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Discord Conv. 12/11

Disclaimer: This is my editing, which definitely reflects my personal views about the drama.

Just for those who don't have time to scroll the discord and want to have a quick glance about this drama.

12/11
David SønstebøYesterday at 8:23 PM We are progressing well
David SønstebøYesterday at 8:27 PM @Werner Today's medium post by the Semkos explain why it did not happen. We as a non-profit Foundation who has the mandate of developing an open source permissionless technology could not sign a unilateral NDA with a for-profit company. Today's blog post by the Semkos really reveal why they wanted this, they plan to patent technology.
WernerYesterday at 8:28 PM Patented technology has a way harder way to reach global standards...
David SønstebøYesterday at 8:28 PM It never will.
David SønstebøYesterday at 8:30 PM The Semkos failing to get patents won't affect IOTA.
David SønstebøYesterday at 8:31 PM It seems Nikita is Economic Clustering (they even use this term), so it's prior art.
David SønstebøYesterday at 8:48 PM I have consistently defended the Semko brothers against accusations that they are exploiting our community with the intent of backstabbing it. We have offered the Semkos flexible positions in the IOTA Foundation to compensate for their work, which they have declined. We have always held both Roman and Vitaly in high regard, but knowing the 'behind the scenes', reading today's blog post and their Phybr website, leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth. They have made a name for themselves and got followers based solely on IOTA, and now they are going in the direction of trying to patent what is by all signs IOTA prior art. They also explicitly state that they intend to support 'multiple coins'. This looks like classical manipulation of the community, keep mentioning IOTA enough to keep the community interested in what they are doing, while in reality attempting to disrupt the same community. Open Source lives and die by its communities. Now that the ICO craze has finally faded, it is time to consolidate around projects, not to fragment them. To be sure, whatever Phybr is, it does not threaten IOTA, IOTA is lightyears ahead of anything they could even theoretically have, even piggybacking on IOTA's work, but it is a distraction and confusion for the community. Given that they have now revealed that they do intend to patent their technology and have refused all attempts at official collaboration, I hereby advice the community to be very skeptical of the Semko's intentions until they prove that all their promises (which they have even accepted donations for) of working to increase the adoption of IOTA are true.
WakanDanYesterday at 8:58 PM They had this strategy before asking for a meeting. This was all a PR stunt after all
David SønstebøYesterday at 9:10 PM @RicardRoyo Not at all, they can't patent prior art. Let me make this clear: IF has always valued the Semkos as community members, but they are not in any shape, way or form critical to anything related to IOTA's success. However, them piggybacking on the IOTA brand (they even renamed to DevIOTA when starting work on Nikita) and causing confusion and disruption in the community, is not something we can support.
Mr GlassYesterday at 9:16 PM David, do you think they maybe would use the meeting to claim to be authors of their idea, which is probably very close to CfBs EC? With a NDA signed you could get in trouble for doing similar work, right?
David SønstebøYesterday at 9:17 PM @Mr Glass I won't speculate on what their intentions were with the unilateral NDA.
David SønstebøYesterday at 9:21 PM @Deep_Sea_Hopper I highly doubt that scenario. EC is known, EC is implemented in code etc. I am not at all worried about that. What I dislike is distraction and fragmentation of community, which is why I am forced to take a harder stance right now. IOTA made the Semkos, and now the Semkos look like they are exploiting this trust and support that you - the IOTA community - have given them. Roman's latest tweet re: Coordicide is quite revealing, they were offered to work together with our vast team, with very good salaries, on Coordicide, but instead they elected to decline that under the guise of wanting to be 'independent', which is fine, but now it is made obvious that this independence is less about creating a thriving and healthy community, but more about maximizing profits. In general, there is nothing wrong with a for-profit model, within IOTA there are tons of for-profit opportunities, but when they start talking about patenting consensus and piggybacking on their trust within IOTA to also on the side 'support multiple coins', that enters an uncomfortable territory for me.
citrullinYesterday at 9:25 PM @David Sønstebø Hi David. I talked to some people about this. And I don't have a good feeling about the Semkos things either. But some people mentioned concerns about the ternary and the whole story behind it. (I don't think that a lot of people question ternary itself, more the incensive and private company behind it). I think it's more the intransparency about everything regarding this topic. So, from my perspective, I think it would help to be more transparent about this topic to strenghten the IOTA community. Especially the IOTA developer community. But, of course, I can understand when there are valid reasons against it. I just want to tell your my opinion. I currently see a little risk of splitting the community and I don't want to see this happen.
David SønstebøYesterday at 9:28 PM @citrullin Ternary is mathematically superior, this is something the universe decided on when it created itself, there's tons of research on ternary, ternary is a very hot topic in Machine Learning, and there are multiple companies developing ternary hardware in some form or another. IOTA is not 'bound' by ternary, this is a myth that seems to be spread by FUDsters. IOTA is simply optimized for that future where IoT devices need absolute optimization, for legacy binary it does not matter at all that IOTA is ternary, these devices can afford the overhead.
Deep_Sea_HopperYesterday at 9:39 PM Hey, Remember when PEAQ said they were pro IOTA, weren't going to ICO, and weren't in it for the money!!! hahha
JimbobYesterday at 9:39 PM @Deep_Sea_Hopper 100% we will see a fundraising effort before any whitepaper.
citrullinYesterday at 9:41 PM @David Sønstebø That is totally true. I already used it on my Bluepill (STM32F1). So it's proven that we can use IOTA on small Microcontroller. My statement was not about any technical facts. Not questioned that at all. It's more about peoples feelings. Especially trust. Since not everything is transparent, people might fear that the IOTA protocols design decisions are based on commercial interests. So, I hope you understand why this is currently more present than ever. In context of the Semko brothers. So, it might give people more trust in IOTA to be more transparent, open about this topic.
KiLLuYesterday at 9:42 PM @David Sønstebø are there any plans to do a board ama again on youtube? The last was a few months ago, so i think there is a lot to say.
David SønstebøYesterday at 9:44 PM @citrullin Thanks for the support. IOTA has always been about pushing the boundary for the future. We do have a ternary series planned that explain why we chose ternary, the history of ternary, ternary vs binary vs *ary, what the current status of ternary in the wider industry is etc. But that requires time @WakanDan To be honest, the Semko drama is not significant to the IOTA program or project. It's about how they are using you - the community - the IOTA Foundation has never depended on the Semkos for anything. So I won't be making any tweets from my account about it, this is a community matter. @KiLLu YES
WASSIMATHIMNI[FREE CARLOS]Yesterday at 9:45 PM Community sent them raspberry pis for their own profit What a shame
David SønstebøYesterday at 9:51 PM Sure, my sentiment has always been that Open Source is dependent on communities, so I will always fight for the rights of the community that has built around IOTA. The community deserves to know if they are being exploited or not. However, when it comes to this specific matter, I am not going to throw gasoline on the fire on twitter, as twitter is more external. I am not at all worried about the industry or investors seeing this, I mean all it shows is that the IOTA Foundation has been working to support the community and assist community developers.
DariusYesterday at 10:01 PM David said it yesterday in context of the NDA thing. Te IF feels committed to the “contract” with the community to stay focused on open source. In the same way, the Semkos may have entered a “contract” (not legally speaking, just morally) with the community members that donated to them to contribute directly to the Iota protocol. If now people feel that this “contract” is breached by the Semkos, the community should get together, form one voice and express their opinion publicly. No need for the IF to get into that imho.
HagiYesterday at 10:02 PM not planning any ICO and saying "not our prioretiy at this moment" are basically different shoes lol
Deep_Sea_HopperYesterday at 10:08 PM I think many people forget as well; though Nelson helped bring attention and grow the community, Nelson actually works against the Tangle and is not in the vision of the IF. Even though CFB discussed this with Semko, they kept straight on their path disregarding the big vision. Not to take away from them... they helped the community grow, but the truth is they always kind of did their own thing and disregarded the Tangles vision.
Deep_Sea_HopperYesterday at 10:11 PM I believe it was that Nelson doesn't consider topology, and because it constantly changes neighbors. Topology of the network should be in a way geographical I guess, rather than criss-crossing around the world. I'm not that technical, so I'm sure I'm messing it up. Also, I believe Field created an issue as well... can't remember how though.
Deep_Sea_HopperYesterday at 10:14 PM It solves the immediate issue of maintaining good neighbors... but I think as the Tangle evolves there will be a replacement or simply it will fade away. Just my guess
HagiYesterday at 10:16 PM Semkoin?
limo_tangleblogYesterday at 10:16 PM I received them yesterday.
KiLLuYesterday at 10:16 PM so they dont a own ico but selling icos
limo_tangleblogYesterday at 10:17 PM anonymously of course, sheds a different light on all of this.
Deep_Sea_HopperYesterday at 10:18 PM The other thing is, everyone thinks Semko Brothers are amazing! and the community is lost without them. They are good for sure, but hey, there have been many Semko's... thing is, they actually decided to work for the IF because they believe in the vision. Semko didn't believe in the mission, so he stayed as a non-affiliated community member. Which means, there will be another Semko in the community, just as Microhash came after him. Microhash joined the IF.. and soon there will be another amazing community member. And at some point the IF won't be able to hire more employees... hahaha
David SønstebøYesterday at 10:21 PM @PergamumTJ All the tokens were up for sale, not a single iota was 'premined' for anyone Now that https://twitter.com/tangleblog/status/1072116857912680449 Tangleblog.com (@tangleblog) @RomanSemko @benjamim Well, pardon me, no ICO (your website indeed states that) it's a separate coin (Semkoin), it has, apparently, been shared with many VC's weeks ago, and your website has been created in November. I received that presentation anonymously yesterday, incl... Twitter Has come to light, I feel that the truth is out. The Semkos has clearly been talking with two tongues.
t00kYesterday at 10:22 PM @limo_tangleblog are you sure these "prints" are real?
HagiYesterday at 10:22 PM lol if thats not a fake, im losing the faith in humanity
limo_tangleblogYesterday at 10:25 PM if it's fake? we will see when the Semkos react, that's the reason I shared them publicly under our discussion on twitter. If it's fake, I apologize, if not, everything is said and done.
Grobian - IOTAshops.comYesterday at 10:29 PM A community can build you, but a community can also tear you down. Just saying. I don‘t know if it‘s a smart move to fool such a big and enthusiastic community.
ricardosnowYesterday at 10:30 PM It's true that he always seems friendly. However he never told us about their agenda. People donated to him thinking that was for the benefit of IOTA itself as an open source, and that's sad. I didn't donate, but if i did I would like to receive the money back.
Slavik ButalikYesterday at 10:31 PM i want my field donation from last season already, give it to the sheeps and then uninstall field and nelson.
capre IOTAYesterday at 10:32 PM So basically people who donated with iota tokens, did devaluate their own coin in a way, with supporting the semko's.
BuckfuddyYesterday at 10:33 PM Semko already losing followers on twitter
David SønstebøYesterday at 10:33 PM I encourage everyone to be civil, and remember that even though this is upsetting, it does not affect IOTA in the slightest. IOTA has never depended on the Semkos. I have always defended the two based on believing that their intentions were honest, but I can't fault the community for feeling betrayed after this. You can't mislead a whole community and piggyback on it to make a name for yourself, and then go behind their back and expect them not to be upset. The good thing is that this Semko-fiasco over the last days has brought the community together to reject this sort of exploitation of itself. This is healthy.
PatriQYesterday at 10:34 PM @David Sønstebø Do not worry about IOTA reputation, facts are out now, nothing to worry about...its clear
2pacYesterday at 11:31 PM @muXxer and people are free to criticize them for how they go about it
muXxerYesterday at 11:32 PM But i hate this negative witch hunt everytime
Jacq IOTAYesterday at 11:32 PM I believe many people are duped into donating to them. They aren't forthcoming about their goals before accepting other people's donations.
citrullinYesterday at 11:34 PM @Jacq IOTA That is what I crisis them for. And I understand why the people feel like the Semkos just used them.
Deep_Sea_HopperYesterday at 11:34 PM MuXer... it doesn't worry me, and I actually am glad the IF has a little bit of competition. What I hate about the whole crypto-space is the lies and misleading social media posts. Such as: we won't ICO, we don't want to be like them.... then truth comes out and they are going for the money
David SønstebøYesterday at 11:37 PM @muXxer The community is pissed off precisely because it seems what the Semkos were planning was actually fragmentation of the community, rather than consolidation No one is pissed at the Semkos for doing for-profit ventures on the side
MuanhYesterday at 11:39 PM I mean that is even how semkos started. They wanted to create a for profit iota hardware wallet but needed autopeering So thats why they created nelson
t00kYesterday at 11:39 PM They are allowed to do other stuff, and you too, of course. I think people feel deceived when they donate (either money or Pi's) thinking it would be useful for the community. And then weekly updates with how good it goes, that they are gonna meet up with the IF.. Then all of a sudden Semkoin drops
MuanhYesterday at 11:39 PM But they said or where implying they were creating a new consensus algo for iota and accepting donations for it the donation part is the important part
David SønstebøYesterday at 11:44 PM This drama was unfortunately real. ICOs and Trojan horsing ones way into a community under the guise of supporting it, when the real intent is actually fragmenting that community into a separate patented for-profit network, is not how one achieves a standardized open permissionless ledger. The ICO nonsense of 2017 set the entire cryptospace back over a year. I am very happy to see that the community takes a strong stance against that.
Trill Pill [Roman Scamko fan]Yesterday at 11:46 PM roman and his brother should refund any donations theyve received, what kinda fucking business practice is to accept donations from community members under the premise that youll develop for this community and then change course and do your own thing but keep the donation, honorless bullshit
https://twitter.com/tangleblog/status/1072116857912680449 https://twitter.com/tangleblog/status/1072117068277927936 https://twitter.com/tangleblog/status/1072117319537778689
WakanDanYesterday at 11:48 PM Thanks @limo_tangleblog for sharing the investor deck. It's a real shame they tried to mask their true agenda. Their comments today remind me of the saying "It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it." What makes IOTA great in my opinion is our community, partnerships, superior tech, vision and the growing IF team of talents (and spec). I don't know any other project capable of boasting of all of these. Some may try to seek short-term gain, regardless of potential impact to the community, but this shouldn't distract us from IOTA's vision and valuing what we have.
citrullinYesterday at 11:50 PM @muXxer That's not the point. But accepting donations, tweeting about: Hey, we need some Pis, in hope that the community will donates some etc. is not a nice way to do that. As it looks like, they used the Pis just for they own profits. I understand why people are not happy about this.
Come-from-BeyondToday at 12:03 AM @muXxer For me it seems some people are pissed because they do for profit stuff There are nuances. When I saw that fancy GIF with the Semko testing their variant of consensus on Tangle I liked it, because it looked exactly as Economic Clustering. Their reinvention of EC means validation of my work. I didn't patent EC because I wanted the whole mankind to benefit from my invention. But then I got info that the Semko are patenting the tech. And are planning to earn money on that. Isn't it normal that I'm a little bit upset with how the things unfolded? Now I'm waiting for their patent details to be published, if their tech is actually EC then I'm afraid we'll see more drama. Because I want the tech to be kept in the public domain.
David SønstebøToday at 12:05 AM Of course Semko is no threat This is not about that
David SønstebøToday at 12:07 AM Of course @gusp There's been numerous clones of IOTA already, all are dead
David SønstebøToday at 12:08 AM The Semko's got exposed to the community before they could fragment the community. So the threat is over.
capre IOTAToday at 12:08 AM If your not being cloned, ur doing something wrong.
AconitinToday at 12:09 AM @David Sønstebø I'm not in legal, so I wonder - What would happen to the IOTA development if the Semkos patented EC? Wouldn't it forbid IF's further development on the technology then?
David SønstebøToday at 12:09 AM @Aconitin You don't get prior art patents
Trill Pill [Roman Scamko fan]Today at 12:10 AM All the raspberry pis, iota and money thats been donated to them should be refunded, because of their dishonesty about their true intentions the iota community essentially funded a competetior, they're scammers in my eyes, saying theyll develop for iota and then doing the opposite was a false premise for everyone that was kind enough to donate resources and they mustve known they were lying for a while alreeady
David SønstebøToday at 12:11 AM This is untrue. The Ecosystem Dev Fund was not yet legally set up, which we informed the Semkos of. Furthermore, a prerequisite of EDF grant is that your work is open source, theirs is not.
Come-from-BeyondToday at 12:14 AM @w4lker [semkofork liason] [could the patent legally prohibit d IF to work anymore on EC's?] The prior art already exists on Tangle (couldn't resist temptation to protect my know-how, as usual :trollface: ), but proving that involves a lot of legal work.
Deep_Sea_HopperToday at 12:16 AM @Buckfuddy at the time Field wasn't open-sourced. Even on discord IF dev's asked Roman to open-source the code. He kept stating he was cleaning the code.
David SønstebøToday at 12:18 AM @Matin That paragraph summarizes this whole endeavor beautifully. When did the Board ever say that a line of their code was ours? Never. We have stated the fact that the Semkos built their name on the IOTA community, branded themselves as "IOTA Dev" and"Tangle Researchers" when they began work on Nikita, they have continuously communicated on Twitter that they are working on different ways to optimize the Tangle etc. etc. etc. This incessant lying after today's revelations makes it impossible for me to take them serious. This blatant lie is just as bad as the misleading of the community that they did.
Come-from-BeyondToday at 12:20 AM @diskings Are there actions that can be done right now... dunno, I'm busy with coding Ict and other stuff, waiting for the patent and then sending C&D letter seems to be the cheapest option now
David SønstebøToday at 12:20 AM The Semkos were never in IOTA's roadmap, we have very solid paths to Coordicide and have a dozen researchers working on the most optimized direction
Come-from-BeyondToday at 12:21 AM I hope they will be honest with potential investors and warn them about the risk of IP infringement...
raphiToday at 12:21 AM @David Sønstebø did any of you ever see a line of their code?
David SønstebøToday at 12:22 AM @raphi No. AFAIK, no one has. We respected them as community members prior to today, but they have never even been remotely equated into anything R&D IOTA-wise.
FredericToday at 12:23 AM @David Sønstebø Sorry for disrupting semkoin drama... Will the ~95 non-chosen brainstorm submissions be published by IF? They might be a solid base for lots of community projects in 2019. Would it be even possible to apply for ecosystem fund and implement someones idea (open source) ?
David SønstebøToday at 12:23 AM @Frederic Yes they will, and yes.
David SønstebøToday at 12:25 AM There is really nothing more to discuss. The Semko brothers got exposed, they exploited the community, and continue to lie in their 'clarification blog post'. As far as I am concerned, they are history. Per Lind 2.0
Deep_Sea_HopperToday at 12:30 AM David, I remember you writing a great blog post about what was completed in 2017, milestones etc., and a very general outlook on 2018. Will you do another 2018 recap article similar to the 2017 one?
David SønstebøToday at 12:31 AM @Deep_Sea_Hopper 2018 Year in review, 2019 Year in preview yup
David SønstebøToday at 12:34 AM Me pointing out the objective fact that the Semkos are demonstrably lying about IF board statements in their desperate damage control campaign takes me approximately ~5 seconds, that does not at all stress me. If anything, I am relieved that the community found the truth and thus the confusion over the Semkos is history, making IOTA's community more focused and no longer vulnerable to being confused.
Come-from-BeyondToday at 12:37 AM Does anyone know if the Semko control that autopeering service? I'd like to remind that I warned against using it. I sent a whitepaper to @Vitaly Semko asking to change it logic (which was ignored). Now, when it's clear that the Semko used IOTA mainnet as a testnet for their Phybr project, maybe we'll reconsider our approach to node peering?
svenger87Today at 12:40 AM [I read anywhere it finds the truth in 100ms] @Marc Lopresti CFB debunked it already with the speed of light
IOTA IS KING! 👑Today at 12:47 AM 2 devs looking for their own financial gain vs group of scientists, engineers and other qualified individuals trying to implement an open universal standard for all.
GeorgeToday at 12:47 AM Do you think Semkos have patented EC? If that is true, the meeting with IF was a trap.
Ralf Rottmann [IF]Today at 12:47 AM I just now learned about the SemkoDev pitch deck and the idea to create a SemkoCoin / ICO as a segue-way to building their own brand on the working body that has been established by this community. Now I finally understand the motivation behind trying to trick me into signing a unilateral NDA, with fines for just one of the two parties and making it super difficult getting two of the founders into the meeting remotely. So far, I had perceived Roman as a very reasonable person and was wondering, why making this so complicated. Well, if one plans to exploit the IOTA community for your own at least questionable ICO all along, it suddenly explains just everything. One less question-mark, although a sad one. Wonder how potential investors see this and what it means for IP related claims down the line.
David SønstebøToday at 12:55 AM The only threat that existed was the community continuing to be exploited, that is no longer possible. So the whole saga is really over.
Roman SemkoToday at 3:13 AM I will say it here once, and will not discuss. As know there are plenty of maximalists in the community which will not react to any reasoning. I truly hoped that IOTA community was different. Yes, we are working on commercial projects besides IOTA. This should not be a surprise. It was even communicated at our last call with David almost two months ago. Our aim was to find a way to apply our know-how to IOTA on a fair basis. This was also the reason why we postponed any PoCs we planned related to Nikita as far as we could. As the meeting with IF was cancelled, due to time constraints, and after announcements that IF probably has a 4th solution for the coordinator, we had to accept the PoC. This has nothing to do with IOTA. It is not an ICO and I do not see it as a competition to IOTA. For us, it’s our daily business. The deck? Yes, you somehow have to present a potential party the way how this new project could be sustainably financed. What is wrong with that? Regarding our IP: it is our IP and is NOT based on any work done by IF. It will be obvious soon enough. Latest, when we publish the details and open-source our work. Obviously, we cannot rely just on cooperation with IF and had to take measures in case we will be applying Nikita on commercial PoCs. Exactly this is what happened. I understand the emotions in the community, people fearing competition, fearing the fate of their own investments. I understand founders’ fear of competition and a better product. Steps have to be taken to discredit other’s work and reputation. We have been there before when IOTA was shitstormed by other Cryptos one year ago, remember? I just hope that this community was different. There is probably nothing I can say to convince everybody. A fate of public position is that whatever you do, there will be someone who does not like it. Maybe just that we still do not consider us a competition to IOTA. We still hold IOTA and want to continue development of IOTA-based solutions. There are no ICOs planned. And we truly hope for a productive and constructive 2019.
Jacq IOTAToday at 4:07 AM Wish the people who donated to you saw the leaked slides. I am sure they want in on the “spectacular ROI”.
dtToday at 4:09 AM @Roman Semko Do you plan return donations? RPi, money etc?
David SønstebøToday at 4:12 AM I will write this one final response to Roman's message: Roman, you are attempting to twist reality here by pretending that you are a victim of "IOTA maximalism" for simply being for-profit. As recent as yesterday I was defending you in this very channel against the community's suspicions that you had shady intentions of exploiting the community. One of the arguments I used to defend you was that I was under the impression that your DLT for-profit activities were to strengthen IOTA's ecosystem. No person in all of IOTA has echoed the need for for-profit independent community members than I, so I encouraged people not to get carried away with fear-driven speculation and instead trust the commitments and comments you have made publicly regarding your devotion to the IOTA project that made you relevant. You declined to join the IOTA Foundation (twice) to work compensated alongside the army of researchers and engineers on Coordicide. We naturally respected this. Then we went out of our way to find some way to work professionally with you guys, not because we believe you have anything unique (random GIFs don't impress experienced researchers and engineers), but because we thought you to be valuable community contributors and dedicated developers, and we wanted to compensate that. We were met with demands of high sums based on literally GIFs; you wanted us to sign a contract without you having to disclose ANYTHING upfront. Then the unilateral NDA comes for a meeting that was intended to compare our approaches to discover whether there was synergy, so you and your brother's claims that you would of course not have proposed a unilateral NDA if both parties were going to display their approaches, is just a flat out lie. Just like your medium post today included lies about IOTA's board. You exploited the IOTA brand by renaming yourself to "IOTA Dev" and proclaiming to be "Tangle Researchers" and gaining a significant following based solely on this while behind the scenes you were circulating a pitch deck. In this secret pitch, you make false claims of having "better than IOTA" tech and talking about an entirely new token, all the while stringing the community along, accepting their donations, having them support your work under the guise of it being for IOTA. It is this betrayal that is the reason why the community is pissed off.
PatriQToday at 4:14 AM @Roman Semko Just in case you didn't see the above message by David
pvaldenegroToday at 4:17 AM @Roman Semko Hey Roman, its OK to make money, we all want to overcome the need to pay bills and just relax doing what we love. Those who do not get that are way lost. HOWEVER, and this is a real question. How would you feel if someone starts asking for contribution and donations to develop something that sounds like it could help the project backed by that community (i've read your entire twitter page like 5 times now, and it is without doubt a phishing move), and then come up with this NEW project that separates everything with a closed source approach? If you have no problem with that, i've (and many here) to review my judgement, because i really, really thought you shared the vision of empowering this ever growing project. Good luck on your projects, but don't do that again, it is a piece of shit move. You keep saying that IT WAS CLEAR FROM THE BEGGINING. Well my friend, i love to read, and from reading your posts, it is far from clear. Thank you anyway. This day has been interesting.
submitted by btlkhs to Iota [link] [comments]

Tools & Info for SysAdmins - Mega Summary Q4 (Over 80 Items)

Hi sysadminblogs,
Each week I thought I'd post these SysAdmin tools, tips, tutorials etc with just one link to get it in your inbox each week (with extras). Let me know any ideas for future version in the comments!
This week is mega list of all the items we've featured to in the last 3 months, broken down into categories, for you to explore at your leisure. I hope you enjoy it.

Free Tools

Free MailFlow Monitor. Rejection / Delay Text Alerts, Group Policies, Alerts By SMTP Code, Trouble Shooting Tools including header analysis. MailFlow Monitor is EveryCloud’s (our) free, cloud-based, round-trip tool that sends you an alert as soon as there is an issue with your email flow. Settings are adjustable to allow you to choose how much of a delay is acceptable and which types of bounce alerts you want to see. Helps you get to the bottom of a problem before users (or your boss) have even noticed it.
Postman is a popular, free app to make API development faster and easier. It offers a powerful GUI, saved history of requests, flexible monitoring, automated testing with collection runner, mock servers, and unlimited collections, environments, tests, and sharing. It also provides detailed documentation.
Microsoft Sysinternals Suite is all their utilities in one convenient file. Contains the all the individual troubleshooting tools as well as help files, but not non-troubleshooting tools like the BSOD Screen Saver or NotMyFault. A shout out to azers for recommending this one.
RichCopy is a simple tool written by a Microsoft engineer named Derk Benisch. It provides a much-appreciated graphical interface for the very popular Robocopy command-line utility.
Windows Update MiniTool is an alternative to the standard (and sometimes overbearing) Windows Update. It allows you to control updates by giving you the power to search, install, and block Windows updates in any way you like.
Space Monger gives you a graphical image of your whole disk, where large files and folders are easily identified. This handy tool can be run from a USB drive, so you don't even need to install it. Thanks for this one and Windows Update MiniTool go to mikedopp.
UNetbootin is a terrific, cross-platform utility for creating bootable live USB drives for Ubuntu and other Linux distributions without burning a CD. Thanks go to Gianks for this one.
CopyQ is a clipboard manager that adds some advanced editing and scripting capabilities. It monitors the system clipboard and saves text, HTML, images and more into customized tabs. From there, the saved content can be copied and pasted directly into any application. Clipboard history is easily searchable and can be filtered. Suggested by majkinetor.
Desktop Info provides a quick view of every kind of metric about your Windows system right on your desktop. The display looks like wallpaper but stays resident in memory and updates in real time. Gives you a quick way to monitor what any system is up to, while using very little memory and requiring almost nothing from the CPU. This one was recommended by mikedopp.
Healthstone is a lightweight, self-hosted, agent-based system-monitoring solution that runs lots of customizable health checks. The dashboard runs on a Windows or Linux server, and it has agents for the Windows and Linux hosts you want to monitor. You can customize the dashboard to send notifications via email, Pushbullet, or NodePoint tickets whenever a client stops checking in or any of the configured checks fail. Configuration is retrieved from the dashboard by all agents in the form of templates, which are stored in the templates folder and can be customized for your needs. Thanks to mikedopp for this one!
Rufus is another utility for formatting and creating bootable USB flash drives. This one works with MRB/GPT and BIOS/UEFI. Rufus is about twice as fast as UNetbootin, Universal USB Installer, or Windows 7 USB download tool when creating a Windows 7 USB installation drive from an ISO. It is also marginally faster for creating a Linux bootable USB from ISOs. We first heard of this one from Gianks, but there were quite a few others who shared the recommendation as well.
Axence netTools is a set of ten free tools for network scanning and monitoring. Includes: Netwatch (multiple host availability and response-time monitoring); Network port and service scanner; Wintools (view of launched processes/services, remote register editor and Windows event log view, HDD/RAM/CPU details, custom queries based on WMI protocol); TCP/IP workshop and SNMP browser; Traceroute; NetStat (list of inbound and outbound connections and open ports); Local info (tables with local configuration details, TCP/UDP stats); Lookup (DNS and WHOIS records); Bandwidth test; and NetCheck (LAN hardware and wiring quality check). This was recommended by DollarMindy as an "easy ping monitor with email alerts."
MediCat USB is a a bootable troubleshooting environment with Linux and Windows boot environments and troubleshooting tools. A complete Hiren's Boot Disk replacement for modern hardware that follows the Ubuntu release cycle with a new update released every 6 months. The DVD version was originally recommended to us by Spikerman "for when you need to helpdesk warrior."
MobaXterm is an enhanced terminal for remote computing. It brings all the key remote network tools (SSH, X11, RDP, VNC, FTP, MOSH) and Unix commands (bash, ls, cat, sed, grep, awk, rsync) to Windows desktop in a single, portable .exe file that works out of the box. The free version includes full X server and SSH support, remote desktop (RDP, VNC, Xdmcp), remote terminal (SSH, telnet, rlogin, Mosh), X11-Forwarding, automatic SFTP browser, plugins support, portable and installer versions but only 12 sessions, 2 SSH tunnels, 4 macros, and 360 seconds for Tftp/Nfs/Cron. Thanks go out to lazylion_ca for suggesting this one.
WinDirStat provides free, open-source graphical disk-usage analysis for MS Windows. You'll get a sub-tree view with disk-use percent and a list of file extensions ordered by usage. This tool was recommended by ohyeahwell, who likes to use it "for freespace as it can be deployed via ninite pro."
IIS Crypto allows administrators to enable or disable protocols, ciphers, hashes and key exchange algorithms on Windows Server 2008, 2012 and 2016. You can also reorder SSL/TLS cipher suites from IIS, implement best practices with a single click, create custom templates and test your website. Available in both command line and GUI versions. EOTFOFFTW tells us, “This tool has been very helpful in configuring SSL settings for Windows IIS servers.”
Ditto saves all your clipboard items so you can access them later. It works with anything that can be put on the clipboard—images, text, html and custom formats. The simple interface includes search and sync functions for ease of finding what you need. Thanks go to Arkiteck for suggesting this one!
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware should be your first stop if you suspect a malware infection. It is the most-effective malware remover—featuring deep scans and daily updates—and blocks malware, hacker, viruses, ransomware and malicious websites that slip through your traditional antivirus. Also available as a full AV program that you can buy if you wish to do so.
Termius is a complete command-line solution providing portable server management for UNIX and Linux systems—whether a local machine, a remote service, Docker Container, VM, Raspberry Pi, or AWS instance (similar to Putty for Android). This cross-platform Telnet, Mosh-compatible and SSH client. Securely access Linux or IoT devices to quickly fix issues from your laptop or phone. Thanks for this one go to blendelabor.
WSUS Offline Update lets you safely patch any computer running Microsoft Windows and Office—even when there's no connection to the Internet or a network of any sort. More specifically, you first run WSUS Offline Update on a machine that has Internet connectivity to download the updates you need and copy the resulting update media to a USB drive. You then use the USB drive to run the update on the target computers. Recommended by mikedopp.
SystemRescueCd is a Linux system rescue disk that allows you to administer or repair your system and data after a crash. It can be booted via CD/DVD, USB or installed directly on the hard disk. Many system utilities like GParted, fsarchiver, filesystem tools and basic tools (editors, midnight commander, network tools) are included, and it works on Linux and Windows computers, desktops and servers. Supports ext3/ext4, xfs, btrfs, reiserfs, jfs, vfat, ntfs—as well as network filesystems such as Samba and NFS.
KiTTY is a fork of PuTTY, the popular Telnet and SSH client. It runs on Windows and can perform all the tasks of PuTTY plus many more. Features include portability, predefined command shortcuts, sessions filter, session launcher, automatic log-on script, URL hyperlinks, automatic command and password, running locally saved scripts in remote sessions, ZModem integration, icons for each session, transparency, unfortunate keyboard input protection, roll-up, quick start of duplicate sessions, configuration box, automatic saving, Internet Explorer integration for SSH Handler, binary compression, clipboard printing, PuTTYCyg patch, background images/transparency and organizing sessions you save in a folder hierarchy.
WinMTR is a free, open-source Windows application that integrates the functions of the traceroute and ping utilities into a single, convenient network diagnostic tool. Many thanks to generalmx for suggesting both this and SystemRescueCd!
Free Services
SSL Labs SSL Server Test is a free online service that will run a deep analysis on the configuration for any SSL web server. Simply enter the hostname, and you'll get a detailed report highlighting any problems found on each server.
Draw.io is a free, browser-based diagramming application that's terrific for creating flowcharts and org charts. It's available as an online application with optional integration to various cloud storage options.
ImmuniWeb® SSLScan allows you to test SSL/TLS security and implementation for compliance with PCI DSS requirements, HIPAA guidance and NIST guidelines. Checks SSL certificate expiration for subdomains, insecure third-party content, and email servers’ SPF, DKIM, and DMARC implementation. Credit for this one goes to pixl_graphix.
BadSSL.com offers a simple, free way to test a browser's security setup. This helpful service was suggested by Already__Taken who advises you to "test what your MITM proxy will happily re-sign and present to you as a valid site."
Testssl.sh is a free command line tool that checks a server's service on any port for the support of TLS/SSL ciphers, protocols, recent cryptographic flaws and more. Recommended by stuck_in_the_tubes who likes it "for when you need to assess protocol encryption without the use of external services."
Tips
For access to all of the sysinternals tools on any Windows box with internet, just Win+R and open \\live.sysinternals.com\tools. It's a public SMB share with all of the tools that Microsoft hosts. Thanks to jedieaston for the tip.
BASH keyboard shortcut: 'Control + r' initiates a name/command lookup from the bash history. As you type, this 'reverse incremental search' will autocomplete with the most-recent match from your history.
Podcasts
Darknet Diaries podcast relates the fascinating, true stories of hackers, defenders, threats, malware, botnets, breaches, and privacy. The show's producer, Jack Rhysider, is a security-world veteran who gained experience fighting such exploits at a Security Operations Center. Thanks to unarj for suggesting this one.
StormCast is a daily 5-10 minute podcast from the Internet Storm Center covering the latest information security threat updates. New podcasts are released late in the day, so they're waiting for you to listen on your morning commute. While the format is compact, the information is very high-level and provides a real overview of the current state of affairs in the info-sec world.
Microsoft Cloud IT Pro podcast is hosted by Scott and Ben, two IT Pros with expertise in SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure. The podcast focuses primarily on Office 365 with some discussion on Azure, especially as it relates to Office 365 in areas such as Azure AD and Mobile Device Management (MDM) or Mobile Application Management (MAM).
Datanauts podcast keeps you up to date on developments in data center and infrastructure related to cloud, storage, virtualization, containers, networking, and convergence. Discussions focus on data center compute, storage, networking and automation to explore the newest technologies, including hyperconvergence and cloud.
Cloud Architects is a podcast on best practices, the latest news, and cutting-edge Microsoft cloud technologies. Nicolas Blank, Warren du Toit and Chris Goosen host discussions with various experts in the cloud space to gather helpful guidance and ideas.
Risky Business is a weekly podcast that covers both the latest news and thoughtful, in-depth discussions with the top minds in the security industry. Hosted by award-winning journalist Patrick Gray, it is a terrific way to stay up to date on information security.
The rollBak is a podcast on systems engineering, DevOps, networking, and automation—along with the odd discussion on software development or information security. Conversation is casual with the intention of making complex topics approachable in a way that fosters learning.
Tutorials
Get Started in PowerShell3 is a great jump start video series on starting out in PowerShell. According to sysadmin FireLucid, "It's a great broad overview of how it works and I found it extremely useful to have watched before starting on the book."
Websites
Ask Woody is a no-nonsense news, tips, and help site for Windows, Office, and more. You can post questions about Windows 10, Win8.1, Win7, Surface, Office, or browse through their forums. Recommended to us by deeperdownunder.
Learn X in Y minutes is a community-driven site that provides quick syntax for many popular programming languages. Here are direct links for some common ones, kindly provided by ssebs:
WintelGuy offers a handy collection of useful links, calculators, resources, and tools for the sysadmin. Thanks LateralLimey for the recommendation!
How-To Geek is a website dedicated to explaining today's technology. Content is written to be useful for all audiences—from regular people to geeky technophiles—and the focus is to put the latest news and tech into context.
EventSentry is a comprehensive, well-organized resource for Windows security events and auditing on the web. It allows you to see how events correlate using insertion strings and review the associated audit instructions. This was recommended by _deftoner_ as an “online DB where you can search for Windows Event Log by id, os, error code, etc. I do a lot of auditing on a big network thru event log ids, and sometimes I found rare errors—and there is not a good db with all of them. Not even Microsoft has one.”
Books
The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win tells the story of an IT manager's efforts to save his company's dysfunctional IT dept. The company's new IT initiative, code named Phoenix Project, is behind schedule and hugely over budget. Bill is given 90 days to resolve the entire mess—or have his entire department outsourced. An entertaining read, with elements that seem familiar to most system admins. Comes highly recommended by sp00n_b3nd3r.
UNIX® and Linux® System Administration Handbook, 5th Edition, is a comprehensive guide written by world-class, hands-on experts. It covers best practices for every area of system administration—including storage management, network design and administration, security, web hosting, automation, configuration management, performance analysis, virtualization, DNS, security, and management of IT service organizations. You'll learn all about installing, configuring, and maintaining any UNIX or Linux system, even those that supply core Internet and cloud infrastructure. A great resource for anyone responsible for running systems built on UNIX or Linux.
Taming Information Technology: Lessons from Studies of System Administrators (Human Technology Interaction Series) was suggested by AngryMountainBiker, who describes it as "essentially an ethnographic study of system administrators. The authors videotaped and otherwise documented SA's over a period of time and were able to break down a number of fascinating incidents and how to improve the art. I'm disappointed this hasn't been recommended reading for all SA's and maybe more importantly, their bosses, who too often don't really know what SA's do."
Learn Active Directory Management in a Month of Lunches is a practical, hands-on guide for those who are new to Active Directory. It covers the administration tasks that keep a network running smoothly and how to administer AD both from the GUI tools built into Windows and from PowerShell at the command line. Provides best practices for managing user access, setting group policies, automating backups, and more. All examples are based in Windows Server 2012.
CheatSheets
Sans Digital Forensics and Incident Response Cheat Sheets provide a collection of assorted, handy incident response cheat sheets. It's a helpful reference for commands, process, tactics, tips, tools and techniques that was compiled by Sans DFIR, the experts in incident-response training.
Blogs
Ned Pyle's blog from Microsoft's Directory Services Team contains a wealth of posts on best practices and solutions to common issues. While no longer actively maintained by Ned Pyle, the library of information already posted is incredibly valuable. Thanks to azers for bringing this to our attention.
Happy SysAdm has been providing resources, solutions and tips for system administrators since 2010. The blog is written by a Senior Systems Administrator with close to 15 years experience in designing, scripting, monitoring and performance-tuning Microsoft environments going all the way back to Windows 3.1/95/NT4.
Stephanos Constantinou's Blog shares the author's original scripts for PowerShell, Microsoft Active Directory, Microsoft Exchange On-Premise and Online (Office 365) and Microsoft Azure. His current focus is on retrieving data from systems, editing it and automating procedures. You'll also find a section with some PowerShell tutorials.
Have a fantastic week!!
u/crispyducks (Graham @ EveryCloud)

P.S. Some Extra Free Tools We Put In The Email Version
Clonezilla is free, open-source software for disk cloning, disk imaging, data recovery, and deployment—helping with system deployment, bare metal backup, and recovery. Cloning efficiency is optimized by the program's approach of saving/restoring only used blocks in the hard disk.
SPF Record Testing Tools is a query tool designed to help you deploy SPF records for your domain. It validates if an SPF record exists and whether it is formatted correctly and entered into your DNS as a proper TXT record.
PS Remote Registry module contains functions to create, modify, or delete registry subkeys and values on local or remote computers. This one was recommended to us by IhaveGin.
PowerCopy GUI was recommended by Elementix, who described it as "similar to RichCopy, but it uses .Net, PowerShell, and Robocopy. A good (non-install) alternative." The tool allows you to set up predefined options, one-click access to help and log file, and instant error analysis.
Gitbash is a package containing bash and a collection of other, separate *nix utilities like ssh, scp, cat, find and others—compiled for Windows—and a new command-line interface terminal window called mintty. Recommended by sysacc who tells us he's been "dealing with log files lately and I've been using...Gitbash a LOT... It's part of the Git tools, I love having access to Linux commands on Windows."
Easy2Boot is a collection of grub4dos scripts to be copied onto a grub4dos-bootable USB drive. Each time you boot, the E2B scripts automatically find all the payload files (.ISO, .IMA, .BIN, .IMG, etc.) on the USB drive and dynamically generate the menus. Thanks to Phx86 who says it "creates a very versatile USB drive. It checks a lot of marks other various tools did not. Formats NTFS, your ISO boot disks doubles as standard NTFS storage. Drag and drop .ISO files to the correct folder, then boot directly to them. Boot menu reads the .ISO files and builds a menu based on what is loaded on the drive. No fiddling around with custom boot menus when you add a new .ISO."
CCleaner is the fastest way to eliminate temporary files and Windows Registry problems. Our own Matt Frye says, "When a machine is having problems, this is almost always the tool I use first. It also helps to ensure privacy by getting rid of traces left behind (such as cookies) by web browsers."
Netwrix Auditor Free Community Edition is a great auditing/monitoring tool for the Windows sysadmin. It lets you see changes and access events in your hybrid cloud IT environment, so you can stop worrying you'll miss critical changes to AD objects, file server permissions, Windows Server configuration or other security incidents.
WinSCP is an SFTP client and FTP client for Windows with a GUI, integrated text editor, scripting and task automation. It allows you to copy files between a local computer and remote servers via FTP, FTPS, SCP, SFTP, WebDAV or S3 file transfer protocols.

Why am I doing this each week?
I’m the CEO of the Email Security company EveryCloud.
We have over 8k global business customers using our Email Security range, which is the highest rated on Spiceworks with over 250 five star reviews. In addition we offer free tools, such as our Free Mail Flow Monitor and this free weekly email IT Pro Tuesday . We have no affiliation with any of the items listed in the email unless we explicitly state otherwise and try to choose the ones most recommended by IT Professionals. Our hope is only that you’ll take a look at our Email Security
submitted by crispyducks to SysAdminBlogs [link] [comments]

[Table] IAmA: Hey! We are Corey and Lori Cole, Creators of Quest for Glory, and Oded Sharon, CEO of Adventure Mob, Ask Us Anything!

Verified? (This bot cannot verify AMAs just yet)
Date: 2013-11-05
Link to submission (Has self-text)
Questions Answers
Why do you think the adventure genre takes a backseat to most publishers? Kickstarter seems to be a way to equal this out. What do you think the publishing model will look like in 5 years? I think that Adventure Games will always be Indie. The profit margin won't be tempting for the major companies. But Crowd Funding will make sure that Adventure Games survive as an art form.
I just read that the development budget for Witcher 3 is $15 million and the marketing budget is $25 million. It's not at all clear to me that those marketing dollars are justified, but they do guarantee that people will hear about the game. Our Hero-U budget is $660K, with close to zero of that going to marketing. We'll find out next year if that's a terrible mistake and I need to come up with another $1.5M for marketing.
Maybe its better this way. I'm not sure I like what happens with huge budgets all the time anymore. We've also reached the point of seeing such good graphics that it doesnt even matter anymore. I think we're going to have a much wider variety of games available now that Indie developers can get funding.
So, what should we expect from the game itself? What style do you see it as? Also, will gameplay be better if I'm high? The gameplay tutorial Oded posted yesterday gives a pretty good indication. You can find it at Link to www.kickstarter.com I'd say the style is somewhat like a television cartoon. The scenes were based on 1970's Kingston, Jamaica photo references.
We're putting a lot of emphasis on the story, and high production values. All the artwork, including backgrounds and 2D cel animations were hand drawn. We've been doing playtests to get the kinks of out the dialogs and puzzles from an early stage of development. You can expect to experience the journey of a young boy in Trenchtown Jamaica trying to become a famous reggae musician, with fun puzzles, engaging dialogs, and Reggae music.
Hey, guys! Oded, it was really great talking to you on Facebook. When the game was announced, the Kickstarter pitch said the game would also deal with some political issues (in addition to being a jammin' good adventure). The Bolt Riley game is more of a homage to Reggie and the spirit of the Jamaican music and not about Rastafarianism. The messages of the music are about peace and love. We want to share the good feelings.
Can you elaborate on what sort of political issues Bolt might be confronted with, and how that will be juxtaposed with the light-hearted mood you're obviously going for? I'm a big fan of LGBT myself (despite being straight).
Also, when we spoke, you seemed unaware of the "(pink) elephant in the room" of Rastafarian homophobia. Have you had a chance to read up on that, and will that have any effect on the game or the aforementioned political slant? Bolt starts the game when he is in a gang of Rude Boys. He escapes this life of crime by following a path of love and harmony with his Reggae music. We want to project a positive theme or inclusiveness in this game. No matter your sexual orientation, race, color or whatever.
Cheers, man, and the best of luck! You guys deserve bounties of success and prosperity. :) As a great musician said once "One Love".
I know not everyone reads the KickstartVentures blog (blasphemy!), so I thought I'd re-ask one of the important questions from my interview. What would happen if Bolt Riley doesn't make funding through Kickstarter? The sad reality is that if Bolt Riley doesn't successfully fund raise, Adventure Mob goes bankrupt on Dec 31st 2013.
There's no second chances. There's no plan B. This will be the end. All our technology, artwork, drawings, design, all the hard work Corey and Lori did. Everything get thrown out and erased from existence.
Did you hear that, people? Go out and pledge! NOW! Exactly Serana.
Hey Oded, I've read that Bolt Riley is developed in Unity and will be available on loads of different platforms. What are some of the difficulties in developing cross platform games? Hey Rodik! I've learned a few lessons from having Star Shipping Inc made for almost every platform that Unity supports. one is optimization. Mobile has a lot of memory limitations. We had to use texture compression packing and such. Then there's some issues with features that are supported on some platforms but not the rest (like playing video files on mobile) Then there's different platform API's, like GameCenter on iOS. We test the game on every platform early on in the development. The game itself plays pretty similarly on each with differences in interface and control.. Unity is wonderful in that sense.
How will you make sure that the game plays well on various platforms? Unity works very well for cross-platform games, as long as you consider the differences in interfaces right from the start.
This one's for Oded. With so many projects backed, which one(s) are you looking forward to the most? I also have two kids. I won't tell you which is my favorite. I've now backed over 150. It's hard for me to choose only one.
All the adventure games. Double fine, Space Ventures, Hero-U Of course. Broken sword, mage's initiation, city quest, quest for infamy. i'm sure i'm forgetting a few good ones.
I actually got a few of the ones I was looking for. OUYA, and Oculus Rift, no doubt i backed a LOT there. I really enjoyed Trial of the Clone, and i didn't get time to get into To Be or not To Be.
Lemme see (going over KS profile page)
I'm waiting for Veronica Mars. I baked a few for joke, but i really liked them. Open source death start. Old man eating eggs in 3D.
I got a few that I didn't have time for yet.
I'll back the $10k if someone makes a kickstarter for a time machine.
I've received several that I haven't had time to play. Just got my copy of Neocolonialism. I spent about 5 minutes each with that and LSL:R. Never got around to playing the Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective modules I got last year as part of my Shadowgate support. Project Eternity and Broken Age will surely be fun, if I ever find time to play either of them.
Heh. I don't blame you for not naming a favorite. I'm the same way. Too many I'm looking forward to. Which one is your favorite? I knew i forgot some :)
Hey guys! Just wanted to say thank you so much for making the amazing QfG games. Hero's Quest and QfG II were pretty much my most played games back in the day. While I know it was all an illusion now, I was convinced you could get into all the houses in the town of Spielburg. To my 9 year old eyes, there was a whole world of loot to be stolen, if only I could get my lockpicking just a little... bit... higher... While I loved the QfG games, I always felt like the fighting sequences were the weakest parts. Was this down to the engine, or simple priorities? Can you talk a little bit about that side of things? In QfG, we wanted to make a fighting system that was Skill Based rather than twitch based. We experimented with the look and feel with every game. I liked game four's "Street Fighter" style of combat best. I'm not a twitch game player, but the game gave me enough warning and feedback to be successful at it. Alas, few of the fans agreed with me. We plan to do extensive playtesting on the combat system (for Hero-U). It is very difficult to balance one for all player types - Some will work hard to bring up their skills, while some will use stealth to avoid most combats. We don't want to punish either play style.
Can you talk about how you got involved with Replay? I've met Replay in GDC April 2011 when I was still running Corbomite. I learned they had licensed Leisure Suit Larry for distribution on intel Atom/Appup. Shortly following I founded Adventure Mob to start making adventure games starting with Bolt and Larry. We built the Larry demo for them (Link to leftybar.com which they used to get the full remake license from Codemasters. Long story short. Fast forward two years, despite our hard work and efforts, Larry didn't happen for us, we're hoping Bolt does.
Was 9/11 an inside job? I don't know. I'm more interested in 4/20 right now :)
I do have a funny story about working at a software company and knew something was wrong when the most reliable thing in the internet world at the time stop working and that was "ping cnn.com"
Are you holding development on the actual game engine until the native 2D tools get released for Unity 4.3, sharing in what Lori and Corey already worked to get right, or facilitating the 3D directly? Chapter 1 is fully developed and in Alpha. We used Sprite manager 2 and EZGui on Unity 3.0. We're not waiting for any native tools. However, for chapter 3 (or 2) we might want to rewrite portions of the engine to switch between EZGui to NGUI and from SM2 to native. no point in that nowthough. We are facilitating 3D for a bunch of stuff. If you look at the game play video you can see it when the camera zooms in on Bolt. It also is very nice to play the game with the Oculus VR glasses on (YES! I have that prototype!) because it's actually layered in 3D!
Hey Oded, How many copies of Pizza Morgana were ever sold? A few dozens thousands copies were sold. Many many more pirated. There were some sites that you could play and pay per minute, so it was played more. The demo was downloaded I think a few hundred thousands times.
How many people payed in advance for two episodes and are still waiting for episode 2? Only a handful bought the entire season, I've refunded some of the people who did, and some people suggested that their purchase remain as a donation. I'm hoping to finish that series one day. Who knows. Next kickstarter?
Seriously? A few dozen thousands? It is not a $19.99 game. Only a handful of people bought the entire season. The game made a few thousand dollars the most, over the span of 5 years or so.
So, if buy few you mean atleast 1, for 19.99 USD a copy that means you made 240,000 USD in revenue. Or if by "few" you mean 2, that makes your revenue 480,000 USD. If it was such a huge success, what's the sense in not producing an episode 2 yet? The first episode game sells for 2.99 in most portals, some sites it was 0.99. I got 30c per copy or even less.. minus portals affiliate marketing fees. Minus 5% tax.
I agree, it should be doing much better, and people have negative feelings about... certain parties. I really hope things liven up. How can you not trust Oded and the Coles? I think that there was a 'gold-rush mentality' last year when all the Adventure Games hit Kickstarter and everyone supported them. The Kickstarter Adventure Gamers Group were awesome - we never would have funded without them. Now, people are much more selective about their choices. And they don't have bottomless wallets. :-(
I realize that there is a certain technical and artistic aspect in creating any sort of game. With this there have to be compromises made to meet artistic vision vs realistic technical possibilities. There is always the looming problem of feature creep as well. With this being said what type of vacuum cleaner do you use at home or the office? We use a few precautions to fit project scale to the budget. First, we try and design it to the budget while takes some slack into account. We don't want to make a game that's way beyond our capabilities, budget wise. We had a lot of planning, knew how much each resource cost like backgrounds, and animations and characters, and set those number in our budget and told the designers - You have 15 scenes to design. And we can make and animate 15 characters. They designed the game to fit to those limitations. Then we adapt according to progress, that's the producer's job.
Given you can always make a better, more expensive game that fits your wild imagination, but we try to stay humble and be realistic when designing the game.
Vaccum: Dyson. He made a lot of failed prototypes before he got it right. I've made a lot of games before Bolt Riley.
Oded, after Bolt Riley has been produced, would you consider making the world's first Krautrock adventure game? I'm not sure i'm a big fan of Krautrock. I actually had an idea to make a Polka Adventure about Weird Al Yancovik!
Ohh, ah! That would be awesome, Oded. We can all drag out the accordions and play along with the game. When you come to Israel!
You realize Wierd Al would totally do that for dirt cheap, right? Because he's Wierd Al. Little known connection - Both Lori and Oded play accordion, as of course does Weird Al.
Why am I not surprised that you guys play the accordian :) Note that I don't play the accordion, just guitar. I think The Music Man was big when Lori was growing up, so her parents bought her accordion lessons. My brother plays multiple instruments - fiddle, autoharp, pennywhistles, recorder. Lori and I both sing in a local choral group - She's a first soprano, I'm a baritone who sometimes pretends to be a tenor and sometimes a bass (no baritone parts in most choral music).
Thank you for putting out the favorite games of my youth. So You Want To Be A Hero and Wages of War were so much fun to play through over and over. I think my single favorite joke was the "Pop-ulation explosion". Do you plan to bring similar humor to Hero-U? I'm trying to balance the humor in Hero-U. There will definitely be humor, and undoubtedly some puns, but I want to keep them from being too distracting. The underlying story is very serious. Of course, that was true in Quest for Glory also, so let's just say I'm trying to be a shade more subtle, but I still love wordplay. :-)
With a name like Rogue to Redemption, a character named Shawn O'Conner, and a teaser trailer with Mr. Bun E. Slippers, can there be any doubt that humor will be an important part of Hero-U? We love pun-ishing our fans.
I'll have to try it. Have you ever looked at the remake for QfGII? I didn't see if you were involved in it. I just couldn't get the original version to be enjoyable after playing the others. The Trial by Fire Remake was great. The only part they didn't get right (from my point of view) was the combat system philosophy that combat needed to be fun, exciting, and easy to learn. Corey kept getting killed trying to survive outside of town.
Other than that, AGDI did a marvelous job turning a parser-based game into point and click. (I personally can't stand parser games)
one here, huh? Well, I'll start us off by linking an interview I did with Oded: Link to www.kickstartadventure.com. That was a fun interview to do Serena! Thanks!
Point-and-click is boring! "Sierra games" were never the same after Sierra made the switch. Will you please make an adventure game with a text parser? Yes, we lost a great deal of difficulty and challenge when Adventure Games moved to 'Point and Click', but there is such a thing as too much frustration to interfere with the game's fun.
Allright Oded, what are your top 10 reggae albums? I'm not sure about Albums, because I like individual songs. Obviously a LOT of Marley: Jamming. One Love. Get Up Stand Up. Three Little Birds. Then , Eric Clapton's "I shot the sherrif". (and not Bob Marley's original version) i surprisingly discovered this when i was working on Bolt Riley, i always thought it was Marley. I like the song "I don't like Reggae, I love it". Do the soundstrack of Monkey Island count?
Speaking of "I Shot The Sherriff" This was the premise of chapter 4 or 5. I was talking to Dave Gilbert to design it, where the Riley had to stop a heist in a radio station where some band members take hostages so a DJ would play the band songs and Riley is stuck in this situation. I envisioned it as a film noir episode like Dave knows to write best.
Hello my friends. You know you have all my well wishes and I have probably exhausted Lori and Corey with questions by now already. But I think a good question for all of you would be, how do you feel about the remote business model for creating things like games vs the traditional brick-and-mortar approach? Currently I work in the latter, and only have a glimpse of the pros and cons of using modern web technologies to replace physical *presence. Are there added obstacles, anything that is better, things of that nature? A remote business model is very difficult to manage. Most people don't have the self-discipline to set themselves reasonable work habits, present company accounted for.. Traditional work places give better structure, support, and feedback for the creative workers. I think the web makes working remotely wonderful. While we had big offices and most of the team were sitting together, a few members of our team were all around the world. Our offices were in Herzliya, Israel. We had people work from Haifa, Jerusalem, Tel-aviv all cities in Israel then one designer in Brussels, Belgium and the Coles in Oakhurst, California. My previous game Star Shipping Inc. was developed entirely remotely when me and Oran Bar-Tal were sitting at our own desks at home, I'm coding, he's making artwork, and we were on an open skype call for hours with screensharing. felt like we were siting next to each other honestly. We'd each say hello to our respective wives when they walked by.
No worries. Just trying to help before people start wandering in asking these questions. We're sent moderators proof ahead of time that it was us. Hope Corey's problem is solved soon.
I can't decide which of QFG2 or QFG4 are my favorite. Which one is yours? You can answer too Lori and Corey. Mine will always be QG4. It was the game I wanted to make right from the start. Gothic Horror, movie tropes, Vampires, and a love story... it had it all. (Including 70 million bugs...)
Hi Oded, this adventure concept just SCREAMS Bob Marley! Have you thought about contacting them to get an even bigger spotlight on your game? Yes, we have. Long story...
Oh do tell... I can't actually go to a lot of details, but the publisher we worked with originally had some deep ties to Reggae music and part of the reason we started working on this game. They had licensed other IPs which we were hoping to work on. Sadly they aren't in business any more - they were trying to raise money from a big VC and the founder poured his own fortune into the company, when the VC didn't invest, the guy lost his money and the company shut down and they lost the IP's and we lost our publisher.
I can't wait to see it. Folks were talking about trust earlier here. For most KS's I try to give generously to support these great games. For you two, I pulled out the stops and fired all the boilers! You earned my trust years ago. And Oded, well, how can you not love Oded? Trust is a contract that must be continually renewed. It's the faith of the fans that inflames our passion for making our games the best we can create.
Awww.
I've personally did not get paid in the majority of the past 7 years. All my income from most projects usually goes to the company's account and that's used to make games. I'm lucky to have a wife with a full time job supporting me and the kids, but it's getting harder by the day.
Hi Oded, best wishes from Berlin! Hope you are doing well my friend. Just curious about how you and Lori + Corey joint for this nice project? Best, Tom. Hey Tom! Good to hear from you. I got an introduction to the Coles by our mutual friend Noah Falstien, who I wrote when i was looking for designers to make Bolt Riley. And like you said, the word on Bolt was a ... "Joint effort".. hehe.
What's the password? Swordfish! It's always "swordfish".
Boxers or briefs? Inquiring minds want to know! Is commando an option too? :) Actually mine is briefs.
Adventure Mob did a great job with the demo. It sucked to hear they were dropped for N-Fusion. :)
With Unity, Linux publishing is a breeze. The Universal Binary + data just runs. There's no emulator setup. And then you can get your game added to the Ubuntu Software Center if you decide. Yes, I promised a Linux build for some of our backers, knowing it should be straightforward. I'm slightly more concerned about iPad and Android builds, as we will have to adjust the user interface to play well on mobile devices. Those are also price-sensitive markets, which is a problem because we don't want to cannibalize our PC/Mac/Linux sales by offering cheaper versions on mobile. Maybe I'll just wait six months or a year before doing those ports.
I think we're going to have a much wider variety of games available now that Indie developers can get funding. I agree with Lori. Kickstarter have opened a new era for game creators. Because adventure games are such a niche, it's nearly impossible to get funding otherwise. Publishers have the alternatives of investing pittance in F2P casual games and get in millions in revenue. A lot of the market is going to those match candy crush type games, and publishers nowadays don't care about old school premium games as much.
The big AAA publishers have budgets (and incomes) of dozens of millions of dollars. a $500k production is not a good business investment if it will only break even. (which is the reality of our market, sadly).
Not so much a question, but a thank you: As a kid I always was interested in Greek mythology, and Quest for Glory V was one of the first games I ever bought. Enjoyed it thoroughly, so thank you! You're welcome and thank you! :-) Lori and I both grew up reading mythology books, so it was natural to incorporate that background into our games. We tried to be true to each culture the player visits.
I would assume getting high would probably always improve gameplay, unless it's Amnesia :( Hehe, that's funny. wait. what was the question? i forgot. ahhh... Does Reddit IAmA are better when you're stoned?
Thanks for your answer. I definitely wouldn't want such a dicey subject to overshadow that message of unification. Thanks for elaborating on the political issues. :) Again, my very best of luck with the Kickstarter! My pleasure! and thanks for asking.
I'm not surprised by that. It's very bad in Jamaica for LGBT people. But I'm amazed that Rastafarians in particular would suffer that. It's hard for anyone in Jamaica. As a result, tribes form. Tribes form by defining themselves. Anyone who isn't a member of the tribe is an outsider and put down.
It's hard for anyone in Jamaica. As a result, tribes form. Tribes form by defining themselves. Anyone who isn't a member of the tribe is an outsider and put down. Sadly, LGBT people will always be the scapegoats and the outsiders in a community that defines itself by excluding others.
I have replayed the Quest for Glory series more times than I can remember. I don't have a question. I just want to thank you for creating a series that has had a tremendous impact on me throughout the years. I can still load up QFG1 and get that warm, fuzzy feeling inside. Thanks, Adrocknola. We believe that games should be fun and meaningful.
You guys rock. Quest for glory series is no doubt the game i've clocked most hours in playing. I had to get all my stats to the maximum. form 100 to 500. In each type of character. And i had to upgrade to Paladin from each of the options. So add that..
Hello all! BigD (Doug) here. Sorry I've been so quiet. I have a parade of students in and out my door! I am very excited about Bolt Riley. Here's a thought, I'll tell every student that comes in for a pledge to BR, I'll give them one answer! Yay, BigD! We've got some nice artwork for your Wing in Hero-U. I'm going to set up a pdf Artbook "Big D's Hall of Heroes" or something similar when the game releases for you to enjoy all the preliminary artwork and the final art. But I'll save it until you get the fun of seeing it in the game.
That's a good idea... especially if you then give them answers such as, "Type enter curtain or walk through curtain, not just go North". Or "Dwarves like to read magazines when they go on break". Nice cryptic clues to games few have played in decades. :-)
You don't want to know how much us hardcore fans gave. It would blow your minds! Well, it's safe to say that the developers give even more. As backers, we open our purses and hearts. As project creators, we have to open our veins. Games are made of blood, sweat, tears, and brain tissue. (Eww, sorry, that all sounds really gross. :-))
Ken sent me. ;) Schwertfisch.
Schwertfisch. ¡Espadarte!
I'm not sure i'm a big fan of Krautrock. I actually had an idea to make a Polka Adventure about Weird Al Yancovik! Ohh, ah! That would be awesome, Oded. We can all drag out the accordions and play along with the game.
Little known connection - Both Lori and Oded play accordion, as of course does Weird Al. A few years back i made a game called "Accordion Hero" which you use a real toy accordion as a controller: Link to www.flickr.com
I haven't had a chance to look at anything for Hero-U yet, I'm at work and this is the first I've heard of it. I will be checking it out for sure once I'm home. In many ways, the games we make are homages to many of the icons and experiences of our lives. The Marx Brothers, Sanford and Sons, Boris Karlov, and above all, Peter Lorre are all timeless. This is a way to make sure that they will never be forgotten.
I didn't realize that the bazaar in Wages of War was a nod to Sanford and Son until years after I played the game, I love all the hidden jokes that come out each time I replay your games. Mind you, most of the references and tributes to characters in our games are from before OUR time, too. We're not that ancient... yet.
I can't wait to find more of these references, I'll have to replay through QfG I-IV, I never got V to work very well. Shadows of Darkness was the richest in cultural references since it pulled from every classic horror riff we loved. Okay, so it didn't have mummies or zombies, but they wouldn't have fit in with the setting.
A remote business model is very difficult to manage. Most people don't have the self-discipline to set themselves reasonable work habits, present company accounted for.. Traditional work places give better structure, support, and feedback for the creative workers. That being said, I'd still rather work in a remote business than a standard one. I'm too much of a contrarion to deal with arbitrary deadlines, specific work hours, and bosses.
Hey Tom! Good to hear from you. I got an introduction to the Coles by our mutual friend Noah Falstien, who I wrote when i was looking for designers to make Bolt Riley. And like you said, the word on Bolt was a ... "Joint effort".. hehe. Not that any actual joints were involved - Besides that it's hard to pass one across several thousand miles, Lori and I are very boring that way. Our high school / college introductions to weed only made us sleepy, so we live boring sober lifestyles.
Last updated: 2013-11-09 18:46 UTC
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