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News in brief

By Chris Williams. Published: 24th Mar 2005, 10:43:45 | Permalink | Printable

Photographic evidence of DVD burning on an Omega

News in briefIt's time again to tie up any loose ends from last week and cover software news in brief.

Steffen Huber demonstrated his DVD writing CD Burn software on a Microdigital Omega at Saturday's Auto show in Germany. Dealer A4 report that the new CD Burn should be ready by the middle of 2005. Steffen told us: "We'll see how well it will work with different machines, I need to ensure that the drives still work with PIO 0. I might need to supply my own CDFS driver because the compatibility with the various CDFSSoftATAPI variants has been, erm, appalling."

ICQ support in online chat app GrapeVine has been restored, after it was mysteriously broken for a few days. Developer Alan Wrigley swiftly declared that "AOL have changed the goalposts again", despite the fact that no other ICQ client in the world seemed to suffer from any similar problems. Nevertheless, soon to be released version 2.03 should allow users to log back into the instant messaging network.

An initial exhibitors list for the Wakefield 2005 show has been published by the event's organiser, the WROCC. Although the usual suspects have booked floor space, notable exceptions include Castle and RISCOS Ltd., although we understand that Castle have a habit of signing up later than others. APDL will be representing RISCOS Ltd., as ROL boss Paul Middleton told us: "The simple matter is that I can't be there due to other long standing commitments. Dave Holden will be selling RISCOS Ltd products."

Dave added: "Since [Paul and I] felt that RISCOS Ltd should be represented and I'm a director of the company (as is Aaron Timbrell whose Virtual Acorn stand is next to mine) we decided to create a 'RISCOS Ltd area' on the APDL stand. The details haven't yet been finalised, but this will ensure that people attending the show will be able to purchase the various products and we hope to be demonstrating the latest versions of RISC OS."

Qercus have "updated" their website and gained a new telephone number: 0845 006 8822. Editor John Cartmell admitted, "We have recently been criticised for our web site that was out of date. The criticism was correct." Often, magazines print puzzles and competitions, and Qercus is no different: try out their Spot The Difference game, by comparing their recently "updated" website to their February 2004 website. Tricky.

Software news
A port of Perl 5.8.6 is now available here, with working system(), for you all to try out. Prof Peter Killworth has released version 1.40 of Tau, commenting, "Tau is by far the nicest graph-drawing software I've ever used, designed to give a publishable-quality graph first time round". Originally developed by Tim Birks, Tau can also process graph data, fit curves and more.

The battle of the Apple lawyer bait MP3 playlist front ends continues: in the blue corner, Andy Flegg's compact and cheerful MyTunes, now at version 0.07. In the red corner, Paul Vigay's ROTunes 0.02. Also, Andy's updated his funky TVGuide app.

Finally, Chris Bell has put EasiHTML back online and Mike Williams has updated UnHTML to version 1.25, download it from here.

Updated at 12:47 24/3/2005
Added comment from APDL to RISCOS Ltd. and Wakefield piece.


News? Comments?

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Cor, very up-to-date article Chris - I only put MyTunes v0.07 up last night :-)

 is a RISC OS UserJaffa on 24/3/05 10:55AM
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Actually, I have not demonstrated the DVD writing CDBurn myself - Detlef Thielsch/a4 Computer did it.

It was one of those last minute stories - Thursday at 21.00h, my BASIC prototype wrote the first DVD+RW successfully on my IYONIX on an AOpen drive. Friday at 23.30h the writing routine was converted into Ada and integrated into CDBurn and tested with an AOpen and an LG drive. A few minutes later, the alpha version was emailed to Detlef, and he was optimistic enough to try and show it on a totally different beast - an Omega with a LiteOn drive.

Talk about luck ;-)

 is a RISC OS Userhubersn on 24/3/05 11:18AM
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Ref Grapevine, it seems that logins were failing unless the client reported the very latest client "version number" for want of a better word. If memory serves, GV sailed through the last ICQ change without problem, but perhaps not updating the versions back that stored up problems for now. Who knows. It's sorted, and the updated will be sent out (which deals with a few other things) before the weekend.

In other news (which seems to have failed to make it to c.s.a.announce etc) we've launched a new RISCBook Extreme which is (as far as I am aware) *probably* the fastest machine (desktop or laptop) ever to run RISC OS, and at very high resolutions. I won't waste space here going into details, but if the idea of running RISC OS software at stunning speeds ON THE GO appeals, drop us an email at rci@rcomp.co.uk for further info.

 is a RISC OS Userarawnsley on 24/3/05 12:20PM
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RISC OS Ltd not attending the main RISC OS show isn't a very good show of their commitment to RISC OS, whatever the reason for it. Couldn't they have their own stall and find someone else to man it?

 is a RISC OS UserSimonC on 24/3/05 12:21PM
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That TVGuide app looks superb! I've basically replaced buying a paper every day with logging on to bleb.org, and was really looking forward to the aligned display. Unfortunately it wasn't quite all I was hoping for - though the real killer is that it slows Netsurf to a crawl. But the TVGuide app looks to fix both problems in one fell swoop!

 is a RISC OS Userninja on 24/3/05 2:57PM
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ninja: if you drop me a mail letting me know how you'd like the bleb.org aligned view to work I'll see what I can do. One of the aims of the current implementation is that it was still relatively simple HTML and so should work quickly even in old browsers like Fresco.

Anyway, drop me a line via andrew@bleb.org.

 is a RISC OS UserJaffa on 24/3/05 4:45PM
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In reply to SimonC:

I thought much the same too.

Although they did mention other long standing commitments, I was left wondering about their RISC OS pledge to the platform, especially after the ROL/CTL dispute settlement last year?

Pledge of absence may have been better served with someone to stand in for them?

When I first bought my Acorn in '95 I was asked a few months later to attend a computer Expo a few hours north of Melbourne to help out the computer shop which only recently started to sell Acorns in that area. We all were new to the Acorn scene, but the helping of each other resulted in some sales for them at the time and a learning curve I enjoyed.

 is a RISC OS UserSawadee on 24/3/05 9:47PM
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Did n't this same situation with ROl not attending occur last year and was due to it being Mr Middletons wedding aniversary weekend or something similar to that? Seems perfectly reasonable for that to take priority over a computer show to me, particularly as arrangements have been made for selling products and demonstrating new developments. I don't see what the fuss is about?

 is a RISC OS Userrobert79 on 24/3/05 11:21PM
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Just to clarify since people do not seem to be reading what is actually written and creating stories.

RISC OS Ltd will be represented by APDL - Dave Holden is a Director of RISCOS Ltd. So RISCOS Ltd will be represented at this year show, just not on their own stand. Paul Middleton had a long standing commitment for what is now the show weekend and could not change it.

Note also Castle and oreganoUK have been added to the exhibitor list and more will be following.

 is a RISC OS UserWakeman on 24/3/05 11:30PM
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UnHTML 1.25 has been around for some time. However good to see it is available for download again.

 is a RISC OS Userhexa0503 on 26/3/05 9:10AM
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How many ICQ clients do you regularly use then? I use ICQLite on the PC and based Grapevine's login procedures on that. At the same time that users reported problems with Grapevine, my copy of ICQLite (which was only about a year old) failed to log in unless I upgraded, so it's a fair bet that other clients also failed. I suggest you stick to reporting facts on Drobe and refrain from sweeping comments such as "no other ICQ client in the world seemed to suffer from any similar problems".

 is a RISC OS Userinchiquin on 29/3/05 2:17PM
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I stand by the assertion that it *seemed* that no other ICQ clients suffered from it; there was no news about it from other platforms and no discussion on a break in the protocol. Even a test ICQ client written years ago that runs in a taskwindow still worked. It sounds like ICQlite had a bug, which was introduced into Grapevine when you based your ICQ stack on it. At least it's fixed now.

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 29/3/05 4:35PM
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I merely copied the login parameters, i.e. version numbers. ICQ is a proprietary system and it is necessary to fake an 'official' client. This worked without a problem for over a year. The fact that the version numbers became out of date is hardly a bug, but clearly an attempt by AOL to tighten up by getting tough on older clients. This is likely to happen on a regular basis and I rather resent the implication that Grapevine is bugged as a result.

 is a RISC OS Userinchiquin on 29/3/05 4:48PM
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