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Author Topic: How to increase interest in hacking?  (Read 34920 times)

Revenant

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #41 on: February 28, 2016, 06:01:18 pm »

DarkSol

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #42 on: February 28, 2016, 08:12:10 pm »


Maybe you're helping to push women away from the scene with that kind of sexist attitude?
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VicVergil

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #43 on: February 28, 2016, 09:12:58 pm »
I withheld comment on this before, but the fact is the activity of this community is mostly not altruistic.

Quote
altruism: feelings and behavior that show a desire to help other people and a lack of selfishness

It's built on a sharing mindset. Mostly everything is distributed free of charge, and people answer most questions here from anyone willing to learn and put a minimum of effort. The immense efforts put in their works aren't compensated either materially or morally (your post being a prime example).

Quote
Or more to the point, only people who speak the original language of the work can truly be said to acting in altruism, as they alone receive no tangible benefit from the activity. Most of us can't speak Japanese worth a lick and the reason for that is that we've not been conditioned to think in Japanese, and for many people the dominant language overruns the brain beyond all else despite all the learning and experience otherwise. Everyone else involved - everyone - is getting the benefit of not having to battle their brain to experience the game (or else, reduce the game play to a series of back-and-forths between the dict/word processor and the screen), that's what the translators contribute. Even people who hack a game so much that they only see it in terms of data chunks nonetheless have the option of enjoying the work of others who have done the same for games they themselves haven't touched. Hacking other than translation... I'm not persuaded that's altruistic... I think that's self-expression... no one yet has made a modding tool that they didn't intend to use for their own creative artistry.

Spending hours on making some tool to give to others on a platter of gold to make their lives easier, is not altruistic.
Spending mounths, even years, on a hex editor and a disassembler trying to circumvent programmer madness to fit in a translation, to distribute something free of charge to the audience in their language (like that terminally-ill grandma who's a fan of Dragon Quest games and wanted so bad to play the sixth game) is not altruistic.
People can't physically learn another language.
The people who romhack the game can't read Japanese and use psychic powers to guess where the "data chunks" with the text are, screw them.

Oh, what else? Is this a more verbose version of the occasional newbie angry breakdown when people don't "help him" translate the game he wants where he is the "leader giving guidance and ideas", but now with more pseudo-philosophical jargon and thinly veiled sexism accusations for people not being servile enough?

Quote
no one yet has made a modding tool that they didn't intend to use for their own creative artistry.
Not even the plethora of decompressors/compressors, often done just to help someone? Just this last month I saw two such cases.

I ask about gender because there are umpteen women involved in scanlation, and hardly any in romhacking. So there's the question of what is being projected about romhacking that isn't about scanlation.

Citation. needed. badly.
Just from my own narrow experience this is so wrong.
So because gender isn't the first thing made a big deal of here, means there are "no women at all" here?
Way to go erasing so many translators and hackers (including ones behind the most high profile translations that started the whole gold rush for romhacking).

There is, of course, no shortage of women programmers in the US at least. Though, maybe women simply don't have the leisure time for hacking because the fathers of their kids are living the playboy life and saddling all the responsibility on them. Might do a poll to find out.

All males here are denying women romhacking by the very act of romhacking on (some of) their spare time, which MUST mean they're harming society by wasting time on this hobby, and are losers who are renouncing their social responsibilities and leeching off (again...) women's hard work?
And all women are too busy being in the kitchen as a result because where else would they be?
And everyone is married in some couple, and with an abusive relationship going on.

Dear God. You really outdid yourself here.


Maybe you're helping to push women away from the scene with that kind of sexist attitude?

I agree it's a tasteless answer to a bobby-trapped discussion, but "pushing women away" is... too reductive for women to say the least, and in fact it's echoing one of the assumptions advanced in that answer (that "women faced with the slightest hint of adversity run away crying").

Dr. Floppy

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Rotwang

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #45 on: February 28, 2016, 09:49:06 pm »
Wasn't Daria a girl?

EDIT: Does ROM hacking really need to be more popular than it already is? ROM hacks are inherently unmarketable and generally difficult to create at the entry level. Some people will cut it while others won't, and if they won't it's because their hearts weren't into it. You can't really turn ROM hacking into something that it's not.

I mean most of the popular games out there that would appeal to the type of person who would be into making ROM hacks already have comprehensive tools made for them that you don't necessarily need much prior knowledge if any. Other than making more and better tools, there's not really much more you can do.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2016, 10:02:11 pm by Rotwang »

Kiyoshi Aman

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #46 on: February 28, 2016, 09:55:11 pm »

Advertisements are not citable material. You have received a zero for this assignment. No do-overs accepted.

Rotwang

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #47 on: February 28, 2016, 10:02:36 pm »
Advertisements are not citable material. You have received a zero for this assignment. No do-overs accepted.

Haha geez, lighten up.

NERV Agent

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #48 on: February 28, 2016, 11:13:02 pm »
YOU ALL FORGET!

THERE ARE NO GIRLS ON THE INTERNET!

Grimoire LD

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #49 on: February 28, 2016, 11:38:49 pm »
Sexist rant disguised as reason.

No wonder you're a Republican. You fit right into that party if this is what you truly think women are like.

In the romhacking communities I've been in over the years women have not just been "there" they have also mainly held the spotlight.

Starting with Zelda 64, one of the best early ASM hackers was a woman named Sakura. During her time also came Airikita who is still vastly involved in Zelda 64 and is the de facto ASM worker for the game. With veritable works under her belt her pre-eminence cannot be denied in that community. Even going away from the realm of hacking you have organizers such as the famed GlitterBerri who, despite not being a hacker, gathered about her a team of dedicated explorers to find every bit of beta from the Zelda games that she can find, and she is a translator whose work we've all seen. She is currently a large part of The Cutting Room Floor.

Then moving to Final Fantasy Hacktics, the place is run by a woman named Xifanie who breathed new life into FFT along with the assistance of Melonhead who built many tools for hacking FFT. Xifanie is not just the leader, but also a grade A ASM hacker. There are also several female ASM hackers in that community as well.

Finally at Slickproductions we have FF4kster. One of the finest video game hacking tools out there also created by PinkPuff, which to my knowledge is a woman (never really came up)

Perhaps these are exceptions to the rules but every rom hacking community I have been on has had their fair share of prominent gals, in many cases moreso than the guys.




Dr. Floppy

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #50 on: February 28, 2016, 11:44:59 pm »
No wonder you're a Republican.

Since when am I a Republican?  :huh:

Grimoire LD

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #51 on: February 29, 2016, 12:14:56 am »
Since you make posts like..

http://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php/topic,21309.msg298071.html#msg298071

And...

http://www.romhacking.net/forum/index.php/topic,21309.msg297992.html#msg297992

And the list goes on.

Unless I'm misreading some extreme sarcasm in your more politically pointed posts, I would say that you are definitely Far-Right since you have blamed Progressive policies for causing a ballooning debt and say that you want to vote for Ted Cruz who is the most far right candidate of this election season. I am simply saying if those are your genuine feelings towards women it is no wonder that you skew that far to the right which has consistently degraded women.

EDIT:

With all that said I have deep respect for your skills in rom hacking and you are often willing to lend a hand to those who need it. If you truly hold to these outdated ideas about women though you may want to re-examine your moral compass.

SunGodPortal

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #52 on: February 29, 2016, 12:16:07 am »
Since when am I a Republican?  :huh:

Yeah, come on guys! We all know he's a secret socialist.
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CM30

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #53 on: February 29, 2016, 05:52:55 am »
Quote
Perhaps these are exceptions to the rules but every rom hacking community I have been on has had their fair share of prominent gals, in many cases moreso than the guys.

Not the Mario one.  The percentage of female hackers at say, SMW Central is virtually non existent.

On another note...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FONN-0uoTHI
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STARWIN

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #54 on: February 29, 2016, 07:41:43 am »
I'm siding with Floppy on this. His answers seem reasonable and worth considering. Although we are unlikely to go further than such speculation on a discussion forum like this.

On the other hand, "defending" females in general by picking out some specific nicknames seems tasteless to me. I doubt a typical person wants to be associated with a topic like this. It isn't a discussion about the existence of a gender anyway.

RyanfaeScotland

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #55 on: February 29, 2016, 08:40:22 am »
Quote from: CM30
Sure ROM hacking is programming.  But programmers don't only use the command line.  They often use editors with things like syntax highlighting, macros, and a nicer user interface.  Like for web stuff, the one for Notepad++, or Brackets, or whatever else.  And even there, a lot of people will use stuff that makes things easier on them, like frameworks (see Bootstrap or Foundation or whatever). 

And in other game design/development houses, they use engines with decent editing tools, like the Unreal Engine editor.

ROM hacking tools look like something from the Commodore 64 era by comparison.

I'm hearing you bud but FAST has made a good point about the use case being pretty different where the goal with the above tools is often starting from scratch or using an existing and accessible set of source files.

That being said I was recently looking for what the state of the art was for 68K programming (Megadrive) and the best I could come up with was Easy68K. It's good (in fact for the product of one / a handful of people it is great) and I don't want to sound ungrateful but it is a far stretch from Visual Studio, Netbeans or Eclipse. What I wouldn't do for a little bit of syntax highlighting!

What would be great is a tool that ties the IDE and the decompiling together. Thinking out loud - You open the IDE, select the ROM file you are interested in, it decompiles it for you (dumb decomp doing data as code, perfectly possible) and presents it in the IDE for you to edit at your whim, recompiling once you are done. Of course there is the whole issue of knocking off offsets / pointers as you dev that would need to be handle but hey, we are just spitballing here.

In my eyes one of the biggest show stoppers preventing anyone going out and developing such a thing is having to start right from the beginning. It would be great if there was already an open source 68K decompiler out there, and one for the other languages of interest. Perhap something could be extracted from the existing open source emulators but I can't say I've looked into it enough to know. All I know is there is a very big risk of whoever makes a start on it getting burned out once they have written the decompiler alone and it would really be great if there was a more collaborative mind set on these things. Someone develops a decompiler, makes it open source, someone adds a basic editor to it, someone adds a compiler, that sorta thing.

As I decompile Toejam and Earl it is becoming more apparent that doing it by hand is going to be a real chore and a more integrated approach would be great.

Anyway, this topic isn't the place to discuss things like that, this topic is about counting penises and vaginas.  ::)

EDIT - I wonder if something at least useful could be put together than pulls all these separate tools together, a sort of integrated launcher that has some built in settings / commands? So you launch it, run the decompile command and it calls the external decompiler and places the output in a known locations, you then run the editor command and it launches Notepad++ on the decompiled file, run the compile and it launches the external compiler, run the run command and it launches an emulator on the file. Heck, that could be made via batch scripting and would be a starter for 10. Make this open source and you've got the first step in place, people can then add an integrated decompiler, editor, compiler and so on as needed.

Food for though... I think I may actually throw this into a rather open ended tool I'm working on just now... watch this space. ;)
« Last Edit: February 29, 2016, 09:02:30 am by RyanfaeScotland »

FAST6191

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #56 on: February 29, 2016, 08:55:12 am »
Does IDA not have the options for such things? Though I suppose if we are talking about making hacking more accessible then IDA prices ( https://www.hex-rays.com/products/ida/order.shtml ) are certainly not the way to go there.

As for the other conversation happening I never cared much for the show as a whole (at least not while http://www.theregister.co.uk/data_centre/bofh/ is a thing) but the following seems somewhat relevant
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=218sscox89U
"The IT Crowd" Are We Not Men? (s03e02)

RyanfaeScotland

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #57 on: February 29, 2016, 09:11:04 am »
Does IDA not have the options for such things? Though I suppose if we are talking about making hacking more accessible then IDA prices ( https://www.hex-rays.com/products/ida/order.shtml ) are certainly not the way to go there...

As I refuse to either pay or pirate it I still haven't tried IDA but from what I've heard / read about it yeah that is the sort of functionality it has. I think I'm picturing something more specific to ROM hacking that what IDA offers though but maybe not, maybe I'm talking about re-inventing the wheel, hard to say if you've only ever read about wheels on the back of cereal packets and thought they sounded cool but expensive.

chillyfeez

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #58 on: February 29, 2016, 09:59:49 am »
AWARDS SEASON!
There should be Hackies (or rommies?)! I would have gone full-throttle into this hobby much earlier if, even for one night, I could trade this rusty suit of armor for a glamorous ball gown and stroll down the red carpet for a chance to win a gold statue of naked Mario.
 :-*

But on a more serious note, I tend to side with the folks who question the motivation for getting more people involved. More avenues of entry = more product, yes, but more product = more crap, for the most part. Look up "free books" in any e-book distribution channel for proof of that notion.

Having said that...
The craft in general could benefit from an ever-improving set of tools and documentation. Sure I can do most things in a SNES game using Geiger's and the right documents, but even when I'm doing something I've done before and I know how to do, certain tasks seem needlessly time-consuming. How many times have I been looking at a live disassembly watching the same code repeat over and over as the x-register counts down from 100 and wished to myself that there was a button I could click to run until the next time X changes? Or when I'm in a subroutine and I want to know how we got there, so I have to jump out, then set a breakpoint for the offset just before that, then hope that the beginning of the subroutine there doesn't involve 700 lines of code I'm not interested in seeing before a long jump to the place I want to be? And don't get me started on tracing graphics transfers or the mess that is the documentation related to that nightmare.
Sorry if that comes across as a rant. It's not supposed to be. I'm merely trying to illustrate the notion that we tend to take these old tools for what they are - good enough - but rarely do we stop to consider how they might be better. I don't have any programming skill outside of ASM, so I am unfortunately not the man for that job.
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STARWIN

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Re: How to increase interest in hacking?
« Reply #59 on: February 29, 2016, 10:38:08 am »
Every time I have documented what some R3000 asm routine does, I have definitely thought that I should automate the process. The topic of decompiling wrt romhacking would probably deserve its own topic, although I'm not sure if there is much to say. Coding a dumb decompiler can't possibly be too difficult. Though I have been thinking of translating the asm to slightly more readable pseudocode only, not exactly to compilable C. It is nice to resolve arithmetic into more math-looking form, which also unhides the memory references. Translating asm jumps to control structures would be sweet at times, that spaghetti can get just awful.