Re: [nbos] Looking for more mapping symbols...
keith.davies-at-kjdavies.org
Tue Feb 26th, 2008
On Tue, Feb 26, 2008 at 06:02:28AM +0100, Mark Oliva wrote:
> > From:keith.davies-at-kjdavies.org
>
> > Mark: Help! - are you there?
>
> Sure. Even though I live in Germany, English remains my mother
> tongue. Nonetheless, I've read your posting three times, and I'm not
> positive that I've figured out what you want to know. If the
> following doesn't answer your questions, please post again without
> quotes from previous messages and just say directly what you want to
> know.
>
> 1. Vector and raster (PNG) symbols are two horses of different
> colors.
>
> 2. CC2/CC3 vector symbols must be converted before they will work
> with FM8. Ed Diana (NBOS) was working on a conversion program, but
> there also are license issue with ProFantasy Ltd. there. I don't know
> what the status is. If you need to know that, you should ask Ed.

I was looking into doing this, couldn't find documentation on the CC3
symbol file format.

> 3. CC3 raster symbols work immediately in FM8. CC3 raster symbols
> all use a PNG file as the graphic source. FM8 automatically uses PNG
> files as symbols. Nothing more needs to be done.

Of course.

> 4. CC3 raster symbols are copyrighted. If I understand ProFantasy's
> licensing requirements correctly, you are required to have the
> ProFantasy program (i.e. CC3, SS1. SS2, DD3, etc.) that is the source
> of the symbols legally installed on your computer if you wish to use
> the ProFantasy symbols with FM8. If this is an issue for you, I would
> contact ProFantasy directly to get a more precise answer.

Okay, this seems fairly reasonable.

> << What are you trying to do by uninstalling and reinstalling CC3? I
> don't need to worry about the symbol files going away (make a copy and
> work with the copy, not the originals).
> >>
>
> No one has to install or reinstall anything. It's only an option.
> One can copy the ProFantasy symbols into FM8 symbol folders and they
> will work just fine. Picking out the necessary symbols to copy and
> then copying them can be quite time-consuming, particularly if you
> have ProFantasy symbols from several ProFantasy programs.
>
> The point I was making is that if you install the ProFantasy
> CC3-generation products _after_ FM8 is installed, they will
> automatically install the symbols in both CC3 and FM8. I first
> installed FM8 after my original CC3 installation. I found it easier
> and faster to deinstall and reinstall the ProFantasy programs again,
> to get the CC symbols into FM8, rather than copying all of the symbol
> files. But it's only something that can be done, not something that
> has to be done.

Ah! I didn't realize the CC3 installation did this (make the symbols
available to both). I assumed the applications knew nothing about each
other and that the symbols would need to be copied manually.

> I'd like to add another point here that's out of the scope of the
> original questions but may be of importance to some users. On the
> advice of our attorney, we have ceased using anything from ProFantasy
> in our FM8 maps that will be distributed commercially. Here's the
> issue:
>
> 1. If you use a PNG from ProFantasy in an FM8 map and distribute the
> map in original FM8 format (.fmp) to someone else, the recipient can
> pull the ProFantasy symbol out of the map and begin using it
> illegally, although they he or she not realize that this is illegal.
> Basically, the recipient has no license to use ProFantasy symbols in
> FM8. My attorney believes that the ProFantasy license is absolutely
> vague on this issue, which in his opinion means that if you distribute
> an FM8 map (.fmp) with ProFantasy symbols to others, ProFantasy
> _could_ take legal action against you for a copyright violation. He
> also added that whether ProFantasy could win such litigation based
> upon PF's "extremely vague in a legal sense" (his words) license is
> completely a matter of speculation. This issue applies only to the
> distribution of FM8 .fmp maps that contain PF's symbols. The attorney
> believes that there is no issue with distributing FM8 maps that use PF
> symbols but that have been converted to JPGs, PNGs, etc..

IANAL, so grain of salt time.

Generally, you are not responsible for how your users use your software.
In this case, that they choose to use your legally-valid files in a way
that violates copyright is not your responsibility.

OTOH, this is a potential risk should Profantasy choose to hold you
responsible, and proving yourself not responsible ('innocent') in the
matter could be more time, trouble, and stress than it's worth. I can
easily understand not wanting to get involved in the matter.

> 2. Our attorney advised us to get written approval from ProFantasy if
> we wished to use PF raster symbols in FM8 maps that we want to
> distribute in .fmp format. We did not do that. We decided instead
> not to use any PF material whatsoever - not because of the legal issue
> but because most of PF's raster symbols are in graphical styles that
> don't match our needs. This shouldn't be interpreted as being a
> negative comment on the quality of PF's symbols. It's simply an issue
> of style.

Indeed. It seems entirely reasonable to me.

> 3. This is important in our case because we intend to distribute FM8
> native formats maps together with our products in order that users can
> modify our maps with FM8 as desired to suit the needs if their own
> campsigns. Because of very tight license restrictions, it's very
> difficult to do this with Campaign Cartographer 3 maps in their native
> format (.fcw). If you use PF's symbols in CC3, your users will need
> to download encrypted versions of these symbols from PF's Internet
> site before the user can work properly with your maps.

Very cool of you.

The symbol conversion I mentioned looking into earlier, I planned to
provide the software to convert the symbols. Actually doing so was up
to the user, using his legitimate files.

In the end I decided it was too hard (no doco) and not worth the effort.

> Mark Oliva
> Webmaster, the Vintyri Project (TM)
> Internet-Vintyri: http://www.vintyri.com <http://www.vintyri.com>
> Internet-Dungeons Daring: http://www.dungeons-daring.org <http://www.dungeons-daring.org>
> E-Mail-Vintyri: info-at-vintyri.com <mailto:info-at-vintyri.com>
> E-Mail-Dungeons Daring: info-at-dungeons-daring.org <mailto:info-at-dungeons-daring.org>

Ed mentioned that you'd made the symbols you use in the Vintyri maps
available at NOX, but I couldn't find them. Are they still available?
I like what I've seen of your maps.


Keith
--
Keith Davies below you, right now: radioactive magma
keith.davies-at-kjdavies.org above you, right now: hard vacuum
keith.davies-at-gmail.com probably somewhere near you: a product with
http://www.kjdavies.org/ label warning you it is unsafe if misused
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