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RISC OS Expo 2003 looms

By Chris Williams. Published: 20th Jun 2003, 22:38:34 | Permalink | Printable

RISC OS visits Holland [Show photos!]

The Big Ben show aka RISC OS Expo 2003 is regarded as the European mainland equivalent of the Wakefield UK show and yes, it's kicking off tomorrow [further details]. Seeing as big names like Castle Technology, RISCOS Ltd., R-Comp and MW Software are exhibiting, we've dispatched Peter Naulls to the Holland based event in case any news breaks out.

In terms of pre-show news, we've learnt that MW Software will have Artworks 2.05 on show which features the new Skew tool, almost complete Dutch messages and more complete German messages.

We've learnt that for the show, Microdigital have decided to present to the European mainland their collection of motorbikes. Additionally, Alan Gibson, of Scottish dealer Liquid Silicon, has informed users that Microdigital will be shipping their AWOL Omega and Alpha machines next week. Someone pass the salt. Alan also reports that Microdigital have offered to swap the Omega's built in 56K modem with a network card, if individual users request this.

Also, user group RISCOS.be this time won't be posing beside their huge poster printer (from RUM2001), however group member John Tytgat told us about an interesting hardware project they will have on show instead.

"We will [be] showing 'ImDat 2', a project of one of our club members made with help of the other members", John told us. "It is a hardware podule with 4 telephone connections (per podule) allowing monitoring of incoming calls. The software written on RISC OS will log the data coming through the lines. This is supposed to be used in factories where problems are logged via mobile phones."

Show photos (added 25/6/2003)
Expo 2003 photo gallery


RISC OS Expo 2003 Expo poster graphic copyright Creatief Beeldwerk

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Next: Omegas, Alphas in users' hands?


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So, Microdigital are saying that they'll be ... ...

... stuff it. I can't be arsed to comment on this any more. -- Spriteman.

 is a RISC OS UserSpriteman on 20/6/03 11:33PM
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Wow, drobe has comments worthy of /. now ;)

-- Dougal

 is a RISC OS UserDougal on 21/6/03 4:29PM
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1. Make RISC OS open source 2. ? 3. Profit

 is a RISC OS Usermavhc on 21/6/03 5:42PM
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Uh, suuure.

Chris, drobe.co.uk

 is a RISC OS Userdiomus on 21/6/03 9:45PM
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Spriteman, I was there yesterday and i was was impressed by the MD omega. From what i have seen i can tell that they have solved allmost all problems. And from what i have heard they will start delivering soon. So i dont understand your negative attitude. they have done s omething completly new and ought to have respect for that. Its in our best intrest that we can choose between two good machines. That will revive the Risc OS scene. And yes.... i have bought an Omega...

Regards, Rick

 is a RISC OS Userrdenk on 22/6/03 9:48AM
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Rick> Right, so did you see a lightning fast screen redraw when dragging a window around the screen?

Oh, and does that mean the floppy drive works now?

And hows the network interface?

-- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 22/6/03 10:36AM
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Still no floppy on the demo Omega I tried, screen redraw is dog slow. Apart from the hard drive speeds you'll not notice much of a difference if you upgrade to an Omega from an SARPC/Viewfinder.

Heavens above even the Alpha Pro portable <spit> Windows </spit> seems nippier than the Omega!! Desktop Alpha anyone? Seems to be only the logical next step/way out for MD?

'High' point of the day (I missed the Iyonix presentation) was the embarrasing spectacle of DA in his presentation of the Alpha.

According to the man himself (during 'direct' and 'persistent' questioning from Dutch RISC OS users) MD haven't broken any promises with the Omega, as the alleged delivery dates have been misreported by the press. This theme cropped up a number of times in his presentation, in answer to a number of other questions. It didn't go down well!

That man and his wry Yorkshire wit ;)



 is a RISC OS Userblahsnr on 22/6/03 10:42AM
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Bloody hell.

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 22/6/03 11:54AM
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An alternative explanation is that we all misunderstood, and MD never promised anyone *any* computer, or indicated an imminent shipment date at all. In fact *we* all hallucinated the whole thing....

see it's all *our* fault,

right !)

-- Annraoi McShane,

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 22/6/03 12:29PM
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I'd just like to point out that desktop redraw speeds using the ViewFinder on a bog standard SARPC *far* outstrip that of the Omega whilst the Omega *still* hasn't got hardware graphics acceleration. So infact, if you upgrade to an Omega from a VF SA RPC, you will notice desktop redraws chugging along (when I tried it at the wakefield show, the redraw speed could be described as if the Omega was powered by an ARM3).

Their computer will remain a joke until they get their finger out and fix blatently obvious problems like this.

Interesting though. The redraw speed has been an issue for quite a few months now, publically commented on, criticised, slagged off, etc. And Microdigital appear to have made no effort to correct this.

-- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 22/6/03 1:29PM
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Ian I'll accept your comment on face value.

The problem then is that to get the display working right will probably require considerable changes (for that read *yet more delay*).

Launching a machine that only has an SA ARM that costs *more* than an Iyonix (with an xScale) and yet performs worse than an older SARPC would be best described as a sick joke.

I don't believe for one minute that Omega purchasers would be in the least bit pleased (or impressed) by it - that being the case I don't see MD having any alternative to sorting this issue out and *only* releasing the machine when/if the machine gets sorted.

-- Annraoi McShane,

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 22/6/03 2:06PM
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Yesterday the first 0mega's were handed out. i did saw the new alpha in action . And it was lighting fast. futhermore the 0mega didnt seem to have any problems with the 2d graphics. They were IMHO new machines in comparison to the machines shown at wakefield. From what i have understood the shipping will start as soon as next week here in the Netherlands.

 is a RISC OS Userrdenk on 22/6/03 2:12PM
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Meanwhile, the IYONIX has been avaliable for over half a year...

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 22/6/03 2:13PM
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rdenk> So, does the floppy drive work on the 'new' Omega machines?

-- Ian Hawkins (g0tai)

 is a RISC OS Userpiemmm on 22/6/03 2:33PM
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Lets not forget that when asked at the Wakefield show (this years!) when the Omega would be shipping, David Atkins said 'Next Week'.

 is a RISC OS UserThe Doctor on 22/6/03 2:58PM
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The Doctor, Desk did keep up their promises. They wrote shortly after the wakefield show that the first omega's will be handed out on the Show in Nieuwegein. And they did.

 is a RISC OS Userrdenk on 22/6/03 3:09PM
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rdenk> I think g0tai asked if the floppy worked or not ? Does it ?

-- Annraoi McShane,

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 22/6/03 3:17PM
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Someone should compile all the news, stories and user comments about Microdigital and the Omega in a book. It would be a comedy best-seller. David Atkins is definitely on a par with the ex-Iraqi Information Minister for comedy value.

I find the concept of people still defending Microdigital particularly amusing, if somewhat worrying. -- Michael Stubbs, Leeds

 is a RISC OS Userarenaman on 22/6/03 4:11PM
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Even I gave up that about a year ago ;)

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 22/6/03 5:08PM
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Heh! :-) -- Michael Stubbs, Leeds

 is a RISC OS Userarenaman on 22/6/03 5:37PM
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After the comments he made on the press I thought this: "the press" as we know them are merely users like us. "Enthousiasts" who try to gather the knowledge that we ALL want to know and publish this so that WE, other enthousiast, do get a change to know this. Right? That means they're also consumers, clients... anyway they're PART of the market. I believe that they're the first to actually buy a machine if possible. So does that mean that MD DON'T want to sell machines? Come on... what is all the fuzz about? A company who keeps delaying delivery dates? Is that it? Just silence them to death or deal with it. I for one will not look at the Omega anymore. If I finally get the 2000+ euro that I can miss (and that I'm willing to spend on a complete new machine instead of upgrading my mac or PC) then I will have my eye on that Iyonix. Besides I still believe that a full 32-bit H/W independant RISCOS IS the way to go. Plus the fact that Castle pulled this stunt in LESS than a year is indeed very respectable! Shame about the price and the cheap casing though.

 is a RISC OS Userepdm2be on 22/6/03 11:15PM
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> Shame about the price and the cheap casing though.

I think CJE Micros will do the IYONIX in an alternate case (it says so on the IYONIX section of their site. Don't know how much choice there is or not, though.

As for the price, I think we all know that with the current situation, there's no other option. I know I'm biting the bullet and getting one on finance in a couple of months...

 is a RISC OS Usermoss on 22/6/03 11:20PM
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This wouldn't fit on the other page, re: discussions about Omega. Quoted from an archived page:

"We had two Omega's on show complete with 600MHz XScale processors, one was working, the other was a populated motherboard for people to view together with a Mico Media computer."

Really? I thought it was shipping with a StrongARM? How come they aren't shipping this 2 year old version which was working with an XScale?

--------- Wasssssssssuuuuuuupppppppp?

 is a RISC OS Userrusstarbox on 22/6/03 11:23PM
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russtarbox: To my knowledge, nobody has ever seen an Omega that could run software on an XScale. They certainly have not been displayed to the public. In fact, MD have not even claimed that they successfully ran software on the XScale. Or did I misunderstand your comment and you missed a smiley somewhere? Regarding that comment you quoted from an archived page, it might help if I tell you that both at Wakefield and at the Expo, MD had several Omegas on Show complete with motorbikes.

 is a RISC OS Userwuerthne on 24/6/03 10:53AM
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