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NomadOfNorad 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 6:06:33
#41 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 2-Jun-2003
Posts: 746
From: Jacksonville, Florida, USA, Earth, Sol system, Milky Way galaxy

@ne_one

I seem to recall something about H&P never having paid any royalties to Amiga for all the copies of Amithlon sold, and it becoming clear that they had no intention of doing so, and so Amiga yanked their license for it and declared any new copies of Amithlon to be illegal. At that point, IIRC, arrangements where made between Amiga Inc and Bernie to produce, under a new company, a whole new Amithlon-like package that was to be called Umilator, but the makers of Amithlon declared that this system had all been their idea, and therefore it was beyond the pale that anyone else would dare trying to produce something that was clearly a direct clone and rippoff of their work and their vision... so H&P sued Bernie to stop all further work on it.

Clearly it was a spoilsport move: "If we can't have it, nobody will!"

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Kotler 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 7:12:48
#42 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 27-May-2005
Posts: 254
From: Sweden

@ne_one

Yes, H&P had a squabble with Amiga, Inc. about unlicensed copies of OS3.9.
But the real problem was his former team mate Harald Frank who threatened
Bernie and apparently approched all of Bernie's third party partners and told them that he would sue their asses big time. So naturally they withdrew from the
project as being harassed by Mr Frank was not a pleasant thing.

It's been 5 years now, so I may not recall all the details correct...

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Kronos 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 9:17:01
#43 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 8-Mar-2003
Posts: 2217
From: Unknown

@DiscreetFX

Quote:

DiscreetFX wrote:
@Kronos

Computer chips are getting so many cores and display cards are getting so much GPU acceleration and memory I wonder if this will even matter anymore soon.


UAE only uses one core for it's emu, and thats not likely to change anytime soon.

Drawing into an offscreen buffer and than copying it to GFX-mem is allways gonna be slower than directly caling the GFX-card.

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Hypex 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:21:49
#44 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 10179
From: Greensborough, Australia

@Kronos

Quote:
Amithlon has the faster JIT (one of the reasons why AGA went out). it has native drivers or drivers directly talking to the driver-interface on the linux-side for all important things. One doesn't need to load a full blown OS in the background.


As with PC's, faster code doesn't matter so much anymore, because they are all so blistering fast these days. But as I tried to say in en eariler post that AF can also work like this. More on that later.

Quote:
Write a pixel in UAE:WritePixel() ...... P96..... UAEGFX (a framebuffer sitting in memory).....notice host-OS.....host-OS calls it's blitter-function and copies the whole screen into the real GFX-card.

Same in Amithlon:WritePixel()....P96.....PowerFB(we are allready x86-native at this point)....call into the WritePixel-function of the linux-framebuffer-driver....write pixel in GFX-card-mem.

The 2nd is about as much faster as a good GFX-card is compared to 8Bit-AGA.....


I bet it would be. Now, AF should be able to do the second method the same as Amitlhon would. When in the live CD mode. I just looked at the web site, and although it works similar to Amithlon, when booting off the CD it doesn't mention installing to HD like Amitlhon can. So it looks like Amithlon still has the upper hand. In that case invest in the Amithlon newer kernel project.

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Hypex 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:23:58
#45 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 10179
From: Greensborough, Australia

@ne_one

Quote:
History seems to be repeating itself.I'm less familiar with the H&P case but I really have to wonder at what point Amiga and Hyperion stopped communicating about deliverables.


Probably when they started saying "when it's done."

H&P did the 3.5 and 3.9 update.

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Hypex 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:40:15
#46 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 10179
From: Greensborough, Australia

@Frags

Quote:
The greatest in the Amiga world I`d say. It makes me want to kill myself when I think about where it would be now. x64 optimised JIT, OpenGL and more. You name it The guy actually got things done.


What I found most interesting about Amithlon was that people in my club said it was one of the best pieces of Amiga software ever. But this wasn't true, it wasn't Amiga software. It was PC software, that ran on a PC. It was marketed as Amiga software so well that even a guy in my club asked if Amithlon couild run on his Amiga A2000 and speed it up! I almost burst out laughing.

I saw the excitment it created. But I knew it would split the community right down the middle. You could say it would become real Amiga/Amithlon. Unlike the "popular PC people" I wasn't a fan and it hit me pretty harsh. It was just another thing that killed off the Amiga and made the PC even better. To me it let the PC said, "I'm better than you, I can be you, I will destroy you." There is no doubt what this did for the PC, and I almost left the scene over it. I thought, well if that's the case, then we have lost and I don't want to play around entertaining the idea of a PC being better then the Amiga.
Especially because Bernie said his will be out before OS4 and it was. Another nail in the coffin. So much for when it's done, no point "when it's too late."

Hey, there is something Amiga and The Hype can agree on. When will OS4 finally be released on any hardware? When it's too late.

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Slick 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:40:48
#47 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 20-Dec-2003
Posts: 215
From: Sunshine, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

@MobbyG

Tell Bernie to come down to a MAUG meeting too.

He's local... and he used to drop in every now and then.

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Hypex 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:46:27
#48 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 10179
From: Greensborough, Australia

@Rob

Quote:
Somewhere in a parallel universe, in 2001, it was decied that X86 was the new pathway for the Amiga, and Amithlon was announced as a transitional stage while the new OS4 was be produced.


It may have been around the samne time, but do you remember that OS4 was first annonced as a transitional X86 developer OS? Yes, the first OS4 was going to be on X86. Then, development was dropped, he he. So it never was. Then OS4 was meanto to come after on all sorts of hardware. Boy that idea has become old.

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Slick 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:50:25
#49 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 20-Dec-2003
Posts: 215
From: Sunshine, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

@MobbyG

Bernie's problem was always his H&P contract.

I don't know what he agreed to... but it seems to prevent him from distributing Amithlon himself.

Given that Amithlon sparked a lot of interest and sales... Bernie would make a very handsome return on any effort he put into upgrading it.

It is unlikely he needs anyone to bankroll him... although Amiga might be smart if they did make him a tentative offer.

Perhaps Amiga could clean up their H&P licensing mess (OS3.5 and 3.9) at the same time?


Last edited by Slick on 03-Oct-2007 at 12:53 PM.

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Hypex 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 12:56:29
#50 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 10179
From: Greensborough, Australia

@logicalheart

Quote:
You have it backwards. H&P did not hog code or kill anything.
&P gave Bernie the software.


Now stop. I thought we would end up here. Sorry I was talking about H&P having OS3.9 and therefore Hyperion having to bring OS3.1 up to 3.9 standards, which it stil isn't BTW.

Okay, now I'd also like to comment futher.

Quote:
AmigaInc would not allow Bernie to use the software and threatened legal action against him if he continued selling the software.


What software? I didn't know he sold software. All I know is that he let H&P put Amithlon on their AmigaXL disk as a compliment to AmigaXL. And the rest.

Quote:
I also remember AmigaInc doing the same thing to other Amiga related products.
They also threatened some Amiga related websites, which in turn, shut down.
I don't remember what all these were though.


There was a website here in Australia that sold "Amiga" PC's. They were just PC setups that were called the Amiga starter kit. It was just used as a name. "Amiga" Inc found out and the site changed.

Quote:
t's a consistent policy and pattern by AmigaInc.
I wish I would have recorded more information over the last few years.
I had no idea AmigaInc would be so bad.


And given AmigaDE and apeaking to Bill myself he is a keen X86'er. Look at it this way, there is no PowerPC version of AmigaDE that was released. It "supports" PPC but in real world terms it was only on x86. They didn't even compile a Linux CD for the A1 which ran AmigaDE. Now, from that, can you tell me, are Amiga Inc against X86?

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ne_one 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 19:40:45
#51 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 13-Jun-2005
Posts: 896
From: Unknown

@Hypex

Quote:
Probably when they started saying "when it's done."


Right... but somewhere along the line didn't either party communicate about requirements or timelines?

It looks like Hyperion thought Amiga was indifferent about OS4 so milestones were ignored and they simply carried on thinking that Amiga would lose interest or evaporate. Work continued, based on the assumption that Hyperion would secure the IP and leverage the technology for other purposes.

Or am I missing something? Surely no one invests this amount of time and energy for $25k.

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logicalheart 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 3-Oct-2007 23:30:25
#52 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 2-Dec-2003
Posts: 694
From: Sandy, Utah. USA

@Hypex

Sorry, I mis-read part of Bernie's statement in relation to H&P.

However, it was still AmigaInc that halted the product and would not license Bernie, or anyone else.

"Over the last few weeks, I have been working with Amiga Inc, trying to
resolve these issues and to find a common way; Unfortunately, it is my
understanding that due to the ongoing nature of their dispute with
Haage & Partner, they are unable at the current time to comment; At
the same time, the stresses this whole affair put on me started to
seriously interfere with my life, my health and my continuing support
for the users of Amithlon. That could not continue."

It's one of many who tried "to find a common way" with Amiga Inc.

Last edited by logicalheart on 03-Oct-2007 at 11:32 PM.

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umisef 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 7-Oct-2007 16:47:55
#53 ]
Super Member
Joined: 19-Jun-2005
Posts: 1676
From: Melbourne, Australia

@logicalheart

First a quick explanation --- in early September (always a pretty busy time for me, anyway...) the company I work[1] for sent me to Beijing for a couple of weeks, to be "the tech guy" for our push into the Chinese market. Turns out our product wasn't quite ready for *any* push yet, so the first week was spent furiously debugging late into the night, rebuilding software remotely over lousy internet connections, and just for kicks, dealing with our hardware supplier having provided almost, but not quite working RAM. The second week was spent putting the results into customer sites, and trying to win distributors. At the end of the first week, my long-term partner called me, screaming in pain, telling me that she had just fallen down the stairs, and was heading for hospital. Then my return flight got cancelled, meaning that once I got home, I had all of 32 hours to get the house ready for my mum (the lovely Kym having been limited to hobbling around on crutches as little as possible), who came visiting from Germany for the first time in 10 years. A couple of days later, we all went to Tasmania for a week, where even the cell phone didn't work for most of the time.

In short --- yes, I had seen the thread, but no, I had never had enough peace and quiet to write the reply that it deserved. Apologies if I seemed to ignore people --- the timing was just really bad. Oh, and sending me PM's on AW, please don't expect a prompt response --- I often miss the "1 New Message" thing for weeks on end :)

Quote:
However, it was still AmigaInc that halted the product and would not license Bernie, or anyone else.


OK, the nutshell version --- I was privately talking to McBill on a different matter. McBill then dropped, as a "by the way" that H&P had never paid any license fees for the AI IP which everyone (including H&P) agreed was part of the Amithlon package, and which H&P had said they could provide a license for. McBill alse mentioned that AI had plans to iniatiate legal action over this lack of a license.
Looking back at my contract showed me that any such legal action may very well be deflected by H&P straight at me. I asked McBill to send me this info officially (i.e. from his AI account), and once that had happened, contacted H&P regarding the issue. I was essentially told not to worry, that none of this was my problem --- yet whenever I asked for anything in legally enforcable writing, communication ceased. Uh-oh. So I instructed H&P to stop selling (there was a clause in the contract for just this case), which they ignored. Various unpleasantries followed.

Then nothing much happened. In particular, no legal action by AI happened. No announcement by AI happened. Many promises of both were made to me, but nothing ever came off them. Meanwhile, H&P was selling a product I had told them not to sell, and which everyone involved knew (and agreed) was in violation of AI's IP rights --- except for the customers paying good money for a fully licensed product. After a month of this status quo, with me trying to get someone, somewhere to do something, I had enough, and announced that to the best of my knowledge, H&P's distribution of Amithlon was in violation of IP rights, H&P had been told to stop, and that any further distribution would be in violation of my IP rights as well. Lots of public outcry against all and sundry; Apparently many angry emails written, partly as a result of my carefully worded text apparently not being as well-worded as I had hoped, thus causing some misunderstandings. Harald decides he is better off choosing H&P's side over AI's (which, given further developments, may have been the "better" choice from a financial point of view --- he could still send invoices for Amithlon licenses when I could not...).

Wanting to keep the product in the market, I work out an agreement directly with AI for licensing their IP. Harald's contributions to the original had turned out rather minor, anyway, so the easiest thing was to replace them all (which took something like two weeks, all up). Now having a track record, I can get conditions out of AI that were fantastic beyond all belief. *And* I actually got a signed contract.
What AI keeps promising, but never actually do, is to start legal action against H&P. They also do not publicly state that H&P's distribution is in violation of their IP. Which leaves me in a rather ####ty position --- I and only I am the one saying that H&P are naughty, that their distribution contract has been cancelled for cause, and that the cause is genuine. With none of the promised backing from AI, I find it difficult (to say the least) to convince necessary third party IP holders to come on board for this new, officially AI-sanctioned product. This cause is not helped by both H&P and Harald gratuitously threatening and harrassing anyone who has anything to do with me, as well as stating explicitly that they intend to serve an injunction on anyone who would consider selling the new thing. One particular license get held up for months because of this, and while it eventually is granted, by that time the situation is just so f*cked up that I just want to put my head through the wall every morning. Meanwhile, someone "mediates", which leads to certain agreements, based on which money is spent. I send back my copy of the resulting document, signed and dated, only to be informed that one of the other parties has decided not to, after all, and instead threats are repeated and "offers" made which come down to me ignoring IP issues and crawling back to H&P. AI still does an excellent impression of a wall --- except that one can lean on a wall, and it will offer support, so that analogy breaks down....

At which point I decide that all this stuff is not worth getting an ulcer over[2], and call it quits. Various turmoil on mailing lists follows. Everyone goes away the worse; I backport as many of the improvements I have made for the new product into a form that can be used with the original --- however, releasing those backports poses a bit of an ethical dilemma as long as H&P continues selling Amithlon; On the one hand, supporting the existing users (who did not buy into this whole mess, but rather just wanted a fast 68k Amiga) is a good thing, and something that I much wished to do; On the other hand, adding value to a newly purchased Amithlon and thus making H&P's offering more attractive was wrong on so many levels.... So things trickled out bit by bit, until H&P finally stopped trying to sell.


There was one moment, back in August or September 2001, when I had the Amithlon contract lying at my place waiting to be signed, and my gut told me not to do it. In retrospect, I wished I had listened to my gut then; It could have saved me a lot of grief.
On the other hand, having actually placed this software in people's hands, and having seen the result of long, long hours of work used and appreciated has been a tremendously rewarding experience; One I wouldn't want to have missed. And seeing that some people continue to use it to this day, while it makes me shake my head in disbelief, also gives me that warm and fuzzy feeling. And last but not least, the job I have been working in for the last 2 years opened up for me at least partly because of my Amithlon background; Given that the job (generally) is nice and is reasonably well-paid, I can also choose to look at Amithlon as less of a financial disaster than the pure time spent vs money earned would suggest.

Which leaves the question of "what about an updated version" in its various forms. Basically, I don't see any point in trying to make a commercial venture of it; The numbers didn't really work back in 2001, and they sure won't work six years later, now that "the community" had six years of shrinking, *and* that things like OS4 and MorphOS actually exist in some more tangible form (they existed purely as announcements in 2001 as far as any market was concerned). And while in 2001, I could somewhat afford to waste my time on frivolous programming for the sake of it, I cannot do so anymore in 2007. We all get older and collect responsibilities.
And let's not kid ourselves, a 2007 (or 2008) Amithlon would need a lot of work. PCs have moved on a lot in the last 6 years --- a new Amithlon would have to be x86_64 based, be able to support at least 2GB of RAM (and be able to at least *work* with more, even if not making use of it), be able to support all sorts of USB devices out of the box (at a minimum, keyboard and mouse; But once you have one stack handle those, it would be rather difficult to have another stack handle other USB devices). Proper support for DVI on graphics cards (and attached LCD screens, possibly more than one) would be a must; SATA support (possibly through AHCI), too. And that's just the must-haves that I can come up with from the top of my head; There are probably more must-haves, not to mention all the I-would-want-to-haves. All of them would have to be crufted onto a 10+ year old base OS which was never designed for most of them, and which has not been maintained in half a decade.

All of which goes to say that it's unlikely to happen. I haven't touch anything Amiga-related in years; If I happen to find myself with spare time on my hand (and by the end of the year, I might find myself out of a job unless we can attract an investor :-/ ), I am more likely to spend it on something else --- be that photography, or learning how to completely rewire my 1970 Beetle, or programming for my Neo1973, or picking up image compression again. As far as I am concerned, the Amithlon chapter is over and done with; There were some bad times, and some good times, like everything in life, and now it's time to move on.



[1]: Please note that never quite specifying *what* we do is intentional --- I can either choose to identify the company I work for (and if I actually said what we do, Google would have a name fairly quickly), *or* write about the experiences doing it. I cannot do both, because then my writings may be found by potential business partners, and while everything I am involved in is definitely above board, it may not be advisable to give such potentials too much background info on how we got to where we are.
[2]: Yes, I know those are not actually caused by stress. Figure of speech.

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SpaceDruid 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 7-Oct-2007 18:35:45
#54 ]
Super Member
Joined: 12-Jan-2007
Posts: 1748
From: Inside the mind of a cow on a planet that's flying through space at 242.334765 miles per second.

@umisef

What about licencing it/open sourcing for someone else to work on? I don't have a client, this is just a matter of interest.

Last edited by SpaceDruid on 07-Oct-2007 at 06:38 PM.

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DiscreetFX 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 7-Oct-2007 19:05:27
#55 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 12-Feb-2003
Posts: 2047
From: Chicago, IL

@umisef

I understand, it's hard to get to PM's or even know you have one, life gets busy sometimes. 1970's Beetles are cool.

Last edited by DiscreetFX on 07-Oct-2007 at 07:15 PM.
Last edited by DiscreetFX on 07-Oct-2007 at 07:13 PM.
Last edited by DiscreetFX on 07-Oct-2007 at 07:13 PM.
Last edited by DiscreetFX on 07-Oct-2007 at 07:12 PM.

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number6 
Re: ART is Looking for Amithlon Author
Posted on 9-Oct-2007 6:22:22
#56 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 25-Mar-2005
Posts: 11164
From: In the village

@umisef

A bit more from Bolten Peck on H&P

Quote:
the contract of McEwen's Amiga asset purchase from Gateway wasn't written in such a way as to guarantee H & P royalties be paid to Amiga, so H & P didn't pay them.


Interesting.

#6

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