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Op Ed

guardian.co.uk - Clone Wars- is plagiarism killing creativity in the games industry? Thanks Ant via Boing Boing.
While finding out that a rival company has plagiarised your hard work may sting, there is little legal recourse for developers who believe their game idea has been appropriated. The issue is that video games are creative in both visual and aural terms, but also in purely functional terms, and the laws that govern these elements are fundamentally different.

Alex Chapman, a lawyer at Sheridan's specialising in games, says: "Generally speaking there is no copyright in a game mechanic or the functionality of a game (or indeed any other type of software). Copyright will protect the visual appearance of the game to the extent that it is original such as by protecting the graphics, screen layouts and art assets. It will also protect the underlying software code. However, it will not protect the functionality.

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27 Replies. 2 pages. Viewing page 2.
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7. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 14:45 Hyatus
 
I quit reading when all it talked about was how you can't copyright a game idea.

Well, no shit. It's called a patent.
 
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6. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 14:41 Mashiki Amiketo
 
PHJF wrote on Dec 27, 2011, 13:54:
I was under the impression modern cars were 100% designed to be as difficult to work on as possible so that the layman would end up taking it to the shop instead of fixing/maintaining it himself.
Nah. 15 years ago you could short two pins on the computer connector to read the OBD codes and read the codes from the check engine light. 10 years ago you could borrow or rent a OBDII reader, since OBDII hasn't really changed in the last 10 years, just the modules you can still get away with it, just swap out the reader card unless you have a generic card which a lot of the cheapo-readers come with so you can pull up the basic codes. It just won't give you specific reader information in some cases to let you pinpoint the problem.

What's difficult, and what makes it difficult is not having easy access to the wiring and schematic diagrams for the electronics and having to do traces. Even then a lot of small garages if you're friendly with them will print off a copy of the traces for you. Here's one I had awhile ago that I did for a buddy of mine, a 2009 caddy(gotta love canadian warranties 3yr/100k km- ~62k mi) I had in had a "at idle hot stall" and your code reads a fault in the TPS(throttle position sensor) might be caused by the TPS, but also might be caused by the electronic gas pedal actuator(because it's fly by wire), or simply by a bad secondary ground connector. However all the other sensors read properly. Everything checks out okay, problem persists. And your scanner says "ok or in range or it's giving voltages in range" for it's data feedback. In the end you'll just break down and do manual checks of all the sensors anyway. I still blow the money on keeping my snapon scanner cards up to date, and it's worthwhile since I like tinkering with cars in my spare time.

In the end, the MAT(manifold air temperature) sensor worked fine while driving but at idle it would freak out and give a reading of it being -60C causing the computer to choke out the mixture by increasing fuel, and closing the throttle plate. Even though the engine was hot. A mechanic today is half mechanic, have electrical engineer it seems. But someone with enough patience could still fix today's car(2009/10/11/12) in their driveway if they wanted.
 
--
"For every human problem,
there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
--H.L. Mencken
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5. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 14:17 Dev
 
PHJF wrote on Dec 27, 2011, 13:54:

This almost reminds me of the discussion the guys had at the shop back about 8 years ago, of why are there so many different bits(sockets, screws, security locks, etc) on cars.

I was under the impression modern cars were 100% designed to be as difficult to work on as possible so that the layman would end up taking it to the shop instead of fixing/maintaining it himself.

Naw. But the newer cars have far more electronic and computerized parts and are more expensive and harder to just do a simple fix. The engine compartments are also far more cramped on smaller cars, so its much harder to work on them. Big older cars are way easier to work on. Its crazy that I have to jack up the motor and remove an engine mount to replace my belt, and thats on a 10 year old car. Also, fewer people nowadays work on their own cars than used to be the case. Its not a conspiracy, its just natural evolution of the cars.

In terms of specialized tools, most of the time standard tools will work, and one can pick up the DIY auto repair manuals such as Haynes that tell you how to use normal tools instead of special. But sometimes those special tools are required, often because of space constraints. Fortunately, places like NAPA will loan out the more expensive tools for free (they take a deposit that they refund once you bring the car back). They also loan out code readers if needed.

As for specialized bits, thats mostly because they don't want non mechanics getting into some areas. Which is silly, because most non car people aren't going to even try it, they are going to take it in.

I am glad though, that the auto industry standardized (mostly) on electronic codes to read. It would have been horrible otherwise, I bet dealers would have required you to get it serviced there to read the proprietary codes if they could get away with it.
 
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4. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 14:06 Beamer
 
PHJF wrote on Dec 27, 2011, 13:54:

This almost reminds me of the discussion the guys had at the shop back about 8 years ago, of why are there so many different bits(sockets, screws, security locks, etc) on cars.

I was under the impression modern cars were 100% designed to be as difficult to work on as possible so that the layman would end up taking it to the shop instead of fixing/maintaining it himself.

Some things do seemed designed to drive people back to the dealer, but none of that makes any sense. People tend to be car people or not car people, and how many really go to the dealers, anyway? The manufacturer itself gets happier customers if they can fix a simple thing (such as an O2 sensor, which is often hard to get to for absolutely no good engineering reason) and gets no share of customers going to the neighborhood garage, where I'd suspect a wide majority of customers end up.

I don't know if things like this are laziness or attempts to appeal to dealers. Maybe internationally there's a difference between who does the work.
 
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3. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 13:54 PHJF
 

This almost reminds me of the discussion the guys had at the shop back about 8 years ago, of why are there so many different bits(sockets, screws, security locks, etc) on cars.

I was under the impression modern cars were 100% designed to be as difficult to work on as possible so that the layman would end up taking it to the shop instead of fixing/maintaining it himself.
 
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Steam + PSN: PHJF
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2. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 13:37 Silicon Avatar
 
All I got out of the article was that some app developer got butt-hurt because some other app developer cloned his unoriginal crap game idea. Then he spawned a drama and made up a bunch of LOL about how the whole industry was going to collapse.

I guess he's new and missed the past 30-40 years worth of game clones.

Admittedly I skipped past some bits because the article is TLDR and an obvious bid by some Guardian editor to sound like an industry analyst/editor.

 
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1. Re: Op Ed Dec 27, 2011, 13:29 Mashiki Amiketo
 
Article makes no sense. You can't copy an idea of a mechanic that's already been in use by someone else, that you've already copied from someone else, that's been in use by someone else for who knows ho long. Or has already been in use by society in some form. I mean seriously, the article starts out with the premise of pong and ping-pong. Which are based on something that already existed.

This almost reminds me of the discussion the guys had at the shop back about 8 years ago, of why are there so many different bits(sockets, screws, security locks, etc) on cars. Because they can. When I quit, I had no less than 45 different bit sets totaling 1100 pieces. I hated that. Seriously, just make everything nice in simple in 5.5-14mm for the guts(engine/inside), and 12-32mm for everything else and call it a day.
 
--
"For every human problem,
there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
--H.L. Mencken
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