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Rob Sprowson talk at January Rougol meet-up

Posted by Mark Stephens on 22:01, 16/1/2017 | ,
Rob Sprowson returned to Rougol (he was here almost exactly a year ago) to give an update on his exciting hardware and software projects. Running a presentation on a Titanium (one he knocked together over breakfast to give him an easier carrying case on the tube), he started by talking about Cloud storage.
CloudFS is not the first cloud storage solution for RISC OS (there is a Python based client for DropBox), but it does offer a totally integrated solution. Rob ran through the pros (offsite backups, access from multiple locations) and cons (potential loss of data, security) before uploading a picture from his camera to his PC and then into CloudFS where he loaded it into ChangeFSI. He also explained how the software could be run from the command line and was decoupled into 2 parts - the pCloud is implemented separately so it would be possible to add other Cloud providers if you can get the specifications.
Asked about security, Rob said he was very happy to be using the Swiss as they are known for their discretion (he stashes all his fortune in Swiss banks).
After CloudFS, Rob recapped on the Titanium board - still the fastest RISC OS machine and still waiting for the OS to catch-up. There are 9 cores sitting inside, waiting to be tapped for video or audio editing or any other processor intensive activity. Rob also reminded us that it has a huge number of ports - one customer is actually using the parallel ports to drive a fax machine. And Rob is always on the look out for interesting new PCI cards to plug into the machine.
Rob takes a keen interest in the economics of the IT industry and had some nice graphics on logarithmic axis to show how costs and projects work. Given the limited size of the RISC OS market his focus is lower cost or simpler projects. He also pointed out that the Titanium was cheaper than the Iyonix when it was released (even before adding inflation). Such is the rate of change in the industry.
Rob's current project is the update of Look Systems Font Manager. It had actually taken two years to hunt down Adrian Look to get permission to update the software. The current release uses some source code from the last release (way back in 2003), Adrian's original partial copy and some deft reverse engineering (the audience suggested it looked like a good reason to have cloud backups.
The new release brings this excellent software onto the latest hardware (where it runs very quickly). Software development was completed on 22nd December and the manual is now being finished off prior to release. Rob showed it dynamically updating fonts in a !Draw document and it was very solid in use. There are no new features but Rob had been thinking about possible future updates. At present there is no unicode support.
Rob said there may well be upgrades for existing users - details and final prices being finalised. The software will be available through Elesar website
Finally, Rob plugged the other port of his Titanium into the overhead projector to give himself an extra large desktop with OSM generating a map of the Borough street area.
Rougol meets every month in the Blue Eyed Maid Public House near London Bridge. The meetings start at 7.45pm and there is usually a collection of people arriving before that to chat and enjoy the pub's Indian curry (which I confirmed is very good in the interests of doing thorough investigative reporting). It is free to attend, and the next meeting is 20th February.
Rougol Website
Rob Sprowson interview
2 comments in the forums

Wakefield show approaches

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 21:25, 12/4/2011 | , ,
Wakefield Show logoIt's that time of year again - this Saturday marks the date of the sixteenth Wakefield show. The show will take place at its usual location of the Cedar Court Hotel, and will run from 10:00am to 4:30pm. Entry is set to cost £5 per adult, which grants you access to both the main show floor itself and to the theatre presentations. Highlights of this year's show look to be:
  • R-Comp/RCI - Apart from the other wares they'll be bringing to the show, expect them to also take the opportunity to officially launch their new ARMini computer.
  • RISC OS Open and RISCOS Ltd - Providing you with the latest OS updates, no matter which side of the fence you're on.
  • Mike Cook's Gadgets stand - If you've ever wanted to find out what he's been up to since his Micro User/Acorn User days, now's your chance!
  • WikiProject RISC OS - Meet the people who aim to put RISC OS back on the map (on Wikipedia, at least).
  • Also look out for lots of new software releases, including (but not limited to) new versions of Organizer 2 and Impact.
For more details about the show, including the theatre schedule, please check out the show's website.
54 comments in the forums

Wakefield Show this Weekend

Posted by Chris on 21:26, 22/4/2010 | , ,
Wakefield Show logoThe fifteenth Wakefield Show will take place this weekend in, er, Wakefield. It runs from 10.30am to 4pm this Saturday, and a ticket will set you back a fiver (free for children).
There are quite a few exhibitors confirmed, including both RISCOS LtdInfo and RISC OS Open. The former will have the latest versions of RISC OS SIX, while the latter will be demonstrating the latest builds of the open source Beagleboard port, and possibly even a Touchbook running RISC OS. Other highlights will (hopefully) include:
  • NetSurf 2.5, including all the latest improvements and fixes
  • Messenger Pro 6 - lots of updates to the leading commercial email client for RISC OS
  • Latest versions of MW Software's applications, including the new PostScript 3 printer drivers
  • Latest versions of CashBook, PrintPDF, Organizer 2, and other apps
There'll be theatre presentations from all the usual suspects, including ROOL, ROL, R-CompInfo and MW Software. For more information, head over to the website.
31 comments in the forums

CES 2010: ARM hardware roundup

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 02:40, 17/1/2010 | , , , , , , ,
Last week saw this year's annual Consumer Electronics Show go down in Las Vegas. The world's largest consumer technology tradeshow, it's traditionally a source for many product announcements from the major manufacturers. This year there was a lot of focus on 3D TVs, e-readers, and, most importantly for us, next-generation ARM-powered goodies.

Continue reading "CES 2010: ARM hardware roundup" | 30 comments in the forums

A gaggle of gadgets

Posted by Jeffrey Lee on 21:00, 13/6/2009 | , , , , , , ,
Last week saw this year's annual Computex Taipei computer trade show go down in Taiwan. The second largest computer trade show in the world, it's traditionally a source for many product announcements from the major manufacturers. Most of the time these announcements are of x86-based products, but this year it was ARM's turn to take center stage, delivering on last year's announcement that ARM were to make a big push into the netbook market. Although none of the products listed here are in stores at the moment, all announcements point towards a good number of them being made available before the year is out.

Continue reading "A gaggle of gadgets" | 38 comments in the forums

Preview - Santa Cool

Posted by Andy Spence on 00:00, 2/1/2005 | , ,
Santa Cool

Santa Cool in game
Santa Cool is a pet project of mine which I started a long time ago and haven't really done much on since. The idea was for it to be a PD game for the RiscPC that could be released around Christmas time, for obvious reasons. I can't even pretend that I can program and the coding is very bad basic, but I feel that it could be a very playable public domain platformer. You can see 4 snapshots down this page from the only four levels that are yet in existance (click on them to load the full size picture). I have spent a lot of time creating all
the pre-rendered graphics in 3D and the result is a set of high quality graphics.
Continue reading "Preview - Santa Cool" | Comment in the forums

Wakefield 2003 - the preview

Posted by Phil Mellor on 01:00, 5/5/2003 | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Wakefield 2003Shows are the best places for companies to announce new products, and with all the special offers and the opportunity to "try before you buy", they're not too bad for punters either.
The annual Wakefield event, organised and run by the Wakefield RISC OS Computer Club under the careful leadership of Chris Hughes, is one of the best. Although this year it's only taking place for one day there's plenty to see, and as can be seen from the companies exhibiting, attendance is a great way to show your commitment to the platform.
There's lots going on so for your convenience we've split things up into different categories. The stand numbers are in bold. If this is just the preview, just think what the after show party - I mean report - will be like.
Continue reading "Wakefield 2003 - the preview" | Comment in the forums

Preview - Iron Dignity

Posted by Richard Goodwin on 00:00, 14/11/2001 | , ,
Iron Dignity Logo

Iron Dignity is an action game with an impressive 3D engine and movie cut scenes with real actors. Both a RISC OS and PC version were to be produced, but sadly the PC publishing house originally chosen went bust which has set things back a bit. It does appear to have reached beta test stage on the PC however.
Continue reading "Preview - Iron Dignity" | 14 comments in the forums

Preview - Descent 2

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Preview - TEK

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F16 Fighting Falcon Preview

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Phoebe unveiled

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King and Country Preview

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Acorn games news

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