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Subject: "R" prize

"R" prize

From: Neon John <>
Date: Sat, 03 Jul 2004 19:41:05 -0400

On Sat, 3 Jul 2004 11:37:57 +0200 (MEST), "[IDC]Dragon" <>

>> Still, trying to do my part, I restate my offer of awhile back. If any
>> developer with a rockbox track record will step forward and commit to a
>> port
>> to some other hardware, I'll buy the hardware and donate it to him. I'm
>> willing to spend up to, oh, $500 on the target hardware.
>Hmm, a very tempting, generous offer. And I guess I have a track record...
>Some general thoughts about this porting/platform issue (none spectecular
>new, btw):
>- The main resouce restriction to grown-up developers is time, not the money
>to buy this or that toy. I know somebody in this household I'd get in
>trouble with if I'd burdon me with another hobby project. ;-)

How well I know that one. But after a 27 year marriage, the ex finding a
boyfriend and now my having enjoyed 2 years of freedom....


>- Availability: Open source development is slow. We'd need a hardware base
>which is commercially available for several years, and preferable with a
>large user base. I have my doubts about the Xclef in that. It's an exotic
>box. Does anybody know who actually designed it? The upcoming Commodore
>player could be a promising candidate, it's got a brand which could sell.
>- Portability: I know the core team will disagree, but so far I don't
>consider Rockbox well portable.

All true. I think that any potential hardware platform has to be a mainstream
product available at major retailers and etailers.

I'm going to take a different approach to motivating a port. Or more
accurately, I'm going to copy a proven formula.

In honor of the very successful X Prize for the first private manned space
flight, I'm establishing the "R Prize". This prize will go to the first
individual or group to release a Rockbox (like) port to any mainstream
platform in accordance with the following rules (and any changes I might see
fit to make.) I pledge $1000** to the prize and solicit other pledges of any

The Rules:

* The port must contain all the features of the then-current Rockbox. It need
not be a code port. A feature port is fine. This recognizes that there may
be little reusable code for a majorly different architecture.

* In addition to the RockBox feature set it must do the following things that
I want: in book mode, N second replay (replays the last N seconds when
resuming from a pause.), N second repeat (rewinds N seconds and replays on a
momentary press of the << button) and one key keyboard lock. These have been
Iriver CD MP3 players for years.

* It must run on a hardware platform that has been on the market for at least
a year (flexible on this point) and is available at major (r)etailers. I
would suggest a hard look at the IRiver H100 series but that isn't a major

* It must be fully documented to the same quality as Rockbox. It will be my
sole, arbitrary definition of "fully documented" that will govern.

* new code shall be released to the public domain. Derivative works shall be
public domained to the extent possible. No GPL infection will be recognized.
There will be no IP pissing matches as has taken place over Rockbox. R Prize
code will be available to anyone or anything for any purpose. (no arguments
accepted on this - my prize, my rules.)

* There must be a support site similar to or integrated with the current
RockBox site. This site shall include CVS, docs and a download area.

* The prize will have been "won" when I can download the code from a public
site, load the code on the as-shipped target platform and run it without fatal
bugs. Candidate teams should consider loaning me a target device for the
test. In the case of (apparent) ties, tie breakers I will consider include:
obtaining some degree of mfr support, flashed vs file based, speed of booting
and/or replaceable batteries.

* If the winner has obtained some degree of manufacturer technical support I
will pay for the target platform up to $500. The minimum acceptable support
includes a description of firmware format, the boot loading process, the
architecture of the device including all port addresses, bit masks, etc.
(developers add more requirements here) A letter from the mfr saying they
think this port is a Damned Good Idea (TM) is a plus.

* I may change these rules at any point with no advanced notice. I will, of
course, entertain discussions about anything except the public domain
requirement before making changes. All decisions, judgements, thoughts,
inklings, notions or other mental processes affecting this prize are
exclusively mine to make.

* There is no expiration time on this prize, though I may decide to end it if
I don't see any progress after some months.

* I will announce the winner on this list. That will be all the notice that
will be given.

Let the games begin :-)


** I reserve the right to award the prize in two $500 payments separated by no
more than 2 months. I'm not rich, just motivated. Anyone else pledging to
this prize may pay on the same schedule.
John De Armond
Cleveland, Occupied TN
Received on 2004-07-04

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