Geminus press release
For release not before 10am Saturday 23rd September 2004
Purley, Surrey. England.
The team behind Aemulor, Aemulor Pro and Cino are pleased to announce
their latest project : Geminus - a multiple-screen driver for the IYONIX
pc. It allows several PCI graphics cards to be installed (upto the
maximum number of free PCI slots-3 in current models) and your desktop
can be split across several screens in various configurations.
- provides screen modes which span multiple graphics cards, allowing the
desktop to be used across two or more screens
- supports up to 8 screens (Note: only 3 PCI slots are available for
graphics cards in current IYONIX pcs.)
- screens can be arranged in any configuration (left to right
horizontally, right to left horizontally, vertically..)
- each screen image can be rotated 90 degrees clockwise or
anti-clockwise, allowing rotatable LCD panels to be used in portrait
mode; great for DTP!
- An API allows applications to create their own display surfaces (the
desktop is just one display surface) and thus claim screens for their
own, exclusive use, either drawing to them directly or via the OS VDU
For example, Cino can take over the second screen for DVD playback,
whilst the desktop is displayed in the first screen
- makes full use of the hardware acceleration already available in RISC
OS 5 on all screens, plus a hardware DMA channel to improve scrolling
and copying performance between screens
- graphical Configuration plug-in allows you to define your own large
screen modes, specifying the screen positions and, optionally,
for each mode.
Geminus doesnt just end there. We have a host of exciting features
planned for the product, which will be made available in different
"flavours" depending on which features you require.
- R/B-swapping in software, allowing the use of other graphics cards
which have not or cannot have their Red and Blue signals crossed-over
(as per Castle's supplied NVidia cards), eg. digital DVI outputs.
- low-colour modes (code to be migrated from Aemulor Pro into the
Geminus module, allowing each physical screen to be used in any
display depth, whatever its actual capabilities).
- Geminus is ideally placed to further accelerate desktop operations
such as sprite plotting and window redrawing.
Some early prototype code has already proved that the plotting of
texture backgrounds in particular can be greatly speeded up, leading to
a noticably slicker desktop.
The widths of the individual screens within a multi-screen mode are
restricted slightly, as shown below:
16 million colours width must be a multiple of 256 pixels
32 thousand colours width must be a multiple of 512 pixels
256 colours width must be a multiple of 1024 pixels
So all standard modes are available in 16 million colours (eg. 1024 x
768, 1280 x 1024, 1536 x 1152, 2048 x 1536)
A couple of example desktop modes available with 2 CRT monitors
2560 x 1024 x 16 million colours
4096 x 1536 x 16 million colours!!
The first public showing of Geminus will be at the Guildford RISC OS
show today, where we will also be selling second PCI graphics cards
suitable for installing into the IYONIX pc, and a range of LCD monitors
at fantastic prices.
We anticipate Geminus will be available for purchase 3-4 weeks after the
show as much of the code is already complete. Pricing for the
multi-screen version of Geminus will be 25UKP+vat
Modified (R/B swapped) PCI graphics cards are available at 50UKP+vat
Upon release, we will be offering various bundles of Geminus, PCI cards
and LCD monitors at discounted prices.