(bright?) idea. Involves MSX and new technologies, please read

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Door cesco

Champion (453)

afbeelding van cesco

09-02-2006, 19:31

I had an idea. And IMHO is a good idea.

You may probably already know what a podcast is. Usually you can download entire episodes of your favourite radio shows using iTunes or any podcast manager. There are already a lot of them, and their popularity will grow even more during the next years.

One day I was listen one of these podcast, when I though:

"I love podcasts. I love my old MSX too. *WHAT COULD HAPPEN* if I let my computer to hear one of these podcasts?"

Old MSX games are stored on tapes, the same tapes that can also store music and speech. If a podcast can hold BOTH music and speech, why it couldn't be able to hold a MSX game?

So here's what I've created (for testing purpose). What I consider to be *THE VERY FIRST* data podcast ever made. A podcast that delivers games instead of speech, that can be heared by old home computers instead of people Smile

You may ask what are the advantages of this thing, and here are them:

* You can use iTunes or any podcast manager to download automatically all the new games
* You can put the episodes on your MP3 Player or burn them directly on an Audio CD. All you have to do is to connect your CD/MP3 Player to your MSX and load the game as usual ( with the commands RUN"CAS:" and BLOAD"CAS:",R )
* Every game loads at a minimum speed of 2400baud: this means that the games load twice as fast (or even faster)
* No more worries for damaged tapes.
* Finally you can play the latest games on the real thing, not an emulator.

Now, thinking about podcast as a system to deliver games was the easy task. The difficult task is to obtain the stuff for this broadcast. I don't want to share illegal software; there're a lot of great homebrew games around, and many of them are absolutely outstanding. So the difficult task is this: to obtain permissions from the game makers to broacast their games: Karoshi, Paxanga, J. M. Jimenez...

I've prepared a small test to show you what this work could be:

_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_

loadnplay.cescoware.com/msx.xml

_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_

You can download the podcast episodes with iTunes or any podcast manager. If you use Mozilla Firefox you can also open the link and manually download the MP3 files. All the files are encoded in MP3 format @ 320kbps Stereo for maximum quality and compatibilty;
Here what's available now. They do work, at least on my Philips VG8020

* El Laberinto Del Tiempo (By J. M. Jimenez)
* MSX Midget Golf (By: MSX Gids Amsterdam)
* The Brickwall Intro Demo (By: SPC)
* Penguin Race (By: Alfonso D. C.)

I've also to thank Eduardo A. Robsy Petrus and Cax for their excellent tools Waver and MicroWAVer. Without their tools this podcast couldn't ever be made.

I have put these games and demo just for a test and to show you what is possible to do, and *I'm going to delete them tomorrow. I'm going to keep them on the podcast only when the developers of these games will give me their permissions.*

If you think that this is a great service or the most stupid idea you have ever heard, give me your impression anyway. I need to understand if I'm making something useful. :D

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Van BiFi

Enlighted (4348)

afbeelding van BiFi

09-02-2006, 20:00

the idea is quite nice... there's one thing which might give problems (actually two, but one of them can be solved by using the correct sample frequency): the MP3 compression simply cuts high frequencies as being obsolete to compress it better... and most likely the data signal is somewhere in that range.

Van Haohmaru

Paladin (773)

afbeelding van Haohmaru

09-02-2006, 20:06

Then why not put compressed .WAV files instead of MP3 (or OGG, or whatever Wink) in your pukecast? Then you won't have to worry about losing frequencies.

(Yes I am getting sick and tired of seeing 'podcast' and everything associated with it all over the internet Wink)

Van NYYRIKKI

Enlighted (5889)

afbeelding van NYYRIKKI

09-02-2006, 20:15

Here are my thoughts:

- MP3 format is extremely bad for storing MSX tape games.
- Why stereo? Do you store one game on left and other game on right channel? Did you know that 320kbps stereo and 160kbps mono are equal in quality?
- Why on earth I would like to store 16KB game in format that takes 2.5MB of space?!?
- Ok, portable player is nice thing, but at least I don't have portable MSX.
- If you need portable, wouldn't it be better idea to compile Waver to Symbian OS or something?

Van cesco

Champion (453)

afbeelding van cesco

09-02-2006, 20:44


Here are my thoughts:

- MP3 format is extremely bad for storing MSX tape games.
- Why stereo? Do you store one game on left and other game on right channel? Did you know that 320kbps stereo and 160kbps mono are equal in quality?
- Why on earth I would like to store 16KB game in format that takes 2.5MB of space?!?
- Ok, portable player is nice thing, but at least I don't have portable MSX.
- If you need portable, wouldn't it be better idea to compile Waver to Symbian OS or something?

I'm using a very high bitrate - 320kbps. With this bitrate I never had problems loading the games. Also, MP3 are quite standard and supported by a lot of MP3 and CD players. I also though about using the "Apple Loseless" format that is similar to the Wav format but it's slightly compressed, but these kind of files are supported only by iTunes and iPod.

Yes, that's right but I'm using a stereo signal to let people to -eventually- burn the MP3 files on an Audio CD. Audio CD format requires 44100Khz stereo files.

Why using large files to store small programs? To let people to load the games on a real MSX. There are people that have their computer far away from the TV set and from a MSX, and there are people that loves to take their old MSX from the attic for a quick play sometimes. You can jack the MSX to the 15$ chinese CD player and play a game in a minute or two.

IMHO

Van cesco

Champion (453)

afbeelding van cesco

09-02-2006, 20:53

Then why not put compressed .WAV files instead of MP3 (or OGG, or whatever Wink) in your pukecast? Then you won't have to worry about losing frequencies.

MP3 is IMHO the most supported format on the players available. It can be also converted into WAV format easily, and you can also play it from a lot of portable devices.

Van AuroraMSX

Paragon (1902)

afbeelding van AuroraMSX

10-02-2006, 10:48

- Why stereo?
A tape has two sides ... Tongue

Van ro

Scribe (4540)

afbeelding van ro

10-02-2006, 12:06

actually, a tape has 4(!) tracks (atleast a normal 4track). 2x stereo, indeed both sides.
pocasting data? hmm, I remember a radio broadcast on hilversum 2 in the Netherlands in the eighties. They did a data broadcast every week in a program called "...." (can't remember)
you could tape it at your stereoset and load it on yer puter.
funny, relapse?

Van Haohmaru

Paladin (773)

afbeelding van Haohmaru

10-02-2006, 13:35

I think ro means that BASICODE thingy.

Van mars2000you

Enlighted (6014)

afbeelding van mars2000you

10-02-2006, 13:37

pocasting data? hmm, I remember a radio broadcast on hilversum 2 in the Netherlands in the eighties. They did a data broadcast every week in a program called "...." (can't remember)

probably Basicode

Van ro

Scribe (4540)

afbeelding van ro

10-02-2006, 14:29

yeah, could be. Smile

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