(Topic ID: 140896)

RGB LED panels for DMD replacement


By ecurtz

4 years ago



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  • Latest reply 1 year ago by ecurtz
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    #851 3 years ago

    Only way to get around it would be to decompile the hex back into some sort of basic code then try and figure out where ALL the checks are and remove them. Which wouldn't be easy. But you cant just rewrite it as the pinDMD.dll will still refuse to talk to your new firmware? They need to hand shake before any communication is made! Unless you can guess the keys they both use your pretty screwed. (yes you can rip apart the firmware and eventually find the key blah blah but it wouldn't be easy!)

    Same with the pin2dmd licence key. This is some how been generated using the KUID of the device. Decompiling the firmware and removing the check/checks would just by pass it. But does any one care enough to do this? probably not....

    @wolfmarsh
    Some times you need it or you can spend a lot of money developing something and some one will just come along and take it. How is that fair?

    If its an open source project definitely do not need or want that sort of protection. But for a commercial product these days its a must or it will just get ripped off. Making all your hard work pretty pointless!

    #852 3 years ago
    Quoted from carlitos_litos:

    One question please; Your firmware do not support keyframe to apply multiple color palettes, and some Editor to colorize it ??

    I don't currently have plans to support modifying colored frames based on checksums.

    #853 3 years ago
    Quoted from russdx:

    @wolfmarsh
    Some times you need it or you can spend a lot of money developing something and some one will just come along and take it. How is that fair?
    If its an open source project definitely do not need or want that sort of protection. But for a commercial product these days its a must or it will just get ripped off. Making all your hard work pretty pointless!

    Are you part of lucky1's project, or are you a separate commercial project all together?

    #854 3 years ago

    I am not part of lucky1s project. I have my own commercial product.

    #855 3 years ago

    ecurtz what about sending pre coloured frames from pinMame this does not intrude on any patents? as your device is receiving the frames already coloured and from a computer not a pinball machine. Or does the pinMame side of things not really interest you.

    #856 3 years ago
    Quoted from russdx:

    ecurtz what about sending pre coloured frames from pinMame this does not intrude on any patents? as your device is receiving the frames already coloured and from a computer not a pinball machine. Or does the pinMame side of things not really interest you.

    Displaying colored data received over USB certainly doesn't infringe any patents, whether it be from PinMAME or a custom app. The current PinMAME proof of concept code only sends 4bit indexed images, but the display code supports 4bit and 8bit indexed as well as 8bit per channel color.

    #857 3 years ago

    My next project is to write some code that can colour frames from pinMame before sending them to the dmd. That is actually the easy part. The hard part is creating a really nice intuitive dmd frame editor where you can import previous pinMame dmd frame sessions and select the frames you want to colour and apply custom pallets to them. This then would create some sort of file including the frame hash and pallet data which pinMame can use to check weather it needs to colour a frame or not.

    #858 3 years ago

    I finally got my panels from China today!!! Can't wait to test this stuff out!

    Two of the four panels I received were missing some LEDs though. That pisses me off . They're all on the boundary of the panel. One was missing two LEDs, the other was missing five. However, the two others look like they'll be perfect.

    Just curious, are others are seeing this kind of defect that ordered panels direct from China in quantity? I will post pictures as soon as I get home.

    If I had a few additional LEDs, I might be able to get a colleague of mine that can solder anything to put them back on. Like I said, the ones that fell off are right on the edge. I was able to find one in the package. They do need to package these things better as they stuffed all four of them in a padded envelope!

    #859 3 years ago

    Where did you order from? thats pretty bad to be physically missing leds! did they fall off in shipping? or just not there at all? where they tested before shipping?

    I have ordered 200 panels so far and ones I have tested have been perfect.

    Not sure how you solder them tbh as they are smd components and the pads are underneath the part?? need to some how reflow them? Maybe a heat gun?

    My samples came in a box padded with foam (gave me some confidence in the supplier lol) And then the 200 panels came in a wooden boxed again packed with shipping foam (very nicely packed) with photos of them all lit up before shipping.

    #860 3 years ago
    Quoted from megadeth2600:

    Just curious, are others are seeing this kind of defect that ordered panels direct from China in quantity? I will post pictures as soon as I get home.

    Here in Iowa my buddies and I have ordered 8 sets of panels and had issues like these with 3 of them. Even the good panels, on close inspection, have pixels that have been fixed (resoldered). It's my guess (no proof) that the aliexpress stock is mostly refurb panels or factory seconds. Kind of explains why they are so cheap.

    The good news is that when you get bad ones they will send replacements, and if you can repair the bad ones you can get freebies.

    Dan

    #861 3 years ago
    Quoted from russdx:

    Not sure how you solder them tbh as they are smd components and the pads are underneath the part?? need to some how reflow them? Maybe a heat gun?

    My buddy fixed 2 broken pixels by soldering under a microscope. he used very thin lacquer wire like you'd use for a coil and burned off the tips and soldered to the contacts of the leds, then left a fairly long set of legs and soldered to the board. Once tested he just twisted the led until the wires were under the led and a drop of glue to hold. Worked, and made a junk panel into a fee one.

    #862 3 years ago

    Thats an interesting method to fixing these panels hehe. Can you tell its been repaired? Is the led slighty risen now?

    #863 3 years ago
    Quoted from russdx:

    Can you tell its been repaired

    Well, if you aren't watching the ball you're doing it wrong, so...

    #864 3 years ago

    Has anyone tested RGB.DMD in TAF yet? In my testing it seems to work correctly For a while, then the image shifts to the right about 18 pixels and down 1.

    image_(resized).jpeg

    image_(resized).jpeg

    #865 3 years ago

    Here is a preview of a feature in the PIN2DMD editor of Steve . Max, a new member of our dev team, has added a import filter to read the animations directly from the ROM of WPC machines. It will be integrated in one of the following releases. Together with the USB dump routine for real pinball machines (WPC,STERN, DE, Gottlieb, WHITESTAR) you have the possibility to catch pretty much every situation of the gameplay and colorize it.

    first_test_using_frames_directly_from_game-rom_(resized).jpg

    #866 3 years ago

    Yes. There is a code update for that. I think the latest on github has it. Am I right? We talked about it a little in my thread.

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/rgbdmd-equipment-setting-up-setting-palettes-trouble-shooting

    Quoted from sysprog:

    Has anyone tested RGB.DMD in TAF yet? In my testing it seems to work correctly For a while, then the image shifts to the right about 18 pixels and down 1.

    image_(resized).jpegimage_(resized).jpeg

    #867 3 years ago
    Quoted from lucky1:

    Here is a preview of a feature in the PIN2DMD editor of Steve . Max, a new member of our dev team, has added a import filter to read the animations directly from the ROM of WPC machines. It will be integrated in one of the following releases. Together with the USB dump routine for real pinball machines (WPC,STERN, DE, Gottlieb, WHITESTAR) you have the possibility to catch pretty much every situation of the gameplay and colorize it.

    first_test_using_frames_directly_from_game-rom_(resized).jpg

    excellently

    #868 3 years ago
    Quoted from sysprog:

    Has anyone tested RGB.DMD in TAF yet? In my testing it seems to work correctly For a while, then the image shifts to the right about 18 pixels and down 1.

    Yeah, as agodfrey mentioned it's been updated on github - https://github.com/ecurtz/RGB_DMD. It would be interesting to hear if you have better results with or without the define on line 11 of InputDMD.ino.
    #define DMA_COMPLETION_ISR 1

    #869 3 years ago
    Quoted from ecurtz:

    Yeah, as agodfrey mentioned it's been updated on github - https://github.com/ecurtz/RGB_DMD. It would be interesting to hear if you have better results with or without the define on line 11 of InputDMD.ino.
    #define DMA_COMPLETION_ISR 1

    I downloaded v0.6.6 last night and it was about the same.

    I'll give line 11 a try today and report back.

    Thanks
    Dana

    #870 3 years ago
    Quoted from lucky1:

    Here is a preview of a feature in the PIN2DMD editor of Steve . Max, a new member of our dev team, has added a import filter to read the animations directly from the ROM of WPC machines. It will be integrated in one of the following releases. Together with the USB dump routine for real pinball machines (WPC,STERN, DE, Gottlieb, WHITESTAR) you have the possibility to catch pretty much every situation of the gameplay and colorize it.

    first_test_using_frames_directly_from_game-rom_(resized).jpg

    What about text overlays, though? (i.e. TZ's Hitchiker animation, etc..)

    #871 3 years ago

    Anyone else have this issue with their display?
    IMG_20160306_162649_(resized).jpg
    Everything's shifted up one row, so the top row is moved to the bottom..

    #872 3 years ago
    Quoted from Coyote:

    Everything's shifted up one row, so the top row is moved to the bottom..

    That's a software issue - what are you running?

    #873 3 years ago
    Quoted from ecurtz:

    That's a software issue - what are you running?

    Pin2Dmd v1.27 on the display, TZ 9.33H (beta) on the game. Sorry, I had forgotten to mention that I was on the PIN2DMD, not yours, d'oh.

    #874 3 years ago
    Quoted from Coyote:

    What about text overlays, though? (i.e. TZ's Hitchiker animation, etc..)

    We have added a mask option to blank out any score display on detection in the upcoming editor.

    Quoted from Coyote:

    Pin2Dmd v1.27 on the display, TZ 9.33H (beta) on the game. Sorry, I had forgotten to mention that I was on the PIN2DMD, not yours, d'oh.

    The version is very old. We are currently working on 2.03 with a completely new input routine using lossless doublebuffer recording and automatic resync on such an error. 2.03 should be released this week. We have a date with a Stern Startrek to verify SAM input and a Stern Kiss for first Spike implementation this evening.

    #875 3 years ago

    Should there be a seperate pin2dmd thread for pin2dmd releated questions/problems as when people post problems or ask questions its a bit confusing which tech they are using or want information about? Might make ecurtz life a bit easier?

    #876 3 years ago

    The whole discussion was started in the smartdmd thread by me, when Eli decided to open this new general thread about RGB LED panels for both pin2dmd and rgb.dmd. I agree we should split now, but we also should lock this thread then, to prevent that the users continue here to post things about both developments.

    #877 3 years ago

    But this thread was started by ecurtz about his project (RGB.DMD) using a teensy. If you read the first post it only mentions his project? I assumed the whole thread was for that purpose? Why should we close this thread? Lets keep it open for RGB.DMD questions/problems.

    #878 3 years ago

    There is another thread dedicated to Eli's "ecurtz RGB.DMD board that was setup to address setting up, hardware, software issues which can be found here https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/rgbdmd-equipment-setting-up-setting-palettes-trouble-shooting

    #879 3 years ago

    I don't think I could lock the thread myself anyway, but it doesn't seem necessary. Somebody should probably start a thread for Pin2DMD support similar to the RGB.DMD one pfinny points out above. It still seems useful for a general thread covering things like questions about panels, and we can try to move software specific stuff and bug reports into the other threads.

    #880 3 years ago

    Keep the thread open. It can start to get back to the topic you started, focused on your board and display methods.

    Aaron
    FAST Pinball

    #881 3 years ago

    Test of the editor with STTNG

    #882 3 years ago

    There appears to be some screen tearing between colors especially during flashing sequences. Do you know if this is a bug or the way the planes are actually displayed from the DMD driver board? If it's the latter that would be distracting.

    #883 3 years ago
    Quoted from lucky1:

    Test of the editor with STTNG
    » YouTube video

    What files do you put on the SD card to do the palate switching?

    #884 3 years ago

    Palettes.dat generated by pin2dmd editor

    #885 3 years ago

    So If I just put that file and the key file on there it should do color switching?

    #886 3 years ago
    Quoted from Crash:

    There appears to be some screen tearing between colors especially during flashing sequences. Do you know if this is a bug or the way the planes are actually displayed from the DMD driver board? If it's the latter that would be distracting.

    That is hard to watch. It it specific to that game? I have only seen Eli's in real life, and don't recall the flashes. But it wasn't on the same game.

    Aaron
    FAST Pinball

    #887 3 years ago
    Quoted from fattdirk:

    So If I just put that file and the key file on there it should do color switching?

    If you generate a project for that game in the editor and export it to palettes.dat - yes

    #888 3 years ago

    Look who caught up to the technology. They better not try and shut these projects down.

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/colordmd-previews-new-led-displays

    #889 3 years ago
    Quoted from Crash:

    Look who caught up to the technology. They better not try and shut these projects down.
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/colordmd-previews-new-led-displays

    If they used this thread for the idea, it wouldn't be fair of them to shut down the project..

    #890 3 years ago
    Quoted from Crash:

    Look who caught up to the technology. They better not try and shut these projects down.
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/colordmd-previews-new-led-displays

    Seems like it would be hard for them to considering they're not first to the market in this case and also it's a commercial product vs open source. I just can't personally justify paying $440 for a color screen for a pinball. 10% of the cost of the game is just ridiculous to me. I'm willing to put in the work for a cheaper solution plus I enjoy tinkering so it scratches that itch also.

    #891 3 years ago
    Quoted from fattdirk:

    I just can't personally justify paying $440 for a color screen for a pinball.

    Neither can I ... and I've about had it watching him crush anyone's throat that attempts to make anything similar to ColorDMD yet he announces his RGB LED version to great fanfare w/o any regard to other projects going on. It isn't my intent to trash that product, but having seen some of the legal threats over bloody pinball machine displays, I can't contain myself anymore!

    I have all of the respect in the world for them from a business perspective as they've had great success with a rather innovative product, but these threats of suing people just to get them to stop producing products that look even remotely similar to ColorDMD has me at wits end. A goddamn display shouldn't cost north of $400. I understand that there is a rather significant time investment when it comes to colorizing frames of data, but additional sales of ColorDMD hardware should cover those costs. Unless the displays are more than I think, there isn't much more than $80 or $90 worth of hardware in that system. I'm not a damn communist, but that's one hell of a markup and is ripe for competition. However, throwing around legal threats that are not related to the architecture of his product, especially when none of his patent is being violated, grinds my gears in ways you cannot imagine . A hobbiest will simply quit working on something similar to ColorDMD due to the potential legal headaches!!! Is anybody aware of him threatening someone from making an LCD that simply adds a single color to the DMD source data? That wouldn't be patent-able nor is his HQnX scaling algorithm he uses for that 'sigma' feature.

    Also, can someone explain to me (or point me to) what his patent in particular covers before I go on another rant and make myself look like an ass? From what I have read, it seems like he is patenting his mechanism for identifying a particular monochrome frame with the intent of adding additional color information. Is this right? Is he patenting the identification of a full frame of video with the intention of integrating chromatic data with a luminance value and pixel position in the frame? For example, is he simply computing a CRC value for a frame and performing a kind of hash lookup to determine the frame being displayed? Does it specifically say "Full frame" in the patent?

    Getting back on topic, I finally got my Teensy based RGB DMD powered up and running on my desk & it's framed in one of those FAST pinball mounting brackets . The Chinese company gave me a refund for the two damaged displays and let me keep them. I can repair one with the LEDs that were scattered in the shipping envelope ... the other is still nasty ... I'll just use this set for my "development" setup. Next step is to install the SW dev. environment and de-rust my SW skills (I design FPGAs for a living ... basically the same thing that drives ColorDMD ... they'd be useless for RGB DMD ... but developing those over the past two decades has rusted my SW skills ).

    #892 3 years ago
    Quoted from megadeth2600:

    Neither can I ... and I've about had it watching him crush anyone's throat that attempts to make anything similar to ColorDMD yet he announces his RGB LED version to great fanfare w/o any regard to other projects going on. It isn't my intent to trash that product, but having seen some of the legal threats over bloody pinball machine displays, I can't contain myself anymore!
    I have all of the respect in the world for them from a business perspective as they've had great success with a rather innovative product, but these threats of suing people just to get them to stop producing products that look even remotely similar to ColorDMD has me at wits end. A goddamn display shouldn't cost north of $400. I understand that there is a rather significant time investment when it comes to colorizing frames of data, but additional sales of ColorDMD hardware should cover those costs. Unless the displays are more than I think, there isn't much more than $80 or $90 worth of hardware in that system. I'm not a damn communist, but that's one hell of a markup and is ripe for competition. However, throwing around legal threats that are not related to the architecture of his product, especially when none of his patent is being violated, grinds my gears in ways you cannot imagine . A hobbiest will simply quit working on something similar to ColorDMD due to the potential legal headaches!!! Is anybody aware of him threatening someone from making an LCD that simply adds a single color to the DMD source data? That wouldn't be patent-able nor is his HQnX scaling algorithm he uses for that 'sigma' feature.
    Also, can someone explain to me (or point me to) what his patent in particular covers before I go on another rant and make myself look like an ass? From what I have read, it seems like he is patenting his mechanism for identifying a particular monochrome frame with the intent of adding additional color information. Is this right? Is he patenting the identification of a full frame of video with the intention of integrating chromatic data with a luminance value and pixel position in the frame? For example, is he simply computing a CRC value for a frame and performing a kind of hash lookup to determine the frame being displayed? Does it specifically say "Full frame" in the patent?
    Getting back on topic, I finally got my Teensy based RGB DMD powered up and running on my desk & it's framed in one of those FAST pinball mounting brackets . The Chinese company gave me a refund for the two damaged displays and let me keep them. I can repair one with the LEDs that were scattered in the shipping envelope ... the other is still nasty ... I'll just use this set for my "development" setup. Next step is to install the SW dev. environment and de-rust my SW skills (I design FPGAs for a living ... basically the same thing that drives ColorDMD ... they'd be useless for RGB DMD ... but developing those over the past two decades has rusted my SW skills ).

    Patent No. 8,773,452
    Claims:
    1. A display device for providing an upgraded graphical experience, the device comprising:an input connector for receiving electronic graphical data suitable for an early generation display, the input connector connected to a video output port of an electronic device having the early generation display;a processor performing the following steps:receiving the electronic graphical data through the video output port;defining frames from the electronic graphical data;generating a tag for each of the frames;matching the generated tag to a set of preprogrammed tags;retrieving one or more colors associated with the matched preprogrammed tags;processing two or more frames to determine an intensity of the retrieved one or more colors;overlaying the one or more colors and the intensity with the electronic graphical data received through the video output port to produce output graphical data; and outputting the output graphical data based on the matched preprogrammed tags; and a later generation display connected to the processor, the later generation display receiving and displaying the output graphical data.
    2. The device of claim 1 wherein the output graphical data defines more colors, a higher resolution or both compared to the electronic graphical data received from the electronic device.
    3. The device of claim 1 wherein the electronic graphical data is suitable for a dot matrix display.
    4. The device of claim 1 wherein the later generation display is a multicolor display, a high resolution full color display, or a high resolution display.
    5. The device of claim 1 wherein the electronic device is a pinball machine.
    6. The device of claim 1 wherein the early generation display is a dot matrix display and the later generation display is a liquid crystal display.
    7. The device of claim 1 wherein in the outputting step, the output graphical data is a theme.
    8. The device of claim 1 wherein the output graphical data is a new theme synchronized to the received electronic graphical data.
    9. The device of claim 1 wherein the processor further performs the step of: overlaying the one or more colors with the electronic graphical data received through the video output port to produce the output graphical data.
    10. A method for providing upgraded graphics to an electronic device having an early generation display, the method comprising the steps of:connecting to a video output port of the electronic device having the early generation display;receiving electronic graphical data suitable for the early generation display from the video output port of the electronic device having the early generation display;defining frames from the electronic graphical data;generating a tag for each of the frames;matching the generated tag to a set of preprogrammed tags;retrieving one or more colors associated with the matched preprogrammed tags;processing two or more frames to determine an intensity of the retrieved one or more colors;combining the electronic graphical data received through the video output port with the one or more colors and the intensity to produce output graphical data; and outputting the output graphical data based on the matched preprogrammed tags to a later generation display.
    11. The method of claim 10 further comprising the step of buffering the defined frames.
    12. The method of claim 10 further comprising the step of:capturing the electronic graphical data and organizing the electronic graphical data as serial data for each dot within the defined frames.
    13. The method of claim 10 wherein the generating step includes the steps of:recognizing regional patterns from a plurality of locations on the frames;generating the tags based on the recognized regional patterns.
    14. The method of claim 13 further comprising the step of defining each of the regional patterns as a mask of a plurality of masks.
    15. The method of claim 14 further comprising the step of providing a table for each mask of the plurality of masks.
    16. The method of claim 10 further comprising the step of replacing the defined frames with preprogrammed frames associated with the matched preprogrammed tags.
    - See more at: http://www.patentbuddy.com/Patent/8773452?ft=true&sr=true#sthash.nP50hm47.dpuf

    #893 3 years ago
    Quoted from Crash:

    There appears to be some screen tearing between colors especially during flashing sequences. Do you know if this is a bug or the way the planes are actually displayed from the DMD driver board? If it's the latter that would be distracting.

    It almost looks like the palette swaps aren't synced to the display properly ... almost like they're being swapped while the frame is drawing. Just speculating.

    #894 3 years ago
    Quoted from Crash:

    Look who caught up to the technology. They better not try and shut these projects down.
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/colordmd-previews-new-led-displays

    They've already tried, if you recall. They have no reasonable claim whatsoever about any of the stuff they've rattled sabres over, but that won't stop them trying to scare people off.

    Given their behaviour and the fact that they have well over $250 gross margin on their ColorDMD product (which is faintly obscene), and they won't allow any openess or community involvement (besides getting people to do their colouring work for them), I can't really justify buying it. Given the advances we've seen for controllers for LED DMDs in just a few months, from multiple parties, it can only be a matter of time before someone does the same with LCDs, and makes it more open and reasonably priced. OLEDs aren't THAT far off either, and the LCDs will be completely obsolete (especially at $400) when they are available. SmartDMD failed to catch on, but if something with the featureset that pinballsp is working on is made widely available, I can't see it not catching on.

    #895 3 years ago
    Quoted from rubberducks:

    They've already tried, if you recall. They have no reasonable claim whatsoever about any of the stuff they've rattled sabres over, but that won't stop them trying to scare people off.
    Given their behaviour and the fact that they have well over $250 gross margin on their ColorDMD product (which is faintly obscene), and they won't allow any openess or community involvement (besides getting people to do their colouring work for them), I can't really justify buying it. Given the advances we've seen for controllers for LED DMDs in just a few months, from multiple parties, it can only be a matter of time before someone does the same with LCDs, and makes it more open and reasonably priced. OLEDs aren't THAT far off either, and the LCDs will be completely obsolete (especially at $400) when they are available. SmartDMD failed to catch on, but if something with the featureset that pinballsp is working on is made widely available, I can't see it not catching on.

    Love to know where you get the $250 gross margin. Running a business isn't free and the contractor fees for people like me that colorize as well as his own distribution costs... Really seems like you are frustrated it isn't cheaper so just grab numbers out of thin air. You put in 80-160 hours coloring a game and tell me $400 is obscene.

    Lots of hate in the last few posts for someone simply protecting their patent. As for this being a solution he hadn't looked at before, or 'just caught up with' I imagine posters here also have clairvoyance to see what Randy thinks. It's been said before, why should he open up his architecture just because people want it to be open? The Open Source movement is great for some things but it isn't everything for everyone. SmartDMD ran into other issues, like licensing and support - not to mention the colored roms for games were too big to fit.

    People being "afraid' because of 'rattled sabers' isn't really an argument either. If you are afraid of competition, better not to enter the market. Otherwise, the only fear would mostly be from infringing on actual patents that might snub your business model. Otherwise, the entrepreneur makes a go of it. Randy isn't awash with cash to go filing lawsuits at everyone that thinks about producing a competitive product but he'd be a fool to just hand over all the work he's done.

    #896 3 years ago
    Quoted from megadeth2600:

    Neither can I ... and I've about had it watching him crush anyone's throat that attempts to make anything similar to ColorDMD yet he announces his RGB LED version to great fanfare w/o any regard to other projects going on. It isn't my intent to trash that product, but having seen some of the legal threats over bloody pinball machine displays, I can't contain myself anymore!
    I have all of the respect in the world for them from a business perspective as they've had great success with a rather innovative product, but these threats of suing people just to get them to stop producing products that look even remotely similar to ColorDMD has me at wits end. A goddamn display shouldn't cost north of $400. I understand that there is a rather significant time investment when it comes to colorizing frames of data, but additional sales of ColorDMD hardware should cover those costs. Unless the displays are more than I think, there isn't much more than $80 or $90 worth of hardware in that system. I'm not a damn communist, but that's one hell of a markup and is ripe for competition. However, throwing around legal threats that are not related to the architecture of his product, especially when none of his patent is being violated, grinds my gears in ways you cannot imagine . A hobbiest will simply quit working on something similar to ColorDMD due to the potential legal headaches!!! Is anybody aware of him threatening someone from making an LCD that simply adds a single color to the DMD source data? That wouldn't be patent-able nor is his HQnX scaling algorithm he uses for that 'sigma' feature.
    Also, can someone explain to me (or point me to) what his patent in particular covers before I go on another rant and make myself look like an ass? From what I have read, it seems like he is patenting his mechanism for identifying a particular monochrome frame with the intent of adding additional color information. Is this right? Is he patenting the identification of a full frame of video with the intention of integrating chromatic data with a luminance value and pixel position in the frame? For example, is he simply computing a CRC value for a frame and performing a kind of hash lookup to determine the frame being displayed? Does it specifically say "Full frame" in the patent?
    Getting back on topic, I finally got my Teensy based RGB DMD powered up and running on my desk & it's framed in one of those FAST pinball mounting brackets . The Chinese company gave me a refund for the two damaged displays and let me keep them. I can repair one with the LEDs that were scattered in the shipping envelope ... the other is still nasty ... I'll just use this set for my "development" setup. Next step is to install the SW dev. environment and de-rust my SW skills (I design FPGAs for a living ... basically the same thing that drives ColorDMD ... they'd be useless for RGB DMD ... but developing those over the past two decades has rusted my SW skills ).

    To clarify, he isn't going after anyone for a similar looking product, just any product that uses technology that he patented (and patented because he was the first to do it). For example, anyone that came up with an alternate system for coloring that relied on none of the methods or algorithm's he developed and patented (ultimately just what he patented) would be protected. SmartDMD infringed by utilizing particular algorithms. SmartDMD would have had other commercial considerations that would have costed as much or more though, that being licensing as you actually change the rom.

    #897 3 years ago
    Quoted from shimoda:

    Love to know where you get the $250 gross margin. Running a business isn't free and the contractor fees for people like me that colorize as well as his own distribution costs... Really seems like you are frustrated it isn't cheaper so just grab numbers out of thin air. You put in 80-160 hours coloring a game and tell me $400 is obscene.
    Lots of hate in the last few posts for someone simply protecting their patent. As for this being a solution he hadn't looked at before, or 'just caught up with' I imagine posters here also have clairvoyance to see what Randy thinks. It's been said before, why should he open up his architecture just because people want it to be open? The Open Source movement is great for some things but it isn't everything for everyone. SmartDMD ran into other issues, like licensing and support - not to mention the colored roms for games were too big to fit.
    People being "afraid' because of 'rattled sabers' isn't really an argument either. If you are afraid of competition, better not to enter the market. Otherwise, the only fear would mostly be from infringing on actual patents that might snub your business model. Otherwise, the entrepreneur makes a go of it. Randy isn't awash with cash to go filing lawsuits at everyone that thinks about producing a competitive product but he'd be a fool to just hand over all the work he's done.

    Do you know what gross means?

    The patent is a joke, as is their attempt to hide behind it. Even if it was breached by anything (which it's unlikely to be even within the US), it would likely be unenforceable.

    Re: fear of competition .. are you joking or actually serious? The ColorDMD guys are clearly terrified of competition, hence their behaviour.

    #898 3 years ago
    Quoted from rubberducks:

    Even if it was breached by anything (which it's unlikely to be even within the US), it would likely be unenforceable.

    I'm fairly certain that pin2dmd infringes in the US. I'm fairly certain the authors of pin2dmd believe it does, in fact, but they are in Germany where the patent doesn't (and can't ever) apply, so they don't care much. And if you happen to acquire hardware somehow here in the US and then download software from Germany to run on it, well, there's not much that anyone could do to stop that.

    What Randy can do is stop someone from selling a product here in the US that in whole infringes on his patent. And that's within his rights whether anyone here happens to like it or not.

    --Donnie

    #899 3 years ago
    Quoted from shimoda:

    To clarify, he isn't going after anyone for a similar looking product, just any product that uses technology that he patented (and patented because he was the first to do it). For example, anyone that came up with an alternate system for coloring that relied on none of the methods or algorithm's he developed and patented (ultimately just what he patented) would be protected. SmartDMD infringed by utilizing particular algorithms. SmartDMD would have had other commercial considerations that would have costed as much or more though, that being licensing as you actually change the rom.

    SmartDMD does not appear to infringe on the ColorDMD patent. (I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice, etc.).

    #900 3 years ago
    Quoted from shimoda:

    the contractor fees for people like me that colorize [edit] You put in 80-160 hours coloring a game and tell me $400 is obscene.

    How much does someone who puts in that much work get paid, since you bring it up?

    Quoted from shimoda:

    SmartDMD infringed by utilizing particular algorithms.

    Which particular algorithms are spelled out in the patent and infringed on by SmartDMD?

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