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Blender now available for BeOS if and only if... 240

you are an official BeOS developer. Ton Roosendaal, author of Blender writes: "I've posted the first official BeOS release of Blender today at the web. Unfortunately almost nobody can use it because Be refuses to publish the necessary OpenGL library for it. All official developers have that library, but I'm not allowed to distribute it. I finished porting to BeOS already 6 weeks ago. Several bugs were fixed in the R4.0 OpenGL library during the porting process. Blender doesn't run at all with the original buggy 4.0 library, so I asked permission to distribute Blender with the fixed OpenGL lib for beta testing. Be decided it would be better to wait for March 12, when the BeOS R4.1 would be out. Last tuesday I received a (not official) message 4.1 won't be out until the 3rd week of April. I'm not very happy with this, as you can understand." Today's been busy so I have not had the time to contact Be. However I know they monitor /. Perhaps they'd like to comment?
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Blender now available for BeOS if and only if...

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  • What most of you seem to be forgetting is that this stuff _is_ available right now if you are an official BeOS developer. Now I'm not certain what the process is right now, but I know that when I first signed up to be a BeOS developer all I had to do was fill out an online form and then I was in. In other words, the people who want/need stuff like early access to new software should sign up to be a BeOS developer. Otherwise wait until the product is released. Be isn't out to screw anyone, they just understand that for most operating systems there's a difference between developers and users (a difference that Linux rips down every day). It doesn't serve the users for Be to release updates for their OS day-to-day, however it does help the developers. And this is why Be lets the registered developers have access to this stuff! If you guys _really_ want this then sign up to be a Be developer. If you don't need it right now, then wait for the release. If you just want to complain, then keep doing it. Just at least realize that there are logical reasons for this stuff.
  • And I quote:
    "Unfortunately almost nobody can use it because Be refuses to publish the necessary OpenGL library for it. All official developers have that library, but I'm not allowed to distribute it."
  • There are a lot of lame posts on this topic
    so it was hard to pick. Hey, guess what? Nobody gives a rats ass that you don't care.
  • I saw something like that at NAMM, but neglected to find out what it was. What is it?
  • Posted by FascDot Killed My Previous Use:

    It does suck that you can't distribute more up to date libraries, but I'm glad Be decided to hold off doing it themselves. Just like with the Linux kernel I'd rather they take their time and do it right than rush to market.
  • by gavinhall ( 33 )
    Posted by The Apocalyptic Lawnmower:

    Cool. Huh huh. He said smart.
  • Posted by Biokernel:

    AMEN. Linux rules, and Be will never be able to compete with Linux.
  • Posted by Anhydrous Cowboy:

    Cheap and strong like ten cent perfume! Get the hell out of my face with your football-sponsoring yeasty liquid! Malt liquor: the people's choice!
  • Posted by AnnoyingMouseCoward:

    I won't. In the 1980's, IncontinentBowelMovement was the evil empire. In the 1990's, it's MightGoSoft. What's the bet that in the 2000's, it will be ( someone like ) Be?

    How quickly they forget. When will you learn, "propriatory = customer lockin". Forget propriatory systems. Like fashion ( read : Intellectual Fascism ) they come and go so fast they arn't worth paying attention to. ( Oh yeah, on that point, his Billness has already been making rumbeling noises that MighGoSoft has a 64-bit OS in the works, so kiss good-by to all your Win32 API's Microserf lusers...).

    #define EXTREME_IRONY

    I mean, after all, "Apple MacIntosh is the OS of the 1990's", right? Everybody knows that Apple MacIntosh dominated the desktop all through the 1990's by virtue of it's superior desktop, right?

    #undef EXTREME_IRONY

    C'mon dude! Be isn't doing this for our benifit. They just want to rule the world ( the may MightGoSoft does now ). Why waste your time on them unless you *absolutly* *have* *too*?

    If your doing multi-media productions, then I could understand that you might have to give Be some rope ( since their multi-media systems are, by all accounts, pretty good ). Otherwise dude, give them a miss.

    Linux, not only the choice of a GNU generation, but an OS that will still be around when I move into the old folks home ( in about 25 years from now...).
  • Posted by Stephen van Egmond:

    I don't believe this guy.

    First, let's start with where you're factually wrong:

    1. Not all official developers have the 4.1 *beta* release. A hand-picked set of a couple of hundred do. Be wants to get the bugs out. The thousands of registered developers having their hands on this beta would make it a nightmare for the couple of people that are running the beta program.

    Are you subscribed to bebetatalk@be.com? No? Damn, I didn't think so. You're supposed to be if you are approved for the 4.1 beta. The readme told you to. There's a whole bunch of people right there that can beta test your app because they have 4.1 beta as well.

    2. You would be releasing the beta OpenGL to non-beta users. It might depend on something else in 4.1. Not only that, it's not finished. Be doesn't want to see unfinished code released.

    Here's some points on which you and all the other Open Source flamers are seriously mistaken:

    4.1 is a *feature* release. They want to get certain features in and finished. It is not a schedule-driven release to make something like Comdex or PC Expo or (heh) Macworld. As such, its schedule is free to fall back as far as it wants.

    Finally, ANY development model, open-source included, has releases. OSS usually has releases slightly more granular than Be's which has been "about every 6 months" for the past 3 years. If you're complaining that they have a release, and don't want things released before they're done, that's just tough bananas.

  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    Okay fine.. BeOS goes open source... it gets copied... every feature ends up in Linux...


    the resulting OS would be better than the two that started out.... Be Inc. could
    a) return to marketing PowerPC computers running said OS (I have no idea whether BeBoxes were PowerPC based, prob not, but whatever they WILL be, as there is no point having a seperate architecture.....)
    b) marketing the OS (service sells and hell they are willing to give it away as a loss-leader ANYWAY as we have seen with their deal with OEMS...)
    c) the issue is giving away the OPENGL LIBS!!!!!!
    "come on" is right, but still....
    to what end, Macbeth?
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    disclaimer : I am running Linux 2.2.3 not BeOS4 or 4.1

    lets look at this OS (BeOS):
    better filesystem
    better SMP
    better process/threading model

    look we WANT them, oh and

    THEY have a prayer of conquering the desktop...
    so long as gnumeric randomly crashes if I divide two numbers without EXPLICITLY changing the given cell to a float point based cell......

    we have no such prayer....

    geez get a clue
    (16 year old script kiddies.... (sigh))
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    okay can we draw a distinction between the OS and the freaking OPENGL LIBS!!!

    they can make select parts of their OS opensource you know... will they not be able to sell their OS because their gl libs have allowed every freshmeater to reverse engineer their kernel??

    besides that is NOT the issue...

    free access to those gl libs... THAT is the issue....

    PS Redhat makes money. BeOS is more desktop oriented... more service contracts to sell
    PPS and what about the OEM deal? Be, unlike yourself, understands the basic economics behind the concept of a LOSS-LEADER?!?!
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    okay and just HOW are Be's (laudable) purposes in re: stability and handholding served by not ALLOWING the release of these libs?

    realize you condemn your own arguement:
    #1 these libs are not available to all developers (regardless of what the author of the article said, look at your fellow BeOS developers who responded here)
    [no good reason for BeOS to do THIS]

    #2 these libs are being PROHIBITED from release
    this is different than simply not releasing them as a patch....

    #3 can you explain to me the logical connection between the need to be a developer and the desire to betatest gl libs?

    #4 now just how does this jive with BETA GRAPHIC CARD DRIVERS for example? there is NO principle of NDA; even when a given revision of drivers are too "beta" to be released on a webpage, using legal shackles to PREVENT such distribution is not only nonsensical (#2) but clearly is a principle that even hardware manufacturers (historically more closeminded about this sort of thing) dont feel necissary

    Nvidia, Diamond, Creative, all CARE about these drivers as they are the enablers to their product. You can have BeOS with/without/with a flawed copy of OpenGL drivers... a graphics card needs those drivers...

    the fact that THESE companies, hardly paragons of opennness, dont feel the need to be this anal definitely damages the case of Be Inc.
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    ok #1 one can make the assumption that these libs work on BeOS INASMUCH AS THIS FELLOW WANTS TO RELEASE SOFTWARE BASED ON THEM!! "yeah let me use these libs, they dont work i checked, but damn those features kick..." er no.

    #2 "the Beta seeding for r4.1 was very small."
    thank you

    #3 is he asking for a feature

    #4 Be is not being asked to sanction this lib.. they can ask that it be predicated by a dialog box saying "WARNING ALPHA BE VERY VERY CAREFUL" or something...

    sorry but you are a poor apologist for a fallen angel

    BeOS is business as usual
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    DISCLAIMER: I do not believe you ought to be arrested.... but then I am more OSI than FSF

    but having said that, some replies:

    you draw a false dilemma by being "sadde[ned]" by "people like you, who crave destruction of what they despise rather than elevation of what they love"

    realize that we see many good qualities in the BeOS from a technical standpoint.
    many so-called "warez" sites refuse to carry BeOS believing to pirate your OS is immoral, (as opposed to another OS I can think of) (oh and I know this as someone in my hall runs one.. yes I am a student in college, let the stereotypes run wild)

    YET to restrict access to a library that has no bearing on your ability to make a profit on your product PARTICULARLY when you (you = Be Inc btw) are willing to GIVE AWAY your OS as a loss-leader...

    this is foolish, and wrong-headed

    as such we oppose. we (or at least I) feel that if you must charge for your OS, fine. You created it, fine. You certainly have the RIGHT to restrict access to this lib. having said that you CAN, now SHOULD you?

    well I would posit that while you sell your OS to get money (something I have no quarrel with) does this lib's release endanger this? if not, then why restrict access?


    yes. this is a legitimate reason.. this is the reason you have not released it, I assume. BUT if this fellow is willing to put, say a dialog box explaining its dangers, and explaining how Be Inc does not feel it is ready for release, then why stop him... now this fellow may not have offered this alternative, but you could have and you still can....

    If you get "crucified", well realize three things

    1) Be Inc. is probably more respected than almost any corporate entity aside from O'Reilly Inc. amongst the /. hordes....

    for your techinical excellence....
    we become wary when you act in this manner...

    2) We expect more from Be than MS... why bother flaming MS, we all disapprove of almost EVERYTHING they do.... you on the other hand are the alternative that (at least I) would like to see on the desktop of tomorrow... Linux maybe in a few years but we are not a viable non-CS desktop environment yet... you are....

    3) many times you are honored, the OEM deal drew rave reviews and fight songs....

    this is not an action for which we can / choose to honor you for....

    - Rahul Sinha
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    are we asking Be to go open source

    well I guess many of us are, but, at least from the OSI end of the OSI-FSF spectrum....

    what this fellow wanted was not source but the right to distribute a lib that does not impair Be's ablility to sell its OS....

    try to argue the issue, please?
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    They dont "need" this lib to keep their OS proprietary... that guy doesnt even need source... just the bin

    there is no good reason to deny him....


    I dont plan to run BeOS, but it would be nice if my roomie did (as opposed to win9x)

    oh well...
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:

    sorry about the flamish tone I took

    Loss Leader -> taking a loss now for gain later

    since this lib will be "free" anyway,

    lets say they get a bit of hassle in having this lib out now

    they get having developers developing,not loosing interest etc..

    the term comes from loosing money of something with the expectation of somehow getting a lot of money later or through another device....

    ie MS IE
    or more benignly
    the free cell phones with the service contracts..
  • Posted by Forward The Light Brigade:


    to get better IT needs to be released for testing etc.
  • Posted by AnnoyingMouseCoward:


    Normally I have more sense than to reply to a posting where someone wants to argue, but I'll give you the benifit of the doubt.

    "The connection that you tried to make between IBM-->Microsuck--> to Be is so far fetched...".

    Ok, so I'm middle-aged and cynical. No big deal.

    "Let's face it, Be is well know for releasing good, WORKING, software..".

    Never said they didn't.

    "They did not "halfway" support everypiece of hardware when BeOS was young...".

    Excuse me, but were you replying to someone elses posting? This is becoming very confusing.

    The whole point of my post was that propriatory systems, no matter how good they may be, inevitably lock you in and decrease your options. I was simply stating the obvious.

    Be may be acting in a reasonable way at the moment, but that could change very quickly. If you want to work on the development of software for Be, that's your perogative dude.

    Me, I'll stick with totally open source systems. I've been burned before.

    Just my $3 worth of crack dude.

  • Posted by Wayne Steele:

    I appreciate both Linux and BeOS because I feel each of these "alternative" operating systems makes computing more useful and fun.

    However, if I knew nothing about Linux before reading this thread, I would be sickened by the whole OpenSource concept and the people who support it.

    Can someone please justify to me why it is unethical or immoral to produce a product and then sell that product for profit? Maybe it's just my red American blood, but I think Be, Inc. is doing a GoodThing(tm) by bringing a modern, easy to use, easy to maintain OS to the market. In addition, I am happy to pay good money for the BeOS and don't give a rat's ass that I don't have the source.

    And another thing, why do /.ers want Be, Inc. to fail so badly? If Linux and OSS is so great, why worry about what the commercial segment is doing? It seems your goal is total world domination at the expense of everyone else in the industry. Perhaps you can find some tips and tricks over at http://www.microsoft.com/.
  • Posted by Wayne Steele:

    ...when the exact same thing could be said about the number of Linux users.

    Hell, there was even a time when Windows was unpopular because the DOS advocates said it would fail.

    I guess history does repeat itself.
  • Posted by Wayne Steele:

    I'm all for open standards. Tell me how BeOS not being open source prevents it from following open standards?
  • Just let them play. They may have great technology, so let them have fun with it. All the open source community can do is learn from and by that way destroy the corporate world. The task is getting easier each and every day. Look at the bright side :)
    Oh and I'd really like to stick out my tongue to the BeOS team. Bleh! :P :) Drawing attention away from a great concept like open source should get you arrested in the first place. :)
  • NT is another "finely crafted and designed" OSs.

    I'll take Linux. It's already superior, and is only going to get better.

    And decisions about it are going to be made by the user/developer base, for technical reasons.

  • NT is another "finely crafted and designed" OS.

    I'll take Linux. It's already superior, and is only going to get better.

    And decisions about it are going to be made by the user/developer base, for technical reasons.

  • it is free, and the author is still unsure.
    he wants to keep it free and still make a living.
    he tried selling a manual, but that did not make
    much of a profit, so blender is still in that
    uncertain stage. if NaN ever gets bought out (or
    goes under, which would suck), blender will be immediately relased under the GPL.

    blender is still one of the few non free (as in
    free speech) programs i think are worth checking out. it puts to shame all the =$1500 3d packages
    i know of and has built in sequence editing and compositing. it also has the fastest rendering engine ive ever seen, and a really good animation
    system (rough for character work though, espeically if your use to maya and the like)
    there will be RIB export following the release
    of the plug in API.

    the download is about 740k. (half a floppy disc)
  • Costs nothing... just buy the OS...
    OK, it's free for very large values of "nothing."
  • Read the GNU Manifesto. Read it again. Read the GPL; understand it. Re-read the GNU Manifesto a third time. Get in into your head that commercial software can be GPLed. Get it into your head that a company can make money off fully free, fully open products. Get some real information into your head.
  • Look around you. Look around again. Work in a company for a while. Understand how a business works. Look around you again. Tell me how many people are making money off open source software.
    I write free, GPLed software. I get paychecks. Next argument?
    Open source only works if you can make money off of something else than the actual application itself, e.g. by making it so damn hard to use that you can sell people support, or by making it so damn big that most people prefer buying a CD instead of downloading it.
    Ok, you tell me then why Red Hat is making so much money selling boxed sets of their products to a crowd largely not dependent on either printed manuals or technical support. Tell me how Red Hat Linux is available in more places in this city than Microsoft Windows. I'd love to hear your reasons for that, considering you pretty much lost your own argument with the tip to convenience.
    A small, easy to use application will never be a commercial success when GPLd.
    So, how many commercial, free applications have you written? You'll have a lovely time proving anything can NOT happen unless you're fit to watch it forever. I'd love to see you try, though.

    And I find it quite amusing how bold and wise you think you are, hiding behind anonymity. Perhaps when you figure out how to use a web browser (registering a user name is really a simple procedure even you could probably handle), then you might understand things like writing software.

  • Boy, talk about a loss for clues. If you'd done a hint of research you'd know exactly how much money Debian rakes in each year, and in how many states they are a money-making, incorporated entity. Oh, yeah, that's right--the answers are 0 and 0. They're a non-profit organization, Einstein. Next time you feel the urge to vent your misfortunes on someone happy with what he does, choose your straw men more carefully.

    And about purchasing a clue? I have a paycheck coming tomorrow, actually, and do you know what I'll do come monday? Yeah, I'll go into work and write software; GPLed software, but of course that probably hurts you knowing that's what people do. So when you're ringing up another extra value meal, or making it back to class before the lunch bell rings, remember how much clue my paychecks afford, and that someday you might be able to put a down payment on your very own.
  • They get new couches and think they own the world? Sheesh!
    I like BeOS very much, but if Be's going to act like spoiled brat... ah well, guess we'll see...

  • I don't think the big, boy's club, 4.0 MIT grads, silicon valley firms monitor /. as much as you think. There seem to be a lot of low level tech support employees in these companies who do hit sites and pass them around their department, but the guys who run the company, the 4.0 MIT grads who got hired for focusing on grades, are going to be as clueless about /. as you can get.
  • Its not like OpenGL is that big of a trade secret. I can't see why Be wouldn't want to have more applications, oh well, seems like Be is begging to suffer from pointy hair syndrome.
  • You do have a good point there. If I wasn't so busy working for a FreeBSD house (80 servers and growing each day) I'd take a shot at Be. I did just install Suse 6.0, more impovements and glibc now. But I need to figure out how NOT to have KDE as the wm. KDE is slick but I still use olvwm. 5 years to hone my conf files... I can't leave now. With the work I do (ssh to many hosts and telnet's to routers and switches) it does me just fine. Anyway, the only apps I really use are xterm, netscape and calc. Hell, I still read my mail in pine!

    Anyway, back to Suse 6.0: nothing really new on the install, but setting up X was so easy that I felt guilty. It even knew what a Smile CA-6736DL monitor was. The monitor data base is huge. Finding the specs for you tube has always been the bitch when it came to setting up X.

    I should also note that I'm a bit biased. I do own the ftp.suse.org mirror. But when the company is shoving out 135Mb/s of porn, a small mirror is naught :)

  • The difference is that if there is an app that only runs with the "development" libraries you can get them. I don't have anything against Be, but this is one area where Linux really shines. There isn't anyone that can keep you from accessing the programs you want.

    Be is doing what companies do, they are trying to protect their reputation by making sure that everyone runs tested applications. In the meantime there are people who can't get the application they need because they can't get access to the development libraries.

    Linux has the best of both worlds, tested stable releases AND the ability to run cutting edge (read un-tested) code if you absolutely have to (or want to).

    I wish the best of luck to Be, but they are not only competing with the Microsoft and their desktop monopoly, but also with Linux, the most open operating system ever.

    It's a hard world,
  • If you don't want the cutting edge releases then stick with BeOS 4.0. No one is forcing you to upgrade. It's no different than with Linux. I still have a RedHat 4.2 box ticking away.

    But if you really needed to use Blender, then you would be screwed (and you would pretty much be FORCED to use Linux), and it is all because some company won't give you access to one library.

    This might not even be Be's fault. They may have a licensing agreement from SGI that requires that they not distribute the library themselves. Either way, however, BeOS users who want to use Blender are out in the cold, despite the fact that the principal developer is ready for release.

    I don't have anything against good software whether it is commercial or open source, but there is a definite advantage to having the freedom to choose for yourself.

  • I'm not that surprised by this. IBM has an OpenGL DDK for OS/2 that allows IHV's to update their video drivers to support hardware accellerated OpenGL. Unfortunately, you need an OpenGL license from SGI (which costs tens of thousands of dollars, I've heard) in order to get the DDK. The ironic thing is that a lot of IHV's and programmers know how to program their 3D hardware but don't have an OpenGL license. The end result is that the only people who can get the DDK aren't interested in it - so there are no hardware accellerated 3D drivers for OS/2, even though the DDK has been available for a year.

    Timur Tabi
    Remove "nospam_" from email address
  • OS/2 users number in the millions. BeOS users number in the tens of thousands (as estimated by the VP of engineering at Be).

    Timur Tabi
    Remove "nospam_" from email address
  • Firstly, not all official developers have received R4.1. Not even close. Around 100 have - I only got mine as I'm developing PCMCIA drivers.

    Secondly, Be are not refusing to release the lib at all, they just waiting to finish testing it (ever heard of QC?) Why should they pre-release a development version for the edification of one application?

    How about checking things are right before ranting like fsck - Another typical slashdot winge *sigh*....

  • Ow, just install your Linux server and be happy ;-)

  • Be was using the Metrowerks compiler tool up until R3. Guess what they're using now, egcs. Egcs is an Open Source project. Whiner... 'nuff said

  • That was not the point was it?
    The point was to show the original poster that Open Source is capable of producing very good (I would even say the best) software projects...

  • It was never a real challenge to begin with :)
    It's like trying to prove the air you breath is not usefull..
  • Well, BeOS is multiplatform. A simple re-compile and it will work on PowerPC. Sure, not 100 platforms, but the two biggest. If Apple wasn't blocking the specs to their G3 machines, then Be would have three platforms to play with. Not a single line of code would need to be changed.

    Have you checked out the state of BeOS PPC lately? It's not that good, in fact rumor has it the PPC port of BeOS will be abandoned by years end (to coincide with dropping of BeBox support). Simple case in point: BeOS PPC is still PEF and not ELF, there are no plans to convert it to ELF, which means people are dependant on the Metrowerks tools
    which are licensed to Be since MW doesn't see profit in there anymore. Which platform will prevail do you think? Already you see only x86 versions of most apps coming out. Oh, and just simply recompiling your app for PowerPC is not true (not unless you create a whole bunch of #ifdefs and many won't bother)

    And that makes it exactly the opposite of almost all other platforms/OSes out there

    What we'll see happening is for real open standards to emerge. I.e. that companies/organizations let go of their proprietary interface in order for them to become standards (no strings attached). That, or they could see the whole market go by their noses (think mp3 and RIAA for example). At least that is my hope.

  • > Oh, I hate to burst your bubble, but OS/2 is far
    > from dead.
    But its certainly not growing, esp. not like Linux currently is. OS/2 is so marginalized currently, that I would find it hard to recommend to anyone looking into non-MS OSes.
    I would also disagree about OS/2 being more easy to use and maintain. Linux has come a long way in this department in the last 3 years.
    When I think stable, I think *nix. When I think ease of use, I think Mac.
  • It's "Mesa", not "MesaGL". For trademark issues, I think.

  • In case you're still unable to get a clue, it's the same reason Red Hat and Debian have "official" releases - so you get everything at once. In this case, Be simply doesn't want the OpenGL libraries out there (who knows? Maybe they aren't fully tested yet).

    Yeah, sure... Be is fully tested... which is why they sell "betas".

    By the way... when Red Hat's not ready to release a distro I think you can get just about EVERYTHING yourself from various servers. You're not tied to RH - they could go under and disappear and you'd still be able to get everything you want/need.

    Additionally, there's no need to wait for a new Red Hat, unless you don't want to or don't have time to do it yourself, you idiot.

  • Speaking as an MIT student, you don't know what the hell you're talking about. Slashdot gets plenty of hits from 18.*.

    Be is definitely not a "big boy's club" either.

    This story has "leaping to conclusions" written all over it.. has it occured to anyone that there might be technical issues with the OpenGL libraries on R4.0? Be has shown themselves to be pretty up on this sort of thing many times before, and to not give them the benefit of the doubt without even getting comment from them is pretty beat, IMO.

  • by Dewb ( 4591 )
    As many people have said, R4.1 is NOT available to anyone but a select few right now. Most registered developers DO NOT have it.

  • Don't you love OS's where marketing and the bottom line impacts every decision?

    Good luck to Be, but it seems like they would do the same things as MS if they could.

  • Yeah, Windows is a great example of a closed source os that is high quality.

    How would opening the source of beos making the quality worse?

  • The Internet and DNS, Bind, Sendmail, gcc, etc.? Wouldn't you say all of that software broke new ground and changed not only computers, but all of society?

    Certainly, closed source software has brought about a lot of progress in computers, but don't even try to discount free software as something that doesn't break new ground.

  • There is _ONE_ Linux kernel. Nobody plays with the kernel because people trust Linus, and also because if they want a change, and it's _techically_ good, then it will get implemented in Linux. They just need to prove it with code, which is what GGI, Alsa, etc. are doing.

    And certainly one size doesn't fit all. But many people like being able to completely customize their environment, and yet be able to run all the applications everyone else can. That way, developers get and use distributions that are more technical, and newbies/people that just want to get work done can use easier-to-understand distributions.

    Having more choice is a good thing, and I think it's actually helped Linux, if anything. Red Hat is the newbie distribution that everyone hears about and tries the first time, and then as they get more involved, if they do, they'll see that there are different distributions and they can pick the one that fits them the most.

    But I agree. This is besides the point. Be can do whatever they want. Releasing their source under a true free license would make they best features be cannabalized by Linux pretty quickly, but Be would have a different priority than the Linux kernel and would, in effect differenciate itself.

    Anyway, as soon as people start using it, bug fixing becomes easier, and they can run something like Mozilla.Org, and maintain Be like that. Has Open Source hurt Netscape any? They're still in business offering proprietary products on the back end supporting their browser. Be could do something that like too.

    Then again, I've never used Be, but my arguments could apply to any operating system code being released to the public.
  • by itp ( 6424 )
    Alas, no, I am a nerd, and yet my University limits me to just one computer. A travesty, I say.

  • http://www.be.com/developers/developer_program/ent husiasts_program.html

    It doesn't cost a thing and nobody's turned down. I've been a developer for over a year now and I write BeOS software in my free time.

    I've heard of people in the past who registered to be a developer just to get free copies of the OS but since the dev programs have been restructured, that's no longer a problem. You should try re-applying again.

  • I think he was saying that the new libGL might depend on some other component like the app_server that would make it incompatible with the R4 app_server.

    If that was true, then people would still be unable to run the app if they didn't have R4.1

    Did that make sense? *rereads* Yeah.

    It's not like libGL is so monolithic that it doesn't depend on other components that may have undergone _significant_ changes. Be can do this with the app_server protocol, for instance, because the interface is through a library and completely transparent to developers
  • > Where else can you play a sound of any format or codec in about 7 or 8 lines?

    I'm probably getting the name of the class insanely wrong, but there's a Qt widget that's like so:


    one line. it just needs some more codecs. I'll give Be that, Linux has no coherent media framework. Kinda sad when you consider that it's so insanely easy to get a scheduler that favors media playback (setscheduler(SCHED_RT) or something like that)
  • There's a screenshot in the "4.1 preview" bit here:

    http://www.thebeline.com/1999/0x02/is sue.html [thebeline.com]

  • by trims ( 10010 )

    So, I guess that just leaves us 2.9 MIT folks here... (by the by, MIT is on a 5.0 scale. So, 4.0 is a "B" average...)

    I think the more relevant issue is how big the company is. If you're a big company, chance (at least statistically) that a person with power reads /. is low. However, if there are 30 people in your company, and only 1 reads /. - there's a good chance either the right person is reading it, or that person knows the right person.

    Back on topic: I wouldn't be surprised if there is a licensing issue with the OpenGL libraries. Meaning, they (Be) may not be able to independently distribute them. Who knows. We should hear from Be before toasting them with the flamethrowers.

    There is something to be said for waiting for a product to "jell" into a coherent whole first, then releasing it, rather than doing a rolling release. That's part of GNOME's problems with the general user population. It's great for developers to get early access to stuff (and in fact, I think it should be required), but releasing something to the general population before all parts are finished can be very bad.


  • for what it's worth, NAB (National Association of Broadcasters --a big deal show for media creation and tool types)


    runs from April 17 to the 22nd in LasVegas. They really need to have something to talk about, show, and ship by then.
  • SGI has made an X version of OpenGL source code public. See http://www.sgi.com/software/o pensource/glx/index.html. I don't see why this would not apply to the OS/2 version of OpenGL. Even so, you could use XFree86 for OS/2 to do an OS/2 implementation of OpenGL with hardware acceleration.
  • No. Be users who want to use Blender are not "out in the cold." They just have to wait a month for the 4.1 release to emerge. I'm a 4.1 beta tester, I downloaded Blender, and it works just fine. The same functionality will be available to the rest of the users in one month. What in hell is so bad about waiting a month for software you want? Are you saying you've never waited for software you were excited about to be released? What's the big deal?
  • Uh, that and because moving from Metrowerks to egcs brought a 20-30% speed boost to the entire OS and all applications on the x86 side (OS optimizations in R4 also contributed to that number).
  • I'd like someone to explain how Open Source is an answer to this problem, since I can't think of one. (Only honest, intelligent answers need apply.)

    If I understand correctly, the idea is that you release an open source library while it's still beta so that you have a very large testing base to find bugs and patch holes that you might have missed in-house. This has the advantage of being fairly thorough in the long run, but takes a while to produce final results, and requires that the software in question be open-source (with all of the resulting advantages and disadvantages).

  • Be wants to take over M$ using the same tactics: closed source APIS.

    Um, you might want to doublecheck some of your statements.

    Microsoft is infamous for *hiding* parts of its API. This means that you only have full access to its features if you work for Microsoft. This seriously hinders software development by third-party developers.

    Be's API is right there for you to look at, in /boot/develop/headers. There's even reasonably good documentation for it, in The Be Book (which comes with BeOS and can also be downloaded from the web). Be has done its best to allow third-party developers to write applications for BeOS, because they know that it is in their best interests to do so.

    Hidden APIs aren't the only tool that Microsoft uses to keep its monopoly. Integration of applications into the OS are a much bigger concern. I think that MS's next step in this trend would logically be replacing Notepad completely with Wordpad, to force people to buy Word-compatible word processors.

    Be uses neither of these tactics.

  • What meaning the word "naive" have for you?
    Just a fool believes that a commercially-oriented
    company is likely to make all its apis *not*

    Think about what you're saying before you type it.

    Be doesn't have the resources to develop an applications suite. Hiding parts of the API would gain nothing for them. They have instead made a great effort to _display_ the API, providing documentation and support for anyone who wants to develop for it. This helps Joe Average Coder write BeOS applications, which helps Be by creating more nifty things that run on their operating system.

    Believe it or not, not every company is a Microsoftian monopoly. Did you even look at the API documentation, or is this just a knee-jerk reaction?

  • Well, mesa doesn't support the TNT, and neither does Be's ogl. I'm perfectly happy to wait. I'd like to try blender too, but I can't see why the author has his knickers in a twist just because he has to wait a couple weeks to let people have it.
  • nope, I've spent about 200 bucks on opportunity cost tonight for a free OS.
  • What are you talking about? I applied for the same thing long ago and I just put down that it would be a hobby to develop on Be. I got signed right up. I don't even have a job as a developer. Be doesn't care. And Be does not make many wrong decisions. Most of their problems are from licenses and other companies' anti-competitive practices.
  • I, for one, really love the BeOS API, speed, stability, design, etc. In fact I love almost every aspect of BeOS. I have finally found enough time to explore the wonders of developing on R4 for Intel, and needless to say, I LOVE it--lots. I'm not the world's best coder, but I have finally found an OS that I can make stuff for. Where else can you send an email from a C++ program in 3 lines? Where else can you play a sound of any format or codec in about 7 or 8 lines? I've not seen it. BeOS is, in the words of Steve Jobs, "Insanly Great". (Ironic since Apple is now a major thorn in Be's side.. Oh well)

    Anyway, I plan on buying R5 when it comes out. I also plan on buying good software to support BeOS developers.

    I love Open Source(tm), but I am not so narrow minded to see that there is no other way. Red Hat is widly considered one of the best success stories of Open Source(tm), but why? They make money because Linux is very hard to use from a newbie point of view. It's hard to install. It's hard to download. It's even hard to upgrade. I use Linux. In fact I have two boxes here at home and a box at work. I like it. But I like BeOS better. Linux is not suited for the desktop--BeOS is. What ever happened to using the right tool for the job?

    I say keep up the good work. Ignore the losers here on Slashdot that bash, flame, and attempt to destroy all that is not Linux. I can't believe what the "community" is turning into. Gone are the days of geeks being excited by new technologies and new ideas. It seems that more and more people are just out for blood. Linux has all the features of just about every OS. But Be has most of the features as well. Why not all? Be left out the crap.
  • "Lets see your C++ program that sends email with 3 lines code hold up in a multiplatform enviroment."

    Well, BeOS is multiplatform. A simple re-compile and it will work on PowerPC. Sure, not 100 platforms, but the two biggest. If Apple wasn't blocking the specs to their G3 machines, then Be would have three platforms to play with. Not a single line of code would need to be changed.

    And why does code need to compile on any platform? (I assume you mean other OSes and not just BeOS on other hardware) Each OS does stuff differently (hence the reason for the different OSes) What's the problem with changing a bit of code? Or building a wrapper? Really, the BeOS API is a VERY good wrapper. If you want to port to Windows or Linux or something, just create a wrapper that mimics the BeOS API for the classes you used. It's much easier to start with a very high level API than a low level one. That way all the other systems out there can be easily ported to by simply filling in the holes. Once you have a set of wrappers built for multiple OSes, porting becomes a dream. Sure you could start out like that on any OS, but Be has already done the hard work for you be creating a well thought out and implemented API.

    That's part of the problem with porting to BeOS. It is based so much on object-type coding that most programs out there are hard to port. They were written at a much lower level (C instead of C++ and so are missing a lot of the object stuff). Basically, they had no API to handle all the little dirty work. In BeOS, you just deal with what you are trying to build. You don't have to mess with the details. And that makes it exactly the opposite of almost all other platforms/OSes out there now.
  • Well, Ok.. If I don't count the var setup and inits, then sure, the BeOS API is the same way. :-)

    Logically, it's the best way to go. I've just never been exposed to that kind of an API before. Having done a bit of programming on Windows, BeOS has HUGE advantages. I admit, I have done almost no programming in Linux. It's on my desktop machine, but I spend most of my time between Windows 98 and BeOS. At least those OSes have a GUI that works. For some odd reason I can't get X to work with my AGP Matrox G200. I want to try out GNOME and KDE, but it's just not working.

    To the general ultra-pro Linux people:

    That proves another point--Linux has a LONG way to go. Don't get the cart ahead of the horses. (And wanting to use a GUI is not a l0zeR lamer script kiddie thing--it's an effeciency thing. It takes about 1 second to drag and drop. It takes a few more to type and hit enter. My typing is pretty good, but not as good as my ability to simply move my hand.)
  • Linux > NT
    That's a given.

    The discussion is about BeOS vs. Linux.

    BeOS > Linux

    BeOS is one solid product. I like Linux and use it every day for server projects, web projects, etc. I like Be and use it everyday to develop on, play with, and in general get work done without a single crash. Sure I could do that with Linux--but why? BeOS is a programmer's dream. It's almost like having VB in C++. It's easy, powerful, nearly perfectly designed internaly, and extreamly fast.

    Linux is aging and falling behind. Sure, Linux ALWAYS catches up. But a true geek wants the latest and coolest stuff--regardless of what the stupid license is or if the code is "open".

    Therefore, I choose Be "for technical reasons".
  • sounds like someone is a little green today.

    "It's Brazilian"
  • Hello all...

    I summarized the sentiments that are being voiced here and wrote a respectful email to press@be.com [mailto] asking if they would consider making an official response to the question "Why is the BeOS closed source?"

    I really think they're a good company. They just don't yet understand why Open Source will ultimately be a Profitable Thing.

    At any rate, we can hope for an "official company line" on Monday.

  • >Be, (like Microsoft, Apple, etc.) says they will
    >never open source their OS. They don't need
    >reasons to screw their users; it's just a

    I don't think Be is out to screw users. Their plan is to make a really good, modern OS.

    After reading a lot of well thought-out comments, I'm willing to concede this point:

    A big part of the reason why the BeOS has some of the clearest, most consistent and elegant APIs is because these APIs were developed in the cathedral, not the bazaar.

    I still think there's a lot to be gained by letting other people fix your bugs and implement your features, but I'm not sure if the official Open Source(tm) system would work for Be.
  • Here, here. Well put.

    I'm less convinced that Be needs to go open source to live up to its potential. There may be some middle ground between Open Source(tm) and totally closed propriatary-ness that works better for companies that are built to sell software.

    Finally, what OS is this guy working on? Something for embedded systems I wonder? I would think we would've heard of it otherwise... curious

  • Well, that about covers it!
  • George,

    as much as i love the entire open-source movement (and will never go back), your arguments are very well founded. i've still not, after 10 years, been able to really fundamentally swallow the more militant values that a great deal of fsf (and now open-source) proponents hold dear.

    it appears that a not-insignificant set of conclusions can be drawn about the emotional security of the /. community by looking at the "profession" statistics in the poll that is running currently...

    i hate to say it, but when i was in college, i felt just like these kids do.

    now that i'm in the "real world", and have had to grow out of my idealism a bit (there's plenty left, believe me), i realize that utopia is merely a figment of my imagination...

    i'd say, don't take this inflamatory bunk so hard... they're kids blowing steam before mid-terms, finals, etc. and they've certainly NEVER been in your position before...

    i venture to guess that the vast majority have yet had to deal with millions to billions of dollars riding on one of their no-way-out decisions...

    cheers all!

    lighten up!

  • That's why it's better to work with free software rather than closed, proprietary software. If you work for a large company with lots of money to burn, then go with expensive software. Otherwise, stay away from it.

    IBM can't do anything about that licence because Silicon Graphics charges lots of money for the OpenGL licence. It's interesting to note that there is ``free'' Glide source code in IBM's OpenGL DDK.

    OS/2 is not a platform where 3D hardware acceleration means anything anyway.

    I consider it much better to work with people like MesaGL where you can actually see the sources without being independently wealthy.

    Is Be in the same situation with regard to SGI and the OpenGL licence?

    <whimper> The more I deal with closed software, the more I come a freed software radical.

  • I don't understand what Blender's problem is. They have a product that works under BeOS 4.1, but does not work under 4.0. So, users will have to wait until 4.1 ships. What's the big deal? Have they verifed that the the version of libGL.so works perfectly with BeOS 4.0? Do they know for a fact that all of the relevant bug-fixes are in that one library, and not in some other part of 4.1? It's not as though libGL can draw to the display by itself. Nor can it talk to a graphics accelerator by itself. More over, Be does provide tech support to users. Is Blender going to pay Be for their costs if users start calling when they fsck their system because they are mixing and matching libraries from different versions? I don't think so.

    Personally, I think Blender looks like a great product, and plan on trying it out. But, I don't think it's unreasonable for Be to require that 4.1 be released as a whole. It's not like Linus would have allowed some developer to stick parts of 2.1 into the 2.0 kernel and ship it because they just had to ship today, not in a few weeks.

    I think a lot of people gripe at any opportunity they can at closed-source companies. To which my reply is, shut the fsck up and start coding! You want an open source system that has the cool features of the BeOS? Grab the API/documentation off of the web site and start writing one. Here, I'll make it easy for you: Archived Be Book [be.com]

  • Ummm, where on earth did you get the idea that Be was going to drop OpenGL? All Be has done is refuse to give Blender the right to distribute the 4.1 version of Be's OpenGL library. It will still be on the 4.1 CD when it ships (or when the update is made available on the net (or both)).
  • I can understand your frustration, but is it really with Be? They are not the ones that promised that Blender would be available on a certain date. Also, it's not that Be is holding Blender back from anything. Blender is the one that is asking Be for a favor. I would guess that Be has a very good reason for not letting Blender distribute the library. For one, they may not feel confident that it will be reliable when used with the 4.0 release of the OS. They may also have contractual obligations that prevent them from letting anyone else ship it. This is the most likely. Be did not write OpenGL from scratch, and they are not just using Mesa. So, they bought it from somebody, and I'm sure they did not get the right to license it again to somebody else (which is what they would be doing if they let Blender ship it.)

    My point being that your analogy is not very good. It would be better to say that your lover has not come to bed yet because they have important business that must be completed first.
  • by Wiley ( 14529 )
    Sounds like something stupid like M$ would do...
  • I don't think you know what the hell you are talking about... Grades don't mean shit - college doesn't mean shit... If they did, I wouldn't be making a six figure salary only after two semesters of college...
  • Come on,... its like you could go to a stationary store, buy a box of stationary, personally apologize to every BeOS user and still have half a box left. :)

    (very special thanks to Sam Kinison for that line)

  • Gimme a break. I like BeOS, but the bottom line is that Sanscrit has more people using it, and silly things like this is the reason for that.

    I do care that they're not being forthcoming, but the bottom line is that the "affected population" for this problem is so frighteningly narrow as to approach nonexistence.
  • Really, stop being a bunch of pathetic whiners...
    Be is a great company, and makes a great product.

    So what if you like Open Source. You know what, many companies can't ship open source software. Why? Our world is ran by money. Try running down to the store to get handed a new computer. Or food, or a new car. It doesn't happen.

    Ask yourself why it takes so long for updates to major releases of the Linux kernel. Duh, Linus and everyone else has to pay for the expences of living, meaning, yes, they all have a job they devote most of their lives to.

    Not only do developers spend more time on closed source projects, they also assure that everything works together, because they can meet face to face, and plan out what they are doing.

    I'm not saying anything is wrong with Linux, but this is the real world, and people need to make a living. Closed source is not the ultimate evil. But open source is also not the ultimate solution to everything.

    As far as what i prefer? My company will be announcing our own OS in a few months. The core components will be kept closed (kernel, grapchis), but many parts of the OS will be open sourced (undecided, but probably servers, multimedia, UI).

    There are many ways it can be done, and I trust the people in charge of making that decision for what ever group will make it for what best fits what they do.

    I think some people should re-evaluate the situation. We are not talking about a bunch of hackers that sit around all night programming for fun, we are talking about people who have to provide for their families, and the only way i ever heard of doing that well is to work.

    Open Source would be better if we had a free economy, but until then, business, and personal decisions are based off $$$. Just be happy that the smaller OS makers like Be sell their OS's for a lot less than companies like Microsoft while providing much higher quality.

    Dan Guisinger
    (A)bort (R)etry (I)nfluence with a big hammer
  • I thought it was stuff like this that MESA was created for...

  • Be's CEO Jean-Louis Gassée offered to give away Be recently to OEMs. Why not go Open Source?

  • This was a great move for the developer community on Be's part. Programmers can see exactly how their time is wasted on the Be platform now rather than finding out that they've made a big mistake a few years from now when Be is bankrupt. I was going to develop for Be a year ago and fortunately saw Linux in time. The sooner Be developers swim from the sinking ship onto the bedrock that is Linux, the better. You'll be welcome here and sea sickness will just be a long ago nightmare.

  • It was originally developed just for their demo, but I guess enough people asked for it that they've turned it into a full-fledged app/utility to be released as part of R4.1. It blew me away. I've got friends who are involved in home studio recording, and I think they would be quite impressed with that piece of software. Move tracks forward and back in the mix, move them left/right in the stereo mix, apply effects - all in real-time with a mouse.
  • The same, old OS fight... Yeah... Great...
    Could you please remind me the former subject, please? ;)
  • Is there a Linuxppc port?


    Hi Mitch,

    Sorry, there's still not such a machine here. I received donations of a Sun, an
    Alpha and a BeOS machine. Still waiting for a Mac...
    A Blender for it can be made in a few days!


    ------------------------------------------------ -------------
    | Ton Roosendaal ton@blender.nl |
    | Not a Number http://www.blender.nl |
    ------------------------------------------------ -------------
  • He really should get his facts straight before complaining.
    It doesn't do wonders for you argument if you litter it with fallacies like
    All official developers have that library
    When infact the Beta seeding for r4.1 was very small. I for one do not have a copy of it, despite being a registered developer, and having released products.
    Be is looking after the interests of the OS by not allowing ITS beta library to be released as a separate component just to keep one developer happy.
    "Hey Be, I'm writing an app that requires feature XXX in the OS - wanna add it for me and ship it tomorrow?"
    Tom really needs to pull his head in. If all he wants is beta testing then he has access to all the same beta testers that Be is using, since they all have 4.1
    IMHO he sounds like a spoilt brat. I doubt he's even checked whether the new libGL works on r4
    "Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men"
  • Huh?
    An API is just an API, I could write a complete OS, and make it totally Free [speech] and use my own API.
    Would that make it better?
    Be's API is documented. That really is all you get even in OpenSource
    Please tell me what great open API Linux provides?
    Posix? Well Be provides that too (not yet there, but improving) And it's hardly a great API, just a defined set of functions from UNIX (which was proprietry)
    X? It's horrible, ugly and deserves to die. I would never write for an OS that designed its interface system around the X API
    "Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men"
  • by zod ( 95213 )
    Well I have nothing against POSIX.
    But, people argue that it is "The one true API" when it isn't.
    The POSIX standard came about as a way to standardise UNIX APIs.
    A good "Standard API" should not be based upon a particular OS (family).
    Be attempts to be posix compatible (hasn't succeeded yet) but that doesn't mean a whole heap. It just means it provides some nice functions that have been well thought out through the UNIX years. But they're far from perfect.
    I'm all for a standard OS API, but ANSI C isn't it, and neither is POSIX.
    They don't provide enough features, and way too UNIX-centric.
    "Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men"
  • Well, maybe Be just doesn't want to ship out beta products to the general public. That way, we'll all have an openGL library that actually works right, as well as all those media codecs.

The IQ of the group is the lowest IQ of a member of the group divided by the number of people in the group.