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Google Emulation (Games) Games Technology

MAME Running In Chrome 165

An anonymous reader writes to point out this interesting outgrowth of Google's Native Client: a Google engineer has ported MAME 0.143 to the browser-based platform, and written about the process in detail, outlining the overall strategy employed as well as specific problems that MAME presented. An impressive postscript from the conclusion: "The port of MAME was relatively challenging; combined with figuring out how to port SDL-based games and load resources in Native Client, the overall effort took us about 4 days to complete."
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MAME Running In Chrome

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  • by SharkLaser ( 2495316 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @06:58AM (#38555122) Journal
    We had that shit before with ActiveX. We need standards, not some stuff that only works in Chrome. However, I guess it's better for Google - now they have something that only works with Chrome. So when new users go to some web site it will say that they need to download and install Chrome to use it. Old users will also be locked to Chrome.

    Don't do that. Only use standards like HTML5 that work in every browser.
  • by JanneM ( 7445 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @07:39AM (#38555248) Homepage

    "write once, run everywhere"

    Write once, run in Chrome.

    You really want to return to the days when sites required a specific browser to let you in?

  • by deniable ( 76198 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @08:07AM (#38555338)
    Java programs = JVM programs Java support in the browser creates incentive to write Java applets: write once, run everywhere. Been there, done that. Didn't get a t-shirt.
  • by StripedCow ( 776465 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @08:09AM (#38555344)

    Native Client is a Chromium project, which means it is open-source, and other vendors can implement it as well.
    Right? (IANAL)

  • Re:Summary (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BasilBrush ( 643681 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @08:37AM (#38555416)

    I'd tend to go with what "the authors claim" rather than your Googling, since this port was done by Google engineers working on Native Client. If they don't know what it does and doesn't do, no one does.

    Resume of the person who posted the method of porting: []

    You're probably right that they went for a quick and dirty approach rather than future maintainable port. But why not, if that is what met their objective? They obviously want to test/prove/demonstrate the capabilities of Native Client. They can do that by just getting MAME running and pointing to it. It isn't their job to take much longer (several months in your estimation) to make it fully maintainable.

  • by StripedCow ( 776465 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @09:02AM (#38555462)

    Java is much more high-level, because it integrates a garbage collector in the VM. This is what makes it a sluggish memory hog.

    NaCl does not do that. It allows lean-and-mean code. It is basically like a lightweight version of VMWare/VirtualBox sitting in your browser.

  • by raburton ( 1281780 ) on Sunday January 01, 2012 @09:04AM (#38555466) Homepage

    > I, for one, like the idea that I can have desktop quality applications running independent of platform on my browser - and wouldn't mind if this became the standard

    The browser is your platform, that's the whole concept behind moving everything to web based. That's a good thing if you take the traditional view that the OS is the platform - now you can run any old OS you like (with a standards compliant browser) and you'll be able to run the apps.

    This doesn't make you platform independent though, it makes you OS independent - all you've done is just redefined 'platform'. While apps only use standards you maintain independence. As soon as they use non-standard extensions you are no longer independent and now you are limited again. In this case you are limited to Chrome.

    In this respect it's really no different to ActiveX. Just because google have published the workings of this doesn't make it a standard and there is really no reason for all other browsers to implement it. And if it isn't a standard and isn't available in all browsers people working with it will be forcing their choice of platform on their users and we're back to where we started. Why don't we all just run Windows and use ActiveX?


  • Microsoft lets other browsers implement ActiveX too if they want to. But they don't.

    Because they'd have to reimplement the entirety of Windows.

    Why would other browsers suddenly start supporting everything Google does, especially non-standard stuff?

    Because the Pepper API is a much more achievable target than the entirety of Win32.

  • by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <> on Sunday January 01, 2012 @11:44AM (#38556214) Journal

    Can someone PLEASE tell me where the hidden setting is to block ACs, please? because I swear their fanboi bleating and flag waving must knock a good point or two off any IQ that dares to read their bullshit.

    Newsflash: sandboxes WILL be broken and no matter how smart your precious Google is (which if you think running native code in a browser is just JavaScript can i have some of what you are smoking?) the malware guys are ALWAYS smarter, always. look at how badly Google has gotten assraped in Android market with malware, everytime they think they have a handle on it something new comes out and stomps them down again.

    In the end just like JavaScript you are talking about running third party untrusted code and hoping the sandbox holds which we've seen time and time again is a BAD assumption to make. Even with all the testing JavaScript STILL gets "JavaScript malware o' the day" yet you think that running native code on top of that is SAFER? I'm sorry but if you were any more full of shit your post would smell like a porta-potty in July.

The intelligence of any discussion diminishes with the square of the number of participants. -- Adam Walinsky