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ROL plots December roadshow

By Chris Williams. Published: 25th Oct 2005, 18:47:07 | Permalink | Printable

Is it too early to mention Christmas?

RISCOS Ltd. logo and cogPunters who missed the run of RISC OS events this year have been offered an olive branch in the form of a roadshow. Riding on a wave of relief after escaping mostly unbruised from the Guildford show, RISCOS Ltd. have proposed a number of open evenings in December.

The ambitious plans involve companies joining ROL on a tour around the UK. MD Paul Middleton said: "The excellent attendance and generally very positive attitude at the recent South East Show in Guildford has encouraged us to give users who can't travel to exhibitions down South the opportunity to sample our wares in the run up to Christmas."

A pencilled in schedule suggests evenings in Birmingham, Manchester and North London on Thursday 15th, Friday 16th and Saturday 17th December respectively. The events could run from 4pm to 8pm, and the roadshow may even move further afield to Newcastle.

ROL admit that its plans are in their "early days", and any company or organisation interested in joining the roadshow should contact RISCOS Ltd. on +44 (0)29 2046 4020.

Links

RISCOS Ltd. website

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Discussion

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I think Castle should give them a call :)

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 25/10/05 7:04PM
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I wonder what RISCOS Ltd have to release around that date.

Still it is a good idea.

 is a RISC OS UserRevin Kevin on 25/10/05 7:11PM
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Select subscriptions ;)

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 25/10/05 7:16PM
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I think ROL should take a lead in the market so all credit for doing so...

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 25/10/05 7:48PM
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"sample our wares"? What wares would those be? 32-bit Select is running only on the A9 AFAIK which isn't available yet nor even firmly scheduled for release; Select on Iyonix consists of a handful of applications which by PM's own admission aren't near ready for release; 26-bit Adjust and Select have been around now for some time and aren't exactly leading-edge. So the offer will be, give us more money and we plan to deliver something you can use, sometime? That'll rock them in the aisles.

 is a RISC OS Userbucksboy on 25/10/05 8:29PM
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bucksboy:

Or "let us show you what we are trying to achieve".

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 25/10/05 8:47PM
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This seems good news as at least ROL are now trying to make up for failing to market over the past year. Sure some people are going to say they don't trust ROL but I think ROL are in the position of dammed if they don't or do with some people now.

Many have been arguing that ROL should come and tell us what they are doing and taking a lead and now they are we get more negatives.

I do understand that some have difficulty and I'm one of those that felt let down over the past 12 months but I do think that this may be the turning point. If enough people go to the road shows and ask for say Select on Iyonix or Select4 then it can only be good.

Don't fall into the trap of not doing something as then ROL can say well we tried but no one was interested. As I've always said you've got to be in the race to win not on the sidelines and this may be our chance as users to get an outcome in this race that we want.

 is a RISC OS Userbluenose on 25/10/05 9:09PM
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I look forward keenly to hearing them here in Adelaide, South Australia!

 is a RISC OS Userbaz3 on 26/10/05 12:55AM
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Perhaps they might consider visiting an area with some of the most influential IT companies in the world - California :o

 is a RISC OS Usermrchocky on 26/10/05 2:35AM
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mrchocky:

they don't need to - you're already there ;-)

 is a RISC OS UserROHC on 26/10/05 3:27AM
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Great idea. I hope this is well advertised and attracts many curious people in addition to RISC OS fans. Tell your mates!

 is a RISC OS Userknutson on 26/10/05 6:21AM
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As per usual the 250 miles of Britain above Hadrians wall is ignored.........

(I'm not a whinging Scot but a Yorkshireman)

 is a RISC OS Usermripley on 26/10/05 8:31AM
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Its all very well ROL going around touting their plans, and getting people to sign up - they did that last year too, and what did we see for it? Nothing. They have to give people something in return for trusting them with yet another subscription - the scheme is suposed to be about on going development, not throwing good money after bad and hoping there will be something at the end of it. Even if for Iyonix users its just !Paint with RenderLib support for PNGs etc (which can't be far away from working properly), that would show they are honouring the original aim of the scheme.

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 26/10/05 9:36AM
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I'm a whinging Scot though :)

 is a RISC OS Useraardvark on 26/10/05 9:36AM
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druck - proove their not. As I remember it, their original plan was to have UP TO 3 releases per year, and the only way they can break that, is to have 4+ releases in one year. I'm pretty certain they never promised that they would 32 bit RISCOS, but even if they did, they are currently in the middle of it.

They also said that they would grow and develop RISCOS. Well having used 1i9, 2i3, 3i3 & 3i4 I can tell you that I for one would not go back to 4.02/3. It is a massive improvement.

So where /EXACTLY/ are they not honouring the original aim of the scheme?

Dave

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 26/10/05 10:16AM
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DS1: Taken from RISCOS Ltd. Mission statement, issued when ROL was originally formed:

"and finally :-

RISCOS Ltd will work with third parties to develop and enhance RISC OS with a goal of releasing a full 32 bit version of RISC OS within 12 months."

Those 12 months have gone by a couple of times!

 is a RISC OS UserGulli on 26/10/05 10:26AM
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Forgot the link: [link]

 is a RISC OS UserGulli on 26/10/05 10:27AM
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Okay fair enough, I missed the 12 months bit. Though I would have to say that any experienced programmer, and I have 22 years as an commercial database programmer, knows that a goal is not a deadline.

Dave

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 26/10/05 10:32AM
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DS1: I paid subs to ROL for at least the last 3 years if memory serves and did indeed instal 4.37 on my RPC. It was improved in many ways over 4.02 but at a cost of ?300+ that was to be expected! The fact now is that the only certain way current subscribers can reap any benefit from their subs is to buy an A9home. For the sake of the platform I hope this will be a great success, but speaking as an Iyonix owner it is hard to see any performance (as opposed to portability) benefit in buying one. All we Iyonix users have received is an undertaking to develop a version of 32-bit Select that will work on our machines if 100 of us sign up to yet further outlay. To treat what must be a substantial portion of the market in this way strikes me as cavalier to say the least. What if the A9home does not succeed? What is ROL's business plan then?

 is a RISC OS Userbucksboy on 26/10/05 11:10AM
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I am considering being involved, (If the garage can fix the intermitant fault on my car) ! Re Scotland/Far North we have exhibited at two Scottish shows one in the BBC B days and another a few months after black Thursday. The turnover at the first show only just reached the cost of attending. The second show was slightly better but we still lost money:-( Shows rarely bring in much follow up business, so a Scottish Show would make no economical sense, if we were making significant money otherwise, it would be nice to give them a visit but sadly that is not the case. I haven't been to Manchester since the last Show at UMIST it would be nice to visit there again, if I can.

 is a RISC OS Userchrisevans on 26/10/05 12:01PM
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bucksboy:

You can only run Select on an A9 at the moment. Running it on an A9 is an logical step towards being able to do an Iyonix conversion so it has to come first. A9 owners only have it because STD are footing the bill....

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 26/10/05 1:33PM
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"The fact now is that the only certain way current subscribers can reap any benefit from their subs is to buy an A9home."

Precisely, but that will offer them few Select features. ROLtd's idea is a universal 32 bit version of their Select, i.e. for all current (and expected) machines. That means that A9home owners can have Select if they subscribe like anyone else.

"What if the A9home does not succeed? What is ROL's business plan then?"

ROLtd is developing 32 bit RO4 for the A9home, because they made a deal with Advantage Six. Remember that A6 partly funded the conversion process, another part was funded by Select subscribers. So, I guess it doesn't matter (financially) too much to ROLtd if the A9home doesn't succeed commercially, since their primary aim would have been fulfilled anyway. Similarly, ROLtd would like if Castle (partly) funds Select for the Iyonix. Nevertheless, according to Castle the deal to merge RO4 & 5 still stands (thankfully ;)), so they still need to cooperate to bring this to fruitition.

 is a RISC OS UserhEgelia on 26/10/05 1:45PM
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markee174: sure, but it would have been equally logical to develop for the Iyonix first, followed by the A9 - after all, the Iyonix represents (as I and others have pointed out before) an existing market, and a machine to which a number of Select subscribers had already moved. ROL have placed a big bet on the A9, and I fear for the consequences if it doesn't come off.

 is a RISC OS Userbucksboy on 26/10/05 1:56PM
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In reply to DS1:

"As I remember it, their original plan was to have UP TO 3 releases per year, and the only way they can break that, is to have 4+ releases in one year."

It was between 1 and 3 releases a year.

"I'm pretty certain they never promised that they would 32 bit RISCOS, but even if they did, they are currently in the middle of it. "

They promised to 32bit it this time last year at the 2004 South East, and even took money to do so. Whether at the middle or the end makes no difference, there should be something to show for it by now.

"So where /EXACTLY/ are they not honouring the original aim of the scheme?"

The aim of the scheme was to fund and deliver ongoing development of RISC OS, via between 1 and 3 releases a year of beta and production quality code. Something during the first three years of the scheme, they did very well, and we were all pleased with Select 1 to 3 as you pointed out. However in the now nearly 17 months since the last code was released to subscribers, we've had absolutely nothing for either 26bit or 32bit machines, while Paul Middleton has continued to take our subscription money, and benefit from flogging off the work we have funded to the tune of over 300 each - the Adjust ROMs - for as little as 69.

I'm not unreasonable, I'm a software engineer and know how long things take to get done, if a company is honest and admits why they need extra time and funding I'll can evaluate that and choose to whether accept it. But I'll I'm seeing is the same promises that were broken last year, requests for more money, and no guarentee we'll see any of the work that has been done so far, or a final release in that time.

I'll I'm saying to ROL is throw me a freaking bone here.

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 26/10/05 1:56PM
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bucksboy - But surely given that 1:AD6 is paying for their part of this conversion, and 2:it's only a 32 bit conversion instead of a 32bit + the necessary HAL / USB and other H/w changes needed for an Iyonix port, it makes more sense to do the a9 first.

druck - I don't remember it as being 'between 1 and 3' so much as 'up to 3' - there's nothing on-line either way, and I won't be home until the weekend to hunt out any written corespondence I may have. IMPO the most RoL have been guilty of is not informing us as to what is going on. I don't agree last years promises were broken, after all they've never promised any particular timescales, though I admit that it does get frustrating when over 2 years (19 May 2003) after select 3 was first released, we haven't had anything new to play with.

One other thought sprung to mind as I was typing this. You as an Iyonix owner say you are frustrated (I'm being kind here!) that you have nothing to show for the Iyonix after years of paying Select subs, which I can well understand and appreciate. Well I don't have an Iyonix, and I guess that had RoL spent ages doing an Iyonix version of select that was never going to benefit me, then I suspect I would be irritated that seemingly other people were getting the benefit from my subs. Sadly this is a catch-22 position which RoL are : Damned if they do, Damned if they don't, and unfortunately we all get in the middle.

Dave

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 26/10/05 2:19PM
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markee174: "You can only run Select on an A9 at the moment. Running it on an A9 is an logical step towards being able to do an Iyonix conversion so it has to come first. A9 owners only have it because STD are footing the bill...."

Well, I believe you can run Select on more machines, but I think you are mixing something up here. If you carefully read the (sometimes confusing) statements made, you'll notice that ROLtd is only developing a 32 bit neutral RISC OS 4 for use on the A9home. It will feature some elements of Select. Advantage Six are partially footing the bill for the 32 bit conversion and fully paying for certain A9home specific features.

ROLtd's aim is to 32 bit RO4 (I believe the Select parts were always developed to be 32 bit neutral). Advantage Six's aim is to provide a 32 bit OS for their product, the A9. Therein lies the deal between said companies. Castle on the other hand, already have a 32 bit OS, so there is no necessity involved for them. Just for the record, Select still is a different thing from RO4, even though they integrate.

druck: "...if a company is honest and admits why they need extra time and funding I'll can evaluate that and choose to whether accept it."

Yes. That's what I find disturbing as well. I appreciate what they're trying to achieve, but they should have shared their business intentions with their customers, instead of informing them afterwards.

 is a RISC OS UserhEgelia on 26/10/05 2:20PM
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DS1: A bit of Googling through the csa.* groups shows that ROL said at launch that "UP TO 3" may technically allow zero, but they'll guarantee at least one:

[link]

 is a RISC OS UserJaffa on 26/10/05 2:39PM
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In reply to DS1: "I don't agree last years promises were broken, after all they've never promised any particular timescales,"

When it comes to the 32bit side, its not an issue of timescales I have a problem with, but that they started taking joint 26bit and 32bit subscriptions last year, but then just before that subscription was due to run out, saying there was not enough interest to do the work they had taken money for (the whole "we need 100 subscribers, but wont ask anyone" fiasco). Add the fact that nothing has happened on the 26bit side either, and you have to wonder where the approximately 70,000 in subscriptions and thousands more from Adjust ROMs and V-RPC licences, went last year. If that wasn't enough to make even the smallest release of code for either plaform, what are the chances this year?

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 26/10/05 2:47PM
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druck - At the show PM claimed that they had not taken any money for 32 bit subscriptions, except from a small number of people (and I think he said this was in single figures), who said he could take the money. While I agree it's frustrating that there's been no 26 bit release either, to say nothing's been done is untrue.

He also said that, after VAT, 100 32bit subscriptions amounted to little more than 8000. I don't know about you, but that's only a small number of months work for most IT professionals. Certainly not long enough to do very much work on an Iyonix select.

More chance in the next 12 months due to the amount of work done this year. That all said, if there's no release long before Dec 2006 (when my current Select subscription expires) I absolutely guarantee not to renew.

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 26/10/05 3:10PM
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In reply to DS1: " At the show PM claimed that they had not taken any money for 32 bit subscriptions, except from a small number of people (and I think he said this was in single figures), who said he could take the money."

No, he said they had not cashed any 32bit ONLY subscriptions, but anyone who paid for a joint 26bit and 32bit subscription, had their cheques cashed. No questions were asked.

"More chance in the next 12 months due to the amount of work done this year. That all said, if there's no release long before Dec 2006 (when my current Select subscription expires) I absolutely guarantee not to renew."

In 3 months time after the grace period and my subscription lapses without there having been a release. I will absolutely guarentee to start recovery proceedings on the money paid for last year.

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 26/10/05 3:30PM
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druck: "you have to wonder where the approximately 70,000 in subscriptions and thousands more from Adjust ROMs and V-RPC licences, went last year."

As RISC OS Developments Ltd are a limited company, they have the post their annual accounts at Companies House which are available for inspection for a small fee. Alternatively, you could always buy some shares so that you get sent the annual accounts for approval every year. These both show exactly where the money gets spent.

Cheers,

Neil

 is a RISC OS Userspellinn on 27/10/05 07:29AM
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In Reply to Neil: Or a company that wants us to keep funding it, could just tell us.

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 27/10/05 09:26AM
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"ROL on a tour around the UK"

Anything in N.Ireland, Wales or Scotland?

-- Spriteman

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 27/10/05 12:57AM
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RISCOS Ltd are based in Cardiff, so it would be relatively easy for people in southern Wales to visit them. People in northern Wales might find it easier going to the Manchester event.

From mid-Wales, it's not particularly easy to get to anywhere :-)

dgs

 is a RISC OS Userdgs on 27/10/05 1:12PM
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In reply to Dgs "RISCOS Ltd are based in Card......"

That's something that I sometimes think about. Can I ever imagine a company from Cardiff in Wales taking on the might of Linux and et al..?

Not really!

Can they even survive? Possibly!

nx

 is a RISC OS Usernx on 27/10/05 2:11PM
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Its only Paul Middleton's office thats in Cardiff, all of the development work happens elsewhere (when it is happening ofcourse).

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 27/10/05 2:29PM
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nx: "Can I ever imagine a company from Cardiff ... taking on the might of Linux et al...?"

I'm sure some people see Cardiff as a more exciting place than, say, Seattle...

dgs

 is a RISC OS Userdgs on 27/10/05 2:47PM
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Seatle? Never heard of it before. Is it next to Rhyl by any chance? ;-)

nx

 is a RISC OS Usernx on 27/10/05 4:17PM
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It's probably nearer Carelisle.

 is a RISC OS Userxyzzy on 27/10/05 6:27PM
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Dgs:

Seattle has a rather larger IT industry than Cardiff (and much better coffee) but probably less sheep....

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 27/10/05 7:48PM
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I've heard the ratio of sheep per person in Cardiff is 7 to 1.

nx

 is a RISC OS Usernx on 27/10/05 8:16PM
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No sheep in Cardiff - well, unless you mean the pc users. Can't even see any from the 12th floor office window.

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 28/10/05 08:19AM
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Dgs: "Sheepless in Seattle" in fact? (Sorry - couldn't help myself)

 is a RISC OS Userbucksboy on 28/10/05 12:39AM
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In response to George greenfield:

I like it. Wish I had thought of it first :-b

nx

 is a RISC OS Usernx on 28/10/05 6:22PM
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Yes, there are sheep in Cardiff, if you can't see them, then they're "pulling te wool over your eyes". ;-)

"Sheepless in Seattle", that's a good one George. Maybe the sheep would prefer to be (S)Beattleless in Sheep?

What would sheep be doing on the 12th floor near your office window?

Or is that Ewe (you) in Seattle?

Gee, someone's got a Sheep (cheap) joke book here!

Steve Harrington

 is a RISC OS UserSawadee on 29/10/05 04:41AM
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