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Valve Working on GNU/Linux Native Open Source OpenGL Debugger

Unknown Lamer posted about 7 months ago | from the four-dee-graphics dept.

Graphics 88

jones_supa writes "OpenGL debugging has always lagged behind DirectX, mainly because of the excellent DX graphics debugging tools shipping with Visual Studio and GL being left with APITrace. Valve's Linux initiatives are making game companies to think about OpenGL, and the video game company wants to create a good open source OpenGL debugger to improve the ecosystem. AMD and Nvidia have already expressed interest in helping them out. Valve has been developing VOGL mostly on Ubuntu-based distributions under Qt Creator. The software currently supports tracing OpenGL 1.0 through 3.3 (core and compatibility), and is expected to eventually support OpenGL 4.x. Many more details on VOGL can be found at Valve's Rich Geldreich's blog." This looks much nicer than BuGLe. Valve is using Mercurial for version control and they plan to throw it up on bitbucket under an unspecified open source license soon. It works with clang and gcc, but debugging with gcc is currently very slow (hopefully something that can be fixed once the source is available and the gcc hackers can see what's going on). The tracer's internal binary log format can be converted into JSON for use with other tools as well.

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Slashdot is for fags (-1, Flamebait)

fucck slashdot (3503541) | about 7 months ago | (#46000079)

You are all fucking bastards who need to be raped by horses.

Re:Slashdot is for fags (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000135)

You are all fucking bastards who need to be raped by horses.

Tell us why you feel that way. Maybe we can change for you.

Re:Slashdot is for fags (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000203)

Are you upset about something? You seem really angry. Whatever it is, I hope you get it sorted.

Re:Slashdot is for fags (-1, Troll)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 7 months ago | (#46000451)

If you'd be so kind as to tell us what it's like to be raped by a horse,
maybe we would have something to abhor or long for.

As to faggots -- like Pres. Kennedy said: Ich bin ein Faggot!
In short: eat horse dung.

Re:Slashdot is for fags (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000743)

Would you rather be raped by a horse with an arm-sized penis or an HIV-infected nigger? (No condoms)

Re:Slashdot is for fags (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46001017)

You mad bro?

Re:Slashdot is for fags (1)

epyT-R (613989) | about 7 months ago | (#46002815)

What site do the breeders use then? espn.com?

Re:Slashdot is for fags (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46004219)

You are all fucking bastards who need to be raped by horses.

http://www.derpibooru.org/ [derpibooru.org]

Go there, create an account, change your filter settings and enjoy.

Very nice (4, Insightful)

pieisgood (841871) | about 7 months ago | (#46000167)

They're building out a comfortable development environment for steam machines. Which is great. When proper well documented tool are available, developers are less likely to shun a platform. If there exists a some GPU memory profiling software (not that a team couldn't competently create their own system) and keyword completion for OpenGL calls then I might consider switching over to Ubuntu for development myself.

This is, of course, throwing aside all DX vs OpenGL arguments based on feature support (which I'm not really familiar with at this time).

Re:Very nice (2)

PC_THE_GREAT (893738) | about 7 months ago | (#46000215)

Easier tools for developers, definitely means more developers will be interested. OpenGL was always a nightmare to me!

Re:Very nice (2)

thygate (1590197) | about 7 months ago | (#46000277)

The exact opposite is true for me. OpenGL is much easier to get started with imo.

Re:Very nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000419)

You would be surprised just how little we need to pull out graphics debugging tools. It's usually pretty easy to tell what's going wrong by what you see happening and a bit of rudimentary knowledge about how the functions work. However it would be nice to have something that gave me the level of debugging as Intel's GPA, Microsoft's PIX for Windows and Nvidia's Nsight. Mostly what those tools help with is solving logic/math errors which otherwise require working through a bunch of stuff on paper to figure out.

I doubt this will sway most Direct X developers. The main thing that keeps people interested in Direct X is the relatively straightforward API documentation and massive amount of modern examples to look at online. OpenGL's documentation is poorly written where it's needed most and most of the examples you find online are really old, targeted at hardware that was successfully phased out several years ago.

Re:Very nice (5, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | about 7 months ago | (#46000533)

OpenGL's documentation is poorly written where it's needed most and most of the examples you find online are really old, targeted at hardware that was successfully phased out several years ago.

Huge problem with books, too. Most OpenGL books are still about the old fixed-function, immediate-mode pipeline, and if they introduce "modern OpenGL" at all, it's somewhere later in the book as an advanced feature. Partly this is because many of them serve sort of double-duty, as intro-to-graphics and intro-to-OpenGL textbooks, and immediate mode with fixed-function pipeline actually is easier to use pedagogically if your goal is to introduce people to graphics and the OpenGL code is just an example, not intended for production. But retained mode and shaders is not an "advanced feature" anymore from a coding perspective, just the way things are done.

This is even true in new editions of textbooks, because publishers are lazy and often don't really update the textbook. Therefore a (c) 2012 book might still be >85% full of early-2000s content, depending on the book. The only two OpenGL books I know of, besides giant reference tomes, that take a "modern OpenGL" approach through-and-through, are the sixth edition of Interactive Computer Graphics [amazon.com] (which is actually revised), and Learning Modern 3D Graphics Programming [arcsynthesis.org] , a work-in-progress textbook that's been slowly appearing online over the past two years (sections I-IV are now complete, V and VI still being written).

Re:Very nice (2)

Nemyst (1383049) | about 7 months ago | (#46001243)

I've had to design a piece of code for students to use as a framework for OpenGL programming. It took me something like two days to drill down to the correct, modern way of doing things in OpenGL, including going through multiple online tutorials on the subject. Most used archaic implementations and didn't bother to explain anything they were doing. And that's just to render a box on screen!

I also do DirectX programming and the difference is like night and day. The OpenGL official docs are acceptable, but I think they lack two key features: examples (and not huge programs with no comments, that's not an example that's an infodump) and more info on what's being phased out (especially if it's not fully deprecated). You can still stumble on official docs for OpenGL 1.1 going through stuff and it won't tell you that it shouldn't be used anywhere but in legacy applications.

Then there's the problems with OpenGL itself which make learning it difficult, such as the piss poor error reporting and the awful tools.

Re:Very nice (5, Informative)

TyFoN (12980) | about 7 months ago | (#46001321)

OpenGL 4 Shading Language Cookbook Second Edition [amazon.com] is a book purely about OpenGL 4.x that I enjoyed.

You might have a look at that too :)
It's still fairly basic though, but it does not contain any of the old opengl cruft.

Re:Very nice (3, Informative)

TyFoN (12980) | about 7 months ago | (#46002045)

Working URL of the book. [amazon.com]
Sorry about that.

Re:Very nice (5, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | about 7 months ago | (#46002401)

Ah yeah, the SEO-style Web 3.0 URLs, where you guess which part is actually significant. :) On Amazon, the /dp/00000000 part is the real URL, and the /Seo-Friendly-Title-Inserted-Here/ part is SEO-bait garbage that's completely ignored from a technical perspective. So you can leave it out if you want, and http://www.amazon.com/dp/1782167021/ [amazon.com] works. But including only the SEO-bait part of the URL doesn't work, because it doesn't successfully locate resources.

Re:Very nice (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 7 months ago | (#46004197)

However the "SEO part" doesn't only help search engines, it helps also individuals like me who look at the URL before following it.

Re:Very nice (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46004573)

I wouldn't really rely on that too much:

http://www.amazon.com/How-To-Take-Over-The-World-With-OpenGL-And-Make-DX-Suck-it-DOWN/dp/1782167021/

Re:Very nice (1)

motokochan (1118229) | about 7 months ago | (#46006409)

John Romero, is that you?

Re:Very nice (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46006621)

Did you know they made a second edition?

http://www.amazon.com/How-To-Take-Over-The-World-With-OpenGL-And-Make-DX-Suck-it-DOWN-second-edition/dp/B00137RNIQ

Re:Very nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46003771)

So very much disagree with this!!!

I'm a computer science student doing 3D graphics programming, fixed pipeline was what was taught last year but I went further and studied the modern OpenGL instead (which is supposed to be this year's topic) and it was so much easier to understand how and why everything worked. A lot less code and a lot cleaner too.

In my opinion fixed pipeline should be the one taught second because all it does is confuse since it never goes deep enough to actually give a solid idea of what the hell is happening. Good for people new to programming in general, not good if you're trying to understand graphics programming.

Re:Very nice (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about 7 months ago | (#46004255)

Learning Modern 3D Graphics Programming [arcsynthesis.org] , a work-in-progress textbook that's been slowly appearing online over the past two years (sections I-IV are now complete, V and VI still being written).

Actually that tutorial tends to swipe all the OpenGL stuff behind a framework and talks about graphics programming in generic terms. Otherwise it's still very high-quality and useful.

My personal favorite is Anton Gerdelan's OpenGL Tutorials [antongerdelan.net] . I find more practical OpenGL recipes from that one. Good also for the basic stuff to get shaders and textures going.

In general I have found OpenGL programming incredibly complex. Same seems to apply for DirectX. They are cool APIs but the learning curve is high. On the other hand, you get high performance and they are like "clay", meaning that you can accurately describe what you want, allowing for a lot of flexibility.

I still have a place in my heart for the old crusty, hacky NeHe tutorials [gamedev.net] . I wish there was something as straightforward for today's newbie graphics programmers, like me. The fixed function hardware is kind of thing of the past.

"thow it up" (1)

noobermin (1950642) | about 7 months ago | (#46000173)

they plan to throw it up on bitbucket

Eww. I'd honestly expect to throw up something called "BuGLE" in a...bitbucket. "VOGL" doesn't quite sound like an onomatopoeia for vomiting though.

Means "bird" in German (1)

tepples (727027) | about 7 months ago | (#46000347)

VOGL sounds like Vogel, the German word for bird [wiktionary.org] , related to English fowl. If you ate badly cooked chicken, you might throw it up.

Re:Means "bird" in German (1)

master5o1 (1068594) | about 7 months ago | (#46003253)

Vogel makes me think of bread [vogels.co.nz] .

Re:"thow it up" (2)

djscoumoune (1731422) | about 7 months ago | (#46002319)

VOGL sounds like "vos gueules" in French which means "shut up" when you say it to several people.

Why not build on APITrace? (1)

elvstone (86513) | about 7 months ago | (#46000209)

Since I don't work on this type of stuff myself, I may be a bit ignorant, but why not build it on top of APITrace? And in what way is APITrace lacking?

there is quite a good open sourced OpenGL debugger (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000231)

Have a look at https://github.com/XenonofArcticus/GLSL-Debugger

Re:there is quite a good open sourced OpenGL debug (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46004365)

Specifically that's a shader debugger, although still useful.

Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like Steam (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000239)

Oh but I forgot, Slashdot loves Valve and Steam is the kind of DRM we circle jerk to here.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (5, Insightful)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 7 months ago | (#46000371)

Once people get it right that steamworks is the part that is DRM and steam is a distribution service and a store... I mean. There are some games that have no DRM at all and after you download them you can use them for whatever. But nooo, a distribution service requiring you to log in is DRM (never mind that GOG also requires you to log in for first download, and they get praised as DRM-free). /rant

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000391)

Am I required to have steam installed on my machine to use these non DRM games?

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000479)

No.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

bloodhawk (813939) | about 7 months ago | (#46000961)

Interesting. I might actually have a look at steam again. previously it always required you to install the steam client to download a game. If that isn't required anymore then I might actually use them again.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46002239)

Stop moving the goalposts when you're losing an argument, it just makes you look bad - you asked for "to use" not, "to install". Or tell us how you preformed media-less installs back in the days when all games were drm free.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46002279)

I don't think he is moving the goalposts. I think like many people he doesn't want to install the abomination that is the steam client just so he can download something.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

fast turtle (1118037) | about 7 months ago | (#46002215)

Sorry but that's no longer true as it's Fuck Yes!

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000485)

no, just move them out of the steam folder

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000769)

why is there a steam folder if he isn't required to have steam installed?

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (4, Informative)

Swarley (1795754) | about 7 months ago | (#46000829)

So steam has somewhere to put the games it downloads for you. This really isn't that complicated. Game producers determine the DRM. If the producer chooses none then Steam downloads the files to the steam directory and keeps them up to date for you if you log in and launches the game for you if you log in. OR you can move the files wherever you want and log in or not and the game works just fine. Don't let reality get in the way of your anti-DRM narrative though.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46001037)

So in other words they lied and steam is required to install the game initially. that is DRM. just because it is fairly lax with what you do after install doesn't make it less DRM.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46001291)

You are a moron. Yes, the steam client is required to download a game from steam - the steam client is not DRM. It is a program that allows you to manage your steam account to buy games, launch them, etc. Once you have downloaded a non-DRM game through the client, you can launch it however you like, move it to another folder. etc. etc.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46001469)

Rin, is that you?

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46001785)

So I can legally resell the game then as there is no DRM?

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46002207)

Sure, as long as you make sure to provide the buyer with the original media.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46002131)

Sorry, but that is rubbish. Remember how they changed TOS? Surprise! If you do not accept new TOS, all your library of games on Steam, DRM or not, is forfeit. I actually wrote them email and asked, and that's what they said in reply - that you need to accept new TOS or you can't play.

So pray that they do not alter the terms of your agreement. And while you're at it, pray also that Gabe does not sell the company or is not hit by the bus.

Fanboys are always blind, be it Apple fanboys or linux fanboys or Steam fanboys.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 7 months ago | (#46002227)

I wonder... How can you agree with a new TOS if you never open the steam client. The way I see it is: if you don't accept the TOS, you lose access to their services (store and distribution, login servers, etc) which results in games with DRM failing to load since they wouldn't verify since you are not logged in (if you are, then you accepted the TOS, right?). Thus, in the case of a game without DRM, they would provide Store and Distribution services. I doubt (IANAL, should check with one) they had the (legal) power to stop you from using games that don't rely on their services beyond store/distribution. AFAIK, when you buy the game you accept the EULA, which is basically a contract between you and the IP holder for that game (which isn't steam/valve, unless Valve games). When you accept TOS of Valve, what you get access is to the Store and Distribution. I don't think (but again, IANAL) that they can break the second contract you made with the company (which allows you to use the game). Thus, you lose access to their services but not DRM-free games. At least the way they interpret it.

If it is the way you say... (which may not be. Posting AC + no proof + internet? Can I have the salt, please?), then it is not good.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000487)

But you get real installation packages from GOG.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000729)

Only if you're on Windows or OS X. Otherwise, treat them as archives and use innoextract [constexpr.org] .

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46006271)

Err, what? GOG distributes only Windows and OS X games.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000661)

But nooo, a distribution service requiring you to log in is DRM (never mind that GOG also requires you to log in for first download, and they get praised as DRM-free). /rant

So a business that makes its money selling DRM-free games and makes you sign in every time you want to re-download the ones you purchased at no additional charge is evil?

You're an ass.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000833)

I think most people are fine with sign in to re-download. It is the install fucking steam to download that is the issue.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 7 months ago | (#46001453)

Many companies try to get you to install their Download Manager. Valve is not unique in this.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

bloodhawk (813939) | about 7 months ago | (#46001849)

The steam client isn't just a download manager though. It is a messenger, includes functionality to scan your system and includes a store interface as well as a pile of other crap. If it was just another download manager it would be irritating but partly acceptable. Instead it is an unstable, intrusive pile of shit that they have jammed so much into that it is offensive.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

fast turtle (1118037) | about 7 months ago | (#46002283)

As I recently discovered. Got an Xmas gift of Civ5 and found out it needed the steam client to be installed even though I don't care for online/multiplayer. God damn client puked, system BSOD's and then I couldn't install critical updates nor take the fucking client out (no restore point created) so I had to nuke it and take 48 hours to get all of the fucking Windows updates before installing the rest of my software.

I dislike Steam and Valve with a passion after that plus I don't like ads or having software demand my network connection be active all the time just to play an off-line game. Hell I'm not a gamer and haven't bought anything new in a decade so Steam and Valve are as usefull as gold handles on my gold fish.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 7 months ago | (#46002261)

The "nooo" didn't give it away? I need to work on writing better. Yes, exactly. Anybody who thought like that would probably be an ass. In my (and your) view, at least. Which is why I find it completely okay. A minor... inconvenience, if you may, for access to the rest of the services each provide.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (3, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | about 7 months ago | (#46000997)

It's difficult as a regular Steam user to get that distinction right, though, because the interface is completely non-transparent about which games have DRM and which don't. You cannot filter the list of available games by "DRM-free only" and choose to vote with your dollars for those. And the majority of games do have DRM (either third-party or Steamworks), so buying blindly is unlikely to get you a DRM-free title. That's a difference with GOG, because there you can know what you're buying is DRM-free.

There are some third-party sites that are attempting to compile the consumer information [pcgamingwiki.com] that Steam doesn't want to give you, but it's a bit hit-or-miss, and most Steam users don't know about such lists.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 7 months ago | (#46002177)

Valve could probably improve Steam in that way... I don't think, however, most Steam users are the type to care much about that. And those that DO care probably will enjoy the experience from other stores like GOG and Humble bundle (I don't think they are selling games with DRM in their store, although the occasional bundles does have DRM, and they are clearly labeled as such). Of course, there is the matter that some people may not care because they don't know, and it'd be nice if Steam mentioned/allowed filtering of DRM-free games to at least catch the eye, but I don't blame for not having it.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Undead Waffle (1447615) | about 7 months ago | (#46002657)

The store page actually does tell you whether they have third party DRM and if so what they use. One example I know of is if you check BioShock (the first one) the store page says it has SecuROM. Though it's true that they don't appear to list whether it has their own DRM and as far as I know there's no way to filter by DRM.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46004307)

Third party DRM has actually been removed from both BioShock 1 and 2. The information on the store page is therefore outdated.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (-1, Flamebait)

Winamp (3439895) | about 7 months ago | (#46001793)

Why was this bullshit modded insightful? Having to log into to download is irrelevant to DRM, so bring up this requirement for GOG is pointless. What matters is that once downloaded, the installer from GOG is completely DRM-free and independent of your Internet connection, GOG's servers and the fate of GOG as a company. Although some games from Valve are DRM-free, most aren't and certainly nothing from Valve or really any of the AAA titles are DRM-free, and so you're still tied to Valve instead of having all the power to run the software you've purchased under your control. Fuck you for perpetuating the confusion.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 7 months ago | (#46002129)

I fail to see how I'm perpetuating "the confusion". Please enlighten me how explaining that Steam is a distribution platform that offers both games with and without DRM causes confusion. Furthermore, explain to me how are you tied to Valve any more than you are tied to say your CD or that CD-Key you mustn't lose if you want to reinstall your game (in the case of games with DRM), or GOG for re-download (in the case of DRM-free games), which you don't need at all unless you failed to back up the installer?

Furthermore, tell me how you lose any power to run the software you've purchased if you only buy DRM-free games (even if it is from steam, since it is, after all, just a store and distribution service)? Because you will obviously lose power if you buy games with DRM, no matter where you buy them... or how, for that matter.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46002399)

because if you purchase a game on steam and they decide to change the TOS, the next time you go into steam you either accept the new TOS or you lose access to your ENTIRE library.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Joshua Shaffer (2895571) | about 7 months ago | (#46002507)

(never mind that GOG also requires you to log in for first download, and they get praised as DRM-free).

Eh? I can run the installers without logging in.

Are you saying that you think DRM should be classified as needing to be logged in to download it after your purchase? How else would you get the installer?

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

mgiuca (1040724) | about 7 months ago | (#46002925)

The difference with GOG is that with Steam games -- even those that don't use Steamworks -- you need to use Steam AND have a working Internet connection to install the game, so you are not truly separated from Valve's ecosystem. With GOG, you can download all the games you own, back them up to a portable hard drive, and then you can play all the games regardless of your Internet connectivity or GOG's continued existence, even if you change or wipe your computer. With Steam, you can only play these "DRM-free" games until you next need to re-install them for whatever reason.

Back in, say, 2000--2004, a game that needed the Internet to phone home during installation (but not every time you play the game) would have been considered an unacceptably intrusive form of DRM by some. It's funny how the public perception of DRM has changed so much that phone-home-on-install is no longer considered to be DRM at all. Well, it still is, because it's a server that controls your ability to use a product you have already paid for. Granted, it's relatively mild DRM, but it's still DRM.

I suppose that once you install a non-Steamworks game, you could manually grab the files and zip them up and archive them, but Steam doesn't make it easy. If you had, for example, used Steam's "back up game" feature, you would find that it requires a phone-home to restore the backup. In addition, Steam doesn't make it easy to play these non-Steamworks games without using Steam. All the Start Menu and Desktop shortcuts launch Steam with a particular game ID, not the game .exe directly, so using these shortcuts either requires that you are signed in to Steam, or have explicitly put Steam into offline mode. It's actually quite difficult for the average user to figure out how to run these so-called "DRM-free" games without Steam. So yes, GOG.com is absolutely more entitled to be praised as offering DRM-free games.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 7 months ago | (#46004559)

I wonder how open Steam would be to improvement on that front. Steam could certainly improve (for a certain measure of improving, anyway) when it comes to DRM-free games. Something as simple as allowing you to browse the store for DRM-free games would be an improvement. Providing an installer or perhaps making the backup feature not requiring an internet connection when dealing with DRM-free games would be nice too (like GOG.com's installer!). OTOH I also understand what kind of service Steam is offering vs GOG.com (you are right, they did change their name to GOG.com), with one wanting to be more of a platform where you can have a social experience as an integral part, while the later just wants to sell you a game and let you enjoy it (you can socialize in the forums/other parts, but that's not part of what they are really selling, is it?) and that's it.

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (1)

mgiuca (1040724) | about 7 months ago | (#46004639)

I actually wonder why GOG doesn't improve their downloader app into a full Steam competitor, which automatically downloads, installs and keeps your games up to date. It wouldn't imply adding DRM -- you could still download the stand-alone .exe installers, and the GOG client could have a "save as .exe" button. Because as it stands, I have to keep making this trade-off between properly DRM-free games (GOG, and Humble Store for that matter, which is also nice in that it supports Linux) and the convenience of having a one-click download/install and always-up-to-date experience (Steam).

Re:Open Source! At least it isnt DRM laden like St (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46004607)

The kind of user who can't work out how to zip their DRM-free game files from the Steam folder and setup new shortcuts, isn't the type of user who cares about having to install Steam to re-download a game.

Reminder (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000321)

It is rude to randomly redirect visitors to beta.slashdot.
Even more so because beta sucks.

Not beta, abuse. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000521)

/.:Glorious design! Glorious Mobile-browsers! Bask the in the un-usability!
AC: Yes, but I came here for an argument!! ./: OH! Oh! I'm sorry! This is abuse!

that's what Slashdot Beta feels like.

Re:Reminder (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000903)

It took me a while to find it, but change your bookmark to this:

http://slashdot.org/?nobeta=1

Re:Reminder (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46002341)

thank you!

Nice! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000507)

AMD's CodeXL, http://developer.amd.com/tools-and-sdks/heterogeneous-computing/codexl/, has proven useful many times while writing OpenGL on Linux. If they make one that is graphics card manufacturer agnostic it would be awesome.

CodeXL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46000737)

Why would AMD sink resources into this instead of just open sourcing CodeXL?

http://developer.amd.com/tools-and-sdks/heterogeneous-computing/codexl/

Inertia (5, Insightful)

Dega704 (1454673) | about 7 months ago | (#46000975)

Reasons like this are why Vavle's push is good for the entire Linux community and not just gamers. I see a lot of naysaying about SteamOS, but what really speaks to me is the number of gears that are beginning to turn.

Re:Inertia (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about 7 months ago | (#46003581)

This. In my opinion FOSS works best when there is some real commercial interest behind it. They can throw a bunch of properly paid engineers on the problem instead of some weekend hobby coders. We should get quite robust results.

Re:Inertia (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 7 months ago | (#46003749)

Reasons like this are why Vavle's push is good for the entire Linux community and not just gamers. I see a lot of naysaying about SteamOS, but what really speaks to me is the number of gears that are beginning to turn.

Well, it's because Valve sees the competition, and they see where they have an open field. Linux is one of them - the app stores it has are few and far between. Valve and Steam are huge names among the computing community.

And while Windows and OS X have their own app stores that compete with Steam, Linux doesn't. Which means Valve can move in and take over and become the app store for Linux.

But to do that, they need to encourage development on Linux, and convince the AAA developers that there's a market for it. Hence SteamOS and this project.

Remember, the end goal is to set up a walled garden on Linux. (And Steam's one of the ultimate - if you think Apple was hard... ). Because Linux doesn't have one, and Steam and Valve are big enough names to convince game developers and commercial vendors to sell software through Steam.

And yes, Valve is listening to the developers on what they need, because the Steam Store on Linux is rather bare.

As a side note - if SteamOS is so hackable (by design) - how long until people hack it to disable VAC? I mean, it's only a matter of time before "cheating video drivers" and bots get ported to it, and if you have full control of the kernel, you can neuter VAC into thinking all is well while the player is really cheating through online multiplayer...

Re:Inertia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46004623)

The Steam client and this VAC will remain closed source, but yes you can modify the OS to trick VAC. That already happens on Windows though, anti-cheating tools are specifically designed to try and work around OS-hacking trickery. With the source to the kernel though I imagine it would be easier.

Re:Inertia (1)

wertigon (1204486) | about 6 months ago | (#46023537)

SteamOS won't ever become the app-store for Linux. Reason being, an app-store is only a glorified package repository.

I do believe we will see less centralised package repositories though, not more.

Year of the Linux Desktop (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46001717)

Almost a decade late, and now we may finally be approaching YotLD.
And it is spearheaded by a company that is built around DRM.
Easy to swallow DRM, but DRM all the same.

The irony is palpable.

OpenGL predates DirectX (1)

dwater (72834) | about 7 months ago | (#46002643)

> OpenGL debugging has always lagged behind DirectX No, it hasn't.

JSON? (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about 7 months ago | (#46002821)

"The tracer's internal binary log format can be converted into JSON for use with other tools as well."

Can we have it in a useful format as well? Something compatible with grep and awk maybe.

Re:JSON? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46026923)

At least we have http://stedolan.github.io/jq/

How about also building a decent general purpose d (0)

melted (227442) | about 7 months ago | (#46003561)

How about also building a decent general purpose debugger? GDB is a pile of shit, so folks resort to just stuffing their program full of printfs() and examining the output. I'd pay good money for a state of the art debugger that works on Linux.

Grammar Senses Twitching (1)

ChoosyBeggar (2969823) | about 7 months ago | (#46006889)

From the summary:

"Valve's Linux initiatives are making game companies to think about OpenGL,"

Unless Valve is making companies, this "to" should be omitted. Either that, or "making" could be switched to "forcing". Yeah, kinda OCD, I know, but we need to save the English language from the Internet! :|

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