"That's actually not their fault. Building an emulator can't be an easy task - and VA had done much work on getting their VRPC to work on the then extant PowerPC based Macs - Apple unfortunately switched processors to the x86 before VA for Mac was ready. What you're seeing is the fruit of their original PowerPC development."
I'm sure that it isn't an easy task, but as I recall VirtualAcorn first demoed their PowerPC version of VRPC at Wakefield 2005 and it seemed quite well underway. Later in the same year Apple announced their platform switch to Intel CPU's, including all relevant technical details for developers. It's been 2 years since that initial version, so I wonder what's been going on in the meantime? I just find a commercial PPC-only emulator being sold in beta test state after 2 years a bit lacking!
"Given that many RISC OS users are somewhat resistant to using Windows as the underlying OS to run RISC OS under emulation on - this development from VA's viewpoint probably makes plenty of sense - it may coax a few users over to VA for running RISC OS under what they would see as the less "objectionable" Apple MacOS platform."
I'm sure most RISC OS users also use Windows either professionally or privately which should be reason enough for VA. I just want to point out that there's a reasonable amount of users on Mac who'd like the opportunity to run VRPC and they've already been waiting for 2 years. You can imagine a lot of these people have in the meantime bought a new Mac, which are ofcourse of the Intel variety. Personally, I find the Mac hardly 'objectionable' - moreover, I simply won't buy something if it's in any way objectionable. I believe most Mac users find their platform pretty nice, so there's nothing 'second-rate' about opting for the 'less objectionable' Mac platform to run RISC OS on.
"I think it's probably worth me clarifying a point. We are making the beta PowerPC only at this point because that's the CPU core that we need more feedback on. The Intel JIT core for VirtualAcorn has been extensively tested and has been used in commercial products for over 5 years. The PowerPC JIT Core has never been out "in the wild" before. It's passed all our tests but there could be something we have missed so that's why we are hoping to get more feedback."
If the PowerPC version needs (more) proper testing, that's fine, but why release it for sale to the Mac public? And if the Intel JIT core is so well tested, why not release that version instead? I guess it could even be a non-beta test version, seeing the extensive period of testing. In the meantime you could let a selection of PowerPC Mac users test the PowerPC version and when it's done you could release a Universal Binary version or just sell each version separately. It seems to me you're using this as an excuse to try to make an extra buck! Well, you can imagine not many Mac users are eager to buy a beta product and simply will not buy a product if it can't run on their machines.
"Since the "shell" around the CORE is the same for PowerPC and Intel Macs we also get testing on the GUI etc."
That's nice, but secondary. A disappointing, but not unusual, attitude in the RO market seems to be that a company gets to explain their point of view and what's in it for them, but what about the end-users who'd be buying the products? Why no answer if the emulator at least works in Rosetta? You have to realise you're not simply dealing with RISC OS users here, who incidentally are quite a patient and understanding bunch, but additionally with Mac users, who typically have different standards.
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RISC OS artist wows public with digital artwork A RISC OS-using artist has described exhibiting his digitally-created work in a public gallery as a "rewarding experience". Richard Ashbery, who used ArtWorks and Photodesk to create his images, showed off patterns and colourful illustrations to punters, who told him his work made a change from the oils and watercolour masterpieces usually exhibited. 1 comment, latest by socris on 18/11/08 4:23PM. Published: 17 Nov 2008