A glimpse at the alternative votes in the 2020 Awards poll

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With the 2020 RISC OS Awards poll now underway and huge numbers of some votes coming in, it’s about time the alternative options were given an initial airing.

If you haven’t yet voted, as well as the options presented on the voting form itself, you can use the alternative suggestions that have been submitted as an idea of what to vote for – simply tick the ‘alternative option’ box, and type in the item you feel deserves your vote.

Please note that I haven’t gone through these items to check what they are or refer to – in at least one case, I have no idea myself!

For the Commercial Software category, two alternative options have appeared – Ovation Pro, and the PowerTec PowerATAPI filing system, and for the Non-commercial Software, the alternatives suggested are SunFish, ADFFS, and ExtdVars. Meanwhile, three different alternative options have been offered for games – Cavern and Eternal Bunner, both recent, and something older with RailPro.

The programming language built into every Acorn computer since the BBC Micro has received a vote in the Best Development Tool category – BBC BASIC, and the Best Hardware category has received suggestions for IanS Econet Podule, and for the Raspberry Pi 4.

Arculator has been suggested as the Best Solution for Backwards Compatibility, while Best New Development suggestions include the new internet stack, and the RISC OS 3.1 Rebuilder.

In the Best Publication or Offline Resource category, GAG-News has received votes, and RISCOS Berlin has been offered as the Best Foreign Language Resource.

For Most Interesting or Innovative Project, the alternative suggestions are Phil Pemberton’s project to preserve old software, and the prospect of being able to use multiple cores on RISC OS 5.

The Best Show or Event Category, which this time round is a free-text entry vote in which you can put anything, has received votes for the only physical show that took place in 2020 – the Southwest Show – along with the first show that took place entirely online – the London Show. User group meetings have also featured, though, with votes for Gerph’s talk to ROUGOL, and Sine Nomine’s talk to WROCC, as well as the WROCC meetings in general, and the German GAG meeting. Sillier votes have also been received, with one mentioning Jackie Weaver – so that would be the Handforth Parish Council meeting, then – and one saying just ‘Corona’. Ahem.

The category that is a free-text vote every year is Best Overall Contributor, and this year the hall of fame is made up of Steve Revill, RISC OS Open Ltd, Peter Howkins, Jeffrey Lee, Andrew Rawnsley, Jon Abbott, Steffen Huber, David Pilling, and Robert Sprowson.

The final category is the Broken Cog of the Year, and one suggestion here is for the people who post off-topic stuff (“inane ramblings”) on the RISC OS Open forum – although I should think that’s mainly in the off-topic sub-forum, Aldershot, so perhaps this should actually be aimed at RISC OS Open themselves for not providing an option to see recent posts in all except that one. Drobe has also been nominated for no longer being online – and as well as being an option anyway, Cloverleaf have received votes for different reasons; one because their Kickstarter options were too complicated, and one because they said the Kickstarter campaign was for half the amount of money they needed, and they only managed to hit the halfway mark on that anyway.

Votes have also been cast for RISCOSitory in the Best Website or Online Resource category, and for me in the Best Overall Contributor category – but as ever, while I’m grateful that people think I deserve the recognition, those votes will be disregarded.