[DECtalk] How about a competition?
Dectalk at aol.com
Dectalk at aol.com
Tue Dec 18 07:59:47 EST 2007
I love your idea but I have 2 problems.
1. An OGG file is not standard. I work with OGG for my job and it is a
total pain because not many players play that format. I thought WMA was
standard because everything I have will play WMA files.
2. I don't think copy right stuff should be left out. I myself can easily
make stuff up, but not everyone can. Plus I myself don't have time. Plus,
are you judging Dectalk skills or are you judging creativity? If you are
judging Dectalk skills, people should be familiar with what they are judging. If
your judging creativity, what is the point of limiting it to just Dectalk?
Here's my idea. Pick a song that everyone knows, and see who can do it the
best. No text files allowed so that we can't copy each other.
In a message dated 12/18/2007 2:45:59 A.M. Pacific Standard Time,
tony at baechler.net writes:
This probably sounds crazy but I thought I would throw it out anyway. I
guess it's the holidays or something, I don't know why I came up with this.
How about a competition of original DEC-talk creations? It would be
like music contests but only for original files and they must use
DEC-talk. They could be plain text for sending to a hardware
synthesizer or loading into the demo or it could be an mp3 file. Each
contribution should be no more than five minutes in length. You can use
as many voices as you want. Mix it with music or whatever. Here are
the rules I had in mind but of course this is all subject to change and
1. No copyrighted works. That means no Red Dwarf, etc. It must be your
own original creation. It can't be DEC-talk singing a popular song or
reading a copyrighted story. Public domain works are fine. I am
arbitrarily defining public domain as anything published before 1923 and
whose author has been dead for at least 70 years. That complies with
both US and international laws. Agatha Christie would not count for
example because she died in 1976. Arthur Conan Doyle would count but
only for works published before 1923. He died in 1930. Tolkien
wouldn't count. This rule would be strictly enforced because the files
would be available for public download. I will not debate differences
between US, UK and international copyright laws.
2. It should not be longer than five minutes. If you need to go longer
than that, please explain why. It would be better for an author to
submit two entries of five minutes each than one long ten minute file.
As much as I like DEC-talk, I don't necessarily want to hear it for ten
minutes at a time. That also keeps file size smaller. This applies
even if you submit a text file, and especially in that case as the demos
have a small size limit and copying it directly to a serial port can
overload the internal buffer, at least from my understanding.
3. You don't have to follow a certain format, but music is probably
better than speech. If you want to mix music and speech, that's fine.
You can mix in background music as long as it doesn't violate rule 1
above. If you want to compose original music, so much the better.
However, music is not a requirement. If you just want to do spoken
word, that's acceptable. It must be primarily DEC-talk making the
sounds though. You talking and having DEC-talk say one word won't
count. This is somewhat up to the judges to determine what qualifies
and what doesn't, but a good rule would be that DEC-talk should do at
least 50% of the audio. Mono or stereo are fine.
4. No adult material or excessive swearing. I personally am not opposed
to some adult material but I am not allowed to host it. If someone
wants to host sexual material, that is up to them but it won't be hosted
here. This is not up for discussion as I am not the one who made that
rule. I know that this rule is enforced and I don't want to lose
Internet access, thanks anyway. Material should be suitable to all ages
but something in the "PG" rating scale would be accepted. If in doubt,
5. Only mp3 and ogg Vorbis files are acceptable formats. Wave files are
just way too big and .wma and other formats are too hard to play on all
devices. The exception is that flac files will be accepted because they
can be converted to wave and there are converters for most platforms.
Zip, .exe, html, etc will not be accepted. You may make a zip file with
your mp3 file and a README, but other files will not be accepted. If in
doubt, ask first.
The judges of the contest will be anyone who wants to download the files
and cast votes. I expect that the judges will be mostly from this
mailing list but hopefully people will spread the word. All entries
would be uploaded with ftp or email attached, depending on size. I
would hold them until the deadline at which time I would put them up for
public download on a web site. I would probably make one master zip
file with everyone's entries for easier download unless there are less
than three entries. There would be a short time (probably two weeks)
for judges to download, listen and vote. After the judging deadline is
over, I would count votes and announce the winner. If someone wants to
donate prizes, the winner would get a prize, otherwise the winner gets a
pat on the back and public acclaim on the site and mailing list. After
the contest is over, the entries would be kept indefinitely.
The inspiration for this comes from the annual IF Competition which has
similar rules. Also, it would be nice to get more DEC-talk original
creations out there that are free of excessive copyright restrictions.
Submitters are encouraged to either release their files to the public
domain or use a Creative Commons license. Regardless of what license is
chosen, authors give baechler.net and other affiliated sites
nonexclusive re-use and redistribution rights. For more about Creative
Commons, look at http://creativecommons.org/ . It is not a requirement
to license your files in this way but it is recommended and encouraged.
This gives people the right and ability to use your works in their own
creations without paying royalties in most cases and knowing that they
are not violating your copyright while you still have ownership of your
creation and can use it any way you see fit. If you put your work in
the public domain, you give up all rights to it, now and forever and
anyone can do anything they want with it without your permission or
If you have questions, it is best to post on the mailing list but you
can write to me directly. I would like to see this actually develop
into something interesting. Other sighted people have music
competitions, so why not one designed for the blind? Anyone may enter,
sighted or blind as long as their entries comply with the above rules.
A final update to the rules would be posted at the time the contest
officially opens. What do you all think? I am interested in getting
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