Breaking: RISC OS unforked thanks to lottery win

In an astounding start to April, some frankly brilliant news has landed on the RISCOSitory desk: the long running issue of two separate parties laying claim to ownership of RISC OS has finally been put to bed thanks to the proceeds of a large win on the Euro Lottery.

Rick Murray’s numbers came up about seven weeks ago, netting him a considerable sum of money1. Rather than waste it on trivial things like holidays, and flash cars – which he’ll almost certainly do at a later point – he decided that his first priority was RISC OS, and the mess and confusion surrounding the ownership and copyrights.

To that end, he made contact with 3QD and negotiated the purchase of the sources to the versions of RISC OS that were developed by RISCOS Ltd. Rick wouldn’t be drawn on the amount of money that changed hands, but other sources inform me that it was “a significant figure”.

Those sources were then passed on to RISC OS Open Ltd, so that they could begin the process of examining it with a view to merging the more useful parts – so not the green folder icons, then, right? – into RISC OS 5. Being the one holding the purse strings, Rick has decided that the official name for the resulting build of the operating system will be RISC OS Unified – though it will still be referred to as RISC OS 5, and the code will continue to be released under the same standard licence as now.

For full details, including some gory technical information, please see Rick’s own website.


  1. It took a few attempts, but a few emails back and forth and I’ve managed to get past Rick’s reluctance on this – and he’s now told me the exact amount of his win. In British Pounds (because this website is really aimed at the UK market) at an exchange rate of 1.14 Euros to the Pound, RISCOSitory can exclusively reveal that his prize works out at a life-changing £17,702,106.40.


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