Discussion in 'Show-ware' started by aricha, Apr 29, 2004.

  1. aricha

    aricha Well-Known Member

    Hi everybody

    Someone on the laserlist had mentioned the rebirth of the Lasermame project & patches
    Can you direct me to this web site?

  2. Steve

    Steve Member

  3. aricha

    aricha Well-Known Member

    thank you Steve
  4. Laser-MAME

    Laser-MAME Member

    The project is still happening - I haven't had much time to devote to coding it of late, however, as requests for patches come in, I'm still sending them out!

  5. Chris Priest

    Chris Priest Active Member

    Hi Rodney,

    Have you made any further updates to the laserMame project?

    Best Regards
  6. Laser-MAME

    Laser-MAME Member

    Laser-MAME OpenSource Project - Source code online

    Dear Laserists,

    For those of you who may be interested, you are now able to download a copy of all MAME (and related) source code packages, including the Laser-MAME patch source code directly and instantly from the Laser-MAME Open Source Project website ( The Laser-MAME patch source code is released under the Gnu Public License (GPL).

    Below is a list of the downloads that you require in order to compile the Laser-MAME patches into the MAME code base:

    1. The original MAME source code from - version 0.78. (9.5MB)

    2. VCMAME - Visual C patches to MAME at - version
    0.78 (92kb)

    3. zlib 1.14 - also available from (233kb)

    4. NASMW - Network Assembler for Win32 version 0.98.38 - (219kb)

    5. The Laser-MAME patches 0.05 Feb 2004 - (93kb).

    Please follow the instructions contained within and please email me if you have any difficulties.

    Thank you to those who have shown interest over the past 18-months, the substantial response and encouragement received to date has been greatly appreciated!

    Also, could you please take a moment to visit our sponsors, Nightlase
    Technologies who have been generously providing the webspace for the
    project -

    I am continuing on with the Laser-MAME project but in the background, as I have quite a few other projects on at this time...

    Thank you again and please enjoy!


    Rodney Davies

    Laser-MAME Open-Source Project
  7. Pangolin

    Pangolin Staff Member

    Re: Laser-MAME OpenSource Project - Source code online

    Thank you Rodney for finally making this available to laserists worldwide. Please allow me to take this opportunity to point out a few things about this project.

    First, this project of Rodney's came to fruition with some help from Pangolin, including explanation and use of our LD2000 SDK. Furthermore, Rodney has included our LD2000.H file as part of his distribution. Technically, this is not kosher since he never sought permission to distribute any part of our SDK, but in this case I will allow it. So, on Rodney's behalf, I will extend a special thanks to Pangolin for helping make this project, and the distributed files, a reality...

    Second, and perhaps more importantly, if you follow the letter of the law, you can not play any of the games that are emulated by MAME unless you have the game hardware yourself, including the original ROM chips. This means you can play the emulated version of Asteroids if, and only if, you have the original Atari Asteroids hardware itself, including all original ROM chips. Likewise, you can play the emulated version of Tempest if, and only if, you have the original Tempest hardware itself, including all original ROM chips.

    From the MAME FAQ: "Possessing a ROM file from a game you don't own is punishible by up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000 for each violation."

    What's more, even if the above conditions do apply to you (for example, Pangolin has both original --working-- Asteroids and Tempest games) I believe it is not legal to make any money from playing this product (i.e. charging people per-play).

    Obviously the MAME project and its source code has been around for a very long time, and obviously it was possible (and easy) for MAME source code to be modified for use along with laser display systems, as this has been done before by at least two other individuals.

    Pangolin and our IP attorneys have looked into the legality of creating a Laser version of MAME extensively, and decided not to pursue it since only a very few laserists could possibly benefit from this development and use it legally. Instead we chose another approach which is completely legal and for which none of the negative MAME implications would apply.

    Due to the approach we took, how we accomplished it, and other special circumstances, our Asteroids game is not covered by the same dark shadow that looms over the use of MAME. Because of this, you are free to use our Asteroids game in any way you wish, including extending its operation since, from the very beginning, we have distributed the source code for our Asteroids game in its entirety. With time, other (completely legal) games may be developed using the same techniques that we used, or even using our Asteroids source code as a basis for such development. If you are interested in the development of laser-based games, please contact Pangolin for more information.

    In any event, please keep all of this in mind when using MAME and other similar game products with lasers.

    Best regards,

    William Benner
  8. Laser-MAME

    Laser-MAME Member

    Re: Laser-MAME OpenSource Project - Source code online

    Thanks Bill for your kind and generous words of support!

    Thanks again Bill, glad to be sharing the experience with everyone!

    I would like to clarify here that the Laser-MAME Open-Source Project had actually become a "reality", was already being distributed and "came to fruition" on the 10th of Jan 2004 and that the assistance provided by Pangolin infact came quite some time later. The assistance provided by Bill merely enabled a QM2000 to be used as another output device - previous to this, I had already achieved laser output from other output devices, including my own personal controller. This has been clearly documented on the Laser-MAME Open Source Project website since the start of the project.

    Pangolin did not contribute to the actual concept of hacking MAME itself to extract the vectors, inserting velocity control points and actually generating laser frames, as I had already achieved this concept previously.

    Although not essential for the success of the project, I chose to add support for the QM2000 due to the apparent majority of QM2000 users within the laserist community and thought that it would be a nice gesture to provide support for that board also, so that many other laserists could share in the experience. It is also good to note now that there are several different types of lasershow controllers that are to some extent, using the Laser-MAME may have already read about a few ...

    I would like to kindly thank Pangolin for helping the Laser-MAME Open Source Project support the QM2000 as another output device.

    I believe that this information is more than likely common-knowledge and as you have just shown, it is provided with MAME itself - I am not sure what you are trying to achieve here with the above comments, other than to perhaps try and cast a 'dark shadow' over the whole concept of MAME, or even perhaps be trying to make alternatives look more impressive? ..or perhaps something else I have overlooked?

    Perhaps not, however, it seems that you may have somewhat overlooked the point of the Laser-MAME Open Source Project - the actual driving-concept here is to be sharing knowledge and experience and not-for-commercial-use! Why do you think it was Open-Source from the start?

    Besides, what's wrong with providing free entertainment? There are usually plenty of rewards in doing just that!

    Yes, it was nice of them to display their achievements and they have always been acknowledged accordingly, right from the start of this project.

    Interesting, as it only took me about 5 minutes while munching on a 50-cent candy-bar and reading the GNU Public License to work out the same thing - hence it being released as Open-Source. If you're interested in trying to make money from Laser-MAME, then chances are it will probably be thwart with problems ... but if you're interested in entertaining people for free, well... It's common-knowledge that you don't always need to make money to enjoy life!

    Sure, if you're interested in making money and only looking at MAME from a commercial perspective, then I think I can see why Bill is talking about a 'dark shadow' ... however, I am not (and I know that there are a few others who aren't either) interested in that - I am only interested in sharing my experiences and knowledge gained from doing this project.
    What is wrong with that?

    If anyone else is interested in developing laser-based games, please feel free to contact me too for more information on that concept! Perhaps a different Open-Source project could be established here...?


    Just to summarise: The Laser-MAME Open Source Project became a success and was already a reality long before Pangolin's contribution, which merely provided support for output on a QM2000 and that the QM2000 was not essential for the project being sucessful. Laser-MAME was and always has been, a non-commercial project and was motivated by giving and sharing experiences and knowledge to others for free. I don't make any money out of this project and nor do I wish to...

    Laser-MAME is to be enjoyed for everyone and not to be endured!
  9. Pangolin

    Pangolin Staff Member

    Re: Laser-MAME OpenSource Project - Source code online

    Hi Rodney,

    Boy, it sure looks like you are the defensive one!! My comments were only meant to inform users that, if they want to use MAME or any laser variation thereof, there are some "legal details" of which they should be aware. More information about this is below, as well as on the MAME site itself. But first I would like to respond to a few of your comments:

    You are welcome for my support Rodney! :)

    I guess I would make the point that since over 80% of professional laserists use Pangolin hardware, that supporting our hardware is a downright requirement for the success of any laser software project (if you define "success" in terms of widespread use and market acceptance). That is why even our competitors support output through our hardware... And, as such, my contribution (and that of our SDK) to the public success of this project should not be belittled.

    (And by the way, you misspelled "successful" :eek: )

    Regarding the legal implications on people who might use MAME or a laser variant thereof, you wrote:

    No, not at all. I would argue that this information is NOT common knowledge!! And furthermore that both "common knowledge" and "common sense" are actually not all that common!!

    Your presentation is as though anyone can use MAME or any laser variation, with complete freedom and "entertainment" regardless of their situation. This is not the case. People can not LEGALLY use MAME or any other variation, for commercial purposes or even in the privacy of their own homes, unless they own the original game hardware including the ROM chips. This only applies to the far minority of people in the world!!

    The point of my last post was to help people to understand that MAME is not a magic bullet. There are severe legal implications and restrictions on how this project may be used, and on who might LEGALLY benefit. The copyright issues surrounding MAME and any laser variation thereof are very complex and ordinary people generally do not understand the complexities of IP law.

    In the context of what you can and can not do with MAME and any laser variation thereof, I also wanted to point out that the use of our Asteroids game (and any Pangolin-open-source-code-derived variation) does not suffer from these negative legal implications, including that it may be (and has been) used for paid public performances.

    Yes, well, there is certainly nothing wrong with providing free entertainment, or even entertainment in return for compensation. But this project really can not be used by the vast majority of people in this world for "free entertainment".

    As I understand it, the whole purpose of MAME was for the education and entertainment of PROGRAMMERS, who, through creating and exploring the MAME source code, might become enlightened and educated on how computer-based games are constructed. Yes, in this way PROGRAMMERS might obtain some "free entertainment", as long as they don't actually try to use it without being in possession of the original game hardware and ROM chips.

    In any event, the intention of my post was to enlighten laserists about the potential legal ramifications of using MAME or any laser variations, and that there are ways of avoiding such legal ramifications by following our approach. IP law is quite complex and I do not believe that most people have the benefit of knowledge or experience in this area of legal practice. Since Pangolin spends a great deal of money on IP attorneys, as well as a great deal of time and money on software development, I believe that we bring real value to the table, both within our current product line, as well as with aiding others in future developments, using our Open Source software and our SDK.

    Best regards,

    William Benner
  10. Steve

    Steve Member

    Re: Laser-MAME OpenSource Project - Source code online


    What about an altered frame file as suggested in the help doc.
    If you replace the ships frame with your clients logo and replace the asteroids
    with competitors logo, is using the other companies coprighted logos an infringement?
    Sure would hate to do a gig for Hollywood Video and then have Blockbuster come after
    me for blasting their logo to bits with the photon cannons fired from the Hollywood Video logo.
  11. Pangolin

    Pangolin Staff Member

    Re: Laser-MAME OpenSource Project - Source code online

    Hi Steve,

    You raise a good question. Really your question has to do with whether or not it is legally OK to blast your competitor's logo. This question has nothing to do with our Asteriods game because it is possible to make a regular laser show using Showtime and blast your competitor's logo there. If you were going to stage such a show, I think you should seek the advice of an attorney.

    I do know that blasting, or even talking about blasting certain entity's name would not be OK. For example, it is not legal to indicate that you wanted to blast the president of the United States. If you do this, you will be visited by the CIA, NSA or FBI. There was an incident recently where a local radio talkshow host made a not-so-good comment about what he would like to do with the President, and he had to explain his public comments in a private meeting with NSA who came knocking on his door the next day... But I digress...

  12. rMuD

    rMuD New Member

    This project is not LaserMAME, Rodney stole the name and refuses to change it. It has nothing to do with the original LaserMAME project that actually works.
  13. Laser-MAME

    Laser-MAME Member

    I called my hack "Laser-MAME" and the name was not "stolen" at all - you know, I'm starting to think now that I probably should not have even bothered acknowledging your efforts on my website as I have done so from the very start -

    In the beginning, I looked around, was nowhere to be found (and still isn't?), so I decided to do my own hack and share it around.

    My work was merely a cheap 'hack' without waranty which provides a proof of concept (which it does rather well), so whether or not it 'actually works' to any particular standard is neither here nor there...who really cares? Atleast I had the decency to actually release and share my code so that others could benefit from it instead of trying to pursue a somewhat futile commercial enterprise with it ...