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Doom 3 open-sourcing held up while Carmack writes new code

Chief id Software technomancer John Carmack is now writing new Doom 3 code to dodge legal issues surrounding the rendering technique which gave Doom 3 its lovely shadows, so the engine can be open-sourced.

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Before it could release an open-source version of the Doom 3 engine code to all, id Software had to run it by the lawyers. But, their fierce eyes have spotted a slight problem. Chief id technomancer John Carmack is now writing new code to dodge legal issues surrounding the rendering technique, "Carmack's Reverse," which gave Doom 3 its lovely shadows. "Lawyers are still skittish about the patent issue around 'Carmack's Reverse,' so I am going to write some new code for the Doom 3 release," he explained on Twitter yesterday. Carmack has been saying for a while, most recently at at QuakeCon, that id would open-source the engine following the release of Rage, and pending legal approval. "Carmack's Reverse" is a stencil shadowing technique invented independently by several people, including Carmack, but ultimately patented by Creative Labs. While id struck a deal to use it in Doom 3 without paying Creative, evidently the lawyers would err towards a safer, less potentially litigious solution. Carmack mentioned back in 2004 that, if a deal hadn't been struck with Creative, "We were prepared to use a two-pass algorithm that gave equivalent results at a speed hit." Given how much faster today's computers are than those from 2004, that approach would certainly be less unattractive nowadays. Or perhaps Carmack has brewed up some fancy new rendering tricks over the past seven years. Wikipedia has more technical details on the Reverse, if that's your bag.

Pinky bathes in Carmack's Reverse

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From The Chatty

  • reply
    November 17, 2011 6:30 AM

    Alice O'Connor posted a new article, Doom 3 open-sourcing held up while Carmack writes new code.

    Chief id Software technomancer John Carmack is now writing new Doom 3 code to dodge legal issues surrounding the rendering technique which gave Doom 3 its lovely shadows, so the engine can be open-sourced.

    • reply
      November 17, 2011 6:34 AM

      good use of his time

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        November 17, 2011 6:37 AM

        We've all been there, put the lid on a project and cast it out of your mind. Only to have to dig it up and re-do a shit load. It's the only time I've ever been able to relate to Carmacks work.

        Then again, he probably loves doing it...

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          November 17, 2011 7:23 AM

          This isn't exactly normal, he's doing it just to opensource it, not for any financial purpose. Anyone else would throw their hands up and say sorry the release is blocked by lawyer shit!

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      November 17, 2011 6:37 AM

      Thanks Creative labs and patenting - this is really awesome you giant douche cunts.

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      November 17, 2011 6:47 AM

      Where is my Rage HD Textures patch?

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        November 17, 2011 10:35 AM

        Held up. Carmack has to code a procedural algorithm that mimics artists with a complex set of AI to simulate their creativity.

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          November 17, 2011 11:57 AM

          It's being tested for newer polished AMD drivers, the patch appears to be the actual HD texture superpack, let me be surprised how much GB will it be. ...

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        November 18, 2011 12:51 AM

        You're right! I'm sure someone will persuade John to get back into the art department where he belongs.

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        November 21, 2011 9:32 AM

        That is what I would like to know, I put the game on hold when it was anounced thinking the patch wont take long.. been ages now and not a word said.