Some of you might remember my post a few months ago, about a format I call "UNIF-IPS", which is a variant of IPS designed for UNIF ROMs and is intended to facilitate ROM Translation and Hacking for UNIF-format ROMs, thus helping to break the dependency on iNES for Translators/Hackers.
Anyhow, recently I posted about it in the forum at the ROM hacking site of which I am a member, and the one comment I could not adequately defend against was said: "Also, I've never seen a UNIF format ROM, and infact, I see no reason to switch from iNES format. iNES is a very simple format, which makes hacking so much easier that it could be otherwise. Just remember the acronym, 'KISS'."
So I've been thinking, perhaps a variant, a superset, of UNIF, in which certain chunks could be "dynamically" loaded (instead of the actual chunk data, a "dynamic" chunk would contain the filename of the file containing the data) would further facilitate Translating/Hacking because a translator/hacker could use established iNES file offsets for hacking into the extracted file rather than having to convert all iNES offsets into appropriate UNIF offsets (and it would assume the UNIF was arranged in a particular way).
As an extension, a dynamic chunk would have a byte or word indicating a file offset from which to start reading the file's data. This would be used to add 0x10 bytes to the start of an extracted file (PRGx) and thus all iNES file offsets would be usable for that file.
A chunk would be marked as "dynamic" by having its chunk name be lower-case instead of upper-case. This would allow this "dynamic-UNIF" format to be a superset of UNIF, meaning any valid UNIF file = a valid Dynamic-UNIF file.
Combined with UNIF-IPS, this could make ROM Translation/Hacking of UNIF ROMs quite practical, thereby eliminating dependency on iNES for Translation/Hacking; this (the hacking of ROMs) combined with the elimination of iNES dependency for standard emulation (the playing of ROMs) and NES development (the creating of ROMs), this would fully eliminate the "need" for iNES, period.
...just another vision... Studios