Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

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Benvolio
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Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

Post by Benvolio »

I'm listening my way through the five hour podcast where Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack. It can be heard on Spotify or, indeed, on Youtube.

I think you guys would enjoy... I'm over 2h in and enjoying every minute. It helps flesh out the timeless tales of the origins of id, Keen and beyond. And to give insight into so many aspects of life, past and present.
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Frenkel
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Re: Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

Post by Frenkel »

I've read Romero's explanation on how the Keen engines work, but this is the first time I've seen Carmack explaining it.
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Re: Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

Post by Benvolio »

Around the 2h mark, Carmack essentially endorses modding and specifically says that Commander Keen level editors made him smile. Nice reflection overall on how he feels about his creations and how possessive he should be of his status as creator of material.

Interesting he contrasts Wolfenstein against Doom in terms of giving modders creative flexibility to achieve "masterpieces". He says there's not enough in the Wolfenstein engine to faclitate great creativity whereas Doom does give this opportunity. He says that there was a line between the two categories of game as far as being a vehicle for creative modification is concerned and that Doom was the first time id games crossed it. But no mention of Keen modding... :(
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Re: Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

Post by Lower IQ than 314 »

Benvolio wrote: Thu Sep 22, 2022 6:33 But no mention of Keen modding... :(
Can't say I blame him. Doom modding is vastly more prolific than Keen modding. They're still making indie games based on the original Doom's source ports to this day - games that people are willing to pay money for, no less. Can't say I've heard of any monetary games using the Keen Galaxy engine nowadays. Sorry to say this, but I think Keen is more likely to be remembered in the public eye for the Dopefish and the SGA than it is for its mods, which is unfortunate, because many of these mods vastly outshine the source material in terms of quality.
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proYorp
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Re: Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

Post by proYorp »

I stumbled into this video a month or two ago. I'd never heard of this channel before, then I saw some random video of theirs got into my recommended, then a bit later I searched something about Commander Keen and this interview came up. Weird coincidence.

And then I guess I noticed it was 5 hours so I didn't watch it. :dopekeen Thanks for the highlights Benvolio.
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Nisaba
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Re: Lex Fridman interviews John Carmack

Post by Nisaba »

I find this section of the interview in particular very enlightening (timestamp 02:02:04 - 02:04:40)
John Carmack on the hacker ethic wrote: [...] There was this sense that was about sharing information being good, not keeping it to yourself and that it's not a zero-sum game that - you know - you can share something with another programmer and it doesn't take it away from you.
You then have somebody else doing something.
And I also think that there's an aspect of it where it's this ability to to take joy in other people's accomplishments, where it's not the cutthroat bit of "I have to be first, I have to be recognized as the the one that did this in some way".
Being able to see somebody else do something and say "holy that's amazing!" and just taking joy in the ability of something amazing that somebody else does.
The big thing that I was able to do through iD software was this ability to eventually release the source code for most of our seminal game titles.
and that was a stepping stone process, where we were kind of surprised early on where people were able to hack the existing games.
And of course i had experience with that i remember hacking my copies of ultima to give myself 999 gold and raise my levels and break out the sector editor.
So I was familiar with all of that.
And it was with a smile when i started to see people doing that to our games, like making level editors for Commander Keen or hacking up Wolfenstein 3d [...]
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