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RISCOS Ltd is on report

By . Published: 30th Aug 2002, 17:15:27 | Permalink | Printable

RISCOS Ltd publish their third annual report and things look better than last year.

Just three weeks before the AGM, and RISCOS Ltd have produced their annual report. It looks good for the Welsh-based OS manufacturer we all know and love.

ROL appear to have reduced their losses from 64K last year to just 8K this year, which is good news. 5000+ copies of RISC OS 4.0 have been sold, and nearly 900 folks have signed up to the new RISC OS 4.x "Select" subscription scheme. (Get yer wallet out, lazybones, and get upgraded!)

Check out the full report for yourself from RISCOS Ltd's website: http://www.riscos.com/news/news_items/PR280802.htm


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Discussion

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I find it hard to believe that laziness is the reason that the other 4000+ RISC OS 4 users haven't upgraded. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 31/8/02 8:57AM
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What do you suggest it is, then?

 is a RISC OS Userian on 31/8/02 1:49PM
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Well, this has been done to death several times over. Some of the opinions ppl suggest I agree with, others I don't.

However, one thing that does strike me is the lack of the 'cool factor' with Select. I'm sure a lot of ppl bought RPCs, ro4, etc 'coz it was cool'. I just don't get that with Select. Maybe it's just me being old and jaded.

That said, it's not my primary reason for not getting Select. I simply can't afford it. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 1/9/02 1:07PM
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It does seem like things are looking up for RISCOS Ltd. Obviously when customers aren't upgrading or subscribing then it's the customers fault...

I think RISCOS Ltd missed the bus a little. If they had co-ordinated developement of the USB API for example, they could have made it a Select or perhaps RISC OS 4 feature. It would have given a clear benefit for upgrading i.e. access to new devices.

-- Steve

 is a RISC OS Userknutson on 1/9/02 11:56PM
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heh, faulty customers :-)

"I wish to complain about this customer what I purchased not half an hour ago from this very boutique."

"What's,uh...What's wrong with it?"

"I'll tell you what's wrong with it, my lad. 'E's faulty, that's what's wrong with it!"

Personally, I'd say it's the customer's 'choice', not fault.

Also, I think the hardware folks would've been rather upset if noone could use their devices unless they bought Select. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 2/9/02 9:52AM
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TBH, the reason I've not got Select yet is that I have a very limited budget for computer stuff (student) - and I simply can't afford to buy Select at the moment when I've got an Omega ordered. (Yes, I know the fact that I've got an Omega ordered means it doesn't look like I'm financially strapped - but it is the money that mum sent me to go to uni with! I really am quite poor...)

As soon as the Omega arrives, and an Omega version of Select appears, I'll get it. If in the (*very*) unlikely event that the Omega doesn't appear, I'll get a Kinetic upgrade+Select. I can't afford to buy RO4 twice!

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 2/9/02 10:22AM
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A version of Select for Omega? Hoho. You'll be lucky!

 is a RISC OS Userian on 2/9/02 11:24PM
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Hell, in fact, a version of RISC OS 4.0 for Omega could be "interesting". :)

 is a RISC OS Userian on 2/9/02 11:25PM
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Reasons for not upgrading to RO4: 1) Well, they were ROL were shockingly unhelpful when I spoke to them. but even more than that 2) It's extremely expensive (and I know a lot of that is the actual chips, but see, I don't *care* about the actual chips, I'd softload the whole lot if that was an option). Despite loving RISC OS with my very soul (yes, yes, I'm writing this on Linux but sat next to me with my Business Plan on it is my SA RiscPC) I simply can't afford 179 pounds for an OS. And you might say "well, you can get a RO4 Rom and CD", but I don't really feel like forking out 88 quid for an OS which is missing bits which would make the machine actually substantially more useful. (I'm also fairly loathed to pay even 90 quid for an OS for a 5 year old machine). If I saw signs of a ground up rewrite; a real implementing memory protection and pre-emptive multitasking (I've discussed this with an ex-Acornite and they believe it should be possible to make it work with 90% of old apps, but not particularly easy), better API, much more hardware independent RISC OS - and that my money was going towards that? Then I'd feel more inclined to save for it. But atm I don't see that. I see more and more prettyness being piled on something which is fundamentally in need of rewriting.

 is a RISC OS Userkate@linuxgrrls.org on 3/9/02 5:08PM
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Learn to distinguish what you need from what you want.

Judge things in context: Win XP Home OEM (70), XP Pro OEM (115), XP Pro Retail (210), MacOS 10 (135), RISC OS 3 (70 at the time).

If Select is "substantially more useful" how can it be judge to offer only "more prettyness"?

Weigh up the benefits against the cost. It wasn't until a few months ago that the sums worked out in favour of me getting ro4. Perhaps in time the same will be true of Select. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 4/9/02 9:27AM
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RO4, over RO3.7 is essentially more prettyness and some nice usability tweaks (from the Acornites I've spoken to this is essentially the case). RO4 Select adds extra features, such as DHCP which are useful (at least to me). Without them I'd be paying 90 quid for essentially nothing I need. With them I have to pay 179 pounds (substanially more than I'd have to pay for MacOS 10 (got that on one of our Macs)) and if I was running windows (I'm not) then more than for XP Pro, again by a substantial margin. There's no issue here with what I want. I quite fancy having RO4 Select. It'd be nice. I don't really need it, my horribly kludged and patched RO3.7 does pretty much everything I need it to. But this article stated that it's just laziness which is stopping me from buying it - That's just plain wrong. What stops me from buying it is the expense and what we could call value for money. As I say, if I saw real signs that a ground up rewrite was even *intended* (rather than just hacking it into working in 32 bit mode) then I'd be more inclined to try and find the cash for it (I couldn't atm, but maybe when the business is going) - but atm it'll wait until I have 179 pounds kicking around spare.

 is a RISC OS Userkate@linuxgrrls.org on 4/9/02 11:33AM
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The statement that RO 4 / Select is just "prettyness" is stupid, ill founded, unresearched and plain flat wrong. Stop spouting crap like this.

 is a RISC OS Userian on 4/9/02 11:50AM
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Thanks for your comments. I appreicate that Select costs money, like any software product, and this is one of the key factors in choosing a product. However, Select is a software product for RISC OS users. The point of Select is to get as many updates as possible, no matter how big or small, to the end user in the most flexible way possible (ie: via the ROL website and then on a CD). As Select is developed over time, Select users have their fingers on the pulse. It might not be for everyone but there you go. The fact is, I have a number of problems with your claims.

1) Don't compare RISC OS to Windows or MacOS or some daft linux distro. You just can't, they are all different beasts with different ways of doing things for different people. Plus, if you can't see why WinXP is cheaper than Select then you need to learn about perspective.

2) RO4 strips the cheese out of 3.7. Long filenames, new disc format, new Configuration system, increased system performance and stability are the key changes. Saying 4.0 is a pretty 3.7 cracks me up.

3) Hang on, I'm making some coffee.

4) Also, 32bit. It's on everyone's lips and people don't seem to grasp how fundamental it is. If the OS were to go 32bit, you'd need to make all your software and podules 32bit too. It's a huge undertaking and obviously ROL need to be absolutely sure that it'll strengthen RISC OS rather than kill it off completely. Plus, they need peope to make the 32bit hardware in the first place.

So, I appreciate that for you 3.7 is good enough for you and I'm glad you use RISC OS alongside whatever other OS you use (and long may you continue to do so) but please don't write off a product because you think it's just pretty.

Chris, editor at some website called drobe.co.uk.

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 4/9/02 11:52AM
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1) Fair point - responding to Spriteman's comment. 2) I've been told by 'other users' :-) that it's a bit quicker, they've never said more stable (but fair enough if it is). But most of the improvements I saw were UI and functionality. Oh and making CDFS work ;-) My experience of it would agree with that, but then the most I've had is a play at a show. 3) Waits... 4) If it doesn't go 32 bit then there can and will be no new (faster) machines. Some means of supporting 26 bit applications will almost certainly have to be devised. The performance people have got out of the RISC PC, Impressive though it is, you can't do that forever (and yes, say Omega at me, go on...but without a proper 32 bit OS it doesn't matter). Eventually people will stop making the StrongARM, and then we'll be royally screwed. The problem for me is that 3.7 isn't good enough (hence this linux box), and 4 just doesn't go far enough. Unfortunately RISC OS is my favourite and most productive OS which is why I'm frustrated.

 is a RISC OS Userkate@linuxgrrls.org on 4/9/02 12:17PM
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Right ok, I detect reasoned thought here. If you visit the RO4 website or the Select website at www.riscos.com, you'll find full feature lists. Today or tomorrow, depending on other projects, I'm going to report on an email ROL sent out to Select users recently, which describes what's in Select and what's to come. Considering that I've been using Select as my main OS since last year and you've "played" with it at a show, I wonder who's better informed here ;) Please decide for yourself rather than let others decide for you. I'm happy with anyone who decides that they don't want Select provided it's for a sane reason rather than "x told me this".

I am fully aware of the 32bit situation, drobe.co.uk has reported extensively on the subject and we know that RISC OS needs new hardware. There's no revelation in that, it's fact. However, RISC OS has always followed the motto of "making best with less" and to be honest, my SA RiscPC (with all its upgrades like my Viewfinder card) has done me proud.

Understand that ROL is essentially a software company. They develop the OS. You need 3rd parties to licence RO and do the hardware and ROL can be seen doing their bit to push this.

Finally, it's nice that RISC OS is your favourite OS but I'm surprised that there are people still using RISC OS 3.7.

Chris, you-know-me department, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 4/9/02 12:38PM
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Tsk. I'm using RISC OS 3.6 :-/

Whatever the situation with the Omega is, let's just say I intend to have a RO4 machine by January.

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 4/9/02 2:39PM
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moss... I recommend CJE to you when buying your new RiscPC then.

 is a RISC OS Userian on 4/9/02 5:44PM
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I wonder if Ian will be laughing on the other side of his face on Saturday :-) -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 6/9/02 8:59AM
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