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RISC OS London Show 2017

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 23:30, 12/10/2017 | , ,
 
This year's London Show is due to take place on Saturday the 28th of October, at the usual location of the St. Giles Hotel in Feltham. The show runs from 11 AM to 5 PM, with tickets being £5 at the door (and under-16's free). Exhibitors this year are set to include:The theatre schedule is yet to be finalised, and with the number of new and interesting exhibitors it's anyone's guess who's going to be filling the slots. What are your predictions?
 
For up-to-the-minute show news, remember to check out the show website.
 
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Acorn World Sat 13th - Sunday 14th May

Posted by Mark Stephens on 07:58, 29/4/2017 | , ,
 
This new event/exhibition is being organised in Cambridge at the Centre for Computing History by the Acorn and BBC User group.
 
It will include machines and software from the whole of Acorn's history and also beyond. And it will also include Acorn's 'children' - the Companies which Acorn helped to create and grow.
 
Event runs 10am-5pm and tickets will cost 8 pounds (which also gives you full access to the rest of the Museum which includes lots of other history, nostalgia and trivia.
 
Whether your interest is past, present or future, there will be lots of interest to see...
 
Museum website
 
1 comment in the forums

Wakefield 2017 Show Report

Posted by Mark Stephens on 21:46, 22/4/2017 |
 
The 22nd Wakefield Show took place at the Cedar Court Hotel. If you were not at the show, this is what you missed.
 
The Show takes place across 3 rooms. There is a retro room, with lots of 8 bit equipment, a RISC OS room and a third room for talks. It was a really busy show and there were lots of things I did not have time to see or missed.
 
I spent most of my time in the theatre and RISC OS stands so I will focus on that in my write-up.
 
You can also get a feel from all parts of the Show from our picture gallery.
 
RISC OS stands
There were lots of new features, ideas and updates from the stands. Here is what I picked up.
 
Ident have so far held the price on their Ident cases despite increasing costs of raw items. They are offering both RISC OS and Linux solutions. They operate in many markets outside the traditional RISC OS scene where their clients are asking for Linux.
 
North One Communications were showing off Organizer 2.26 (which is new to Wakefield) and still getting ideas for a hopeful new release for London Show.
 
RISCOSbits had their growing range of hardware solutions on show and some neat little covers for your PI case - I think I even spotted a bright yellow one.
 
Chris Hall had his GPS system updating a map in real time and had several interesting hardware setups using GPS and custom screens.
 
CJE MicrosInfo had their usual large range of hardware and software on offer.
 
Steve Fryatt was on hand to demonstrate his range of software, which can also be bought on CD and raises money for Charity.
 
ROOL had their ePic release and the usual selection of Books, USBs and some 10 year old badges for their anniversary.
 
Drag'N'Drop had the latest release of their magazine, their range of fonts and books/drawing tutorials.
 
Archive Magazine had both Paul Bevereley, Jim Nagel and the latest release of Archive (released last week).
 
SoftRock/Riscository had the full range of software and Pi cases on show.
 
R-CompInfo had lots of little software updates since last year's show and their full range of hardware and monitors.
 
Orpheus Internet had their big screen and were discussing both their traditional internet services and new plans with Riscos Developments.
 
Timothy Baldwin did not have a stand but attracted a lot of interest as he now has RISC OS running on Debian Linux and was able to demonstrate what is a reasonably stable (and quick) beta release.
 
The talks
 
Richard Brown had a special talk added to the start of the day. He began by updating us on OrpheusNet. They have been updating their servers which means they will be able to offer new services including better web hosting and VPS (they can offer you your own virtual box to use rather than having to install you box in their data centre). Richard has been involved in lots of other RISC OS projects including ArmMini, ARMX6 and gets lots of suggestions and requests. Sometimes people ask for things and his usual response, is along the lines of "If you are prepared to pay X, we can make it happen".
 
Richard explained that one specific request at SW South had led him to ask "How much is this worth to you?" An encouraging answer to this has led him to aks other people and in less that 2 months he has managed to put together the 30K he estimates he needs to make it happen. The hope is that this will be the first of several such ventures. The investors are not expecting to see a financial reward from this and the idea is that everyone in the RISC OS community will be able to benefit.
 
Mindful of previous events not having ended entirely happily, and having secured the funding for the first project, Richard is being cautious on initial announcements. Once a clear timeline can be provided, there will be more details. In the meantime, there is lots of speculation.
 
In order to provide a legal structure for this, a new Company has been created. Andrew Rawnsley is the second director, as Richard has worked with him before, but the idea is to benefit everyone and anyone is invited to be involved.
 
At the moment, Richard has most of the funds for his initial project but if you are looking at donating a significant figure (ie over 1,000 pounds), he is happy to tell you more if you would like to sign an NDA.
 
If you are looking to donate smaller sums, there are plenty of worthy ROOL bounties which you could top up..... Both these efforts are complementing each other to improve RISC OS.
 
In the interest of full disclosure, Iconbar has signed the NDA and the planned first project is VERY,VERY EXCITING. The people who have put the money in are all fairly shrewd people who are not expecting to see a financial return on their investment but are expecting to see the money used very wisely as specified and expecting to hold Richard and Andrew to account and to deliver.
 
This is probably the biggest investment in RISC OS since the sale to PACE.
 
Andrew Rawnsley gave an update on what R-Comp have been up to. There are lots of minor software updates but the recent focus has been on hardware updates and the new laptop. He recapped on recent releaseswith the ARMX6 speed improvements on accessing networks, the RAID solution, new Linux release for TiMachine and new RISC OS builds for all machines as well.
 
The second half of his talk was devoted to Riscos Developments, with the desire to ensure that RISC OS will still be around in another 20 years and to fix some of the big issues and missing gaps.
 
Steve Revill from ROOL did not have advanced notice of Riscos Developments, but welcomed the new initiative and looked forward to learning more and working together. ROOL have their ePic release forthe show which was r15 for the PI. It has been an epic release due to the sheer amount of changes and work needed to make it work. As well as the standard RISC OS build (which you can buy from them or download for free), ROOL are now offering a large, fast, SD card combining RISC OS and all the NutPi software for 50 pounds.
 
ROOL also ran through recently completed and still open bounties.
 
The EDID bounty is now complete (it autodetect monitors making RISC OS simply and easier to use). Potential other future changes may include hot support and multiple monitors. A second completed bounty now offers support for larger drives up to 2 TIB. A critical part of the RISC OS filing system has been rewritten in C (making it much easier to maintain and enhance). Step 2 will be partition support (still raising funds on bounty and at 2,700)
 
Open bounties include-
 
1. USB support bounty to update and sync with net BSD stack
2. Networking and stack overhaul (IPv6,etc)
3. Better clipboard support
4. Compiler support
 
ROOL's New Zealand division (Andrew Hodgkinson) is doing updates to the ROOL website and hope to add some new features such as targets for bounties.
 
Jeffrey Lee and others have started looking at multicore
 
Sine nomine demonstrated a new version of !Impact which added much better import features. This has come out of improvements originally added to OSM. !Impact no longer needs fields in same order. The software shows potential import preview of issues before import and allows you to fix them. Import allows for Merging, update and selection values. There was a quick demo of exporting location to OSM to add as pins (which led nicely into the second part).
 
OSM has lots of polish and nice to have features added. There is a new resizing tool to choose output size, route tracing, lock button, tracks can be edited, compass and ability to turn map. You can also load photos from web in OSM (once RISC OS has https this will also be able to use Flickr). Future updates will Look at better GPS support and adding contour lines.
 
CJEInfo Micro's are also excited by RISC OS developments. Chris had his preparations for the show interrupted by a overly complex house move so it was more 'spontaneous' than usual. Chris has 2 different markets with retro/legacy customers as well as customers wanting the latest. So he has secured a support of legacy mice for RISC OS machine and also a supply for older Pi2s (not the new versions which are essentially Pi3s with some bits missing). He also has some nice compact speakers and some KVM switch boxes which will work on both DVI and VGA so you can mix new and old machine. Finally, he gave a recap on changes since last Wakefield with the new !Photodesk release, USB drawing tablet, PiTop laptop
 
Amcog games have been busy on their sound system and their games and gave us an update on both areas, again with the nice sign summarising the changes and ideas for the new RISC OS sound improvements.
 
4 comments in the forums

Wakefield 2017 show in pIctures

Posted by Mark Stephens on 20:26, 22/4/2017 |
 
Take a stroll around Wakefield 2017 with us....
 
(Click on the thumbnails for the bigger image)
 











 











 











 











 







 
Show report
 
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Wakefield Acorn & RISC OS Show, 22nd April 2017

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 20:00, 8/4/2017 | ,
 
It's now just under two weeks until this year's Wakefield show. On 22nd April the Cedar Court Hotel near Wakefield will be filled to the brim with all manner of Acorn and RISC OS related people and paraphernalia, including but not limited to:In addition to the usual number of new and updated products that will be on display around the show, ROOL are promising an "announcement of epic proportions", suggesting that this show isn't one to miss.
 
The show will be open from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm, with tickets charged at £5 on the door, although children under 13 can get in free if they're accompanied by an adult.
 
For further information and all the latest news and updates, don't forget to check the show's website.
 
4 comments in the forums

South West Show in Pictures

Posted by Mark Stephens on 18:03, 27/2/2017 |
 
Here is a selection of pictures to show you what the event was like.....
 
(Click on the thumbnails for the bigger image)
 
 











 











 











 











 








 
1 comment in the forums

South West Show Report

Posted by Mark Stephens on 22:11, 25/2/2017 | ,
 
The 2017 South-West Show took place at the Webbington Hotel, its regular home. It was a bright, sunny day (at least to start with) and attendance seemed good. The final count is still awaited, and there was also a questionnaire for visitors to get information and suggestions. If you were not one of those visitors, here is what you missed.
 
The very quick summary
No major new machines but lots of interesting new software and hardware releases and a good, upbeat atmosphere. It was a great day and R-Comp/Orpheus did a great job.
 
The Talks
There were 4 talks, this year in their own little corner. All talks were recorded so should hopefully appear soon. I have summarized them with the details of their stands below.
 
CJEInfo Micro's
CJE Micro's had their usual large range of hardware and software. They had their usual wide selection and had several ARM machines setup to demo for customers.
 
In their talk CJE MicrosInfo explained that their customers include both users of 'classic' items as well as more cutting edge users. They have now been able to source a new supply of serial mice, a previously elusive and expensive creature. They also mentioned the recent !PhotoDesk release from London and the new drawing tablet (which should work on almost anything).
 
They are always interested in second hand items and will be going on a trip to collect items from Oxford next month. They will probably take a route via any other locations which could be on the route (London, Southampton were mentioned) so let them know if you have any previously-cherished and now surplus items taking up space you wish to have them take away.
 
R-Comp
R-CompInfo had their usual range or Windows and ARM machines, including the new RiscBook Go (a nice compromise between size, batter life and cost). They released a new RAID solution to provide a non-technical and much cheaper solution for keeping your machine backed up. There are some new, MUCH faster drivers for the ARMX6 networking operations (which are free updates for existing customers) and a new solution to partition much larger hard drives for RISC OS.
 
In their talk R-Comp talked about the new software releases. Many of their new developments are the result of the requirements of commercial clients, who provide the funding. The partition software is a good example. They also did a demo on the new RiscBook Go, which has a removable screen if you want to use it as a Windows touch tablet. Andrew recommended a Blue tooth mouse if you want to use RISC OS in this mode.
 
Orpheus Internet
Orpheus Internet were there to talk about their internet and broadband packages (and give out free sweets. Richard was also moonlighting as announcer, technical show trouble-shooter and show organizer.
 
ROOL
ROOL had their range of software, hardware, books and badges. This included the last few fullsize SSD cards, and new releases of Pico.
 
ROOL's talk provided an update on recent events. ROOL is now 10 years old (which was as long as the time from the first RISC OS release by Acorn until their final 3.70 release). It was formed to save RISC OS from obscurity after development stopped in 2003-6. The highlights of the last year have been :- JPEG update bounty, new DDE with updates to the tools and includes BASIC Compiler (which you can get on its own free from www.riscos.fr), and new Pico release. Testing on another bounty finished late last night so watch their newspages in early March.
 
There is still lots to do and RISC OS relies on everyone's help. So they highlighted ways to get get involved - contribute to the forum, try the nightly build, donate money to help them cover the costs of being at Shows and hosting the software.
 
The last user guide was 21 years aga. So it is out of date and needs updates/reviewing as a few things have happened since then (like the Internet). There are now only 23 chapters left to go and it is not a technically challenging task.
 
There are 3 new bounties - extend clipboard, TCP/IP (improving ssl, security and adding ipv6 and wifi), and USB full sync with netbsd code tree.
 
Rob Sprowson was reasonably confident that FontPro Dir would be available next week. He is waiting for the manuals which he was notified shipped at 3am this morning.
 
The Pi3 RISC OS release is still waiting on some final items of software to be fixed before it can be released.
 
John Norris (Bell ringing) & Tasty Treats
John was talking very enthusiastically about all aspects of bell-ringing and offering both software and hardware solutions for bell-ringers to learn and practise. It is clearly a lot harder than it looks and he was explaining how they 'ring in the changes'. Tasty treats was offering lots of enticing jams and spreads.
 
Drag & Drop
The latest release of the magazine was available along with a new set of fonts for RISC OS (both will be reviewed by Iconbar in the next few weeks).
 
David Snell
David was demonstrating ProCad and WebWonder and John showing lots of clients how to get the most from this powerful tool.
 
Organizer
The dynamic duo were there to show off the 2.26 version released at London Show and to ask what users would like to see next in the software.
 
Archive
Jim Nagel had back copies of the magazine and details of the new DVD. The latest release was held back so that it could include all the SW Show news and updates.
 
Soft Rock Software
Vince had the full selection of software and his very cute RiscPC shaped case for a Pi. He was also promoting Riscository where he tracks all the news fit (and unfit to print) in the RISC OS world (always my first port of call when I log onto the Internet). He was also promoting the Bristol user group.
 
Steve Fryatt
Steve had new releases of his software (including Cash Book) and was showing users all the little tweaks in the software.
 
Chris Hall
Chris had a transparent RISC OS box which was receiving GPS data and displaying this on a little OLED screen. He was also showing how you could use this data for alsorts of other applications.
 
ROUGOL
Brian was talking about the groups meeting and up-coming events. If you are in the South-East, their London venue is very easy to reach (and serves excellent curry).
 
AmCog Games
AmCog games have a growing range of games, including Mop Tops (a Lemmings style game with lots of humour), Xeroid (a flying game), Overlord (a shoot-em up), Legends of Magic (a 3D Isomorphic adventure which also has a game editor and 70,000 novel to accompany the game).
 
Several of the games are also available in French and German. They are written in BASIC and run at 800x600 resolution. Users are encouraged to dissect and reuse the code. AmCog may well have the makings of a very good Games library....
 
All their games include extensive original music tracs and AmCog have also been working on a new sound system for RISC OS, which borrows ideas from many places including BBC and C64 sound chips. The theatre talk focussed on how easy it was to use all these features.
 
Ident Computer
Tom had his range of Ident Computers for RaspberryPi. He has put a lot of work into improving the configuration software and making it easier to setup and use. He has lots of developments in the pipeline which will be revealed in due course. Stay tuned...
 
RiscOSBits
RiscOSBits have a growing range of devices to plug into RISC OS machines or provide extra features to RISC OS which were being demonstrated. There was also a prototype card to give the Titanium wireless internet.
 
Show website
 
The show in pictures
 
2 comments in the forums

SouthWest show reminder

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 00:30, 23/2/2017 | ,
 
This Saturday, the 25th, is the date of this year's RISC OS SouthWest show. Organised by R-Comp and Orpheus Internet, the show will take place at the Webbington Hotel, south of Bristol.
 
Exhibitors for this year are set to include:The show is planned to run from 10:30am to 4pm.
 
For more information, check out the show website.
 
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