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seanadams
2004-01-10, 14:47
In the last couple of weeks, a few new networked audio products have
entered the fold. One in particular that we should address is the
SoundBridge - I would like to clarify some of the questions and
suspicions that were raised:

First, despite striking similarities to the SLIMP3, the SoundBridge is
NOT a licensed Slim Devices design.

The product appears to use (a variant of?) SLIMP3's communication
protocol, and is based on the SLIMP3 Server software (most likely
v4.x), as we can see from the feature list and the screen shots. I have
no more information about the product than what they've announced.

Roku is not currently supporting the development of Slim Server. The
project has been supported so far only by our SLIMP3/Squeezebox
hardware sales and by this community. Therefore, buying a SoundBridge
does not help the original SlimServer GPL project.

We have no reason to expect that Roku is unfamiliar with the GPL,
particularly their obligations to retain our copyright notice and
release their changes to the source. Let's not worry about that yet.

This is NOT a big surprise for us. We knew that if the Slim Devices'
server software were a success, others would design hardware to talk to
it. The possibility exists that other companies will do the same thing.
What remains to be seen is to whether these new entrants will embrace
the open foundation of our software effort, or attempt to subvert it by
moving key functionality into the client (or other closed components).
On this issue, it's too early for informed speculation about Roku in
particular.

Either way, this does present some interesting technical and strategic
challenges concerning server development. Consider that most GPL server
software is designed to implement a static, well-defined protocol -
deliberately void of user interface and hardware specification. By
contrast, much of the Slim Server code is there to support SLIMP3 and
Squeezebox (the protocol, the remote, the UI, hardware registers, etc).
While the lower layers are abstracted within the server, there are
still many broader UI and architectural requirements which could be
different for other products. It is technically possible, but unlikely
that the official Slim Devices distribution would support other
hardware derivatives. At any rate, we will absolutely continue to
support the powerful creative force of this community, regardless of
whether others are using our software for their purposes.

Finally, please feel free to communicate with us if you have any
questions or ideas concerning this. There is nothing we value more than
our customers and this group. Thank you,

Sean

jacobdp
2004-01-10, 15:15
On Sat, 10 Jan 2004 13:47:48 -0800, you wrote:
>While the lower layers are abstracted within the server, there are
>still many broader UI and architectural requirements which could be
>different for other products. It is technically possible, but unlikely
>that the official Slim Devices distribution would support other
>hardware derivatives.

Just a thought...
Isn't the HTTP remote streaming something like this? Based on the
posts I've seen, there are at least a few people using SlimServer only
for the purpose of streaming to software clients.

However, it's pretty clear that they've MASSIVELY re-worked the UI.
See this picture:
http://www.cesweb.org/shared_files/innovations/innovations_2004/2192/mainphoto2192.jpg

The real test GPL-wise will be when they release their version of the
server.

Has there been any communication between Slim Devices and Roku?

- Jacob
--
"Terminak #3 has bad keyboard. Pkease fix."

kdf
2004-01-10, 15:23
Quoting Jacob Potter <jacobdp (AT) earthlink (DOT) net>:

> On Sat, 10 Jan 2004 13:47:48 -0800, you wrote:
> >While the lower layers are abstracted within the server, there are
> >still many broader UI and architectural requirements which could be
> >different for other products. It is technically possible, but unlikely
> >that the official Slim Devices distribution would support other
> >hardware derivatives.
>
> Just a thought...
> Isn't the HTTP remote streaming something like this? Based on the
> posts I've seen, there are at least a few people using SlimServer only
> for the purpose of streaming to software clients.
>
> However, it's pretty clear that they've MASSIVELY re-worked the UI.
> See this picture:
its not that massive. its an ol version of the fishbone skin, with different
graphics and colours. In fact, the layout isn't changed at all.

the hardware looks slick though. Much better than a lot of the other devices
out there that end up being mentioned here. I was beginning to think the
Industrial Design people were all blind.

-kdf

jacobdp
2004-01-10, 15:37
On Sat, 10 Jan 2004 14:23:11 -0800, you wrote:
>its not that massive. its an ol version of the fishbone skin, with different
>graphics and colours. In fact, the layout isn't changed at all.

I was referring to the hardware UI, not the web interface. In the
picture, the "now playing" screen is very different - cover art on the
VFD!

- Jacob

--
"Terminak #3 has bad keyboard. Pkease fix."

dean
2004-01-10, 21:50
I'm quite confident that this photo is a mockup.

On Jan 10, 2004, at 2:37 PM, Jacob Potter wrote:

> On Sat, 10 Jan 2004 14:23:11 -0800, you wrote:
>> its not that massive. its an ol version of the fishbone skin, with
>> different
>> graphics and colours. In fact, the layout isn't changed at all.
>
> I was referring to the hardware UI, not the web interface. In the
> picture, the "now playing" screen is very different - cover art on the
> VFD!
>
> - Jacob
>
> --
> "Terminak #3 has bad keyboard. Pkease fix."
>
>
>