Southwest 2023 is almost here

The first significant event in the RISC OS calendar for 2023 is the Southwest Show, and it will take place in one week’s time on Saturday, 25th February, at:

The Arnos Manor Hotel,
470 Bath Road,
Arnos Vale,
BS4 3HQ.

The hotel is very easy to reach if you are coming by car, with directions here for the main routes, and just as easy to reach if you are travelling into Bristol by train, with a short bus trip between Temple Meads station and the nearest bus stop.

The doors will be open on the day from 10:30am until 4:00pm, with a £6.00 entry fee.

Just like any other RISC OS show, a variety of exhibitors are lined up, some of whom you’ll be familiar with from other shows, and some that are unique to the Southwest Show – and there should be at least one first time exhibitor, who will be jetting in all the way from Silicon Valley. Okay, no he won’t – Paulo Zaino works for a company based there, but he mostly works from this side of the Atlantic Puddle. He is hoping to be on hand to show off and talk about Launchpad and the Desktop Modernisation Engine, as well as the RISC OS Community project.

You can expect to see representation from a few user groups, encouraging you to join them and/or attend their meetings if you’ve come from the right part of the country (or if any of their meetings are held online) – both ROUGOL (London) and MUG (The Midlands) have tables, Andrew Conroy will be representing the Southampton group while dazzling you with flashing lights on his stand, and there will be a few stands held by members of the Bristol group – Chris Hall has a stand to show off SatNav and other projects, Quincy Coleman will be there showing off the Advanced Music Construction System, and I’ll be around representing Soft Rock Software.

Speaking of Soft Rock Software, I should have an early demo of an updated game available to show off, with other items available to buy – and AMCOG Games will be there, so there will definitely be a selection to play and buy, quite possibly with a new title available (Tony Bartram usually times new releases for shows). Other stands to check out for games will be Cameron Cawley’s and Gareth Lock’s.

If you’re more interested in the operating system itself, RISC OS Open will be talking about the progress they’re making towards the next major release, with the latest release candidate for you to try out. They also say they have “a significant essential app” now under their wings, and the latest version of the development tools will be available, along with a bucketload of merch.

The owners of the OS will also be on hand, with Richard Brown manning the RISC OS Developments stand (along with Orpheus Internet/GeneSys) – and this is the stand you definitely want to head for to claim your free copy of the Iris web browser.

The other key member of RISC OS Developments is Andrew Rawnsley, who will be bringing large selection of R-Comp goodies to the show – both software, and a range of hardware, including the much anticipated Pinebook Pro laptop.

Hardware will also be available from RISCOSbits/Andy Marks, who has been teasing out hints at something new on Twitter. Or more accurately, he’s been posting speed-related cliches with pictures to match. But there’s probably something new in the works.

And that’s just a selection of the exhibitors – if you want a lot more detail, the best thing you can do is sort out your travel plans to get you to Bristol next Saturday. Otherwise, you’ll just have to wait until the RISCOSitory show report eventually appears!

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