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Thread: Commercial licensing of skin designs

  1. #1
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    Commercial licensing of skin designs

    Hello again.

    As reported in a previous thread, we're now in the process of developing mediate ICE - a new integrated front end for your carputer installation. This is developed using DirectX 9 and DirectShow technologies so offers considerable scope for some really neat user interfaces.

    However, we're new to this so to speed things along we'd like to leverage some of the existing skin designs that are out there. This will take a little work on our part to convert them to work with our user interface engine, so we need cooperation from some of the talented skin designers.

    Essentially, mediate ICE renders each frame as a series of composite elements - so a background image, buttons, video frames, text etc. are all rendered from scratch many times per second. This is a very different concept to some of the existing skins out there that use two or three static images to represent the UI in various states.

    For us to be able to use an existing skin as a start point we would need each of the source images used to compose the skin - i.e. each of the individual images used for every button, frame, bevel, background etc. - we can then develop a theme around these elements to reconstruct the composite image at run time.

    Our approach may sound like more work, but it's extremely flexible as we can easily reposition or animate controls on an individual basis. Currently we have to manually edit a number of XML files to define the theme but we are working on a theme designer to simplify this task. We're hoping to release the theme designer soon - this will be free for use with mediate ICE.

    We'd like to license an existing skin for use with our new application - we will at some point be charging for a premium edition of this software so we are prepared to pay up front for a suitable skin design. We don't require an exclusive license, or to assume copyright of the images - but we will require the right to resell and modify any images supplied.

    Ideally we would like to use one of the more popular skins to give both familarity to our product and allow us to concentrate on functional improvements rather than visuals. Skins with images for navigation, phone, weather, radio and ODBII functionality are therefore preferable.

    Skins in any format are fine - we won't be using the skin as such, just the component images and layout designs so we're happy to accept submissions for any of the current popular free front ends. Images in PNG or any other format supporting transparency are preferred.

    Any artwork used must be either in the public domain or otherwise free of commercial copyrights. Unfortunately we cannot accept any images with questionable origins - basically we can't afford to be sued for use and sale of your submission.

    If you would like to submit your skin for consideration please reply below, ideally with a screenshot and a link to any further details. If we choose your skin for use with mediate, we will require you to sign a license agreement - on return of that agreement we will pay a sum of $500.


    Many thanks,

    Andrew Retmanski
    Director
    @home media limited

  2. #2
    Raw Wave justintime's Avatar
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    Would you be interested in my NEXUS skin?

    Nexus Skin for Centrafuse
    2002 Honda CR-V
    Carputer progress: 90% [▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓ -]
    Spent so far: $1105.90


    Download the NEXUS Skin for Centrafuse
    ...or even Listen to my music

  3. #3
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    Wow, that's a really nice skin.

    Thanks for posting - we'll wait for a few more submissions then choose one to use with mediate ICE, so stay tuned :-)
    Beta release now available: mediate ICE - http://www.mediateice.com

    @home media limited
    http://www.athomemedia.co.uk

  4. #4
    MGD
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    Take a look at this.
    Astro (In Progress)

  5. #5
    FreeDrive Creator CdRsKuLL's Avatar
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    why not just get one done from scratch to suit your needs ?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by CdRsKuLL View Post
    why not just get one done from scratch to suit your needs ?
    Good question - speed is the main reason really. Eventually we'll develop new themes to match whatever functionality we include in our product. But this will take time - we want to get something out there to the community for feedback as soon as possible, so this seems a sensible approach.

    We're also hoping to demonstrate some interesting functionality and visual effects using a familiar reference point for existing users of the other front ends. Initially we will have quite similar functionality to the existing front ends available, so taking an appropriate "off the shelf" theme and adapting it for our product saves us time and also rewards the efforts of the theme designers out there.

    Of course both the theme design and the application will evolve over time but we're hoping to get a good selection of artwork and a few user interface ideas to kick off with. Then we'll see how things develop from there...
    Beta release now available: mediate ICE - http://www.mediateice.com

    @home media limited
    http://www.athomemedia.co.uk

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by MGD View Post
    Take a look at this.
    Astro (In Progress)
    That's a nice skin, but I'm concerned about the re-use of artwork from freebuttons.com. In your thread you mentioned that you've obtained permission to adapt it for personal use, but I doubt that permission extends to licensing it to other companies for commercial use.

    Sorry!
    Beta release now available: mediate ICE - http://www.mediateice.com

    @home media limited
    http://www.athomemedia.co.uk

  8. #8
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    I'd build the interface with minimal graphics to get it out there.... a simple even black & white outline type graphics even....

    this way, you can show what your app can do... also, people will be able to see the approach your using for skinning your app.... to start with an existing skin you'll have to disect it & do a bunch of work to get it to work with your app anyway, & also may limit the flexability of your own layout... I'd say your better off having skins made directly for your program.....

    if the app is as good as you say, people will jump on board......

    I had another thought... may be good or may suck but here it is: you can take this a step further, by offering a skin "contest"....

    the contest should require that any graphics used in the skin must be your own.... absolutely NO cut & paste, no pre fabbed buttons, etc...

    all contest participants who complete a whole skin & submits it, gives the rights to the skin to you.... in turn, any one who submits a complete skin will get a feee copy of the completed app.... then there can be a grand prize of $500, & second & third place could be lesser amounts... $250 second place & $100 for third maybe....

    you would spark a bunch of comunity awareness & participation... you could even have an online voting or judge it yourselves, or a combo of this as you see fit...

    just an idle thought.... hope it helps....

  9. #9
    Raw Wave justintime's Avatar
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    A skin contest for an app interface that does not exists makes little sense to me. I think his current approach works.
    2002 Honda CR-V
    Carputer progress: 90% [▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓▓ -]
    Spent so far: $1105.90


    Download the NEXUS Skin for Centrafuse
    ...or even Listen to my music

  10. #10
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    I'm going on the premise that the app does exist, & is fully functional....

    of course no one will make a skin for something that don't exist.... that's why I suggested finishing the app with just simple graphics initially....

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