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Username: davehigton
Realname: Dave Higton
About me:76 Glenfield Crescent Southampton SO18 4RF England
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Comments posted:69 (show all)
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On Tanks a lot! Double USB toy driver joy:

AW: Hugely easier. Drivers like this are dead easy to write, and really I spend more time on the GUI than on the USB. Updating the USB parts for file storage should similarly be dead easy, but making the rest of the filing system deal with bigger block sizes is a much bigger challenge.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 4/9/09 2:32PM
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On ARM-powered computer firm in RISC OS port talks :

Wow. Not one, but two new computers with RISC OS either being ported, or probably going to be ported, to them. Very good news.

I have been hoping for some time that the most serious of the A9Hom'e limitations (disc corruption; failure of the USB stack to ignore HIDs it can't use) would be fixed. There seems little likelihood of this happening now - otherwise it would have - so I think my money is going on the new targets instead.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 30/8/09 8:07PM
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On NetSurf on RISC OS faces axe:

The first things I searched the source for were "superscript" and "subscript". The results weren't helpful.

Thanks for pointing me at the function that handles it; but there's and indication of part of the problem. No mention of "superscript" or "subscript"; the fragments turn out to be "super" and "sub".

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 10/8/09 9:55AM
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On NetSurf on RISC OS faces axe:

I'm not thinking of stepping in. I think it's important that some idea of the scale of the work should be publicised for the benefit of anybody who might consider it.

A few months ago, I downloaded the NS source to see if I could do anything about subscripts being rendered as superscripts. I couldn't get even the first idea of where they were handled.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 7/8/09 8:29PM
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On NetSurf on RISC OS faces axe:

Just how big is the code for the RO GUI? How many files, how many lines of code? And would the code pass a code review at the place where I work?

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 7/8/09 4:47PM
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On First screenshot: Beagleboard runs RISC OS 5 desktop:

Yet another target coming up for Jeffrey:

[link]

I want one :-)

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 2/6/09 2:28PM
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On First screenshot: Beagleboard runs RISC OS 5 desktop:

Not exactly - but I think we could interest Castle in reselling an off the shelf one with RISC OS.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 17/5/09 10:12PM
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On First screenshot: Beagleboard runs RISC OS 5 desktop:

That's a terrific piece of work! My congratulations to all who contributed.

Has anyone documented the porting process?

It might be useful next time round - and I'm sure it should form the basis of a magazine article.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 11/5/09 6:56AM
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On A sign of the times: flash a cheeky message from your RISC OS desktop:

Do let me know how you get on!

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 23/2/09 7:51PM
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On Best of 2007 awards voting open:

Nice to get another nomination! It reminds me to offer a quick update. Although I was unable to demonstrate the VoIP User Agent in October, I did demonstrate it successfully in November. I'm currently rewriting it in C using DeskLib. Progress is slower than I'd like, but positive.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 23/12/07 10:13PM
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On RISC OS 5 to support NetSurf printing:

Congratulations and my thanks to John-Mark Bell for doing the work, Castle for having the courage to share the source, ROOL for co-ordinating the release, all of the Netsurf team for their huge amount of work and dedication, and anybody and everybody else I've missed.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/11/07 7:35AM
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On RISC OS 5 core source release imminent:

The simplest way I can see to deal with big discs is to partition them. Other common OSes partition discs; RISC OS could if it were so designed. I have a feeling that it could be added with only medium (at most) difficulty. It would certainly need thorough testing!

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 19/10/07 1:07PM
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On PostScript overhaul project reports progress:

Kudos and best wishes to both of them! Let's hope this helps Louie get RISC OS Now out quicker and easier.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 15/10/07 7:13AM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

More news: the demo on Tuesday at SAUG completely failed. I took a Linux box with Ekiga for the other end. What I hadn't expected was that Ekiga utterly failed to work once it was not connected to the gateway (and possibly the Internet), so, although the Iyonix was sending the INVITE (and I could catch this on the Linux box with Wireshark), Ekiga wasn't listening. A particularly forceful case of The Demo Effect.

I've begun adding the code to get my app to accept incoming calls as well as make outgoing ones.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 12/10/07 7:45AM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to Christian:

Thanks! Also thanks for your help on the AudioIn module recently.

In reply to Christian and jess:

I was thinking in terms of a unified API for audio in /and/ out. (Currently I'm having more problems with audio out than in.) I still don't think I'm qualified to define a unified RISC OS sound API. Remember, RISCOS Ltd decided it was impossible.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 12/10/07 7:38AM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to jess:

Experience in audio (and in DSP) qualifies me to understand codecs, especially the simple ones. Devising an API is an entirely different proposition, and requires experience that I don't have - experience of the audio systems of the various RISC OS platforms, and of their drivers. There are other RISC OS hobbyist programmers better qualified than me in that area. I also happened to see something on the RISCOS Ltd site a couple of days ago to the effect that work on a standardised audio API had been abandoned because the systems out there are too different.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 9/10/07 3:41PM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to jess:

No and yes, in that order. :-)

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 8/10/07 10:29PM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to jess:

You're right, there is no standard API for audio in, at least as far as I'm aware. It would be helpful to have it across all versions of RISC OS.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 7/10/07 10:01PM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to jess (09:27):

The mu-law encoder is BASIC at the moment. The mu-law decoder is assembly language - it's easy.

In reply to AW:

Presumably the exact arrangements for paid calls vary from provider to provider. I've been with sipgate for a while now, and I've only ever used it to call other sipgate numbers, so it's been free. Sipgate (and others, I believe) will allocate conventional telephone numbers; I have a 023 number with them. If I chose to make calls to land lines, then I believe it's similar to PAYG mobiles: you buy credit in advance.

In reply to jess (15:06):

I have no idea how to do audio input on the Mico or Riscstatiion. I'm not about to buy one to try. I might well buy an A9 if they get RISC OS running properly on it. (Flame war elsewhere please!) It may be possible to use espeak, I don't know, but I can't imagine I would want to do that.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 7/10/07 5:21PM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to jess:

(Check spelling of my name) Yes, the codec is from scratch. Fortunately, I was an audio engineer for some years, and I now work for a company that records telephone calls. Tapping digital lines is my speciality. If I ever get to implement any of the compressing codecs, they probably won't be from scratch, though.

I'm just sad for users of earlier RISC OS computers, as they don't have audio input and therefore won't be able to use this client.

I have no idea whether the A9 will be able to use it. I imagine that some modification to my audio input code would be needed.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 7/10/07 2:18PM
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On RISC OS VoIP client emerges:

In reply to jess:

Currently it only supports mu-law, which is 64 kb/s but is very widely supported. To support A-law in addition would not be much effort - but again it's 64 kb/s. I don't want to even think about compression until the thing can both make and receive calls, register with a SIP proxy, and use STUN to get through a firewall.

Video: currently no chance.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 7/10/07 11:01AM
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On Robot pet hamsters arrive for RISC OS:

In reply to jess:

Currently the Iyonix version relies on two things: (1) the device can be accessed via a FileCore_SectorOp, and (2) plugging the drive in, or booting with it present, doesn't crash the Iyonix. If those two things hold true for devices on other interfaces, then yes.

Remember that it's written in BBC BASIC and distributed in the easiest possible form, i.e. with all comments and full variable names, etc. (uncrunched), so you can hack it all you like.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 8/8/07 3:38PM
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On Robot pet hamsters arrive for RISC OS:

In respect of !ROFS, I'm also working on porting it to the Simtec stack, although this app is /far/ more difficult to port than others, so don't expect anything just yet.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 8/8/07 8:07AM
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On Robot pet hamsters arrive for RISC OS:

In reply to bluenose:

They aren't real hamsters, you know...

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/8/07 9:24PM
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On Robot pet hamsters arrive for RISC OS:

(Sorry for the prosaic response...) The hamster is suspended from the axle.

You might have to fit transparent sides (a) to prevent the hamster from evading its exercise, and (b) to verify that the creature is actually running, not looping the loop. Or maybe thrill-seeking hamsters prefer to loop the loop?

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/8/07 4:46PM
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On Early Soundblaster Live Iyonix driver released:

Well, I just ordered an SBLive 5.1 card on eBay this weekend, so I look forward to being able to try it and the drivers soon.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/8/07 1:31PM
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On Robot pet hamsters arrive for RISC OS:

Well, who's planning on trying !Hamster, then?

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/8/07 12:47PM
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On Vigay: I was told to remove my Firefox 2 tutorial:

The old friendliness of the RISC OS community has disappeared.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 20/3/07 7:21AM
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On New high quality print drivers released:

In reply to lym:

Why can't your A9 print?

What printer(s) would you like to print to?

Do you have other computers on your network that you would like to share the printer(s) with?

Dave

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 12/3/07 7:26AM
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On CDVDBurn to support DVD-RAM:

In reply to David Pilling:

There is a Linux implementation of UDF. I'm sure it can be used as a reference. But this isn't an easy process, is it? The two main difficulties I see are: (1) RISC OS has different interfaces at both ends (i.e. to the upper level and to the hardware); (2) it requires understanding a large body of someone else's code. I don't know about you, but I always have difficulties reading someone else's C or C++.

I would like to be more than lukewarm about it - really I would.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 8/3/07 8:37AM
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On CDVDBurn to support DVD-RAM:

At work recently we went through the pain of trying to write files to DVD-RAM on one of Linux's native formats. It was desperately slow - absolutely untenable for our application. The solution was to write much bigger blocks to the disc. I think the killer was the seek times, which are dire for CD/DVD drives compared to hard drives.

Initialising, writing and reading ADFS formats shouldn't be too difficult, and I feel tempted to have a go - but any normal use would soon exceed 100k writes to the map sectors, so it would be of limited usefulness.

UDF should be the way to go, but there are a couple of problems: (1) the spec is extremely difficult to understand (I did try a while ago); (2) the word out there is that there are very few correct implementations. (2) may be a consequence of (1).

A group of us maybe could crack this, given the will and a few correctly formatted UDF discs with some data on them. Lots of messages to discuss it, lots of experiments... any takers?

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 3/3/07 8:18PM
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On ROS powered 'weapon of mass distraction' unveiled:

In reply to simo:

My work so far has been on the Iyonix. I am aware of other work done on the Simtec stack for an FTDI device. In any case, I see no reason why the FTDI devices shouldn't work on all the implementations of both RISC OS USB stacks. Parameters are set via control transfers, which clearly have to work on every stack. Data are transferred via bulk transfers, which both stacks support quite well. The Iyonix does have two serial ports, but there are some problems.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 24/2/07 8:25PM
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On ROS powered 'weapon of mass distraction' unveiled:

In reply to simo:

(Please check the spelling of my name)

I've got a USB-RS232 adaptor recently, with an FTDI chip. Is that what you're looking at? Having got into the detail of the protocol, it's apparent that there are several FTDI chips with slightly different flavours of the protocol. The info I have comes from the Linux people.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 23/2/07 11:04PM
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On ROS powered 'weapon of mass distraction' unveiled:

I've had a call from CJE to tell me that it doesn't work on an A9, unfortunately. However, they are examining the possibility of lending me an A9 so I can make it work.

Dave

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 23/2/07 7:44PM
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On ROS powered 'weapon of mass distraction' unveiled:

In reply to simo:

The app is in interpreted BBC BASIC, so you have the source, and I released it under the GPL.

I didn't reverse engineer the protocol; other people did, the code is out there to be Googled for. I used the information but not directly anyone's code. One of the earlier programmers did write an app with a TCP/IP interface so it can be controlled remotely.

You would not be the first by any means to mount a webcam on one.

Dave

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 23/2/07 7:42PM
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On Open sourcing RISC OS won't help says ROL:

To pick up on Paul's comment that open sourcing Printers+ didn't attract much attention: do I recall correctly that, shortly after it was open sourced, there were comments from well-placed sources that this was illegal? Because that would surely rule out most chances of help from the rest of us: we would have been working on illegal code, with no chance that any of our work could have been released.

To my mind, there is still some mileage in open sourcing /some elements/ of RISC OS, such as the CDFS drivers.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 4/9/06 10:35PM
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On Castle considering open sourcing RISC OS:

They are considering open sourcing "elements" of RISC OS. I would very much like to have a go at two of these elements: the CDFS driver, and the USB podule stack. I'm sure some of you can come up with more such elements to add to the list. I have suggested to John Ballance the idea of open sourcing those two.

With a suitable license, it is possible to open source appropriate parts without giving away the whole lot.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 15/08/06 9:58PM
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On Bluetooth support for A9home mulled:

In reply to timephoenix:

I'm not sure that USB support would open a lot more doors than Bluetooth; but it would open some different doors. Notably, whatever USB flavour is offered, it needs to support the isochronous transfer mode. That opens up the door to high quality digital audio with external devices; and, if the overall system is fast enough, it would open the door to webcams.

Bluetooth via a dongle would open up the Bluetooth door to far more people than Bluetooth via built in hardware special to the A9, which in turn would open up more sales to Ad6. Or so it seems to me, anyway.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/4/06 8:03AM
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On Bluetooth support for A9home mulled:

In reply to ROHC:

Unfortunately I have nothing to offer except that I've done a bit of background work on Bluetooth dongles. I wish the Linux drivers weren't such a sprawling mass of impenetrable C...

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 6/4/06 7:56AM
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On Bluetooth support for A9home mulled:

I'd like to see Bluetooth available for RISC OS. I would prefer it to be via a dongle (most of the dongles out there seem to be just the one Broadcom design, which should simplify things). If A6 are doing it on the A9, I think they ought to do it via a dongle there too.

Give the A9 USB2 - that would be an improvement. Give it BT support via a dongle. Sell BT via a dongle to users of UNIpods and Simtec USB podules. They should be able to make some money on that :-)

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 5/4/06 10:44PM
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On Driver for USB IO kit started:

... and I've added the Simtec version too.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 10/3/06 10:16PM
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On Driver for USB IO kit started:

I've put the first Castle stack version up on my web site just now. [link]

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 9/3/06 9:38PM
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On New USB radio driver developed:

In reply to smiler: Have you got access to one of these DVB-T USB sticks? If you have, can you tell me what type of endpoints it has?

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 22/2/06 10:03PM
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On New USB radio driver developed:

In response to cables and sa110: The radio has a prefectly ordinary analogue output. This is suitable to feed into active speakers, or to feed in to the sound card's line input. Chris's statement "it's not possible at the moment to stream the received sound from the USB radio to the host computer" is misleading. There is no digital audio output, i.e. you can't stream via USB, but you can certainly input the analogue sugnal and get it digitised in the sound card.

I hope this is formatted OK...

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 22/2/06 9:58PM
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On Using an A3010 as a central heating controller:

Yes, you can get X10 stuff here - my son uses some, and there are a couple of people where I work who use it too. Its communication protocol is somewhat limited, though.

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 17/10/05 7:47PM
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On Archive mag to survey RISC OS computer use:

I use a Risc PC at work, and an Iyonix at home. Plus I've got an A3010 running the central heating at home (and a second one on long term test), so, although I don't sit at the keyboard + monitor, I do use it.

I use an A4 very occasionally, but certainly not as often as weekly so I haven't included that.

Dave

 is a RISC OS Userdavehigton on 25/08/05 8:55PM
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