Re: [Off-Topic] Number of Coders for a MUD

From: Doppleganger Software (doppsoft@TZC.COM)
Date: 09/16/98

>Is it me? Or has the amount of stock circlemuds just reached an alarming
>new rate? I have seen everything, from plain old circleMUD 3.0 BPL 14s.
>They are a load of stock, yet the owners feel that their mud is the
>best. To top it off, I've seen soooo many that violate the CircleMUD and
>DikuMUD license.

The stocks are next to impossible to deal with.  The violators of the
liscence, on the other hand, are extrordinarily easy to deal with.  Just
send a quick mail to the admin saying that you represent one of the
parties (the university is best) and that you were made aware of a
violation of the liscence agreement, and have come to either see it put
right or you will be continuing with legal proceedings, and informing
their ISP of the violation.  If they still resist, tell their ISP of the
violation (not stating you are with anyone) and if the 'I'm not in the
US' response, remind them that international copyright laws exist.  Sure,
it's a lie from the start, but it tends to get the job done.  If that
still doesn't work, pass word among the players that the MUD is being
shut down for copyright violations.  Too bad TSR wasn't cracking down on
MUD's anymore.  Oh well, at least some good came out of Wizards buying
them out.

>Maybe Jeremy should put in a few bugs that you actually have to fix to

They do something similar to eggdrop in the release, to make sure that
people take the time to go through and actually configure the system.  I
personally like the system very much.  It  forces people to think, and
all you need is basic coding skills if you but the 'bugs' in properly.
Just make the 'bugs' a bunch of lines that need to be uncommented or
removed, and that should do it.  If maybe 10-12 of them are put in (one
in a file?) most people will give up and try something else.  Putting
errors in certain zone files will work nicely too.  Another possibility
is to have a 'backdoor' built into CircleMUD, and even say so in the
setup guide.  Have it built on another command, so they must actually
remove the backdoor code properly, or the command will be messed up.
That way, people who don't do it will have a gaping security hole in
their MUD just waiting to be exploited.  <grin>  Sorry, just in an evil
mood.  <cackle>

>And back to the main discussion, I would have to say that most of the
>MUDs that remain totally stock lie and die in a short time.

Not necessarily.  The reason a lot of them are started has a lot to do
with their life-span unfortunately.

>I don't think the real crime here is that the number of stockies
>deluting Mr. Elson, Mr. Greer, et al. code.  Since they are in fact,
>getting thier code seen and used.  Although it is a personal curiousity
>why they do it anyway.  (I'm glad they do.)  Since they don't get paid
>to do it, how do they have time?

Problem is, people see the code and see the stock MUD, and assume that
ALL CircleMUD's are stock.  Which is why a lot of people are modifying
the name of the code base to something else once they have changed it a
signifigant amount, still keeping in the liscence agreement, just
'adding' to it as it were.  That way, you can say that it was BASED off
CircleMUD, but its no longer anything like it.  The reason why most
people start up these stupid stock MUDs is that they played on a
CircleMUD for a while and now they want to run one.  They usually aren't
given immortal positions on any (as they tend to be immature, or have
some other problem relating with people or abuse of power) and so they
decide to make a MUD where they can do what they want.  They get a few
friends together, and they set it up somewhere.  A lot of these kids tend
to be rich kids who can afford a pay site with money from their parents.

This whole topic was the main reason the SPOOC (Society for the Promotion
Of Original CircleMUD's) was created.  Despite the difficulty in keeping
it alive, there is still a lot of interest in the idea of some kind of
organization to promote CircleMUD's that excel in originality.  Sorry I
can't be the one to help this organization off the ground, but I just
don't have any time.

"One hundred years from now, none of this will matter because you and I
will be dead -- unless the Grim Reaper has switched his record-keeping to
a Windows 95-based system, in which case we all might live forever. "
-- Associated Press

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