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My build: SBMAMEs - June 25, '99 by JoseQ
You may probably categorize this as a rant, but I certainly need to do some marketing of my Stop-Building-MAMEs build. I just feel this thing has certainly gotten out of hand. I believe that there are way too many versions of MAME floating around and I would like to request something from those of you who build/use them. Stop! Just think about it for a minute. How can the public test and report on a Release Candidate version of MAME if there are a dozen of them floating around? How can problems be attributed to MAME if you're building/using not the official build, but something else? Please consider that you are being given the chance to play with the source that geniuses have created for your enjoyment.
If what you honestly feel is that you want to contribute to the scene via changing MAME, then all you need to do is submit your source changes to the MAMEDEV team. Everybody knows at least one MAMEDEV member, or if you don't, use your webmasters as a liaison. Most of us are on the MAMEDEV team. We can get source there like the "Street Fighter" driver which I submitted for Olivier way back when he was not a MAMEDEV team member. Your contributions will be examined and approved if they are good. There are always good reasons behind any decision the team makes.
Now you may be asking where do I put "Metal Slug X" and the rest of the 'Missing from the binary' gang. Well they are probably located right on your nearest arcade. If you want to play it, you can visit your arcade, or get the source and compile it in. There is already a switch that will enable those games. That compilation switch also states that you will not re-distribute the binary that will come out of that build process. Then I ask myself why are we seeing those builds being distributed in popular websites around here? Beats me, but as easy as they have lost respect for MAME, I have lost respect for them.
There are always alternatives of course. How would you feel if out of disgust Nicola stops distributing MAME? Well that's a bit extreme, but something that we've all been through before, how would it feel if we only had final versions of MAME to distribute? Need I remind you that the latest final version of MAME dates back to December 31st? Not so long ago, betas were private matter. And with so many extra builds, the reasons to make beta releases exist publically completely cease to exist as there is no testing done on the actual MAME releases, but on X, Y or ZMAME. Personally I think this stinks. If I were to distribute my own vesion of MAME, at least I would try to get Nicola to say "look, we can't include this in our build, but you can go ahead and distribute with X or Y warning". Similar case happened with the Pentium Optimized MAME which can't be incorporated into the official build for compatibility reasons.
I guess I just needed to get this off my chest, and I would just like to ask you to re-consider, and think about what is really happening. Think about the outcome of those actions before doing them, and if you do changes and want to keep them from the MAMEDEV team, try to keep them to yourself as well and not publically distribute. If you want to contribute to the MAME team, just drop me a note and I'll hook you up (please be specific and what you have to contribute). In the meantime, play MAME and play it good, it is perfectly fine for me the way it is officially distributed, why shouldn't it be for you?

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