Software newsBy Chris Williams. Published: 16th Jul 2005, 14:15:25 | Permalink | Printable
Podcasting client, RISC OS on Java, PDF generation and moreThe latest craze tearing through the savvy Internet denizen population is podcasting. It is typically a combination of RSS XML and MP3 files to ultimately enable anyone with a website and a microphone to become their own independent broadcaster. Users record their own audio piece, upload it and create an XML file that links to these MP3 files. Other users can then check the XML file and download any new broadcasts. Although it's used by various bloggers who love the sound of their voice, larger broadcasters have caught on, including the Beeb who are podcasting some programmes in a trial this year.
The good news is that Carlos Michael Santillan has created and released spc, a podcast client for RISC OS. His software will download a podcast RSS XML file, fetch the associated MP3 files and finally build a DigitalCD playlist for users to listen to the audio.
Gareth Boden's project to develop a RISC OS environment emulator in Java continues to make progress. His work, which can be found on sourceforge, includes an ARM processor emulator and aims to recreate the RISC OS SWI API so that native software can be executed on alien architectures. Gareth told us, "Quite a lot of simple command-line programs now work just fine". Nearly 80 SWIs and over 60 C library functions are now implemented and a similar project attempted some time ago called riscose has, according to Gareth, only a third of the SWIs that his project has implemented.
"I've been working with Draw Plus, since Jonathan Marten kindly made the source code publicly available - of course this necessitated me getting SharedCLibrary working but that wasn't so hard after all, although I was very glad riscose had reverse engineered some of the initialisation behaviour," he commented.
"Draw Plus is a great test because it uses an awful lot of different RISC OS APIs. So far, it executes most of the initialisation code from Draw Plus up until the point where it fails to find Trinity.Medium because no such font exists on Mac OS X."
Steve Fryatt has developed PrintPDF, which simplifies the process of generating PDF files on RISC OS with Ghostscript. The software is currently in beta and Steve says he will welcome any feedback from users.
SpamStamp 1.03 now supports statistics for multiple users, is more friendly towards AntiSpam, supports encoded message headers, and includes some bugfixes too. Liquid Silicon have halved the price of AddressIT, a CD based postcode-address database. Web gallery generator WebGen2 is now up to version 2.19 and includes various tweaks. For Version 2.20 author Dave Stratford promises to use CSS for the layout of galleries. High quality graphing application Tau now supports 24 bit colour output for drawings.
Software development aid DrWimp is now up to version 4.30, as well as NurseW, and includes font blending support, window position saving, system variable support and various other updates. Ext2/Ext3 filesystem reader IscaFS has been bugfixed to version 0.17. Stephen Revill's Routines programming library now provides buffered access to files, which can increase performance on filesystems such as ADFS and NFS. Variations 0.41 now supports thumbnail sorting and searching as well as various other updates. Compo 1.23c also adds an area image blur effect, the ability to bleed into a canvas plus other tweaks. Both are available from author Rob Davison's website.
And finally, Acorn users are invited to XzentriX 2005, a three day event in Germany for alternative computer users. With all the hallmarks of a nostalgic nose-bleed-techno music fuelled demo party, the organisers say it's "a party for people who love their computer more than their wife and kids, and dogs". Just make sure you leave your PC at home. The event is scheduled to take place in September.
Also, the fat lady has finally sung for ISP Argonet.
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