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The Icon Bar: News and features: The Vigay will never abandon RISC OS [Updated]
 

The Vigay will never abandon RISC OS [Updated]

Posted by Andrew Duffell on 20:07, 12/12/2006 | , , ,
 
Paul Vigay not using RISC OSThe Paul Vigay has written an article on his website detailing why he will never abandon RISC OS... ever.
 
From the article:
Most people know my views on RISC OS and also on other, lesser operating systems - so why did I feel inspired to write this short article and share my views with people? Partly in response to an article on The Icon Bar and partly because there are a number of (IMHO) rather ignorant, yet arrogant, PC users inhabiting some of the comp.sys.acorn.* newsgroups who love to complain about RISC OS and prosthetalize about how good PC applications are to their RISC OS counterparts - usually without the skill set or experience to make a valid judgement. I'm all for argument, but when people argue through ignorance or though blinkers, I feel like shouting "Oi! No!" in their faces, but instead I'll settle for writing this article.
Are you in Paul's camp? If the ship went down, would you go with it?
 
Update: Well, The Vigay received quite a slapping on OSNews, it seems. He's written a follow-up article and published it this evening. OK, that's the update. You can continue slapping now.
 
Links:
- The original article
- Follow-up article

 
  The Vigay will never abandon RISC OS [Updated]
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Andrew Poole Message #95716, posted by andypoole at 22:00, 12/12/2006

Posts: 5552
Crikey, I think someone needs to find out what Vigay's been taking...

[edit] And I just noticed the irony of the photo on this article... [/edit]
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Peter Howkins Message #95718, posted by flibble at 22:17, 12/12/2006, in reply to message #95716
flibble

Posts: 864
"developers won't generally try to manipulate and distort your computing requirements" (deliberate half quote)

:laugh:

Maybe not, but it seems the users are happy too.
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John Hoare Message #95719, posted by moss at 22:22, 12/12/2006, in reply to message #95718

Posts: 9346
"I just need it to make the tea and I could claim that RISC OS can truly do whatever you want it to do."

Which is nonsense, because RISC OS patently *can't* do what *I* need it to do these days.

If RISC OS works for some people, fine. I'm happy for you. I wish it did for me. But to claim that it is the solution for everyone is nonsense - just as Windows isn't the solution for eveyone, Linux isn't the solution for everyone, and indeed OS X isn't the solution for everyone. Everyone has different needs, and so different systems suit different people. Anything else tedious OS wars rubbish that you'd hope everyone had grown out of by now.
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VinceH Message #95722, posted by VincceH at 22:42, 12/12/2006, in reply to message #95716
VincceH
Lowering the tone since the dawn of time

Posts: 1583
Crikey, I think someone needs to find out what Vigay's been taking...
Indeed! :o

I hope he had a hanky ready to wipe his mouth after all that foaming (he was presumably foaming at the mouth so bad that it sprayed all over his screen so he couldn't read what he'd written - that would certainly explain a few things).

[edit] And I just noticed the irony of the photo on this article... [/edit]
AFAICS, it's a picture of PV and a couple of other people sitting at a computer. You'll need to explain the irony of that.
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Andrew Duffell Message #95723, posted by ad at 22:45, 12/12/2006, in reply to message #95722
ad

Posts: 3229

[edit] And I just noticed the irony of the photo on this article... [/edit]
AFAICS, it's a picture of PV and a couple of other people sitting at a computer. You'll need to explain the irony of that.
Maybe this will help.
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Paul Vigay Message #95724, posted by pvigay at 23:08, 12/12/2006, in reply to message #95723

Posts: 200
LOL - you only just spotted it. I wrote that nearly two weeks ago! :)

And I don't quite see the irony above. Yes, I'm using an Apple Mac - because we were training people in the use of some software. Like I said in the article, I'm perfectly capable of using Windows and Mac OS machines - just that they're not a patch on the usability of RISC OS.

Anyway, there's been too much negative ranting on newsgroups and forums, so I thought I'd have a bit of a positive rant! :D
People are free to disagree with me though - I did express that it was my personal views! ;)
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Gazc Message #95725, posted by gazc at 23:16, 12/12/2006
Member
Posts: 16
Having read both articles, I can see where both Paul and John are coming from. I can completely understand John's point of view in particular. As a frustrated RISCOS user, I too find there are many things that I just cannot do with RISCOS sometimes. On the other hand though, I still use RISCOS and regarding Paul's article, I'm often either unaware of the alternatives or if the alternatives exist, such as EasiWriter for example, they may be up to the job, but often just aren't compatible enough for working with files from Windows.

Perosnally, I've been waiting for a long time for an article on using RISCOS for doing things I would normally use Windows for, could Paul consider this in the future?





[Edited by gazc at 00:49, 13/12/2006]
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John Hoare Message #95726, posted by moss at 23:47, 12/12/2006, in reply to message #95724

Posts: 9346
Rant is certainly the word, Paul.

My piece wasn't the greatest piece of writing in the world, but I thought it was pretty well considered. You've just gone off on one and spouting an enormous amount of bollocks (the stuff about websites being particuarly embarassing). I mean, there's the odd good point buried in there, but most of it's inaccurate ranting. Which doesn't help anyone or anything, least of all RISC OS.

In fact, I think I'll leave this thread before I get too angry.
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Peter Howkins Message #95728, posted by flibble at 00:10, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95726
flibble

Posts: 864
It's currently being shredded on OSNews.com and not without good reason.

My personal fave is the bit where you claim there's more software choice on RISC OS than on windows.
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Richard Message #95732, posted by lrspares at 02:10, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95724
Member
Posts: 1
Sadly, while it is true that a 1 person bunsiness can be run soley using RISC OS, it is only true to a rather limited extent. There's a 101 small stumbling blocks that cause major problems that can easily become show stoppers for even a slightly bigger enterprise. For example, there's not even a Dymo, or similar, label printer driver. RISC OS users still have to print labels on sheets which at best can allow labels to get easily mixed up, and at worst leads to huge wastage of either abels or time as the sheet is reloaded. Such a small thing may appear to the outsider as petty, but when dealing with a 200 item delivery through Goods Inwards it's a major headache. Then there's the obvious show stoppers - for example there's delivery documentation - both ANC couriers and ParcelForce require Windows machines to allow label printing for consignments (free in ANC's case)to be used - work that takes seconds on the PC and only has to be done once has to be done manually in RISC OS land, often repeatedly, which is to say the least very labourious. Another is the current trend of supplying either CD based or downloadable front ends to suppliers databases. While the courier forms software could be cloned (assuming a netword database was available), these applications cannot - they are (deliberately) proprietry, and almost always rely on copyright pictures and diagrams which makes cloning effectively impossible.
Then there's accounts and stock control - a problem that has been dogging me for months, if not years. As soon as more than one user needs concurrent access RISC OS has nothing to offer - though it has to be said that in PC land the available software is truly horrendous to use for the non accountant unless your are prepared to spend upwards of £5,000 or lease at around £200+ per month.
To sum up, yes - Paul is right. In a very limited sense, you can run a 1 man band which does not rely on "coumpulsory" 3rd party software or need multi-user access to accounts and/or stock, but for anything more complex it falls at the first hurdle.
For what it's worth, my solution is to write my own software. Its going to be very slow going though. Not because of the accounts technicalities as might be supposed, but because there is no network based database available any more - S-Base and Squirrel both being dead - and the A9Home bought to do it on *still* having a rather flakey beta OS doesn't help. The lack of appropriate databases highlights another, rather more fundamental, omission in RISC OS these days - the basic building blocks have disappeared[1]. Sure, there's SQL front ends available, but if one is going to have a PC to hold that actual data on, why not just have the PC do everything.
It could be argued that giving out what might be regarded as "optimistic" propoganda doesn't help the platform either - in fact it is probably counter productive. Potential users are very likely to be disappointed, and that benefits no one.

[1]To get an idea of just has much has gone by the wayside, go to resources such as the CSA FAQ or one of the many RISC OS links sites and see how many of the links actually work, and then how many of sites that can actually be got to have been updated in the last two years, and then how many will actuall elicit a response if contacted.
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Andrew Poole Message #95736, posted by andypoole at 10:02, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95732

Posts: 5552
OK, someone ask The Vigay what OS his "national ISP"'s servers run.. :P
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Marco Frissen Message #95737, posted by mfrissen at 10:12, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95716
mfrissen

Posts: 173
While the other articles are good reads, and well founded, the article from The Vigay is filled with unfounded untrue nonsense. A real rant, and I wonder why Paul has published this, even if there has been a lot of spouting on the csa* usenet (which I never read anyway).

about productivity.. I've worked with RISC OS for years, and yes, it's a pretty productive OS. In the office I work with XP, which is bloated, I admit, but it works pretty well as well. Stability issues are part of a far back history. Privately (and home office), I use Mac OSX. Which is probably even more productive. why? Because, in contrast to Pauls' wordings, there still are a LOT of developers which have a passion for their software. You can't compare large bloatware companies like MS and Adobe to the more independent developers, which are active on all platforms.

I think it's even the other way round: RISC OS is going the wrong way.. wait.. no-one knows which way it's going, since these split-ups are confusing for the users. and especially for new users, what "distribution" should they choose?

Talking from personally experience, the biggest reason I quit RISC OS is that there is no proper raw image editing tool. Something essential for photographers. yes, there's photodesk, but it's all but abandon ware (oh wow, an update which adds Iyonix compatibility.. super!).

Webdesign... on Mac OS alone there are outstanding editor options, like RapidWeaver (bits the crap out of anything I used on RISC OS before), or apples' own iWeb (still immature). And I bet the same is true for "the dark side" aka Windows.

and is there a suite like iLife on RISC OS? No, I think not.

I could go on, but others have done already. i think Paul loses credibility with articles like this, which is a shame, really. Ranting is fine, but please don't make up things or state things that are simply not true.

[Edited by mfrissen at 10:13, 13/12/2006]
________
--
lada di lala da
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Garry Message #95738, posted by thegman at 10:24, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95737
Member
Posts: 63
Agree with Marco, Paul's article does not do RISC OS any favours at all, not only are a lot of his assertions false (RISC OS the only OS which you can take out of the box and start programming - Mac OS X is supplied with XCode, an IDE in a different class to anything on RISC OS, and of couse practically any UNIX or Linux is supplied with GCC and UI libs, vastly more powerful than BASIC, and not really any more difficult to use at all.)

Also he says he is only limited by his imagination, unless of course his imagined design includes meddling with alpha-blended graphics on his Iyonix, then he is fresh out of luck.

Frankly, RISC OS would get a lot of interest from new/returning users if we said 'Look, it's not perfect, it's a bit archaic, but it's got some cool features you might like. Also with the source becoming available, we may be able to fix a lot of it's shortcomings', rather than pretend every problem is a non-issue and every difference from another platform is a killer feature, we can also do without people making stuff up.


[Edited by thegman at 10:25, 13/12/2006]
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Mark Scholes Message #95748, posted by mavhc at 11:47, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95716
Member
Posts: 660
> For a start it could emulate arcade games, probably better than the original arcade machines

Although emulate could be seen as the wrong word the Acornsoft clones did tend to be better

> No boot discs, no corruption through damaged discs, impossible to damage the OS by viruses and malware and super-fast boot-up from power on

Having spent the past few weeks with computers that won't boot due to corruption of the harddrive/filesystem/OS and you're left with wasting hours trying to recover using boot CDs, or wasting hours reinstalling, this is great. And everyone knows some Windows malware is basically impossible to remove.

> RISC OS had things in 1987 which Microsoft and Apple are STILL trying to copy, now in 2006, nearly 20 years later! Just goes to show how well RISC OS had been designed originally

Still true, any popular OS is stuck with the design decisions made when it was first coded, in 1984 Apple could only run one app at a time, so their GUI is based around that. Windows or MacOS couldn't cope with active windows underneath others, so they're stuck with that. The first mouse had 3 buttons, but they dumbed it down for early users. With raise-on-click drag and drop becomes too difficult to use properly. And they can't change it because 100 million people would go mad.

Windows still can't antialias fonts, the italics in the drobe comments on firefox or IE are unreadable.

Why drop down lists on Windows don't fill the screen is unknown, perhaps because there's no ability to move any menu item that's opened. And menus on all other GUIs suck. Not that having a scrollbar on the right of a menu in RISC OS is good, can one move it to the left in Select?, seeing as they let you move other interface items around.

The whole Save/Open dialog box confuses people all the time. They try to browse files with the Open dialog and wonder why files are missing, they try to insert graphics into documents using the Open dialog. When you give them a file that can be inserted into a document but has no default viewer they're confused.

Trying to do anything with vectors on Windows is a joke, unless you buy Adobe Illustrator or similar. The EMF format is 11 years old and support for it is still terrible.

> Microsoft - who are guilty for the worst file compatibility of any platform
That's true, Microsoft aren't compatible with anyone else, can't read other disk formats for example.

The rest is probably bollocks, unless there's some evidence to back it up. Although ChangeFSI is very accurate, how it compares with bundled apps on other platforms is unknown.
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Andrew Message #95756, posted by andrew at 12:16, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95748
HandbagHandbag Boi
Posts: 3439
More power to the man. I hope I'll never abandon it either. The very thought!
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Phil Mellor Message #95758, posted by monkeyson2 at 12:24, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95756
monkeyson2Please don't let them make me be a monkey butler

Posts: 12380
More power to the man. I hope I'll never abandon it either. The very thought!
Let us know when you get that scanner and MP3 player working ;)
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Andrew Message #95759, posted by andrew at 12:26, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95758
HandbagHandbag Boi
Posts: 3439
That doesn't constitute leaving RISC OS at all as I don't use a scanner elsewhere and the MP3 player we talked about is stand-alone.

Apart from which, the only bar to getting either is cost!

And anyway why would you gloat at RISC OS's shortcomings?

[Edited by andrew at 12:28, 13/12/2006]
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Simon Challands Message #95765, posted by SimonC at 13:33, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95759
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
That doesn't constitute leaving RISC OS at all as I don't use a scanner elsewhere and the MP3 player we talked about is stand-alone.

Apart from which, the only bar to getting either is cost!

And anyway why would you gloat at RISC OS's shortcomings?

[Edited by andrew at 12:28, 13/12/2006]
Because if you pretend they don't exist (or ignoring the areas where other OSs are far, far ahead) then you'll never get anything fixed or improved. When advantages of other systems are pointed out they get dismissed as being irrelevent. Makes me wonder why these people ever stopped using Arthur. As much as I still like and use RISC OS, I'm not living in cloud cuckoo land.
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Mike Message #95767, posted by MikeCarter at 13:52, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95765
MikeCarter

Posts: 401
As much as I still like and use RISC OS, I'm not living in cloud cuckoo land.
I guess I am. As im abandoning Windows for RISC OS and not using anything else.
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Andrew Message #95788, posted by andrew at 19:26, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95765
HandbagHandbag Boi
Posts: 3439
That doesn't constitute leaving RISC OS at all as I don't use a scanner elsewhere and the MP3 player we talked about is stand-alone.

Apart from which, the only bar to getting either is cost!

And anyway why would you gloat at RISC OS's shortcomings?

[Edited by andrew at 12:28, 13/12/2006]
Because if you pretend they don't exist (or ignoring the areas where other OSs are far, far ahead) then you'll never get anything fixed or improved. When advantages of other systems are pointed out they get dismissed as being irrelevent. Makes me wonder why these people ever stopped using Arthur. As much as I still like and use RISC OS, I'm not living in cloud cuckoo land.
That's not a reason for gloating and you underline the point being made by PV in saying "other systems". Many people including PV don't /want/ other systems unless they absolutely have to.
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VinceH Message #95789, posted by VincceH at 19:28, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95767
VincceH
Lowering the tone since the dawn of time

Posts: 1583
As much as I still like and use RISC OS, I'm not living in cloud cuckoo land.
I guess I am. As im abandoning Windows for RISC OS and not using anything else.
That doesn't put you in cloud cuckoo land - if you find RISC OS does everything you want or need it to, that's fine. What puts someone in cloud cuckoo land is... well, read PV's article for plenty of examples :P
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John Hoare Message #95790, posted by moss at 20:39, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95788

Posts: 9346
What's all this talk about gloating?

I can see *no* gloating anywhere on this thread.
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John Hoare Message #95791, posted by moss at 20:42, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95789

Posts: 9346
That doesn't put you in cloud cuckoo land - if you find RISC OS does everything you want or need it to, that's fine. What puts someone in cloud cuckoo land is... well, read PV's article for plenty of examples :P
This is exactly right. If RISC OS does all you need it to do, then great.

The sad thing is though, for more and more people - it doesn't. Which is why the platform is in serious, serious trouble.
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Tony Haines Message #95793, posted by Loris at 20:48, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95748
madbanHa ha, me mine, mwahahahaha
Posts: 1025
I think I'm with Mark Scholes on this. RISC OS still has some advantages, many of which The Vigay has outlined.
I think what most people who disagree with Paul's article haven't accounted for is that if P't'V wants a piece of software, he just writes it. So he has a different perspective to most users - he has software which covers all his needs.

I think most of us can agree that it is no longer true that it is as easy to do anything on RISC OS as, say, windows. But I found myself nodding with agreement to a lot of PtV's comments - Windows makes me curse when it freezes up for no apparent reason, also. Its user interface and general design has the loser nature. So for the simple, bread-and-butter processing, which is most things, RISC OS (& associated apps) beats Windows hands down.

Contrari-wise, I also agreed with most of Michael Reed's article. Yet I still use RISC OS for lots of things. My wife bought a spare PC which I do use for web-surfing now (and I've had access to or been forced to use PCs at uni/work for ages), so I'm not restricted to either subset.

I suppose there are several reasons why RISC OS is now falling behind:
1) Lack of grunt. I feel this for image processing and compressing zips. Apart from that, it isn't an issue. PCs are just generically slooow, whatever their Mhz rating.
2) Coder absence. There could be an app, but no programmer has wanted it enough to write/port it.
3) Parochial or proprietary code which can't be converted for legal reasons.

(1) can be addressed with faster or more parallel hardware. I'm sure we'd all like that. There really should be a law against (3). I think (2) is the main current issue. But I don't lose sleep over it.

I particularly agree with PtV's comments about the progressive reduction in programmability of computers in practice.
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GuestX Message #95796, posted by guestx at 22:29, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95793
Member
Posts: 102
I particularly agree with PtV's comments about the progressive reduction in programmability of computers in practice.
What? Install any half-decent Linux distro and without touching the package manager you've got Python and probably a bunch of other languages, all of which wet the top of the head of the archaic BBC BASIC in a stream of liquid in a colour of your choosing.

Sure, you can't disable interrupts or casually poke around the memory map in any trivial fashion, but that's quite possibly for the best if it stops people and their programs from taking the machine down on a whim.
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Andrew Message #95797, posted by andrew at 23:22, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95790
HandbagHandbag Boi
Posts: 3439
What's all this talk about gloating?

I can see *no* gloating anywhere on this thread.
Monkeyson was dishing out a good licking of tongues.
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Andrew Message #95798, posted by andrew at 23:25, 13/12/2006, in reply to message #95796
HandbagHandbag Boi
Posts: 3439
BBC BASIC is beautiful and powerful.
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Phil Mellor Message #95800, posted by monkeyson2 at 01:22, 14/12/2006, in reply to message #95797
monkeyson2Please don't let them make me be a monkey butler

Posts: 12380
Disclaimer: I've just come back from the pub. |beer|

What's all this talk about gloating?

I can see *no* gloating anywhere on this thread.
Monkeyson was dishing out a good licking of tongues.
Oh come on, that wasn't gloating. If anything, it's masochism on your part.

I supported RISC OS because it was any good (in many ways it still is), and it often provided the best way to solve various problems. But I'm also ready to accept that other platforms are better at some tasks, and I'm willing to give them credit for that.

For months (years?) you've been posting threads asking about MP3 players and scanners on the forums, with the conclusion being that it will cost a lot of money to get either device working on your Risc PC, and even then it won't be so hot.

Your workaround for an MP3 player requires an audio cable and a CD player, resulting in an unorganised collection of unnamed tracks. Your scanning solution involves a primitive and expensive second hand parallel scanner.

You want to use these devices, but it's not feasible to use RISC OS to do so. What's wrong in admitting that?

Loyalty, like an opinion, is a dangerous thing. Unless it can withstand reasonable questioning, it's meaningless. I'm more than willing to promote RISC OS on its strengths, but you can't solve its weaknesses by pretending they don't exist. To be honest, I've lost faith that they *can* be solved any more.

I can't stubbornly avoid the alternatives any longer. Frankly, life's too short.
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Peter Naulls Message #95802, posted by pnaulls at 03:13, 14/12/2006, in reply to message #95800
Member
Posts: 317

Loyalty, like an opinion, is a dangerous thing. Unless it can withstand reasonable questioning, it's meaningless. I'm more than willing to promote RISC OS on its strengths, but you can't solve its weaknesses by pretending they don't exist. To be honest, I've lost faith that they *can* be solved any more.
Yes, it is. I've time and again pointed out that PV's blind advocacy of RISC OS is far more harm than good. I hope, but seriously doubt, that this will be a wake up call for him. Most of the problems that RISC OS has can be solved, given some coordination and a little time, but few seem to care about that, but instead pretend that the traditional RISC OS situation is ok, and is hunky dory. It isn't, and things need to change. If that involves telling people they're talking nonsense, so be it.
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Marco Frissen Message #95808, posted by mfrissen at 08:46, 14/12/2006, in reply to message #95716
mfrissen

Posts: 173
Replying to the follow up.

again, some false assumptions:

quoted from the update article:

"Apple's Xcode and things like GCC are hardly relevant or suitable for the average computer user who wishes to quickly develop some software or learn programming for the first time - and they still need installing or setting up, whereas RISC OS features BBC BASIC actually built-in, so it's still available even if the hard drive or local storage device fails."

Okay, forget XCode.. how'bout Applescript. About the easiest language around and even a complete moron can use it. and, it has been in Mac OS (also pre OSX) for ages!

I bet not many PC users could name more than PhotoShop and Paintshop Pro - both rather cumbersome beasts.

Eh? ACDSee, Irfanview, Photobrush, and more.
on Mac side: Image tricks, Chocoflop and lots more (and free!)

then:
I would also argue that the RISC OS produced version is of higher quality, even though it's a much smaller filesize. Look at the JPEG artifacts in the foreground grass and on the bush on the right.

Actually, there's a lot more detail in the Graphicconverter file. And no, you cannot compare the percentage JPG compression as if it is a linear thing.

I have no clue about vector graphics, so won't comment on that.

Try loading a 21MB e-400 ORF file (or any camera raw file) in RISC OS.. oh wait, you can't do that, can you? maybe with a cobnverted dcraw.c package, but that's not what I call user friendly and productive.

I used Zap! as well in my RISC OS days. Indeed, a pretty nifty editor, but I've also used Pepper (When it was Pe on BeOS) and now SubEthaEdit. Can't comment on features since it's been too long ago, but there's nothing I feel that's lacking in the latter.
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The Icon Bar: News and features: The Vigay will never abandon RISC OS [Updated]