Linked by Chris Wraight on Mon 11th Sep 2006 17:45 UTC
RISC OS Being a RISC OS user is an odd experience. It's normally baffling to non-believers why so many (mostly British) computer users persist with the eccentric beast. It's easy to list reasons why no self-respecting geek would trouble with it: many old or under-developed applications, poor streaming media support, lack of compatibility with key standards and technologies, limited hardware support, and there are many more. For most, RISC OS is a thing of the past, a curio, a once-promising minority OS trampled on by the juggernauts of Windows, MacOS and Linux.
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nice writeup
by helf on Mon 11th Sep 2006 06:34 UTC
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But I still like it. It makes me smile. And when was the last time Windows did that for you?

*sigh* I cannot remember. The last desktop I've used that made me smile was BeOS.

Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.01; Windows NT Windows CE)

Reply Score: 3

RE: nice writeup
by cypress on Mon 11th Sep 2006 07:54 UTC in reply to "nice writeup"
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Exactly my thoughts too: I used BeOS as my main OS for 2 years and then dropped it for Linux. But reading this article about RISC OS, made me feel just like when I was using BeOS and noone understood just why in the name of God I'm so stubborn to let it go.
As for the final phrase ("And when was the last time Windows did that for you?"), it made my day! ;)
Great article!

Reply Score: 3

Still a pleasureable experience
by markee174 on Mon 11th Sep 2006 07:18 UTC
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The RISCOS zealots can also be a down side but every platform has them.

I keep coming back to RISCOS for all its faults because it is so-well designed for day-to-day usage. We just need a better web browser....

Reply Score: 2

nice but..
by marcof on Mon 11th Sep 2006 07:41 UTC
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I gave up on RiscOS/RiscPC when I started photographing more actively. The RiscPC I owned back then just didn't cut it. Photodesk was nice, but I think there is no support at all anymore. Let alone a decent RAW application.

But it was very nice indeed, I even preferred it to BeOS in some ways. now I'm a mac user, I sometimes look back to those days, and I'm happy there'll be a decent RISCOS emulator for OSX, just to play around.

Reply Score: 1

by MamiyaOtaru on Mon 11th Sep 2006 07:48 UTC
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Sounds like some interesting GUI ideas. It seems a little strange at first to only have a right click menu, but it does make sense. Apple's menus are touted for being easier to hit, being on a screen edge. Of course, the corners would be easier to hit than the edges, and there is one spot easier to hit than even those: wherever the cursor happens to be. Sounds like RiscOS did a good job harnessing that. (OT: the ease of hitting that spot always made me wonder why Macs did without a a right click enabled mouse by default for so long).

Seeing the features it had and why people clung/cling to it still, it almost seems cheap for the new Acorn to use that name.

Reply Score: 1

by twenex on Mon 11th Sep 2006 08:13 UTC
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I only used RISC OS for a while back in the early nineties, but I remember thinking it rocked (despite the odd-coloured keys!). I think the RISC OS desktop ("Pinboard") is one of the easiest-to-use and best looking out there.

Alas, I'm too poor to buy an Iyonix (more precisely, to be able to run it on top of all the other electronic equipment in the house). Maybe someday we'll get RPCemu working on Linux...

Reply Score: 0

by alcibiades on Mon 11th Sep 2006 08:38 UTC
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Isn't rox an attempt to recreate the experience in linux?

Edited 2006-09-11 08:44

Reply Score: 3

RE: rox
by mjmoran on Mon 11th Sep 2006 09:04 UTC in reply to "rox"
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Yeah, at least thats what their site says(i've never actually used RISC OS though graphically they look similar)

Like I said above, i've never used RISC OS however if its anything like ROX I can certenly understand why people would like it.

Reply Score: 1

nice writeup
by Valhalla on Mon 11th Sep 2006 08:51 UTC
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loved the article. full of sarcastic humour and a touch of sentimentality. also perfectly ended with the author's candid explanation as to why he is so committed to the os despite it's shortcomings. great article!

Reply Score: 5

by Babi Asu on Mon 11th Sep 2006 09:54 UTC
Babi Asu
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There are also many people who still use Windows '95, despite Vista will be launched next year.

Reply Score: 3

RE: rox
by Dave_K on Mon 11th Sep 2006 10:34 UTC
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ROX certainly emulates some of the look and feel of RISC OS. It provides a highly usable file manager that's very like the RISC OS filer, along with an iconbar that is superficially similar to the RISC OS feature. But in the same way that adding a Dock clone and Aqua themed window manager to Linux doesn't turn it into Mac OS X, ROX doesn't really come close to replicating the full RISC OS experience. If it did then people wouldn't stick with the real thing.

A huge part of the RISC OS experience is the consistent design of its applications, the elegant way they use the menu system, and other RISC OS features like its pervasive drag and drop between apps. Of course any RISC OS like Linux DE will lack that when it's running Linux apps that aren't specifically designed for it.

Reply Score: 4

A blast from the past
by tristan on Mon 11th Sep 2006 12:14 UTC
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When I was growing up (in the UK), I had an Amiga at home and used Acorn RISC OS machines at school. I have many fond memories of both of them; they were well-designed, easy to use and very fast, considering the hardware they were running on.

Like many others, I've now moved on to using Linux, but I do feel lots of nostalgia for those old systems. I'm glad there are still some people trying to bring them into the 21st century.

Reply Score: 3

RE: A blast from the past
by maxmg on Mon 11th Sep 2006 17:56 UTC in reply to "A blast from the past"
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When I was growing up (in the UK), I had an Amiga at home and used Acorn RISC OS machines at school. I have many fond memories of both of them; they were well-designed, easy to use and very fast, considering the hardware they were running on.

Yep, those were the days. I can still remember the sheer horror at having to use Windows (3 point something, I would guess) for the first time after getting used to Acorns. I'd grown used to thinking myself computer savvy, what with being able to happily use Commodores, Acorns and such, and then being completely lost with Windows. Still, at least MS managed to partially catch up with Acorn's usability: it's almost mature enough now to be usable, though it's poor attempts at organising a files system still mean it is way behind (and, yes, that is written tongue in cheek, at least partially).

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: A blast from the past
by twenex on Mon 11th Sep 2006 19:31 UTC in reply to "RE: A blast from the past"
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Ya gotta admit though; "ADFS::0.$.Apps" is just plain ugly; something like "ADFS::0:Apps/" would be cleaner, surely?

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Third screenshot
by Ronald Vos on Mon 11th Sep 2006 13:07 UTC
Ronald Vos
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It's missing.

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Very nice article
by Lakedaemon on Mon 11th Sep 2006 18:04 UTC
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I wish I could read many more of this kind...

Thanks again for the nice read

Reply Score: 1

Well, it sounds like:
by deb2006 on Mon 11th Sep 2006 19:21 UTC
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- it's outdated
- it has little applications
- there's lack of hardware support
- the processor is too slow
- standards are not being followed

BUT it's damn cool to use it, because it's different.

BeOS was cool - it's dead now (I'll change my mind when Haiku runs on a sufficient number of mainboards). The PPC was so damn cool on Apple hardware - it's dead now and won't come back.

Forgive me, but I still cannot see any reason to use this OS except nostalgia.

Edited 2006-09-11 19:23

Reply Score: 0

What about rox desktop?
by DrCurl on Tue 12th Sep 2006 18:47 UTC
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Rox desktop combines rox filer with several rox apps that emulate nicely riscos:

The debian setup even have automounting of pluged in devices, which automagically appear on the iconbar. It's also configured to create icon launchers for each apps that are installed in debian. This way, when you go into the Apps folder, you can launch firefox, as well as the othe Rox specific apps...

Reply Score: 1

The RISC OS mouse
by epistaxsis on Mon 18th Sep 2006 14:21 UTC
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Has to have at least 3 buttons.

From left to right:

Select - Like other OSs
Menu - As in the screenshots
Adjust - Doea an "alternative" to Select

& like the others its the GUI that does it for me - not nostalgia!


Reply Score: 1