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Valve Joins the Linux Foundation 108

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the now-just-kill-your-drm-and-we-can-be-friends dept.
probain sent in this excerpt from Engadget "In case Valve's multi-tiered investment in Linux gaming weren't clear enough from SteamOS, the Steam Controller, and Steam Machines, the company's also joining the ranks of The Linux Foundation membership. Valve Linux head Mike Sartain calls the news, 'one of the many ways Valve is investing in the advancement of Linux gaming;' he sees the move as yet another step for Valve toward its bigger goal of popularizing accessible Linux-based gaming." Cloudius Systems and the HSA Foundation also joined the Linux Foundation today.
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Valve Joins the Linux Foundation

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  • by ledow (319597) on Wednesday December 04, 2013 @01:47PM (#45597331) Homepage

    Though I have to say that their announcements are 10 years too late, I feel that Valve's experience of their investing their system in this minority platform must be paying off. Why would they continue otherwise.

    They get a viable console OS platform, for "free", with community support. They get a reputation as being "the" Linux gaming vendor (like transgaming etc. were). They get to bring their games to new platforms and push driver issues through Intel etc. cooperation to get themselves some influence in the industry from multiple angles.

    And they are obviously seeing that their investment in Linux and even small things like SDL (which I believe is the backend of much of the Steam client, not to mention the browser components they use) is paying dividends for them.

    Good on them, I say. It *is* a niche platform, but they are driving it hard and seeing what it can do for them, rather than just waiting until it has 25% market share before they do anything about it (which is the standard attitude among software and hardware companies). And they are doing lots of things they don't NEED to be doing. They've pretty much held off the Windows marketplace junk, so they don't need that 1% of Linux users jumping on board, nor would they make a huge difference even if they hadn't shielded themselves against the Windows Store.

    I have used the Linux Steam client. It's just like Steam, but on Linux. I have played some of my games on Linux (88 supported out of 500+), and they work just like they do on Linux (even though that's much more dependent on the software developer, but the Valve titles are especially nice). Big picture mode was needed once we all started having widescreen TV's with HDMI, and it delivers. The next logical step is to make a box that just plays Steam and goes out on HDMI and if you have that kind of backing and prior success on Linux, why pay for Windows (even if that's only true for the first few revisions of the hardware)?

    But they've taken it further - rather than just bash out a cheap PC-clone console, they are redesigning controllers, reprogramming their games around them, looking into the new VR trend, and trying to make it a machine that not just they can build. That's going above-and-beyond, as far as I'm concerned, so they deserve recognition for it, even if they are doing it purely for profit reasons.

    The only downside is that people have been saying for 10 years how this should have been started on, and it took too long to get there. But we're there now.

    Well done, Valve. Looking forward to buying a Steam console next Christmas when all these XBox and PS crap that I've never touched are just memories.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 04, 2013 @01:50PM (#45597367)

    Agree with Steam's business model or not, having Valve of all companies pushing gaming on Linux is going to reap enormous benefits for completely unrelated features.

  • by ledow (319597) on Wednesday December 04, 2013 @02:15PM (#45597707) Homepage

    Make a good product, make a good customer out of your customers, and you don't have to pay people to advertise it.

    Probably spent more on Steam than I have on my last few PC's combined. And my first purchase took nearly a year after they shut WON down, and I only created the account to carry on playing CS 1.6 online.

    Fact is, make a good enough product and treat your customers well and you don't have to buy ANYONE, they'll give you a positive review and backing all of their own accord.

  • Re:Games on linux (Score:5, Insightful)

    by RazorSharp (1418697) on Wednesday December 04, 2013 @02:54PM (#45598243)

    I believe what he was trying to say is that corporate America is unlikely to wean itself off of the Microsoft monopoly anytime soon, but Microsoft's stranglehold of the consumer market is vulnerable if gaming is taken away. Apple has dug deep into one important niche -- the non-gaming, high-end users -- and Steam on Linux has the potential to knock off the gaming niche. This is important because those two niches are where the high dollars are spent.

    So while you're right, that the consumer market has the potential change quickly, I think he's correct in pointing out that corporate America will largely remain latched on to Microsoft for the foreseeable future. Two centuries is a bit of a hyperbole, but corporations are much slower to change up the technologies they depend on than individuals. An individual has to set up a new computer. A corporation has to set up thousands of new computers, write software, train people, etc. In the long term, I see specialized Linux systems becoming the standard in most corporations, but it's also probably the stranglehold Microsoft will keep within its grasp longer than any other.

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