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Lets Make A Difference To Xbmc


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#1 mikebeecham

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 12:18 PM

Ok...I know the title is a bit cheesy...I couldn't think of what else to put which clearly defines what the post is about.

For some time now, I have been dissatisfied with the skins that we have for XBMC. Probably the best one out there is PM3 without a doubt...it's classy and does the job it is designed to do but, lets face it, it's getting old now, and I'm sure jezz would agree?. HarshReality once posted that he gets tired of seeing exciting mockups come to nothing more than decent graphics on the forums...all style and no substance. I have to say that I find myself agreeing more and more these days with that statement.

In XBMC we have a media centre that blows ALL competition away in terms of feature-rich functionality. XBMC really does have all the bells and whistles it claims to have. Nothing (and I DO mean nothing) can come close to what we get in XBMC for free. AppleTV can't come close, HP Media Centre cant come close, and Vista MCE can't come close. In terms of functionality, we have the best that there is, and it's getting better with the help of people like Jezz, Spiff, Donno, and others on the XBMC Team

However, it saddens me to feel that the visual GUI of XBMC lets down the functionality...and this is where I want to step in.

I am calling out to the XBMC community, on both the XBMC and Xbox-Scene forums, and asking if there are people here that would like to be part of a collabroative effort to create a truly Professional-looking skin for XBMC. I'm talking about creating a skin that can MORE than match the paid-for skins provided by Microsoft, HP, Acer, etc.

Within the community we have people with staggering talents. We have designers and coders that can create amazing peices of work when the motivation is in place. What I want to do is pool these resources into one big team (or maybe maybe two smaller teams...I'll explain shortly) and make a collaborative effort to create something new, fresh, exciting and professional. I'm not wanting to create a new skin for the sake of a new skin. No disrespect of offense intended, but I dont want to create Halo skins, music skins or movie skins because they're the fave game or music at the time...I want XBMC to boast an exciting, visually-pleasing skin that ticks all of the boxes, and (as said before) can match the paid-for media centres that professional companies create and charge for.

We need to bear in mind that the project would have tosplit into two and run parallel with each other...obviously there is a need to embrace HD technology and create the skin to meet this standard...however many people are still using SD (myself included) and, therefore, this would need to be a consideration when taking the project forward.

So then...over to you. I am happy to project manage or share the responsibility with other people in order to get things going, but it wont happen without YOU. Do you want to be part of something that could change the face of XBMC forever? Do you want to be part of an effort to give XBMC a facelift and put it firmly in first place.

If this is something that you would like to be part of, then please email me at teambeecham@gmail.com, letting me know what part you could play, along with any experience you've had in the past.

I really hope you guys take this opportunity with both hands and run with it. I think it's exciting, and I hope you will to.

Cheers for listening, and I hope to hear from you soon.




Mike

#2 shizzle01

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 02:11 PM

QUOTE(mikebeecham @ Oct 2 2007, 01:54 PM) View Post

Ok...I know the title is a bit cheesy...I couldn't think of what else to put which clearly defines what the post is about.

For some time now, I have been dissatisfied with the skins that we have for XBMC. Probably the best one out there is PM3 without a doubt...it's classy and does the job it is designed to do but, lets face it, it's getting old now, and I'm sure jezz would agree?. HarshReality once posted that he gets tired of seeing exciting mockups come to nothing more than decent graphics on the forums...all style and no substance. I have to say that I find myself agreeing more and more these days with that statement.

In XBMC we have a media centre that blows ALL competition away in terms of feature-rich functionality. XBMC really does have all the bells and whistles it claims to have. Nothing (and I DO mean nothing) can come close to what we get in XBMC for free. AppleTV can't come close, HP Media Centre cant come close, and Vista MCE can't come close. In terms of functionality, we have the best that there is, and it's getting better with the help of people like Jezz, Spiff, Donno, and others on the XBMC Team

However, it saddens me to feel that the visual GUI of XBMC lets down the functionality...and this is where I want to step in.

I am calling out to the XBMC community, on both the XBMC and Xbox-Scene forums, and asking if there are people here that would like to be part of a collabroative effort to create a truly Professional-looking skin for XBMC. I'm talking about creating a skin that can MORE than match the paid-for skins provided by Microsoft, HP, Acer, etc.

Within the community we have people with staggering talents. We have designers and coders that can create amazing peices of work when the motivation is in place. What I want to do is pool these resources into one big team (or maybe maybe two smaller teams...I'll explain shortly) and make a collaborative effort to create something new, fresh, exciting and professional. I'm not wanting to create a new skin for the sake of a new skin. No disrespect of offense intended, but I dont want to create Halo skins, music skins or movie skins because they're the fave game or music at the time...I want XBMC to boast an exciting, visually-pleasing skin that ticks all of the boxes, and (as said before) can match the paid-for media centres that professional companies create and charge for.

We need to bear in mind that the project would have tosplit into two and run parallel with each other...obviously there is a need to embrace HD technology and create the skin to meet this standard...however many people are still using SD (myself included) and, therefore, this would need to be a consideration when taking the project forward.

So then...over to you. I am happy to project manage or share the responsibility with other people in order to get things going, but it wont happen without YOU. Do you want to be part of something that could change the face of XBMC forever? Do you want to be part of an effort to give XBMC a facelift and put it firmly in first place.

If this is something that you would like to be part of, then please email me at teambeecham@gmail.com, letting me know what part you could play, along with any experience you've had in the past.

I really hope you guys take this opportunity with both hands and run with it. I think it's exciting, and I hope you will to.

Cheers for listening, and I hope to hear from you soon.
Mike

true story

#3 skilltronix

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 02:54 PM

I think there are a lot of good skins out there right now, but it's true that if you put all those creative people together on a collaborative project then the result will probably be phenomenal!

#4 mikebeecham

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 03:31 PM

Skilltronix,

Not to be dispariging in anyway, but no! There are about 3 or 4 good finished skins out there at the moment, the rest are in alpha or beta stage.

And again, apart from PM3 there are none that do the xbmc justice.

#5 maximusoctavious

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 04:22 PM

PM3 best skin? Don't think so. & there are alot of great skins out right now? But they can always excel.

#6 mikebeecham

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 06:18 PM

maximus,

I am not going to let this thread become a flame-fest, so I will quantify my point:

When I say that PM3 is the best skin out there at the moment, I am not talking about merely the design askepct of the skin. As I have already said, the PM3 GUI is good, but it's becoming outdated. What I am talking about is the overall package of the skin...the gui, the sounds, the functionality, whether lag is an issue (which it IS with some skins at the moment), the potential to grow and expand, etc etc.

The simple fact is, whether we like it or not PM3 is the best skin in terms of an overall PACKAGE. Another reason why it is the best overall skin, is that there are very few skins that are complete and compatible with version 2.0, all resolutions, HD and SD. In fact, it's one of only about 4 or 5 skins out there that are complete on the compatability list.

So far, we have PM3, xTV, xMC, Vision...have I missed many more out? djh's Xephyr is becoming a popular skin at the moment, but as he has already posted...it's at Alpha stage, and has a shed load of work to be done. Now bear in mind his original comment that the skin was designed for HIM, not the community as a whole, so the chances of it becoming compatible across all resolutions and definitions is either non-existent or at leats 6months to a year away. Dont expect to see 4x3 out of it anytime soon!

...as an aside, how many threads on this forum alone contains the phrase "Any update on this skin yet? Cant wait to see it, blah blah"...it happens all too often that great ideas turn out nothing more than that...great ideas with maybe one or two screens done!

So, in quantifying my previous statement Max, I would like to pool the resources of both forums to get a group of talented individuals together, who would be able to work together on a common project, and to create a new, overall Package of a skin that gives the big names something to be worried about.

I want people to say "Why pay for Vista MCE, when I can have THAT for free"

So please, lets have none of this "pm3 best skin...dont think so" comments, and perhaps start thinking about collaboration.

Thanks

#7 CHI3f

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 06:22 PM

QUOTE(skilltronix @ Oct 2 2007, 10:30 AM) View Post

I think there are a lot of good skins out there right now, but it's true that if you put all those creative people together on a collaborative project then the result will probably be phenomenal!

That is not a sure thing man, the problem with having a bunch of people working on something like that is that there is sure to be a lot of creative differences amongst the group.

QUOTE(mikebeecham @ Oct 2 2007, 11:07 AM) View Post

And again, apart from PM3 there are none that do the xbmc justice.

In your opinion biggrin.gif I think Blackbolt Classic and PDM are up there with PM3.

#8 mikebeecham

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 06:35 PM

..but you yourself have had a lot of experience in this area, so why not work in providing some positives for this potential project, instead of looking at the negatives?

#9 maximusoctavious

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 07:21 PM

Yes, you are correct. Overall package it is the best. The one thing about intelligence.....you can't argue with it. Very well put.

#10 CHI3f

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 08:25 PM

QUOTE(mikebeecham @ Oct 2 2007, 02:11 PM) View Post

..but you yourself have had a lot of experience in this area, so why not work in providing some positives for this potential project, instead of looking at the negatives?

Thinking about the negatives before they happen help you prepare yourself for them so you can deal with them more effectively when they do happen.

Don't get me wrong, I do think you have a good idea on your hands.

#11 Jezz_X

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Posted 02 October 2007 - 11:40 PM

I think its a great idea
but on a personal note I would like to think that I have allready made a difference to the Xbox 1 modding scene and the XBMC world

#12 CHI3f

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Posted 03 October 2007 - 12:55 AM

QUOTE(Jezz_X @ Oct 2 2007, 07:16 PM) View Post

I think its a great idea
but on a personal note I would like to think that I have allready made a difference to the Xbox 1 modding scene and the XBMC world

Indeed you have

#13 djdafreund

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Posted 03 October 2007 - 03:00 AM

Honestly buddy? Long after the xbox1 scene dies out, when i think about xbox, i will still always remember your name of the few "Jezz_X". You have seriously done so much for the scene. I'm sure a lot of us have been around long enough here that remember EVERYTHING you have done. And that things probably wouldn't be the same if it weren't for you Jezz and your contributions.
Thanks a bunch for your help with questions, your work with every update to pm3 and EVERY other skin you've also helped work on, and your contributions to XBMC in general. Much appreciated, and RESPECT!!!

Edited by djdafreund, 03 October 2007 - 03:02 AM.


#14 mikebeecham

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Posted 04 October 2007 - 09:13 AM

Ok, things have started to progress a bit now. From looking at the thread on the XBMC forums, a few people have shown an interest, doing anything from just brainstorming design concepts, to full blown long-term commitment.

The names is have so far for people showing interest in some capacity are:

BritneysPairs
MacGyver
C-Quel
Mantis
JustMeD
Skunkmonkee
Gamester
timdog82001

It's an eclectic list for sure, but is by no means the team at hand. I want to re-assert the fact that this stage is just about collecting names of all those people interested in being involved IN WHATEVER CAPACITY! I would like to re-assure you that you are MORE than welcome to come on in, even if you have limited experience. My view is that it's better to have someone with limited experience working on smaller aspects of the project, than asking a single person to do the bulk load of everything...so if you're sitting there thinking "I would like to get involved, but I've not had the experience in coding, designing, etc", then please either email me on teambeecham@gmail.com, or pm me. let me know how much you would like to be involved or what help you could be, and we'll get your name down.

Thanks again

#15 Blackbolt

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 11:32 PM

While I find all the ideas great, I fear the idea itself will become just like the mock up's plaguing us as of late. Managing a team project is a bonified twat. Unless you're willing to dedicate a massive portion of your life to it, I think its unfair to even begin, because you could end up letting down a lot of people in the team when you can't commit.

Having started Team Blackbolt wiht this exact sentiment, we are now wittled down to me and Jezz, well mainly me at the moment as Jezz_X is extremely busy with his own projects. I've experienced how tough it can be, but I've also experienced how awesome it can be to work in a team of oh so many talented artists and coders.

If this gets off the ground I'd love to see it succeed. Shame I can't dedicate any time, all my spare art time, is dedicated to my own skin. smile.gif




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