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What are RiscStation playing at?

By Chris Williams. Published: 10th Apr 2003, 22:33:30 | Permalink | Printable

"Nothing at all"

If you run a private mailing list for a product which you've been promising to ship for over two years and you have no good news for the patient people on it, don't expect whatever you tell them to remain a secret. It's not like we enjoy being bearers of possible bad news (far from it) but just in case you were looking forward to getting your hands on a ARM7500 powered 56-odd MHz RiscStation portable, there might be one or two snags.

Here's what a RiscStation software support person stated on the portable mailing list on the 5th March this year, a copy of which was passed to us by an anonymous person on list:
"As it stands, there are a couple of avenues being looked at. One is a full blown 32 bit RISC OS laptop, another is a SA110 based laptop. There are problems associated with both and currently the feasability of the two are being weighed up."

"Oh wow", you think, "at last, they're considering at least a StrongARM powered device". And yes, we'd be the first to jump for joy at the thought of using a portable RISC OS 4 or 5 device with at least a StrongARM behind it and my, what a bold statement by one of RiscStation's people saying they're considering it.

But hang on a minute, something's not quite right. If we recall correctly, the device was almost ready with RiscStation blaming problems sourcing a case and other things yet now they're talking about designing and producing a totally new product from scratch. Sorry, they're considering which totally new product they'll design and produce from scratch. Let's not start considering time scales, it's all too distressing.

I have to use the phone
We've tried calling RiscStation and left our number with them but the person we need to speak to about the awaited portable is always busy and another member of the press confirmed with us today in private that they find RiscStation is similarly "busy" when one wants to ask about the laptop. We dropped Riscstation support an email asking if they had anything public to tell us about the laptop but the reply was "Nothing at all". At time of writing, RiscStation won't be making an appearance at this year's Wakefield 2003 show.

Update
We've been informed this evening that sadly this article "has the potential to cause a hell of a lot of problems for RiscStation" and the portable mailing list is in danger of being closed despite being a success, according to RiscStation. So please, no more leaks as we'd hate to be made a convenient scapegoat in case Riscstation's plans (and whatever they may be) fall through and you lucky people don't get a portable.

Links


RiscStation Not that we'd accuse RiscStation of this.

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Discussion

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It all sounds to me like RS have ended up like MD -- well meaning, but useless, and ended up being conmen to boot. Pretty grim preying on the desparation of small RISC OS community like that.

 is a RISC OS Userimj on 10/4/03 11:59PM
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I assume they are having problems. However, they may be wise to do a CTL and not say anything about products until they are about to ship one. I mean, it's not as if anyone else is just waiting to ship a RISC OS laptop.

The other option is that they'll announce something in the hope that it'll prevent potential buyers from looking at PC or Mac alternatives. Then there will be the inevitable years of waiting in which time everyone will get pissed off and RS will look like the bad guys again. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 11/4/03 12:21AM
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Which is why RS has the mailing list and not making public announcements.

Hopefully, this revelation won't cause too many problems with ongoing talks.

Chris - I don't care what you've been passed by other folks from the list. Revelations of this nature are not for public consumption and if things go tits up because of what has been posted here, then we know where to point the finger. Oh well, another news org off the list...

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 11/4/03 12:44AM
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Paul: You know who to blame - the organisation you represent! I'd be pissed off to have paid in full for something that is constantly delayed with a different excuse every time. And all this cloak and dagger sh1t doesn't help matters. Private mailing lists hardly instill confidence that RS is being entirely straight. Any normal company would be shouting from the rooftops about a revolutionary product, not attempting to restrict it to a few disgruntled "customers". It's not the likes of Drobe that prevents me spending more money on RISC OS kit, it's the kind of farce that projects such as the laptop generate with depressing regularity. I do feel sorry for RS in a way, but really their problems have been caused by themselves - due mainly to spectacularly shite PR. Trying to blame your current problems on those with an interest in seeing new RISC OS kit become available really is sickly perverse.

 is a RISC OS Userrobert79 on 11/4/03 1:00AM
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Oi, I've tried talking to RS since the start of last week to get some good news out of you, if not before that. Hiding on a mailing list won't help and disclosing secret talks and then later trying to blame us isn't a good plan.

Striking Drobe.co.uk off your press list won't prevent us from reporting on RS related comedy and it's not like we're all drowning in news from RS anyway.

Chris, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 11/4/03 1:02AM
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Less talk. More laptop.

okay thanks bye -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 11/4/03 1:10AM
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/me wonders when RISC OS companies will learn the joys of decent PR...

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 11/4/03 9:15AM
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/me tsks Chris for stealing my gag.

 is a RISC OS Usermonkeyson on 11/4/03 9:33AM
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Nodoid: What do you expect people to say/think when this kind of thing from RiscStation has been going on for YEARS.

I feel that it is completely fair for drobe.co.uk to voice it's concerns to people about something that should have been dealt with a *very* long time ago.

And just so you don't forget, the article is quite fair and just, compared to what others have said about RiscStation and the "now you see me, now you don't" Laptop of theirs.

So, when laptop? -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 11/4/03 9:57AM
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If I can't buy me a RISC OS lappy coz of FUD on a website - I'm going to be quite dissapointed :(

 is a RISC OS Userdanielbarron on 11/4/03 10:14AM
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You'd be quite dissapointed if there was no lappy anyway. -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 11/4/03 10:14AM
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You can't blame them for changing their minds on the 7500FE, the machine was outdated years ago, even by RISC OS standards. Maybe if Castle release the Neuron 200 (supposed to be out on 2002, apparently), RS could build around that and maybe release something soonish. Who the hell am I trying to kid!?

 is a RISC OS Userthegman on 11/4/03 10:43AM
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Maybe it's possible that they're still releasing the ARM7500FE lappy this year, and considering a brand new design as their next project.

If that *is* the case, the only sensible thing to do is publically confirm this.

Incidentally, I can see absolutely no reason why this article would cause RS *any* problems whatsoever. Saying "Nothing at all" is like a Government denying any sort of incident, and will merely confirm the minds of sceptics. It's hardly an exercise in good PR.

 is a RISC OS Userheds on 11/4/03 11:13AM
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Indeed - if there are problems with the laptop project, then fine - but it's only sensible to keep *everyone* informed.

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 11/4/03 11:30AM
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I don't think anything in the article can be called FUD - it largely consists of comment on things RiscStation (or people speaking for them) have said themselves. The Fear, Uncertainy and Doubt that *is* being produced is coming from RiscStation - in their usual style. Maybe the support department should be less involved in marketing/PR?

To be fair, though, I still haven't heard of anyone who has asked for their laptop deposit (or full payment) back and not received it immediately. RiscStation have been very good about this, unlike other RISC OS companies I could mention.

I'm sure if any of the people who've paid for the laptop in full (I know of a few), were to ask for the return of all their payment apart from the 100ukp deposit, but to retain their place in the theoretical "queue", then RiscStation would co-operate.

So the fact that some people paid up in full, and are still waiting patiently, is more a sign of those people's enthusiasm for the project (and their possession of adequate spare cash!), rather than something RiscStation have done wrong.

(Personally, though, I'd be distinctly nervous if RiscStation had over a thousand pounds of my money at this point!)

 is a RISC OS Userdgs on 11/4/03 12:03PM
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It's really quite pathetic that there is neither a laptop nor an Omega. RS and MS are like toy businesses. If it wasn't for the previous desparation in the RISC OS marketplace, they'd be long gone. Buy an IyonixPC instead. That exists. -- Michael Stubbs, Leeds

 is a RISC OS Userarenaman on 11/4/03 12:06PM
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MicroDigital have a product, and are very close to market, which is really good. RiscStation have other products, that isn't in question.

It's just the *extremely* long amount of time that it's taking for RS to get their laptop to market is very worrying. Closed lists don't really help stay the fears either. Drobe is merely expressing these concerns.

-- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 11/4/03 12:17PM
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> MS are like toy businesses ^^ Did you mean MS? If you meant MD, I suggest you call them and have a chat; I called them this week, and didn't get the impression of a "toy business" - quite the reverse infact.

 is a RISC OS Usermonkeyson on 11/4/03 12:18PM
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Y'know, RS (and to a lesser extent, MD) still haven't learned the first law of marketing: GET YOUR PRODUCT OUT QUICKLY, REGARDLESS OF COST. If you don't get it out quickly, the marketing window closes, and you can't sell nearly so much product and therefore you can't make a profit.

And I think RS themselves are the source of the FUD. Trying to blame it on "others" is dishonest. -- Dave Higton, Southampton

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 11/4/03 1:38PM
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I don't think we should get too upset about this, RiscStation I am sure only have the best of intentions, there is no reason to presume otherwise, however like MD (although MD is not so bad) their PR is so bad it's funny.

RiscStation should do a press release and let us all know what's going on, so we can make up our own minds. They should also allow anyone who wants a full refund of deposit to have one, without question.

 is a RISC OS Userthegman on 11/4/03 1:59PM
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SO why can't they do something like the RON project? Or would they not be able to license RO5?

-- Jess

 is a RISC OS Userjess on 11/4/03 2:26PM
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Yes, what about RON?

Now that RISC OS 5 is already more 'hardware independent' wouldn't it make a bit more sense to port that to the netBook, which has already got a StrongARMchip in it?

Instead of designing a new computer?

[And while on the topic, does anyone know about those pictures from riscosdeveloper.tripod.com?]

 is a RISC OS Usermiddot on 11/4/03 3:28PM
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VNC is a wonderful thing. -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 11/4/03 3:34PM
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VNC or just viewing a picture, it's odd how he's renamed the hard disk to 5mx and got folders like IRDA Connect, like he's trying to convince us that it's actually running on the Psion.

I think RON is deid, there are conflicting reports whether netBooks are even still being made, and even if they are, for how much longer?

Probably better off looking at standard ARM boards, ones which are'nt going to disappear soon.

 is a RISC OS Userthegman on 11/4/03 4:00PM
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jess : the terms of the "licence" for ROS 5 prohibit anyone other than Castle from having it.

gman : As I said on csa.hardware a couple of days back, unless the Palmtop RON was going to be on used SA110s then it was dead as Intel would not g/tee the 26 bit mode on the SA1100. As for the press release, it will be forthcoming when it is possible to be done.

dgs : (regarding para 1 of what you wrote) without the background information of the emails between myself and Chris, you don't know what you're on about. Sorry matey.

g0tai : perhaps. Unfortunately, it really has put a spanner in the works. It *really* has. I'm anticipating a hell of a lot of work for Roy and myself to get things back on track due to this being published.

As to whoever leaked - all I can say is "Thanks. You really do know how to potentially wreck things". Sheesh.

Oh well, back to the rescue...

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 11/4/03 6:30PM
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If you didn't want people to know, you shouldn't have told anyone, or made a written agreement for them to keep quiet.

Simple as that. Don't reveal things to anyone that you don't want everyone to know.

 is a RISC OS Usertakkaria on 11/4/03 6:51PM
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Not knowing what the terms of the RO5 license are - if it is *not* possible for anyone other than Castle to use it - why not get Castle to do the mainboard (a version that will fit a portable with the PCI slots angled to take the video card "flat", purchase the shebang off them - give them a cut of the final price of the portable. RS then pays for the Case and sells the completed thingey.

Everyone winds up happy, ok RS don't get 100% of the profit (but having something to sell is better than having nothing). Castle risk losing some Iyonix sales - but perhaps ones they weren't going to get anyway (and make some money on the transaction).

Or have I missed something tres obvious ?

-- Annraoi McShane,

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 11/4/03 7:12PM
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What? RISC OS Companies work together? Like thats ever going to happen.

I completley agree with takkaria. I would also like to add that by counter claiming in public forums RS are doing themselves no favours. Surely it would be better for them to email drobe.co.uk with a statement? Or just ignore the article altogther and just inform whoever they need too.

I'm increasingly loosing my patience with companies which issue announcements about products which may or may not appear on the marketplace. Apart from obviously raising our hopes up surley it has a detrimental effect on their accesories sales.

Any damage caused is mearly a response to the inability of RS to manage their PR. Get it in your heads; people are not satisfied with off-hand comments in 'Private' mailing lists or hints in the signatures of newsgroup postings.

Reply to drobe.co.uk next time RS. Save me ranting in this tiny comments box.

-- Snig Undoubtley doubtfull.

 is a RISC OS UserSnig on 11/4/03 7:19PM
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snig : when Chris emails, I reply. As I have also said to Chris, the Select group is private as is the Oregano2 group. The point is that these groups are private and you don't normally see things leaked from them.

takk : when folks sign up to the group, the rule is there for all to see. By signing, you agree to it.

ams : The licence basically says only Castle can use it.

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 11/4/03 7:53PM
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The Select list isn't confidential. The Oregano2 list is also non-confidential. drobe.co.uk has a presence on both lists and news posted to them invariably gets sent to us and thus gets reported on.

It's called publicity. Stop grasping for straws Paul, unless you're seeking to entertain us all.

Chris, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 11/4/03 8:07PM
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This "discussion", if I may call it that, seems to be attacking drobe.co.uk which I don't see the validity of.

It might just of well have been placed somewhere anonymous like a geocities page and it could have been spread around that way (all portals have free, anonymous registration, and all you have to do is post an URL).

Basically, if someone's going to leak something, they will do it, and there's no way you'll stop them unless you do proper PR.

(I think RiscStation should be paying drobe to do PR myself, as they've given them a lot more exposure than they've given themselves)

 is a RISC OS Usertakkaria on 11/4/03 8:24PM
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Chris : To be on the Select or Oregano list you have to pay. As we've discussed this on email, there is little else to say on the matter.

It's not called publicity either. Publicity (as the name implies) is something made public by those responsible for it - not what someone else decides to make public. That's known as a leak and (as is now apparent since about 20:15 today) has caused masses upon masses of problems. Hope you're bloody well happy.

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 11/4/03 8:27PM
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Oddly enough, you have to pay to be on the RS list as well, as far as I can tell, so I fail to see the relevance of the comment "you have to pay to be on list x and x".

If you'd care to enlighten us about what troubles this has caused, then people might be slightly more convinced by what you're saying.

 is a RISC OS Usertakkaria on 11/4/03 8:32PM
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If the leaking of the list contents was going to cause this much trouble (though, IMHO, you're just being childish by blaming drobe.co.uk for stuff and huffing and puffing about the terrible consequences) then you should have got people to sign some legal binding document to silence them, like an NDA.

As far as I gather, this isn't the case, though do correct me if I'm wrong.

-- Dougal

 is a RISC OS UserDougal on 11/4/03 8:45PM
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If something is so secret that a leak must be avoided, don't post it to a list made up of people who are out of your control ... duh. Well I supose this is why the portable mailing list was created in the first place, to post retractions, deadline extensions and excuses out of the public gaze.

 is a RISC OS Userflibble on 11/4/03 8:53PM
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And there I was thinking it'd be a "it burns my eyes!" post... :)

 is a RISC OS Usertakkaria on 11/4/03 8:54PM
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:) here let me help, "this hassle burns my eyes".

Chris, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 11/4/03 8:56PM
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It had to happen, didn't it? :)

 is a RISC OS Usertakkaria on 11/4/03 8:57PM
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/me slaps takkaria

I'm not that predicatble dammit ... oh hang on.

:P

 is a RISC OS Userflibble on 11/4/03 8:58PM
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The rule was simple - the contents of the list is for the list only. I (and Roy) didn't want to go down the NDA route - there are too many of them around and they're more of a pain than anything, so we left it to trust. A trust obviously betrayed.

I did ask drobe to remove this to help try and get things back on track. They didn't. This simple leak has caused more problems than just about anything else and the irresponsibility shown by drobe is amazing. Anyway, that's now gone and what's done is done. I'm now past caring.

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 11/4/03 9:07PM
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Amazing. Microdigital had a sh*t load more grief than this, had probably more problems, but they *HAVE* a product.

Riscstation consistently appear to try and supress any comments, use constant stalling tactics, have someone on PR that talk very much like (in my experience) a con artist does, and have nothing to show but a readily available prototype board that only got previewed over TWO YEARS AGO.

Come on Paul, enough crap. What is the truth this time? -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 11/4/03 9:24PM
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Oh, and i forgot to mention you implying that you may try to shut up shop and try to blame this on drobe. That is NOT on. -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 11/4/03 9:28PM
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Drobe has done nothing wrong. Reporting news is what they're here for.

The person who "leaked" has done nothing wrong, infact they've done a service to the RISC OS community.

It is not Drobe's fault that you're now having "masses of problems". That's down to your own shocking incompetence.

You cannot and will not be allowed to balme Drobe for your own incompetence.

It is the RISC OS users that have trusted you to deliver what you promised and it is you that have betrayed them.

 is a RISC OS UserPhlip on 11/4/03 9:43PM
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Fool us once. Shame on you. Fool us twice. Shame on us.

I think we'd all be wise to totally ignore Riscstation until they are in a position to hand us a laptop in exchange for a wad of cash. Anything else is just false hope and a waste of time. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 11/4/03 11:18PM
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I can't see that Drobe have done anything wrong here. They try to report the news, albeit with their own brand of humour. It's certainly news and they think they've got a scoop - it's what they do!

Puts me in mind of the Cybervillage leak on a certain Tungsten announcement. Those that knew more had to keep quiet but Castle didn't get all upset - the leak was the info that they'd chosen to risk with people that hadn't signed the NDA. Just Cybervillage doing it's job in that case.

As to the Portable, I wish RS luck. This does sound like a fresh start (and hence another big delay) but it may be the right decision. I was going to buy a 7500 Portable when the desktop m/c was a StrongARM; I worried about the performance gap. Having spent the money on an Iyonix, the performance gap now looks unbridgable. Hence, a SA Portable would probably be the minimum acceptable for me.

Life moves on.

Tony

 is a RISC OS UserTonyStill on 11/4/03 11:28PM
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g0tai : It has nothing to do with me if RS shuts up shop. Hmmm, PR sounding like a con artist. Having never been conned or done any conning, I couldn't comment.

As to if drobe has done a service? Well, if "doing a service" costs as much as it may still do, then it's a service I think we could all do without!

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 11/4/03 11:47PM
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So uh, can I quote you on that?

Chris, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 12/4/03 12:10AM
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The threat of RS disappearing is somewhat amusing. Exactly how would this impact on the RISC OS market? I don't see any laptops for sale, nor any Evolutions. You've missed the boat. If you aren't willing to invest in development and licensing, then this is what happens. Now your competitor (Castle) has a RISC OS 5 XScale machine out and it's due simply to the fact that they've invested money in development... and they have PR there, as well. -- Michael Stubbs, Leeds

 is a RISC OS Userarenaman on 12/4/03 12:49AM
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arena : We have Castle with OS 5. How they pay for their machines and development is not how you would think either (if my information is correct). After the balls up around Christmas over the inclusion of GPL material, I think the claim over having PR is slightly amiss.

chris : which bit do you want to quote me on?

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 12/4/03 1:13AM
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I seem to recall that Castle issued a statement to the press after the alleged "balls up around Christmas". It kept people informed and it kept the situation under control.

 is a RISC OS Userjonix on 12/4/03 1:27AM
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What a hash! You can't exactly blame Drobe for this mess. When you don't release any info about your new product for months, a leak is bound to happen. The rather messy way RISC OS companies are advertising their new machines won't draw new users to the platform.

Arenaman has made a good point. Where is this mysterious Evolution PC? Already it is out of date (Running only an SA233) and it hasn't even been released yet! Will the PCI project be dumped? If RS can't manage to develop an desktop, one wonders whether the Portable has any hope.

RiscStation has shown flashes of good PR at times. They showed a slight interest in a sponsorship deal I offered them, for one.

 is a RISC OS Usertimephoenix on 12/4/03 1:40AM
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jonix : come on - after weeks of speculation, usenet postings, harnaging and everything else. In the end it needed Pace shouting at them before they would admit anything!

It was gerph who kept people informed.

time : the Evolution is 2 months off and has been for 3 years. It needs money and there isn't enough being spent to get it done. Oh, even on the SA it is far from slow - especially as it has all of the memory problems and associated problems you see on a RPC - plus it can take multiple processors from the start. Oh, and different operating systems on a card.

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 12/4/03 9:14AM
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"Oh look" said Noddy, "Now we've got yet another excuse to explain why we've stolen people's money!". Big Ears looked confused - "You honestly think we can blame a little website for all our lies and nondelivery?". Noddy was convinced and proceeded to attack drobe from every possible angle. Thankfully people were aware of what a tit Noddy is and ignored all his stupidity. Big Ears just chuckled and went back to counting his stolen money "RISC OS users. What suckers."

 is a RISC OS Userimj on 12/4/03 10:24AM
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Why don't RS just go to h..... I mean they gave crappy support on their older models (just ask for that second serial port to work to see what I mean) as well as this bullshit about the portable. In fact I the risc systems world is really pissing users off. It has been said over and over agian. If all themanufacturors shoudl team up we'de have a hell of killer machines AGES ago but no... these morons each want to do it their own way. Well Now they finally deserve what they seeded. In the end it all boils down to this. Castle CAN really pulls this off the others just can't. So let them go...

 is a RISC OS UserEPDM on 12/4/03 10:37PM
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Nodoid: What you say about Evolution sounds great, but until it's released it does not mean anything, and I think we all know (RS included) that it will /never/ be released. I expect Evolution may perform OK on a StrongARM, but who wants it when you can get a 600MHz XScale, which ain't going to set the world on fire, but I'll bet it's faster than a 233Mhz SA.

When you say Evolution has multiple processors, can this be demo'ed on under any OS?

Maybe if RS accepted a bit of blame and responsibility for their actions, people may take them seriously. On the bright side, this whole debacle makes the Omega/MD situ look pretty good!

 is a RISC OS Userthegman on 13/4/03 12:00AM
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imj : you're tredding on bloody dodgy grounds there "stolen people's money". You also don't know the background to what I've been saying (in all probability)

gman : multiprocessor works under Linux quite nicely. As to the speeds of the 233 vs X Scale. Remember, the XScale *can the thought of* as a very fast ARM7500FE chip - the processor does everything. Take a look back at the likes of the Amiga - it had chips to do specific tasks and boy did that machine shift! The Evo is the same. Specific chips for specific jobs. It makes it damned fast. I've asked if it can be demoed at RONWUG (even under Linux) but it's not allowed into the big scary world. It does run and it does run bloody fast (I've played on it at the shop). I think it's been a case of once bitten.

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 13/4/03 12:14AM
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My, my Paul - back so soon? Are you trying to give the Iraqi (Dis)Information Minister a run for his money or something?

Chris, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 13/4/03 12:20AM
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Nodoid: I know the Xscale does not perform clock for clock as well as the Xscale, but I'd be really surprised if you could get a single SA to do a task as quick as the Xscale, regardless of dedicated chips. If the Evolution works under linux, then why does RS not release it as a linux box, might be quite compelling a low-power server.

I see what you're saying about the Evolution, but (no offence) we've only got your word for all this, and without a computer that can even be demonstrated, then why even tell us about it?

Frankly if the Evolution came out, with 4 ARMs, I'd probably sh*t myself and run out and buy one, but while RS have a 7500FE board in a crappy case, Castle actually have a new box and MD seem pretty close.

Actually, when you say that there is'nt enough money going around to bring out the Evolution, do you mean the RISC OS scene in general, or RiscStation? If it's RS, then it's hardly surprising, who want's an R7500 when you could just buy an SA RPC and ViewFinder?

 is a RISC OS Userthegman on 13/4/03 2:27AM
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The 7500FE is nothing like the IOP321, as we've said repeatedly. Throwing in Amiga comparisons is just specious, irrelevant and only further demonstrates to everyone your technical incompetence (as if anyone needed proof of that)

Your posturing and excuses really has finally bought you the discredit you deserve.

Thegman: First, the word is "isn't". Secondly, the SA110 and XScale IOP321 clock for clock performance difference is negligible at best. There are a number of different XScales, and you can't put them all in the same basked.

-- Peter, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Usermrchocky on 13/4/03 8:17AM
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All your typos are belong to me. :-p -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 13/4/03 10:04AM
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mrchocky: First, the word is "basket" (Sorry, couldn't resist that!) :)

Just want to say I've developed a fully featured RISC OS X-Scale palm top machine, almost ready for manufacture. If you'd all like to send me a hundred quid deposit, then I can buy a soldering iron and get to work on the final tweaking.

(This is how RISC OS developers are supposed to work, isn't it?)

Seems ridiculous, to me, that any company who think's they've been agrieved by a news item doesn't actually publish an official counter-claim. Or even say what their concern is about.

If you want to make potential customers 'warm' to you, surely it's obvious that those customers must be told the truth of what's happening.

If any damage is being done (and that's not at all obvious) then the company concerned needs to make an official announcement. Snide comments won't help, and neither will silence. It's all down to RS now to be honest and open.

p.s. I haven't really got a Palm Top developed - but then perhaps RS and MD haven't got ... -- Jeremy Brayshaw, Braintree, Essex

 is a RISC OS UserJeremy on 13/4/03 10:41AM
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The RS laptop mailing list appears to have stopped working.

 is a RISC OS UserMartyn Fox on 13/4/03 10:50AM
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Are you sure it ever worked in the first place? :) -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 13/4/03 12:45PM
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The comment quoted in the article came from it.

You will notice that it spoke of "avenues being looked at" and "feasability ... being weighed up", rather than suggesting that RS were in negotiations with anybody. This gave the impression that RiscStation were thinking of developing a new machine from scratch, with consequent implications for the timescale involved.

 is a RISC OS UserMartyn Fox on 13/4/03 1:01PM
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chocky : the XScale is a machine on a chip, the same as 7500FE. Now get your head out of that vast expanse of an arse and start living in the real world.

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 13/4/03 1:18PM
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Common Paul, pleaaaassseee.....

The 7500FE is slow because it uses an ARM7 processor core not because it's system on a chip (the SA-1100 is a system on a chip and it seems plenty fast - as it has a SA core).

Likewise the IOP321 is fast because it has an xScale core (the fact it has a fast memory controller, PCI interface logic and other pieces integrated in does not affect this).

By providing support for 200MHz DDR RAM (rather than 100 or 133 SDRAM) the IOP321 as used in the Iyonix IS faster than any putative SA based system Evolution might use.

Finally the Iyonix *exists* and that in my opinion is the real clincher.

Kind regards

-- Annraoi McShane,

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 13/4/03 1:41PM
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It's highly interesting to come back two days later to find *not a single person* is defending RS/Paul. I think you ought take this as an indicator to the current feelings towards RS.

 is a RISC OS Userheds on 13/4/03 2:02PM
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I'll defend RS to the extent of urging everybody to leave their payments where they are and not rock the boat, at least until after Wakefield.

After Wakefield, though, Hmm ...

 is a RISC OS UserMartyn Fox on 13/4/03 2:48PM
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Nodoid: your comment demonstrates just how ill-prepared you are to comment about XScales and therefore to make assertions about machines.

The XScale is _not_ "a machine on a chip". The XScale is processor or processor core which comes in several forms. The IOP321 is also _NOT_ "a machine on a chip", it is an embedded XScale device with added functionality on it make it easy to use, and useful for a RISC OS machine. It has very little in common with the 7500 in terms of functionality.

It will be clear to all who is living in an alternate reality.

-- Peter, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Usermrchocky on 13/4/03 2:54PM
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The people at RS and indeed MD should realise that as things stand, they are not essential to this market at all. Castle Technology provide the only brand new, 32bit RISC OS machine available to purchase. Castle are essential, RS and MD are not.

If MD and RS adopted new policies of honesty, good PR and finishing and selling products, then they might enjoy a little more success.

The way things are now, the only way we have a new, fast machine is through one company having control of the hardware and the OS. Personally, I prefer this and the other hardware companies are not exactly doing much to proof the other way is better... -- Michael Stubbs, Leeds

 is a RISC OS Userarenaman on 13/4/03 3:38PM
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Typo alert: I meant "prove" not "proof". -- Michael Stubbs, Leeds

 is a RISC OS Userarenaman on 13/4/03 3:39PM
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How do RS think that they can run SMP on a cooperative multi-tasking operating system? If they ever produce a multi-cpu machine, in order to make it work properly they'd need the software to go with it. If they don't even show up at wakefield, I think that proves everyones point.

 is a RISC OS Userrpozz on 13/4/03 3:54PM
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rpozz: 10 points for observation. Very little software for RISC OS would be able to take advantage of this without substantial changes to RISC OS. But don't worry, I'm sure RiscStation's PR will be able to gloss over this minor issue.

-- Peter, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Usermrchocky on 13/4/03 4:03PM
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Heh - very much like the hype for hyperthreading with the P4 3GHz :). Let's con Win XP into thinking we're a multiprocessor machine. Oh yeah - except we're not. And only one program on my machine apart from the OS actually cares (LabView). Still - I'm sure that won't stop the PR people... -- Andrew Hill

 is a RISC OS Usermd0u80c9 on 13/4/03 6:02PM
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I'm sure they could cobble something together using Wimp2 and bits of Simtec's Hydra..... ;-) -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 13/4/03 10:26PM
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Oh,... in about a decade. -- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 13/4/03 10:27PM
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I think the RS mailing list has been deleted..

[link]

Chris.

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 13/04/03 10:53PM
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If comments are to over-flow into the forums, then the thread that's created should also contain the comments from the original article, IMO.

Also, when can we expect threading of replies? :)

 is a RISC OS Usernunfetishist on 14/04/03 11:27AM
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Oh, and can we turn off graphical smilies on a per-post basis, or a global user preference?

And where can I provide an image, so you don't just get a question mark on a head? :)

 is a RISC OS Usernunfetishist on 14/04/03 11:28AM
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have a look at your drobe profile - you can give a URL to your face image in there, and drobe will automatically download/resize/set it to you.

 is a RISC OS Userg0tai on 14/04/03 11:38AM
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Yay!

 is a RISC OS Usernunfetishist on 14/04/03 11:41AM
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Well I'll be buggered if I can get it to work. I type in the URL of the image and submit changes, the page reloads and the URL entry is blank and I still have a ? in place :-( Never mind, it's a terrible sight to see anyway. Cheers!

 is a RISC OS UserThe Doctor on 14/04/03 1:11PM
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Fixed.

 is a RISC OS Userg0tai on 14/04/03 1:18PM
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Bah, my nun is better than your Mr. Baker! :-p

 is a RISC OS Usernunfetishist on 14/04/03 2:26PM
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Well, this is a welcome distraction from RiscStation's noise. :)

Chris.

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 14/04/03 5:59PM
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That's 'cause we're all waiting for one of PFJ's knowledgable postings.

 is a RISC OS Usernunfetishist on 14/04/03 6:39PM
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Time to bed down for a bloody long wait.

 is a RISC OS UserPhlip on 14/04/03 6:46PM
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An IMPORTANT MESSAGE to anyone in negotiation with RiscStation:

Please don't be put off by all the ranting you've seen here.

A lot of people paid deposits or full amounts for a laptop, some as long as 16 months ago. The fact that many of them are still hanging on demonstrates that there is considerable demand for a RISC OS laptop, and nobody else looks like producing one.

If you do a deal with RiscStation to produce a laptop, IT WILL SELL !

 is a RISC OS UserMartyn Fox on 14/04/03 7:52PM
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That ought to convince everyone Martyn ;)

 is a RISC OS UserThe Doctor on 14/04/03 7:57PM
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Martyn: We accept your enthusiasm for a RISC OS laptop, but shouting isn't going to help matters. If you've got anything informative to share with us, or any corrections to point out, then we'd very much like to hear them. As it is, the facts about RiscSation stand for themselves. This has little to with the demand for a laptop.

 is a RISC OS Usermrchocky on 14/04/03 8:39PM
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I fail to see how anyone can be enthusiastic about a product which in all likleyhood will never see the user it was intended for.

I do feel sorry for RiscStation they have served the RISC OS market place long and hard over the years. It is a pity that they have opened themselves to ridicule and public denouncements. Ah well, lets all go out and buy Iyonix's. Wait a sec, where did I put that student loan?

 is a RISC OS UserSnig on 14/04/03 11:14PM
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It wasn't meant to be shouting but eye-catching.

RiscStation seem to think that the publicity on Drobe may have damaged something that they're engaged in, such as negotiation with someone who might be able to help them produce a machine. That suggests that whoever it is will have seen Drobe. Just on the off-chance that some such person will have read down this far, I thought that my posting might help.

 is a RISC OS UserMartyn Fox on 14/04/03 11:17PM
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Nah, I phoned RiscStation earlier today and the RiscStation person I spoke to didn't seem angry with drobe.co.uk at all. In fact, she admitted they had no idea what Paul (Nodoid) had been saying over the weekend - they're going to return my call right away, honest.

So I don't know what to believe, certainly not Paul.

Chris.

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 14/04/03 11:24PM
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The RiscStation laptop better be better specified if it ever reaches the market, 'cause what they're offering at the moment is woefully awful. Not just the CPU and RAM, but the size of screen, quality of keyboard, and pretty much everything else about it.

Go buy a sexy and cheap PC laptop, and run Red Squirrel.

 is a RISC OS Usernunfetishist on 14/04/03 11:49PM
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To get things straight from the Horses mouth (so to speak) you need to speak to Roy Heslop himself. This in itself is not always easy as Roy's a busy person, but phoning in the morning sometimes gives better results, (always assuming you have something important to talk about of course!) Cheers!

 is a RISC OS UserThe Doctor on 15/04/03 09:09AM
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I would say the future of RiscStation itself and the perception of the laptop by the buying public is pretty damn important, and something he ought to be busy with. Nevertheless, drobe.co.uk has found it difficult to get hold of him.

 is a RISC OS Usermrchocky on 15/04/03 09:15AM
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who knows?

 is a RISC OS UserAndrewDuffell on 12/06/05 1:51PM
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