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BeOS Media Applications Update

Filed under the:  department.
Posted by:Ryan on Saturday, 13 Jan, 2001 @ 8:10 PM
Bits N

Just a quick update on the BeOS Media applications front covering various happenings that have been brought to our attention. Some Moho doubts, some Soundplay updates, and a nice new video app are all just one “Read More” link away…

Well, first off, there is a new release of SoundPlay over at BeBits, and what a release it is. It features support for VST plugins, a new LiveEncoder, a new Equalizer, a new Analog VU plugin, a midi renderer, a new plugin kit, and a ton of other features and fixes. Well worth it for just about anyone, and if you havent registered yet, you should. It will be the best $12 you ever spend on software.

Meanwhile, a reader inquired with Lost Marble about when their BeOS native cell-animation software would be brought up to the 2.2 level of their windows and mac ports, and recieved a somewhat upsetting response:

The main new feature in Moho 2.2 is called “Switch Layers”, and is meant to support lip-sync with an application called Magpie (and Magpie Pro). Of course, Magpie isn’t available for BeOS, so this feature isn’t of much use by BeOS users.

Regardless, we just don’t know what’s going to happen with Moho on BeOS. We first started out with Moho on BeOS, so we don’t really want to let go. On the other hand, we’re no longer under any illusions that BeOS will become the “Media OS”. Moho alone isn’t sufficient to do animation production.

You need (professional) video editors, good video codecs, audio editors, image editors, effects software, etc. As much as we might like BeOS, if I were to advise a beginning animator choosing a system, it would be irresponsible to recommend BeOS.

So, this doesn’t mean we’re abandoning BeOS, but neither are we certain about the future of Moho on BeOS. I just can’t imagine BeOS being a realistic option for an aspiring animator (or most any kind of media

So they are sticking with us for now, but are facing the realities of the platform. Hopefully as Be starts developing BeOS more we will get more media apps to strengthen Moho’s position. In the meantime, lets offer em some encouragement… and if you are a developer able to help fill any of the holes they mention, now would be a good time to do so.

Following up on that downer, we have recieved reports of a new video editing app, MotionGlider (screenshot). This app is being developed by a non-english speaker, so we have no way to contact the developer to discuss it. If you know his language (japanese?) it would be great to help with language issues and hopefully encourage further development of what looks like a great app.

Now to go have a beer. Have a great night y’all.

23 Responses to “BeOS Media Applications Update”

  1. rain Says:

    About motionglider

    Yeah, isn’t this one of the apps eugenia showed us over at benews when she made a story about the japanese beos community?
    In that case, yes he’s from japan :) and the app has been around for some time now..

    I agree with lost marble. Moho alone can’t make the “Media OS” we all dream about.
    However, why can’t they team up with some other company and deliver a complete animation package for BeOS? I don’t know how much money they got or if they even care about BeOS anymore. But I think it might be possible for them to create a great package together with some other company.
    The question is probably, is it worth it?

  2. wobegon Says:

    In Response To rain @ 01/13/2001 10:55:30 PM

    Re: About motionglider

    I’ve never considered Moho to be anything more than a toy.
    It’s high time for companies to start putting thier money where there mouth is.If they want to see high quality apps, codecs, ect then write them, don’t bitch about it.
    Instead of wasting time with foolish projects like moho,they could have developed something worthwhile,like new kinds of codecs that take advantage of BeOS.There are far too many companies that have never written anything worth using that bitch about the work of others or don’t contribute or sit on the sidelines.BeOS is a movement,it must be seen as such.it’s purpose is to bring about coolness to computing.you can either be a part of it or not, your choice.

  3. Kelwyn Says:

    In Response To wobegon @ 01/14/2001 00:32:30 AM

    companies bitching

    Much as I hate to admit it, their bitching is legit. They are not out there to help an OS become more main stream. They are simply trying to make money. If you were in their shoes, can you tell me you would honestly spend all of the extra money it would require to write codecs for an operating system that only a handful of people use before you write your program, or would you simply develop your program for an OS with a larger market share that already has the drivers and codecs you need?

    BeOS’s best bet is for companies or individuals to port finished products from other platforms. The companies can start out making their money that way, and the users can see programs run side by side, and see how much better they run on Be. Until there are a significant number of programs that run better under BeOS than any other platform, users will stick with an OS that will get newer and better programs, and developers will stick with what they can make their sales by.

    So what can we do? Those of that have the talent, work on making the codecs and the drivers for the hardware. Make programs that do the same things as similar programs under other platforms, but make them better. Those of us who cant program should support our brothers and sisters in arms who give us the nifty toys that let us run our Be machines. Buy the programs, email encouragements, make positive suggestions about how to improve those programs.

    Developers and users alike should support Be Inc, no matter what direction they choose. The tools they develop for BeIA will trickle down to improve the OS. Have faith in them and support them. Above all else, we want Be Inc to stay alive.

    Wow. Sorry that got so preachy =)

  4. Nutcase Says:

    In Response To Kelwyn @ 01/14/2001 02:26:45 AM

    Re: companies bitching

    I dont know if there is a definitive solution to the “Chicken and Egg” problem OS’s face… but i think Bioware is getting close… developing for a cross platform model, and then publishing on as many platforms as possible.

    Linux will make that fairly more likely, since it could be considered a decent market (despite the free-software mindset)… so we need to convince them that a better solution than a linux port is to just go cross platform and include beos.

    A few more majors doing that, and we will be set.

    We are already getting past the app problems, but we arent there yet. Its up to us early-adopters (and hopefully thats what we are, as be certainly hasnt hit mainstream yet) to keep the faith, and hold down the fort. Just keep chugging along, and the apps will build up. Just keep the old apps working, and keep adding new ones, and we will get there eventually.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    Other interesting “Media Updates”

    Browsing the latest bug reports in BeBugs I have read about two interesting “Media Updates” from Be: the releases of the beta 1 of what it seems a renewed Media Kit and of new drivers for the audio cards based on the chipsets Enoniq 137x, which resolve the well-known problem of choppy sounds after some hours of use.

  6. Eugenia Says:

    In Response To rain @ 01/13/2001 10:55:30 PM

    Re: About motionglider

    Yes, MotionGlider is the app I presented on BeNews, but since then they have been two more releases, and a new manual. The only problem is that someone needs to contact that guy and try conveice him to make it English too.
    BTW, if you have problems installing MotionGlider, just copy its add-ons directory to /home/config/add-ons/ dir.
    As for LostMarble, I would encourage everyone to email them and tell them to keep the BeOS updates, at least for the 2.x source tree and then let them decide further…

  7. Anon. E. Mouse Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/14/2001 03:10:43 AM

    Re: companies bitching

    “I dont know if there is a definitive solution to the “Chicken and Egg” problem OS’s face”

    Actually there is. It’s called patience and willingness. Er, if willingness is a word.

    The fact is, nobody should go into developing for BeOS with the attitude that they’re going to make a great deal of money. As a hobby, as a sideline to other platform development, yes. Anyone who goes in thinking they’re going to be the Next Big Thing is going to be sorely disappointed.

    This is not to say that I think BeOS users are cheap bastards, unlike some developers who are under the misconception that if they write something, anything, then people _should_ buy it no matter what.

    The BeOS userbase is small. If 10% of 100,000 Windows users actually pay something it’s not as horrendous as 10% of 100 BeOS users. People really should get used to that fact.

    And the more developers that get disgusted with all the BeOS users who aren’t interested in certain games, or 3D modeling, or audio creating and then leave merely hurt their chances of making a profit further down the road. The less apps that draw, the less people that will be drawn.

    But, if you have the patience to wait and hope that something will happen that will create an influx of users the chance that more people will be interested in your application will increase and then things will start to pay off.

    In Moho’s case, I don’t think this applies. If they’re relying on something for Moho and Be can’t or won’t provide it, that’s certainly not Lost Marble’s fault. Same goes for games that rely on OpenGL. Even if WCD didn’t hit that legal snag, how long could John have waited before releasing, say, Shogo? Same goes for NGE. I have no clue what they’re doing at the moment, but if it’s OGL related how much longer can they hold out? Same for BONE related material.

    Anyway… I really wish Be had done their focus shift in a better way. I blame all of this on Be Inc. Yeah, I know… BeIA or possible certain death. But there are ways to do things, and there are ways not to do things.

    Er, sorry for the tangent. Back on track-

    BioWare might make a large push in the right direction for us. I don’t think they’re hinging their company on the success of BeOS. If I remember correctly, the BeOS version started off as a sort of side project for someone that was interested in the OS. See?

    This is why I hate computer gaming now. Everything is done by comittee. You can’t have the guy sitting at his keyboard thinking, “I’m gonna write a game that I know I’ll like, maybe other folks will like it too.” You have to have producers, directors, massive graphics, an orchestra, licensing… It’s all crap now.

    You want my advice? No? Oh. Well, here it is anyway. Make original games. Not high-priced, massively time consuming, mega-blockbuster-graphic games. Not yet, anyway. Make FUN games! Games that aren’t on other platforms. Games that may not have Nine Inch Nails playing in the background, but games that you want to play.

    Chris Herborth, where is Arcane? There might be quite a lot of BeOS users that would like to play an RPG. Do we want to replay Baldurs Gate, or Torment:Planescape when we’ve finished them on Windows? Possibly not. An original RPG would be great! And maybe there’ll be some Windows and Linux users in the mood for an RPG waiting for NWN and Fallout 3 and who knows what. They’ll load up PE and play away for a while. And, if they’re anything like me, they’ll realize that BeOS just might be a tad better than what they’re used to.

    Hmm. Anyway. BeOS still has a chance. I have no faith that Be will bring BeOS back into the fold once BeIA starts making money. Not for user use anyway. What will is if BeOS starts making unexpected money.

    Oh, and here’s a tip for Beatware… Continue ePicture for BeOS. I tried the demo version for Windows and it was utter garbage. The early demo versions were FAR better for BeOS. Perhaps if you fixed the bugs and offered a new demo with PE people would think, “Hey, it’s pretty good! I don’t mind shelling out the half-a-million bucks it costs.” And drop the price a little or offer a version for hobby folks. You might make more money there since anyone with 1/2 a brain would realize that there’s no business’ right now that are going to drop Windows or Macintosh for graphic development until the OS has some kind of foothold.

    Well, now that I’ve insulted a few people I think I’ll sign off. Take this message with a bit of grace and think before you flame :)

  8. Nimdok Says:

    this is all great but…

    Where is the 2nd part of the JLG interview? :)

  9. Nutcase Says:

    In Response To Nimdok @ 01/14/2001 1:18:27 PM

    Re: this is all great but…

    being with held to make silly people ask questions. :P

  10. wobegon Says:

    In Response To Kelwyn @ 01/14/2001 02:26:45 AM

    Re: companies bitching

    I think it is the job of software companies to promote and build the user base of an OS.especialy an OS with very few users.

    BeOS software developers are directly responsible for the promotion of BeOS,by creating really cool apps.

    why develop and spend money on codec for BeOS instead of developing for windows or mac? why not use an os with pre-built codecs? because as we all know windows and macos can’t handle media the way BeOS can. BeOS is not the media OS because it has all the codecs, it’s the media OS because it can handle media information better than any OS on earth.

    The fact that it has less codecs available to it is a sad reality of competition in the market place.eg:Apple wouldn’t dare port the sorrenson codec quicktime format to Be.Apple wants you to use a Mac for all that.imagine the shock and horror at Apple the day BeOS becomes the platform of choice for developing quicktime streaming media.

    The prime reason a developer would spend a ton of cash and time developing codecs and video editing tools ect is because there is a market for it, BeOS needs this stuff.And where there is a need there is a market.
    I think some BeOS developer needs to invent a video codec that can take advantage of BeOS media abilities,and then write video editing tools that uses this new codec in ways that the other guys can’t.BeOS would become the video/audio editing-producing tool of choice.

    I dsiagree that Lost Marbles bitching is legit.If you develop for an OS with less than 100,000 users world wide then you MUST expect to fight an uphill battle to promote your software,so at least for God sakes write something usefull.If there is a percieved need then fill it. You should also help to promote the OS as well.The last thing BeOS or Be needs is a bunch of whiney bitching oppertunists thinking of nothing but themselves.we need action.end of rant.I’m sorry as well that got so preachy but I guess that’s where we are right now. this is a great moment for Be right now.where ever there is a need there is an opertunity.

  11. Shice Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/14/2001 1:50:14 PM

    Re: this is all great but…

    I’m hoping there’s some good stuff in it re: BeOS that you’ve been asked to keep a lid on until they make an official announcement.
    /me crosses fingers

  12. Nutcase Says:

    In Response To Shice @ 01/14/2001 2:32:59 PM

    Re: this is all great but…

    nope. absolutely not. please dont get your hopes up. i am just taunting you. I am that much of an asshole. :P

    keep in mind, it hasnt even been a week yet.

  13. Anonymous Says:

    In Response To wobegon @ 01/14/2001 2:08:52 PM

    Re: companies bitching

    “The fact that it has less codecs available to it is a sad reality of competition in the market place”

    The fact that Be has never released the codec API for BeOS sure hasn’t helped things.

  14. Anonymous Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/14/2001 4:50:40 PM

    Re: this is all great but…

    if you dont tell us, im gonna tell everyone what you bought at victoria’s secret the other day and who REALLY intends on wearing it… :-)

  15. Nutcase Says:

    In Response To Anonymous @ 01/14/2001 8:02:19 PM

    Re: this is all great but…

    damn it katie! i told you when i gave you that teddy that it was for you alone, and to keep it secret.. why you gotta start posting about it here?

  16. Piers Bray Says:

    In Response To Kelwyn @ 01/14/2001 02:26:45 AM

    Re: companies bitching

    No, sorry, their bitching is not legit. As a media content creator myself in both prepress and video/audio post production I think the makers of Moho should have been prepared to do what it takes to create the software tools they wanted on this platform or used another platform altogether and not bother with BeOS. As they stand at the moment their tools are pretty much useless to most content creators and this would be regardless of platform. Moho although cute, is a toy piece of software and for them to compete on any platform they would have to create a much more comprehensive and integrated tools package for content creators. Adobe wouldn’t have done so well if they hadn’t made their tools so useful.
    There are other projects on the near horizon which will provide us with real content creation tools for the Be platform.


  17. Big Al Says:

    In Response To Piers Bray @ 01/14/2001 8:50:44 PM

    Re: companies bitching

    Being someone familiar with Magpie (the main reason why they probably won’t be able to continue with the BeOS port) it moves them from the level of a “toy program” to something respectable/professional.

    Magpie is a pretty big thing in animation circles (3D animation, that is). This lends quite a bit of credibility to Moho, and as difficult as it is to see the future of the BeOS port up in the air, I’m glad for Lost Marble. It should bring them quite a bit of success in circles outside the BeOS community.

  18. Billy Kakes Says:

    In Response To Nutcase @ 01/14/2001 03:10:43 AM

    Re: companies bitching

    I hate to recite a familiar theme, but I think Mozilla could be one of the most important applications to grace the BeOS, provided it runs well in its final release (and, presumably, under BONE). The simple fact is that these days most users spend the majority of their time using the web and e-mail, and Mozilla will be the first program to really bring the BeOS up to par. Four years ago, NetPositive was great, but it’s obviously dated, and in its current form, Opera is somewhat promising but most definitely not there yet.

    What else do most users do? AIM? We’ve got that covered pretty well. ICQ? A bit shaky, but working. MP3s? We have great players, Rio software, and a pretty good Napster client (in my view, even if you take the reasonable view that Napster is wrong, I think it’s hard to argue that the BeOS doesn’t need a good client; we need to attract as many users as possible, and many people use Napster. Having Napster for BeOS doesn’t change whether or not they download the music; it just allows them to change the OS they do it in.). Many of these popular markets have hit their inflection point, where companies add worthless features to try and get users to upgrade; many pieces of BeOS software are catching up to this point, so even if they do not match the competition feature for feature, they provide those which are valuable. Obviously, we also have Gobe and all the others for various needs.

    My point? Hopefully, we’ll soon be hitting a very critical point: where the most common task–web browsing/e-mail–can be done just as well (if not better) on the BeOS as on other operating systems. This, of course, assumes Mozilla is and remains comparable to IE, but have some hope. We’ve never hit that point: back when Word Processing was arguably the most popular, we didn’t have a great program. When video/music became popular, we didn’t have the Media Kit. Finally, we are approaching a usability milestone, so I think some optimism is warranted.

  19. cedricd Says:

    In Response To Anonymous @ 01/14/2001 5:15:38 PM

    Re: companies bitching

    The fact that DivX;-) was ever released for BeOS shows that people
    willing to write a codec can get in touch with Be and have prime access
    to info, just like Bioware has been granted access to the beta of OpenGL and that company
    whose name escapes me seemingly got access to a beta of Java for their sound processing app
    (see benews, the Swing screen grab).

    Just like for drivers, it’s just that Be has to do most of the work because
    there are really few 3rd parties willing to work on it unfortunately.. We should
    be very very grateful to the few people who do (the authors of ATiTV,SB16, of the
    G400 driver before the’re’s an official one from Be ..etc).

    No revelation here, beside working for an OS company, or for a HW company,
    how do you make a living writing drivers? (or codecs or whatever)?

    No one would pay for a driver in bebits’s store page :(

  20. LeftTurn Says:

    In Response To rain @ 01/13/2001 10:55:30 PM

    Re: About motionglider

    Lost Marble has a legit point at the moment. The market they’re shooting for requires tools like Magpie. If there isn’t one available for BeOS, well, it sounds to me like the BeOS community should be talking to the makers of Magpie to see if one can be ported.

    Application developers shouldn’t be required to write all the codecs and drivers for their programs. That is unnecessary in Windows and Mac OS whatever world. Where is the incentive for them to create programs for BeOS if they have to take the extra time and steps? Monetarily, it’s not feasible.

    Personally, I’d like to see a port of Magpie because it can be used with other tools besides Moho, Blender for instance.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Glad to see another video editing app making a presence, and I hope Adamation is making progress on Personal Studio 2.0 for BeOS :)

  21. WattsM Says:

    In Response To wobegon @ 01/14/2001 00:32:30 AM

    Re: “Bitching”

    Folks, you need to understand a paradox in the software development community: hackers can afford to do things that commercial developers can’t, because the hackers aren’t relying on the software income for support.

    It really doesn’t MATTER that the “DivX;)” (or however the hell they punctuate it) people have written a new codec and spent hours hacking on things to get around limitations in the BeOS media kit. They do not have to rely on the sales of their work to put food on the table.

    This gets back to the whole question of what “free software” really is: development costs ALWAYS have to be paid for. Most free software has its costs, in effect, subsidized. It is done by students at universities (sometimes with university resources), sometimes as part of university courses, and often as spare time projects from people who are making their money in other ways.

    But an actual SOFTWARE COMPANY, relying on selling software for their income, can only subsidize development costs with no sales for as long as their capitalization holds out. Gobe was founded by people who had a LOT of capital from being Claris founders–and it’s worth noting that they’re going to a cross-platform strategy, by all appearances. What about smaller companies? Do any of you have $50K lying around? Of course you do! How far do you think that will go if you want to make it a real business–maybe one other part-time employee, business licenses, the ability to handle credit card orders, advertising, and (unless you want to be entirely net-based) duplication expenses?

    And now you come along and say, “Oh, by the way, there are integral pieces of the OS that you expected to be there that aren’t, so why don’t you take time out to do the work you expected the OS vendor to have already done, even if you have to do it as a monumental half-assed hack that will probably all need to rewritten if the vendor finally DOES ship something that addresses the problem?”

    I don’t think so.

  22. samui Says:

    In Response To wobegon @ 01/14/2001 00:32:30 AM

    Re: About motionglider

    motionglider is not a video editing software,
    it’s a video jockey soft that makes it possible to do live video stuff. itīs like a tracker which plays video clips instead of samples.
    you can have the clips layered on top of each other and you can add some cool fx on the clips. I am translating the japanese manual to (my funny finnish) English.
    the soft doesnt work at all with amd processors it seems. (ive got one you see :( ) and its still very BETAbeta. :)


  23. Jared Says:

    Just another nail…

    I mean, if anyone takes a look at all the hopes and dreams falling away from BeOS, can anyone really get excited about BeOS anymore? By the time BONE and hardware OpenGL are made available, I doubt anyone will care anymore!

    What Be needs to do is kick their booty in gear, pay some dudes to bring BeOS functionality in par with Windows 98SE and start advertizing major time! Only if BeOS is seen as equivilent or better than Windows, will they have any chance at all of making BeOS a viable platform used by more than just a handful of slowly dwindling enthusiasts.

    However, I’m beginning to think JLG has been playing with us the whole time, getting a dream of a better OS made (with no realization that by bringing the public into the developer base so early on and not matching their effort in the right directions, they have simply made people realize just how useless an exciting OS can be) and then walking away from it and “changing focus” when he saw people weren’t buying into it as the great glory it was touted to be.

    A ferrari engine (wow factor) without the car (usfulness) = useless wow factor. And that makes me say… Whoa.

    BeIA is not BeOS. BeOS is all that matters. BeOS is dying (or dead, depending upon how you look at it). I’m not playing with Be anymore. They don’t know the rules of the game nor care to learn how to play right.


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