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Username: Q
Realname: John Cartmell
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On Omega update fixes speed, bugs:

To AMS: Enough (too much) was written about the Omega pre-launch. We decided that we wouldn't review until: 1. All pre-orders were satisfied; 2. the critical aspects of the Omega were all running satisfactorily. Doing this means that a review will either silence the critics of the ARMTwister or show that it doesn't work. Either way we get a proper answer and an end to damaging comments.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 20/07/04 5:13PM
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On United at long last:

If we all work together then the winner is RISC OS; if we don't then RISC OS (ie all of us) loses. There's plenty of work for everyone to do - including a couple of months of buying from the AMSs to catch up on! ;-)

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 16/07/04 5:40PM
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On Castle conference transcript online:

I missed it earlier but someone mentioned the 'fact' that ROL refuse to consider a negotiated settlement. Has anyone bothered to ask Castle and ROL if either of them has ever suggested (or refused) mediation (maybe earlier this year) - or if either of them would accept it now?

My information so far suggests that 'fact' is way off beam.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 09/07/04 2:00PM
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On STD Temporary Closure:

To Michael Stubbs: Please get up to date before making very silly statements. Check on the A75 and the potential for immediate sale of thousands of RISC OS-on-ARM machines into a new market. Of all the RISC OS developers, Advantage Six (STD) is the one we can least afford to lose if we want a future.

The RISC OS market could cope with the loss of Castle more easily - though some might find it difficult to accept the Omega as the only top RISC OS machine. ;-)

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 07/07/04 10:53AM
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On STD Temporary Closure:

No-one seems to have picked up the naive comment from page 1. Even if castle own the whole of RISC OS that doesn't mean they can do what they like with it. ROL paid over 100K for rights to RISC OS. That's money spent by the dealers by purchasing shares in ROL. I understand that some bought something like 5000 shares (ie costing them 5000 pounds). I believe Castle bought 500.

Those shares, that money, went into producing a future for RISC OS. RISC OS 4, Select, Adjust and work specific for specific hardware was the result. The work continues.

No matter who owns RISC OS they have to abide by the terms of the agreement/licence that RISC OS own as do ROL themselves and anyone producing RISC OS products for sale in the market defined in the agreement.

Castle say that ROL has breached the terms of that licence. ROL deny that. ROL say that Castle had previously breached the terms of that licence. Castle deny at least one of those breaches.

Whatever is the case it is *not* true that Castle can do whatever they want with the bits of RISC OS that they own.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 07/07/04 10:45AM
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On STD Temporary Closure:

To McShane (calling you AMS wuld be far too confusing!):

The current (drama) started when Castle sent a letter to all the AMSs saying, in effect, stop selling RISC OS products or we will sue. This was on the 26th May - very soon after Wakefield. You may remember Wakefield as the time when the AMSs went out of their way to announce (mainly for immediate sale) a range of new hardware. That cost. Development, good prices - even good prizes - at Wakefield. All that had to be paid for. Ten days later and all those RISC OS products that the AMSs had in stock (with licences and hardware paid for) were suddenly worth nothing.

In the case of Advantage Six this was worse. Not only had they given the best deals - and prizes - at Wakefield they were also in the middle of final negotiations with OEM suppliers re the A75. (A75: a new machine for a new market bringing thousands of copies of RISC OS and BBC Basic to the attention of people who might remember BBC Basic from school but hadn't realised that it was still around).

Add to that the other new releases from STD - A6+, UNIpod, MassFS, &c and there is a lot of development work and a lot of people ringing up and ordering those A6+ machines - that STD can't now supply (even though there are A6+ machines with RO4/Adjust licences sat on the shelves). There are even OEM manufacturers wanting confirmation that Advantage Six can supply x machines for testing by customers, y machines for delivery by ..., &c.

And Castle promised a deal that would sort everything out - and failed to deliver.

That's when the first, short 'holding' statement went out without naming who was responsible.

BTW If someone sends a legal letter threatening you if you sell certain items - you don't describe that as 'withdrawing those items from sale'.

And then Castle seemed to be willing to sort something out again - but failed to deliver.

<speculation> And now Advantage Six are? My guess is doing their sums about trying to persuade their OEM customers to change to Linux. Or talking things over with their lawyers. Or something.

My guess was that Castle had until 24th June to sort everything out. The AMSs have (presumably for the sake of the RISC OS market) accepted far more than anyone could reasonabley expect.


What really astounds me is the Castle 'offer' that McShane mentions. I've seen the offers. None can be described as legit - unless they've finally (this morning?) signed the one that they've been quivering over for a week or more.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 07/07/04 10:25AM
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On Castle spills beans on ROL dispute:

To dgs: Speculation is when you guess with insufficient reason. That's not the case in my report. Unattributed is when you don't name your sources. I've named one. And there isn't an ounce of rumour amongst it all. I'm the one that has been calling for co-operation and compromise for months - indeed years. Suddenly, once it's too late for alternative action, you think it's a good rallying call. The principals involved know exactly what is needed to sort out the mess. I'm certain none of them like the options.

Now is not the time for silly squabbling. If you have something valuable to contribute then either make it public or pass on your good ideas to those who can implement them. The first task is to get a guaranteed and accepted legal copy of RISC OS 4.39 made available to all the developers. Do it tomorrow and they can get on with some development and sales work and cancel all those expensive appointments with solicitors.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 23/06/04 00:05AM
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On Castle spills beans on ROL dispute:

To dgs: I've known about the invoice question for some time but have not felt free to discuss it publicly until JL publicly confirmed last night some more details from those invoices. Whilst he rejects the interpretation he was at pains to confirm that there was "no change in the invoiced unit price for authorised products".

Are you rejecting what Jack said or are you suggesting that he chose such a convoluted phrase for some other reason? When asked if there were any other items on the invoice in addition to authorised products, he named "unauthorised products" and "products not capable of authorisation" and went on to name those as Virtual Acorn.

Now are you suggesting that Castle didn't increase the price of Virtual Acorn on their invoices? Please name your source. Or are you suggesting that I've got the amount wrong? Perhaps the increase wasn't limited to Virtual Acorn but included another "unauthorised product" that I don't know about? I'm happy to receive your correction if you have direct knowledge of the matter. I'm not going to quote directly but I'm double or treble checking the facts before posting on this matter and I'm ignoring all the good (bad?) rumours going around where I haven't or can't check the facts. And yes I do keep contemporaneous notes - and in far better condition than those kept by a certain professional BBC reporter. I'm reporting. The only 'representation' that I'm doing is for myself and - in a small way - for RISC OS (*not* ROL).

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 22/06/04 10:54PM
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On Castle spills beans on ROL dispute:

To Josh: We're given to understand that the reason ROL didn't pay the invoice is that the invoice wasn't for the sum agreed and that paying (or even part paying) that invoice would indicate acceptance of the new charge. Castle have said this "interpretation is wrong". As the increase is (I think) reported as 850% (I think I mistakenly said 900% earlier) I'm sure that you, as a customer would be unhappy about that increase. NB I understood Castle to say that the price increase did not relate to authorised products but I'm confused how Castle might be invoicing for "unauthorised products" or "products not capable of being authorised". (I'm open to guidance here from anyone else who was at last night's conference).

To Malcolm: What Castle can offer the third parties immediately is unlikely to be (I would say certainly not) suitable. What they all appear to need *now!* is RO 4.39 and only ROL can offer that.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 22/06/04 7:52PM
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On VA halts VirtualRiscPC deliveries:

To hutchies: Interesting thought about Castle getting a 'slice of the pie' from the sale of VRPC. Of course they already do - and there are contracts involved. Are you saying that Castle deserve more? How much more? Why? Are you happy about the extra cost that will put on RISC OS products? I'm afraid this is a bit of an ad hominem question as hutchies declares himself to be a Christian in his profile ;-) [to keep on topic at this point might require the use of the !Holy Bible software ;-)] And as there are contracts involved - and it takes (at least) two to agree a contract how do you see this happening?

Amidst all the speculation it's worth remembering that two developers have had to suspend their businesses (ie their means of generating income for themselves and their families) through no fault of their own. Whatever the dispute it needs to be resolved quickly and the legal bar removed so that they can get back to work and the rest of us get back to buying RISC OS products.

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 15/06/04 11:08PM
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On STD suspends A75, A6 range:

To Smiler: The A75 is available in a variety of styles - these are for industrial batch orders of course - and can have a disc or be entirely without moving parts. The desktop in the versions I've seen is a standard RISC OS 4/Adjust desktop...

...and very nice too! ;-)

 is a RISC OS UserQ on 15/06/04 4:21PM
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