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Allegro needs your help!
Paul whoknows
Member #5,081
September 2004
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bamccaig said:

The developers care less about Windows than ever before.

This could be a bit of a problem, or just suicide.

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____

"The unlimited potential has been replaced by the concrete reality of what I programmed today." - Jordan Mechner.

Matthew Leverton
Supreme Loser
January 1999
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Now do the same graph titled:

"Allegro Contributor Operating System Market Share"

Arthur Kalliokoski
Second in Command
February 2005
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If Allegro was sold, or had a subscription model, the devs would tolerate Windows more to make the $$$.

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty. This is known as "bad luck.”

― Robert A. Heinlein

Thomas Fjellstrom
Member #476
June 2000
avatar

If I had a product that used allegro, I'd find time to work on the windows port :P

It's all about itch scratching.

--
Thomas Fjellstrom - [website] - [email] - [Allegro Wiki] - [Allegro TODO]
"If you can't think of a better solution, don't try to make a better solution." -- weapon_S
"The less evidence we have for what we believe is certain, the more violently we defend beliefs against those who don't agree" -- https://twitter.com/neiltyson/status/592870205409353730

SiegeLord
Member #7,827
October 2006
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If we all take fewer showers, there'll be a lot more itch to scratch :o.

"For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increases knowledge increases sorrow."-Ecclesiastes 1:18
[SiegeLord's Abode][Codes]:[DAllegro5]:[RustAllegro]

Edgar Reynaldo
Member #8,592
May 2007
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Arthur Kalliokoski
Second in Command
February 2005
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I take a shower every month, whether I need it or not! >:(

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty. This is known as "bad luck.”

― Robert A. Heinlein

furinkan
Member #10,271
October 2008
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I'm not sure what that graph represents, but the sales are shifting drastically towards mobile and tablets[1] where Android and iOS are the only real players[2], and Windows is being hedged out.

How many toolchains do we support on Linux? One, GCC. How many toolchains on Mac? One, whatever the hell they use (GCC based, probably). Adroid? One, GCC based. iOS? One. WinTel? Like 5 or more!

Windows is not that important. The focus should be on Android and iOS, where indie games are livelier than ever.

beoran
Member #12,636
March 2011

I think Windows and Android are both imporant, since for a library like Allegro, portability is a key feature. And that's why we need people to help out with those platforms in the first place. So I'd encourage everyone here to make less complaints, and more contributions. If you want better Windows or Android support then please help us out.

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
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Who said developers have to work in the operating system they target? Has cross-compiling been entirely forgotten, or is everyone writing C++ on their Android phones?

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

Matthew Leverton
Supreme Loser
January 1999
avatar

Any open source and give-away-for-free software written by volunteers is going to be driven by the need of those developers. Why should it be any other way?

The real question isn't why do the existing developers not work on Windows as much, but why don't developers who use Windows care about having a library like Allegro?

furinkan
Member #10,271
October 2008
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The real question isn't why do the existing developers not work on Windows as much, but why don't developers who use Windows care about having a library like Allegro?

Probably because they're afraid of losing performance, and want to use DirectX directly. I suppose I should be less vehement, and try to remember that on Windows there's no point in anyone profiling their code. The OS will waste whatever resources that you don't waste. :)

Arthur Kalliokoski
Second in Command
February 2005
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furinkan said:

Probably because they're afraid of losing performance, and want to use DirectX directly.

Or Unity.

Quote:

on Windows there's no point in anyone profiling their code

But what if it's maxing out the CPU and still only gets 10FPS?

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty. This is known as "bad luck.”

― Robert A. Heinlein

furinkan
Member #10,271
October 2008
avatar

Then your computer needs upgraded; there's no way it could be the programmer's fault! ;)

beoran
Member #12,636
March 2011

@Chris, of course I try to port as much as I can with a Windows VM. Unfortunately windows tends to be is much harder to program for, so there I could use all the help I can get.

It's as Matt says. We need more capable Windows developers who use Allegro to also contribute to it, or at least to test it and make tutorials, etc. I guess the problem is that windows developers care less about portability...

Max Savenkov
Member #4,613
May 2004
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The real question isn't why do the existing developers not work on Windows as much, but why don't developers who use Windows care about having a library like Allegro?

Because novice developers don't go for C/C++ much any more (now that we have RPG Maker, Unity, Flash and HTML5) and a lot of experienced developers prefer to roll their own libraries, because they actually prefer writing libraries to creating games (do I know a few of such people...) :)

Let's face it, Allegro is mostly for old-time guard like me who just can't let go of C++.

As for driving new developers to Allegro, I think Allegro need a "killer product" kind of game that's made with it. The one that will make people ask "hey, what did they use to make it?!". We have some nice commercial games, but nothing of that class.

What are Allegro poster-boys, what could be listed with pride on "made with Allegro" page? CEGUI, for example, has the first Torchlight, and even though, by all accounts, it's not a very good GUI library, being used for a very successful commercial game counts for something (not to mention that during game's development, developers almost certainly fixed some bugs and added features to it because they needed it).

For Allegro, I'd probably nominate the first Eador game, but unfortunately it's relatively little-know outside of Russia even though it became successful enough to spawn a sequel that was sold on Steam (but wasn't made with Allegro)! Also unfortunately, that sequel sucked, but that's beside the point :)

So, while streamlining API and installation and expanding documentation and tutorials are all very important, someone should really go and make A GREAT GAME with Allegro. Before you ask, yes, I'd like to do that myself, but so far, I hadn't had a lot of success :)

Chris Katko
Member #1,881
January 2002
avatar

As for driving new developers to Allegro, I think Allegro need a "killer product" kind of game that's made with it.

Well, I do all my stuff with Allegro, so when one of my killer products come out, all of our problems will be solved! 8-)

-----sig:
“Programs should be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.” - Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

Paul whoknows
Member #5,081
September 2004
avatar

I use a portable version of A5, is just Orwell DevCpp (portable) and A5 devpack. It would be nice to have an official A5 portable bundled pack like this for starters without installations at all :)

____

"The unlimited potential has been replaced by the concrete reality of what I programmed today." - Jordan Mechner.

furinkan
Member #10,271
October 2008
avatar

DevKitPro has a bash script for linux and a Windows installer.

All those really do though, is download the latest stable and put everything in the proper folders. For APT-based platforms we could easily check for existing packages and install them if necessary. I'll try to remember to look at CrunchBang's first-run script; as they do something similar.

Windows is a bit more complicated; you might need to edit the path and we'd expect the user to know which compiler they are using. Sadly, a lot of people (read n00bs) probably won't so they'll either install the wrong one or overload your mirrors by downloading A5 for every compiler on the market. >:( I'm familiar with making installers, so I'd be willing to help with that.

Keep in mind, that making an installer just makes it so that more n00bish people can get started, which creates the aforementioned problem.

Striker
Member #10,701
February 2009
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It would be nice to have an official A5 portable bundled pack like this for starters without installations at all.

Thats what i am preaching since years. 8-)

beoran
Member #12,636
March 2011

Striker: then practise what you preach. We could use the help of a windows installer developer/maintainer. :)

Striker
Member #10,701
February 2009
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Really? You want an installer in broken english?

Matthew Leverton
Supreme Loser
January 1999
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Gideon Weems
Member #3,925
October 2003
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Hell yes, I want an installer in broken English. Didn't you make that huge tutorial last year? It was good. I used it.

Thomas Fjellstrom
Member #476
June 2000
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Even if the installer starts in broken english, that doesn't mean other people can't help translate it :)

--
Thomas Fjellstrom - [website] - [email] - [Allegro Wiki] - [Allegro TODO]
"If you can't think of a better solution, don't try to make a better solution." -- weapon_S
"The less evidence we have for what we believe is certain, the more violently we defend beliefs against those who don't agree" -- https://twitter.com/neiltyson/status/592870205409353730



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