everything up and probably wanted to license RetroArch once everything is ready for production. My guess is that he didn't even think that a license would be an issue, he probably thought this would take 1 - 2 weeks of discussion, then the deal is set and everything is fine.

    Well, that didn't happen... but everything was already in production.

    That's my guess how it worked - at least, that's how the industry works and this is exactly how his email sounds like.

    So they didn't intentionally steal it - the definitely planned to license it and didn't expect to not get one.

    But what should they've done then?
    They probably had more than 20k consoles produced. Not being able to release them would've caused them a HUGE loss (and RetroBit isn't a huge company yet, they couldn't afford that)... so the only sane thing they could do was to release it and still try to license RetroArch.

    Yes, what they did was wrong - but they didn't have bad intentions.
    And in my opinion, the intention is the most important thing.
    Everyone makes mistakes sometimes because he expects something which isn't the case (like RetroBit expected to get a license).
    These things happen. But that's totally different from a company who knows exactly they aren't allowed to use it and simply grab the stuff to make a lot of money.

    That's just my 2 cents,
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 16, 2018, Original Post Date: Jan 16, 2018 ---
    I wasn't better with my answer, I guess :p
     
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  13. Autechre

    Autechre Member

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    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 16, 2018, Original Post Date: Jan 16, 2018 ---
    Well, as aforementioned, we are in the final process of setting up an entity of our own and we are open to a lot of ideas, as long as it finally starts benefiting us as well so that we can keep the project alive, we can recoup programmers' hard work, we can keep paying for all these expensive bills, etc. I am in better spirits now and I am willing to put complete trust and confidence in you so we can have some collaboration going with you if you feel like it as well, and we can discuss anything basically. Feel free to talk to us, we can throw some ideas against the wall and see what sticks. You can best reach us on Discord, the link is there on retroarch.com. Just mention in the main general channel you are EvilDragon and we can take it from there.

    As aforementioned, I am sorry about the delays with the OpenPandora release on the site and I fully intend on correcting that as soon as possible. That you sourced the product and got it in my hands was not taken for granted, guaranteed, and I still want to return the favor there.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
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  14. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    Well, honestly "We were not aware of this situation, but want to work with you to find a successful solution." does sound to me like they want to try to fix their mistake.
    What's wrong with that?

    Umm... maybe your view on OpenSource is a bit different here.
    When you start your project, you can decide on your own, which license you want to release it under.

    If you release it under a license that allows commercial usage, you have to expect that some commercial company will use it.
    If you're not fine with that, you can also release it under a license that prohibits commercial usage.

    That's totally up to you as project creator.

    But releasing it under a license that allows commercial usage and THEN complaining if anyone makes cash from that is simply wrong, as these companies haven't stolen anything but simply followed the license and saw an opportunity to make money.

    But I think I found the main problem you have with companies...
    It took me a while to find the license for RetroArch, but in the end I found it on the GIT:
    https://github.com/libretro/RetroArch/blob/master/COPYING

    It clearly says that RetroArch can be used for commercial projects under the following conditions:
    • License and copyright notice
    • State changes
    • Disclose source
    • Same license
    And yes, this is EXACTLY what RetroBit wrote in their email AND if I remember correctly, Hyperkin released the sourcecode to their customers as well, as that's what's in the license.

    Now, the big problem is:
    Most companies don't realize that the CORES are NOT part of the same license!

    They find out about RetroArch, look up the license and find out that commercial usage is okay under the normal GPLv3 license.
    Can you blame them for that?

    I would've probably thought the same, if I hadn't known about the different licenses before.

    Then why exactly is it licensed under a license that ALLOWS commercial usage?

    Basically, you're running around telling companies "Hey, our stuff is free to use, you just have to release the sourcecode" - and then you complain that they're doing this?

    True, but it's also not their fault that you've got a license on your website which tells them they're allowed to use it.
    How SHOULD these companies know that you're not okay with that if you tell them otherwise before?

    Everyone is free to create projects and releasing their sourcecode or not. Everyone is free to create projects that allow commercial usage or not.
    But creating projects with a license that allows commercial usage and then complaining that companies are using it is a bit of a contradiction in my opinion.

    Tell me, why does RetroArch use such a license if you're not okay with it?
    Because I got the feeling that's where that issue mostly comes from...
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 16, 2018, Original Post Date: Jan 16, 2018 ---
    Well, what are you planning to do? Creating your own full hardware or having a combination like the Retrode with the Raspberry Pi?
    Sure, I'm happy to help with anything, be it with selling hardware which is officially being supported by LakkaOS (ideally plug and play) and giving you a share of the profit, or whatever.
    The Picade would be an existing hardware for that. It was quite a pain to setup EmulationStation to properly work with it (I had to do it myself).

    No need for that, as we already have a nice working port now. But thanks :)
     
  15. Autechre

    Autechre Member

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    Snes9x 2010 is not under the GPL license, neither is Genesis Plus GX. The issue with Retron5 and their contractor has always been the usage of noncommercial emulators.

    Let's not go over this again and keep taking my quotes out of context and spinning it around, I am sorry to say but you are now trying to make it seem like I am at fault here and I really, really don't appreciate that, and I want you to retract those statements. I never said anything to that effect.
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 16, 2018, Original Post Date: Jan 16, 2018 ---
    I never complained about this, I think you are misrepresenting what I am saying and I really don't care to discuss this here. I find it to be disingenuous. The only party we have known of so far that has directly used RetroArch is Retro-Bit. Our issue with Cybergadget/Hyperkin is and always has been Snes9x Next/2010 and noncommercial core usage. RetroArch right now is not a factor in our grievances with these parties.

    We have not seen any source code published yet for RetroArch from Super Retrocade, RetroArch is licensed under GPLv3, so anti-TIVOization needs to be honored. And honestly, let's stop with this nonsense where they do the least amount of attribution necessary. A 'powered by libretro' logo would be nice, a RetroArch logo would be nice, in consultation, some money in our pockets, maybe a kickback on our Patreon. THAT would be the kind of activity I'd appreciate, not this cannibalism of the host. Anything but using up our time and then leaving us with nothing, but yet more bandwidth to deal with for our efforts.

    And honestly, this is all moot if, by all accounts, it is using the same noncommercially licensed cores all over again. You cannot even give them the benefit of the doubt here, like all other examples, they have once again messed up despite having had a one-year lead time to get this right. Why defend them if they are already in the wrong once again? How many more times are you going to cut companies like this a blank cheque just because you happen to be a reseller?

    Why you are then shifting the conversation around and putting me in the hot seat is beyond me. Let's try to no longer do this because I fear once again we are heading for a collision again, and I really don't want that. If you care to discuss this, you can visit us on Discord or move to PM.

    This is not about us. This is about companies not doing due diligence on what they are selling, them putting profits and dollar signs before any kind of quid-pro-quo arrangements, using up our time, etc.

    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 16, 2018 ---
    Because RetroArch being GPLv3 has no bearing on cores like Snes9x being noncommercial. Like you yourself point out, RetroArch is not licensed the same as its cores, and doesn't need to be because a core interfaces with the Libretro API, which is MIT-licensed.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
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  16. JDTAY

    JDTAY Half Pepperoni, All Cheese

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    North Carolina, USA
    I was thinking about defending ED, but really, I think it's more important to make Mr. Pusher feel more welcome.

    I'm actually not particularly good at that kind of thing though. I guess I just wanted to say, welcome, Mr. Pusher, and I hope you get this all sorted out.
     
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  17. Autechre

    Autechre Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    37
    Hyperkin only released the sources to their emulators once somebody had reverse engineered the disassemblies and proven where it came from. They originally acknowledged nothing and pretended it was all made from scratch. It was not done with good intent right from the beginning. Only when it became time for them to play ball and there was no longer a way out were sources released.

    And on another note, when sinc resampler (which was GPLv3 licensed at the time and came from RetroArch) was found inside their binaries, they didn't release that code or anything, nope, they said that it was debug code that was no longer used (uhuh), but apparently this debug code that was no longer used immediately set off a firmware update that they immediately rolled out to supposedly 'remove' any leftover traces of this. Which I always happened to find very suspicious, but well, it is what it is, and it happened years ago. It was the only part of RetroArch (it being assembly code and publically exported) which could not have been obfuscated.

    They have not operated in good faith from Day One I am afraid. They have forum links where users point out to them the Snes9x core are noncommercial, their own employees posted in this forum thread and replied to all of the messages except for theirs. Retron5 has never operated in good faith. Notice by the way this is my fork they have been using and selling since 2014-2015 (Snes9x Next/2010), with heavy modifications made so it could actually run at fullspeed on ghetto-tier hardware.

    If they had operated in good faith, that Snes9x module would be gone by now, and I wouldn't still have to keep sending them e-mails about that to this day. They are still making money, to this day, off something they have no right to be making money off. Same with Cyber Gadget, and I fear the same might be true of Super Retro Cade as well as long as they don't do a full audit of their system, the emulators and the cores it uses. And honestly, that cheap Rockchip chip is not going to be running bsnes/higan, so yeah, given it is using RetroArch, that we know the hardware it is based on, and given the fact they don't have a bsnes/higan license, I think we can all come to a very logical conclusion what it is using.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
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  18. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Location:
    Ingolstadt
    No, I am not trying to make you it look like you're at fault here, I try to make you understand why I think the same issue happens again and again.

    I am well aware of the SNES9x License, but did you read my post thoroughly?
    YOU know that, I know that.. but if a company has not a single clue, finds that RetroArch is working nicely and checks the license.. all they find at first glance is the GPLv3.

    They probably don't even check whether the cores have a different license or not. They simply find the GPLv3 and are happy they're allowed to use it.

    I didn't find any licensing information at all on your website, only on the RetroArch GIT.
    Maybe adding a tab with "License" which lists the licenses or a least gives the information that the emulators have different licenses than the framework and it can't be used commercially might be a good idea?
    Because as far as I found out, most companies didn't even know that they were breaching the license here.

    Ah, sorry about that, that was a misunderstanding them.
    I thought with "your work" you meant mostly RetroArch and the full framework, as I thought SNES9x is mainly being developed by the SNES9x-devs (though I don't know if you're working on that as well or not).

    Well, have you told them that? Have you answered to the email and suggested something like that to them?
    What have they replied?

    So, you made them aware of the situation a year ago, that they can't use the cores and they ignored it?
    If yes, then it sounds like it was a good thing the guy who was developing the Super RetroCade stopped working on it, if he simply ignored it.

    Reading the email from RetroBit you published, it seems to me like they only saw GPLv3 and stopped investigating further, as they saw that as ONE project.
    The same could happen to anyone, as trying to understand exactly what RetroArch, the cores, etc. are, if you are not directly involved with it, can be a bit complicated.

    That's why I'm suggesting adding a license page on the website which explains things a bit. Then NO company can tell they didn't know.
    But as long as it's even not easy to find out that there are multiple licenses involved, you can't really blame anyone for falling for that trap.

    And no, this has nothing to do with me being a reseller for some stuff.
    The only thing I'm trying is to be the man in the middle.

    Try to explain to you WHY the same licensing issue seems to happen again and again and again.
    Try make it clear to you that a company might not even KNOW they're doing something wrong here.
    To PREVENT that it will happen again.

    As said: You have EVERY right to complain if a company KNOWINGLY breaches the license.
    And yes, even if they breach it UNKNOWINGLY, it's against the law.. but in my opinion, if they did it unknowingly and are contacting you, trying to fix the issue, they're not to blame. As they acknowledged they made a mistake and are offering to fix that.
    That's totally okay in my opinion. Mistakes happen. It's just important you try to fix it. Regardless whether you're an individual or a company.

    I can understand why you're blaming all these companies. And yes, you're right here, they ARE in the wrong.
    But have you ever thought about that they might NOT have done this willingly? That they thought the license was GPLv3 because that's the first they found? Or something similar?

    That's the only thing I want to achieve here. An understanding between the developers and the companies.
    And yes, I also sent an email to RetroBit Europe about that issue. I explained why the emulators can't be used. The Super RetroCade is about to launch in Europe as well, and they asked me for advice how to improve it.
    And yes, one was to check for different emulators they can license (like byuus).

    Moving to PM wouldn't help a lot. The reason I post openly is because I think a lot of that "collision" you think is happening is because of some misunderstandings.
    Other users might understand you or me better and might be able to use better words to explain what either you or me mean.
    As English is not my native language, some things might sound wrong to you, and if any community member sees something like that, he can find better words.
    That doesn't work via PM :)

    As explained: I know that. You know that. But can you expect EVERY company to know that, if the licenses are well hidden on the website?
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
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  19. rygD

    rygD Nihilistic Mystic

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    7,260
    Location:
    Everywhere
    @Squarepusher, as a Pandora owner and user, I don't think we would need a rolling nightly build if that requires any effort. Maybe you could just release an updated official Pandora version after major releases, when you have time (many of us are patient). Additionally, if you wanted, I think you can still put paid stuff on the Pandora repo, so you could get donations from us that way (not sure about all the legalities and stuff with the licensing as it pertains to that). I would also like to see a Pyra RetroArch port. Anything else you are working on is also more than welcome, or you can just come by and hang out. I think you might find many of us are also concerned about the misuse and abuse that has been giving you so much stress.

    What? Where can buy? Must see hardware info. Assuming it is a come, not something running an emu, but probably wrong, sadly.

    A possibly little known fact about me and my GB obsession is that I also like clone hardware. I don't own any, but I am not opposed to it. I suppose there are plenty of older clones I can start collecting (maybe I could fund it and clear up some space by selling off some of my other old hardware).
     
  20. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    19,401
    Location:
    Ingolstadt
    Ouch, THAT is something that should NOT happen! This is definitely bad and should not be defended.
    I wonder who made the decision for that... I met the developer team over a year before release at the GamesCom, and they were pretty open... probably marketing or some boss then :(
    That's definitely not acceptable.

    But it doesn't sound to be the same case with RetroBit, as they contacted you. That stil leaves the question if they can fix the whole situation...
    Writing an emulator from scratch seems impossible, licensing SNES9x is impossible, but scrapping a fully developed system when you even bought tons of licenses for a game... that's also almost impossible.
    That's quite a bad situation for everyone :/

    Hm, I wonder what Hyperkin licenses higan then for...
    But yes, it needs a lot of ressources.

    It's really a sad situation. There are companies, who would PAY to license an SNES emulator, but there isn't one they can use :/
    --- Double Post Merged, Jan 16, 2018, Original Post Date: Jan 16, 2018 ---
    You can buy it from me when it's released.
    It's currently on hold as Nintendo extended the design patents for the GameBoy and this one looked too similar.

    Hyperkin showed a GameBoy clone at the CES 2018 - it seems they don't care about Nintendos design. But it looks nice, with an Aluminium case.
    You might want to keep a look at it, if you're a collector.
     
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