Steam Machines

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Is SteamOS a threat to consoles? No.
But it will murder and bury Windows PC gaming and completely murder Windows 8.

Lord_Gremlin:
Is SteamOS a threat to consoles? No.
But it will murder and bury Windows PC gaming and completely murder Windows 8.

Not sure if sarcasm but that's completely wrong. Steam Machines aren't for the hardcore PC gamers who build their own rig; they're all gonna stick with what they have. Your analysis couldn't be father from the mark. Steam machines are meant for console users who don't want the responsibilities of maintaining a PC or want a "better" living room experience.

Lord_Gremlin:
Is SteamOS a threat to consoles? No.
But it will murder and bury Windows PC gaming and completely murder Windows 8.

Doubtful if your first assumption is true. I don't expect the average pc user to install the steamOS on their regular pc which is regularly used for non-gaming functions. If the Steamboxes do sell well with the SteamOS already installed then we may see Linux get a significant boost.

clippen05:

Lord_Gremlin:
Is SteamOS a threat to consoles? No.
But it will murder and bury Windows PC gaming and completely murder Windows 8.

Not sure if sarcasm but that's completely wrong. Steam Machines aren't for the hardcore PC gamers who build their own rig; they're all gonna stick with what they have. Your analysis couldn't be father from the mark. Steam machines are meant for console users who don't want the responsibilities of maintaining a PC or want a "better" living room experience.

You're talking about Steam Machines.

He's talking about SteamOS.

Sleekit:
you don't know what is actually do-able on an (original) xbox do you ?

well if you feel like edumacating yourself google "xbox media center" for a start...

and for "it has custom made CPU, GPU, MoBo, everything..." don't kid yourself: its a PC.

Ahhh... so being able to play most videos, music, podcasts, and other digital media files is supposed to be impressive? I don't get it, it seems like the software is so lightweight it can be run on anything including iphones, android phones and the ouya. How is this an example of the xbox being a valuable piece of hardware?

And I don't "kid myself", one thing is that it has PC pieces, the other is that they should be build around custom firmware thus will NOT read standard PC OS. You can't install current Linux or Windows on your xbox right, why do you think this new steamOS will magically allow you to?

lacktheknack:
You're talking about Steam Machines.

He's talking about SteamOS.

Damn you and your reading comprehension! Beat me to it. Anyway for the post you quoted, PC enthusiast spend hundreds/thousands more to get a 10% to 20% performance increase, they will surely adopt steamOS if it gives them a 5% to 10% increase for free while keeping all the advantages for gaming a windows PC has.

Tanakh:

First of all the original xbox hardware is dated, like 12 years dated, there is no point at all to use that hardware or build an OS for it outside nostalgia.

Secondly, it has custom made CPU, GPU, MoBo, everything.... and the data for those components is not available, meaning you will need to do a fucking lot of high level reverse engineering to fit your OS to that.

In short, you would need to be a genius and devote years to reverse engineer the specifications of that hardware and then fit it to an OS, all to use crap super dated hardware; or have been an intel and nvidia engineer and be willing to have your ass sued to China. It is NOT going to happen.

Actually, the hardware in the original XBox is pretty standard with an NVidia designed GPU and Intel Pentium III CPU, and is (IIRRC) still supported by the Linux Kernel. There were several GNU/Linux Distros that supported the original XBox. None of them appear to be up to date, though. Even XBMC no longer supports it (although there is a fork that does). Obviously it needs to be modded.

I doubt you could get SteamOS running well on it, though, considering the old hardware and the fact it only has 64Mb memory, shared with the GPU. Even a Raspberry Pi has more memory (256Mb or 512Mb, depending on the model), but I doubt that Valve is planning to support ARM architecture CPU's at the moment.

Lightknight:
2. Create a standardized tiered market standard for pc requirements. This could be a lot more mobile than the console market with a new box every year that represents the next upper tier while not being as varied as the pc market as a whole. If the steam box manufacturer becomes just one or two companies, then we could even see some optimizations if the hardware is standardized.

you could simplistically do this by basically taking the top-middle-and bottom choices from a gfx card rundown on tom hardware guide and reissuing the "console" every years or so.

you give the rig a performance number somehow and you put the same number on the games (much like windows experience).

you also track those using a machine at each number (much like valves hardware surveys)

developers would then instinctively go for the widest base/performance band suitable for their game (much as they do with PCs).

all in all you could do that with just a bit of clever marketing/standardization/promotion.

although it would be far more interesting if they came out with something left feild like maybe a consumer electronics level form factor that had some kind of consumer friendly "carts" that held upgradable gpu/cpu/memory units on a base unit that dealt with connectivity and power and sound...could be 1080 and 4K base units or something...

Lord_Gremlin:
Is SteamOS a threat to consoles? No.
But it will murder and bury Windows PC gaming and completely murder Windows 8.

For dedicated gamers? Maybe, as a side OS to Windows. But amongst the vast majority of PC users who use their PC for everything but maybe an occasional few minutes of gaming here and there? I find that pretty unlikely.

It's a tad myopic just to assume that because X might be "better" for a subset of gamers that it's going to become the standard for everyone. Remember, we're talking about people who, when taking their PC in to Best Buy tech support, have to be asked if they make sure it was tutned on and tf they tried just rebooting it.

Andrew_C:
snip

Humm, it is interesting to see they didn't bother to put special restrictions on the hardware, my bad. Still, can't see this working as a regular forked distro of steamOS due the legal issues of making it running custom software and because... well, a toaster has as much processing power this days (figuratively) why bother with it?

Sleekit:

Lightknight:
2. Create a standardized tiered market standard for pc requirements. This could be a lot more mobile than the console market with a new box every year that represents the next upper tier while not being as varied as the pc market as a whole. If the steam box manufacturer becomes just one or two companies, then we could even see some optimizations if the hardware is standardized.

you could simplistically do this by basically taking the top-middle-and bottom choices from a gfx card rundown on tom hardware guide and reissuing the "console" every years or so.

you give the rig a performance number somehow and you put the same number on the games (much like windows experience).

you also track those using a machine at each number (much like valves hardware surveys)

developers would then instinctively go for the widest base/performance band suitable for their game (much as they do with PCs).

all in all you could do that with just a bit of clever marketing/standardization/promotion.

although it would be far more interesting if they came out with something left feild like maybe a consumer electronics level form factor that had some kind of consumer friendly "carts" that held upgradable gpu/cpu/memory units on a base unit that dealt with connectivity and power and sound...could be 1080 and 4K base units or something...

"I" could do that. But get 100 people in the room and they may all come to a slightly different conclusion.

There are two ways to standardize the setups. One is just pure specs and overall output. That's generally what we're doing now and what you just recommended. Having tiered boxes that specifically hit those marks would make the standard more legitimate.

The second way is to have a limited number of hardware configurations in the steam boxes. If the developers know exactly what hardware is likely to be in the boxes and if there are few enough boxes to make the work manageable, they can optimize for those hardware components in the same way console developers do now. One of the reasons that the specs of a console can't be directly compared to a pc is that developers can optimize for maximum performance in a way they can't currently do in pcs where they don't know the cpu/gpu combo or even the RAM brand or amount.

Well, color me excited. A couple things, though: is it possible to get Steam running on one of the existing home consoles (since I play the Orange Box on XBOX 360) and I don't get the hate for Uplay. It's worked out well for me on PoP and Assassin's Creed.

Ohkay. This is why it is bad to start something in the wee hours and crash unprepared for the guaranteed follow up. Certainly an error in judgement on my part and I do apologize.

So many wildly incorrect assumptions and dismissals. Perhaps one of the worst is my own. I would think that by virtue of how my statements are clearly expressing concerns not for myself but for ALL, that people would have enough sense that if they are going to make assumptions, that they would not be in direct conflict with the statements. How I can write a message focused on the impacts on all customers and the entire industry, and have it so mangled into assumptions of being internally motivated is both awe inducing and dumbfounding, but I digress.

It is NOT a tech issue, its a philosophical one.

It is not ignorance, insignificance or misplaced blame .


It is not jumping to conclusions, insane or irrational.

What has to be perhaps the saddest part of this is to be expected on such a wide spectrum defend a position as if it were completely preposterous, uncommon, or even original with little or no more justification than ".... but... but... I LIKE Steam!" Completely intolerant to the notion due to not liking what it means if true.

I would like consideration of The message of "What is popular is not always right and what is right is not always popular." which goes a long way in explaining why " he just doesn't get very many people following him on it" yet being "pretty good at what he does,"

(TY for the show of respect btw. /bow)

Oskuro:
You misunderstood me.

I probably did, because you wrote something entirely different than what you explain below. You originally wrote about making the software exclusive to their platform - not making delivery of software exclusive to their platform.

What I meant is that the only official method to install software in an Apple device is through the AppStore. They've set it up so if you want to use/publish software on their hardware, you must subject yourself to their policies.

That's not true for Apple's Mac computers, only for iOS devices.

But more to the point - it's exactly the same for Sony's Playstation Store and Microsoft's Xbox Live. Since we're discussing gaming, wouldn't those be the more relevant examples? Why make the leap to Apple? Just because it's popular to bash Apple?

The same thing applies to Microsoft and Sony about subjecting yourself to their policies in order to publish - and it's much easier for small developers to publish on Apple's platform than either Microsoft or Sony's.

Compare to Android, where you can upload apps without using their store. And yes, you could jailbreak your Apple device, but when installing software requires voiding your device's warranty, there's something not right there.

And again, compare to Microsoft and Sony.

Just as *all* console manufacturers, and Apple, do.

Again, why in an article about gaming consoles did you previously neglect the other two console makers and go straight to Apple? Because they are the current "big bad" among nerds or something? Because it makes for more sensationalism and attention?

It might be just me, but if I fork over money for a piece of hardware, say an iPhone, and want to install an app that Apple's content standards don't like, say one that shows a floppy penis on the screen, I'm well within my rights as an adult to do so, and I don't see why Apple, or any other company, should have a say on what content I choose to use on the hardware I payed for.

Apple or anybody else is not obligated to provide you a method for doing so. You can jailbreak or use the hardware however you like. But Apple/Sony/Microsoft make the product, and they don't have to actively assist you in using the product in ways other than intended.

While the "walled garden" does have its issues, it actually has a lot of benefits for average users, like not being as vulnerable to malware, and having a useful parental control system.

They build hardware. They are not the moral guardians of the world.

Correction: they build hardware and software, which function closely together. They also never claimed to be moral guardians of the world. Blowing things a little out of proportion there, perhaps?

Furthermore, as a hobbyist developer, I don't like the idea of subjecting myself to the whims of a corporation. Why should I limit my creative vision to fit their corporate image?

You shouldn't. Who said you should?

Hence my comment. I'd be onboard with an OS/Box that is open to third party software, like Android is. If not, I'll just pass, as I do with iOS and consoles.

So, nobody has limited your freedom, and you have every right not to use products that don't suit you. So what's all the fuss about?

Thunderous Cacophony:

If They don't have Half-Life 3 as a launch title, they're crazy.

That's something I hope that Valve will start pushing. If they expect people to invest money in the Steam Box, a lot of them are going to start wanting first-party titles delivered on a basis slightly more regular than "every few years, when we feel like it."

Pretty much this... Sure you will be able to play some or all or your Steam games on your steam system, but with out a clutch title. There is nothing that will make PC gamers Build/Buy a steam box they will just keep going on playing PC games on their PC's.

Now the big deal is that this may promote more players to move from traditional console gaming, to a Steam Box with an simpler more free form "console". This would have the effect of bringing even more games publishers in to the PC game market. There are a few other major hurdles mainly, hardware consistency, game requirements and player experience.

There were talking about you being able to buy/build Steam Box's off the shelf or with off the shelf hardware at different price points. This is going to mean diffident levels of hardware. Right now you have lots of hardware developers making vary different parts at many price different points.

Think of it like this you buy a XBox One (XB1) and a Playstation 4 (PS4), lets say for the sake of argument the expected hardware run is 5 years. Now when you look at games there for the XBox360/PS3 there really have not been much innovation in terms of quality of GFX quality. This is mainly a result of the hardware limitation the XBox One and Playstation 4 has tightly controlled hardware specifications. There is a vary good reason for this, so that every user gets a vary similar user experience weather they buy their console on launch day or 4 years later. This means that as the developers figure out the limits of the XB1 and PS4, your really not expecting to see major innovations in the GFX quality or the scale of the games.

While PC's have a fluid hardware requirements and thus you have sen lots of innovation and improvements in both game scale and overall GFX quality. The major downside is that user experience can vary greatly based on the power of their hardware and the settings they attempted to play the game at. If the Steam Box is going to have fluid hardware requirements then a Mid-Range system this right might be a low-range system next year. This will making getting a consistent and good gaming experience more and more difficult as PC titles continue the innovations.

I think what Valve will need to do is develop a certification and rating system based on the capability of the hardware.

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