Software Technologies for Game Platforms In this essay I will be ...

parentpitaSoftware and s/w Development

Nov 18, 2013 (4 years and 7 months ago)


Software Technologies for Game Platforms

In this essay I will be talking about software technologies for game platforms and how they work
depending on the scenario.

Platform Dependency

There are two

types of platform
dependency, Dependence and Independence. If I an
application is Dependent it means that it will only run on a specific operating

setup or complier. For example the operating system Windows will only run x86 hardware, so this
hardware has t
o run through all products which run on Windows, such as the Windows Phones, the
tablets and the Xbox.

Another example
of an application which can only be run on a certain piece
hardware, is the Solaris software which is only able to be ran on the SPARC h
ardware. When talking
about this in terms of video games, you can take the game Halo series, which is only able to


played on the Xbox platform, the same with the Gears of Wars series and Heavy Rain for the

On the other hand platform indep
endence means that a certain application can be run on a variety
of hardware platforms.
For example if an application is written in Java it is more than likely going to
be cross

As long as the platform has got Java installed and the latest versio
n it should be
able to run games made on Java. Java can run on many different operating systems, such as
Windows, Mac OS, and Linux etc.

An independent application must be capable of being able to run
on many different server platforms and it must provid
e a BUI (browser
based user interface).

Operating Systems

An operating system


a collection of software which is responsible for running all of the software
and hardware in a computer system.
The operating system must be installed on the computer for it

to be able to run programs. Operating systems perform basic tasks, such as recognising instructions
from the keyboard, sending output to the display screen, keeping track of files and directories as
well controlling peripheral devices such as disk drivers

and printers. For much larger systems the
operating has bigger responsibilities and powers. It makes sure that different programs and users
running at the same time do not hold each other up. The operating system is also responsible for
security, for exa
mple making that unauthorised users

access the system. Operating systems
can be classified in many different categories:



two or more users to run programs at the same time


Supports running a program on more than on
e CPU.


Allows more than one program to run all at once.


Allows different parts of a programs to run all at once.

Real time

Acts to response to input instantly.

Operating systems do allow application programs to run on it.

The application programs have to be
written so that
it can run on top of the operating system. The choice of operating system determines
what applications can run on it.


A driver is a software program that allows a specific hardware device to wo
rk with a computer’s
operating system. Drivers may be needed for internal components, such as video cards and optical
media drives and external peripherals such as printers and monitors. Most modern hardware now is
known as “plug and play”, this means the

devices will work without needing a driver installation but
even if a hardware device is accepted by the operating system, by installing the drivers it may
provide additional options and functions for the device.
For example most mice work straight away
hen they are connected to the PC but if you install the appropriate mouse
driver it

may let you to
customise functions of each button and change the mouse sensitivity. In terms of keyboards if you
install the driver which is needed it will allows you to as
sign functions to chosen key, such as
controlling the volume or opening an application. There are many different ways
to install drivers,
there’s the way where the operating system may automatically find and install the right drivers and
this only works
for some devices such as printers. Another way is install the drivers through suing
CD’s and DVD’s provided with the hardware. Sometimes there may be the case that there isn’t any
CD’s or DVD’s provide, so you would have to go and download the latest drive
rs from the
manufacturer’s website.

Application Software

A piece of application software is a program that runs on your computer.
The programs could be
anything, such as Web browsers, e
mail programs, word processors or games. Application software
can be

divided into two classes: systems software and applications software. Systems software
contains low
level programs that interact with the computer at a basic level. For example like
operating systems, compliers and utilities for maintaining the computers
resources. On the other
hand applications software
sits on top of systems software because it won’t be able to run without
the operating system and the system utilities. This includes database programs, word processors and
spread sheets.

Graphical API

Application programming interface (API) is a directory of how some software components should
with each other. API’s act as a library which includes instructions for routines, data
structures, objects classes and variables.

API’s can take many fo
rms, the first being an International
Standard like the POSIX, another being a vendor documentation such as the Microsoft Windows API
and finally a library of programming language, e.g., Standard Template Library in C++ or Java API. A
good API makes it ea
to develop a program by giving you all the building blocks.

Graphical API
(GAPI) are the software systems which are responsible for rendering the images you see on the
screen. Two
examples of a GAPI is DirectX and OpenGL. DirectX is GAPI developed an
d owned by
Microsoft, this also means this GAPI is platform dependent. On the other hand OpenGL is platform
independent also it is run by a non
profit company.

Sound API

Sound API’
s are responsible for controlling and playing the sounds.
It will control the dynamic
manipulation, for example it will control the directional sound or distortion. Two SAPI’s are Open AL
and Java Sound API. Open AL is able to run on 15 different OS’s but Java SAPI is able to run on most
things because it is plat
form independent.

When in games, if you are in a cave the sound will be
echoed throughout the cave this is the Sound API working by manipulating the sound.