Dec 022017
 

If you are designing or developing a piece of hardware and need to use a microcontroller, you will need a way to program it. There are many tools to do this available for other platforms (x86 in particular) – but there is also a solution for RISC OS users in the form of Rob Sprowson’s PIC suite.

PIC Suite is a set of applications that make it possible to develop for Microchip’s range of 8-bit PIC microcontrollers, and it has reached its 20th birthday. To coincide with this, Rob has just released an update for the suite, adding a greater range of supported devices, which now stands at 110. Continue reading »

 December 2, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , ,
Nov 152017
 

With a growing catalogue available from AMCOG Games, it should come as no surprise to anyone that there would eventually be some kind of compilation available – and that has been the case since this year’s Southwest Show, when the company began selling a CD featuring their first five games.

The individual games continue to be available via !Store, but if you wanted to buy them as a compilation, on CD, the main way to do so has been to pop along to a RISC OS show and hand over the necessary amount of money to AMCOG’s Tony Bartram. Continue reading »

 November 15, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , , , , , ,
Nov 152017
 

A couple of years ago, RISC OS Open Ltd started building versions of RISC OS with “zero page relocation” – with the memory map changed such that the kernel’s workspace that started at the bottom of the addressable memory was moved to a higher location. This was an important step for security and stability, and for the future of the operating system.

However, it wasn’t ever going to happen without some casualties along the way; software that in some way tried to use or access certain information held in that workspace and which therefore found it no longer available. Aemulor, the 26-bit emulator that allows applications that are not yet fully 32-bit run on newer hardware, was one such casualty – and an important one at that. Continue reading »

 November 15, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , , , ,
Oct 272017
 

As this year’s Wakefield Show drew near, news emerged of a new company – RISC OS Developments Ltd – formed by R-Comp’s Andrew Rawnsley and Orpheus Internet’s Richard Brown, with an extra theatre slot set aside for Richard to explain why the company was set up, what it’s purpose is (to a certain extent; full details were, and still are, subject to a non-disclosure agreement), and how people could help.

A video of that talk is on YouTube: Continue reading »

 October 27, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , , , , , ,
Oct 272017
 

May also result in a new version of NetFetch 4.

Tomorrow’s London Show will see the launch of a significant new version of R-Comp‘s NetFetch, which brings with it greater support for modern email security standards and protocols – SSL/TLS, SPF-checking, and so on. There have also been improvements to performance, stability, and other aspects of the software, including a major update to the main Hermes module. NetFetch 5 is priced at £30 (£20 to upgrade) plus P&P for a copy on CD, or without P&P as a !Store download.

During the development of NetFetch 5, a couple of issues “cropped up” with NetFetch 4-specific features – so the company is planning to hopefully make one further release of that version, bringing it up to version 4.13 if they do – but given the nature of the NetFetch 5 release, the sensible option for NetFetch 4 users would be to upgrade to that.

 October 27, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , , ,
Oct 242017
 

RiscOSM, the mapping software from Sine Nomine that uses data derived from OpenStreetMap has gained a major new feature in time for the London Show. Towards the end of his talk at April’s Wakefield Show, Matthew Phillips mentioned that Sine Nomine were looking at adding contour lines, the data for which is now available from Ordnance Survey under an open data licence.

That feature has now been added – although, being data from Ordnance Survey, that does mean it’s only for Great Britain. Upgrades to the latest version, supporting contour lines, along with map data that includes it, will be available at the show on Saturday, and Sine Nomine will be accepting old RiscOSM SD cards and USB sticks in part exchange for the upgrade.

 October 24, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , , ,
Oct 202017
 

No mention of eye of newt or toe of frog.

Doom TrilogyFans of first person shooters should have a soft spot for Doom from id Software. While it wasn’t the first game of this type, it’s certainly one of the pioneer titles that helped popularise the genre, and led to a number of follow-ups and expansions. The game  featured texture-mapped surfaces and varying room and level heights – a step up from the simpler Wolfenstein 3D, the previous game from the same company – as well as mood-setting MIDI music, and the ability to swap out the internal data files (WAD, which stands for “Where’s All the Data?”) with alternatives, featuring new levels.

The game engine was ported a number of platforms, including RISC OS, and a fully licensed commercial version was released and sold by R-Comp Interactive in 1998 – and last year the company released a new version of Final Doom, updated to work on modern RISC OS hardware, and benefiting from the option to use an MP3-based soundtrack rather than the original MIDI music. Continue reading »

 October 20, 2017  Posted by  Software Tagged with: , , , ,