A Technical Look at D&D Insider Applications - Page 7




  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by epochrpg
    Where is this Dungeon Tile builder that is currently available on the D&D site? I went looking for it when I saw this and have not been able to find it...
    I think this is what they are referring to:

    http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dnd/20061121t
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    Quote Originally Posted by Remathilis
    1.) To access the e-book version, you must already have DDI account. Which means you've already registered your name and credit-card billing address. Withouy a DDI account (and a credit card to pay the unlock fee) the code itself is useless.

    2.) I doubt the codes will be unique to each book. More likely, there will be one generic code for each book. The code will allow you to purchase the e-book version (for a fee). So even if you don't buy the book (you copy down the code), you could still buy an online-only version (available to you as long as you have a DDI account) without penalty (except for the lack of a paper/printable copy).

    3.) Even if you DON'T buy the hardcover, WotC still gets you for DDI+Access Cost. And you'll have to be online on there site to use it. Thats more money than they'd get if you downloaded a OCR version off Kazaa...

    4.) It finally gives users a choice: An online-only version for a nominal fee (still readable, if not printable) a paper-only version (and you get the bare-bones version online) or get the premium package and get BOTH the online version for reference (and the more robust generators) and the paper-book.

    5.) Will it stop piracy? No. Will it slow it down by giving it a legitimate alternative (like iTunes did) yes.
    The codes will be unique to each book and you will not need to be a D&D Insider subscriber to activate the E-Book version.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott_Rouse
    Charles has this exactly right.

    The nominal fee is likely $1-2.
    Now that is a good nominal.

    Can you give me an official update on how the book will work if you aren't online?

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    Quote Originally Posted by JVisgaitis
    If I read the phrase "Windows rich" one more time
    It's Windows "rich client"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scribble
    Now that is a good nominal.

    Can you give me an official update on how the book will work if you aren't online?
    No. It will likely be a PDF type document that lives on your HD so you can use offline.

    When you activate (while online) and you also have a D&DI account the system will update your database. If you don't have a D&Di account you'll need the free Gleemax account so we know who you are and you just get the PDF on your local machine.
    Scott Rouse

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kravell
    Of course Wizards can charge any price they want for anything they sell. However, Paizo, a much smaller company, offers free PDFs to me when I buy the paper copy of Pathfinder by subscription.
    Paizo isn't offering you integration with a suite of tools. That PDF doesn't get you extra stuff in a character generator or integrated maps to play with your friends online. This is really no different than the data-sets people buy from Code Monkey for E-Tools and stuff.

    Why does Paizo give me a better deal than Wizards when Wizards is bigger, sells more, and controls a large portion of the market?
    Because Paizo has to work harder to get people's money.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scholar & Brutalman
    Wizards have mentioned the fee before. They said "Nominal" means "about the price of a cup of coffee."

    I have no problem with that part of DDI, or even the Dragon and Dungeon online as long as the content improves.

    That all depends. It the nomial fee is the subscription to DI and all that intails, thats fine.

    If its a fee ON TOP OF the monthly fee to subscribe to the DI....I'm starting to feel nickle and dimed to death.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott_Rouse
    No. It will likely be a PDF type document that lives on your HD so you can use offline.

    When you activate (while online) and you also have a D&DI account the system will update your database. If you don't have a D&Di account you'll need the free Gleemax account so we know who you are and you just get the PDF on your local machine.
    Thank you. This alleviates my fears... For the most part.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CharlesRyan
    Keep in mind also that the nominal fee creates accountability that, in the end, protects you.

    By charging a small fee, WotC makes it impossible to anonymously take ownership of the digital version of the book. Anyone who enters a code to get the digital version must identify themselves in a real, positive manner (through the use of a credit card or other verifiable payment scheme). That makes the fee one of (probably several) roadblocks to piracy.

    [And before this blossoms into a discussion of intellectual property rights, remember this: What you're downloading is a unique digital object assigned to the book you bought. If somebody steals that, they've stolen your right to access the digital version of the book. YOU are the loser in a very real way, not some giant corporation is a very intangible way.]

    [And before this blossoms into a discussion of how the pirates always find a way, remember this: This will not be perfect in preventing piracy, and neither will any of the other steps WotC takes. But, combined, they're intended to keep theft to a minimum. WotC has a lot of experience with digital objects (via Magic Online), so their overall system will probably be pretty effective.]

    So the requirement to purchase increases the likelihood that when I buy a book, the code to obtain the digital version is likely to still be valid when I take the book home and type it into DDI. That alone seems to be worth an extra buck or two.
    All true. However, I think it's also worth pointing out that pirates already have no problems constructing electronic versions of WotC books already, and so will probably not bother to try to hijack anyone's books. Rather, if they really, really want WotC's electronic version rather than making their own scans, they will probably buy the book, unlock the electronic version, and then find a way to remove any DRM, watermark, or other identifier from that document, then distribute it.

    The fee will prevent casual piracy, but the people scanning the books now will keep scanning the books. I agree that paying a fee will prevent some kid from copying down the book's code in the store and registering it before the actual purchaser has the opportunity to do so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott_Rouse
    No. It will likely be a PDF type document that lives on your HD so you can use offline.

    When you activate (while online) and you also have a D&DI account the system will update your database. If you don't have a D&Di account you'll need the free Gleemax account so we know who you are and you just get the PDF on your local machine.
    What if you buy the book, register it using the free Gleemax account, and then later get a D&Di account? Will the registration be easy to migrate?
    Formerly known as Dr. Awkward

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