Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 17th Jan 2018 00:43 UTC
BeOS & Derivatives

In late 2002, decided to combat falling ad revenue by charging admission to its archives of computing content. I have first-hand experience tring to harvest enough revenue from the Internet to pay operating costs, and fully support Byte's decision to move to a subscription model. However, my BeView columns on are now virtually hidden from search engines and thus from the Internet, and hundreds of incoming links (which now redirect to a subscription page) might as well be broken.

The BeOS content I provided to over the two years I wrote for them is tailored to a very specific niche audience. BeOS itself is, for practical intents and purposes, completely dead. Even though these articles were surprisingly well-trafficked at the time, it is hard for me to imagine that anyone would pay for access to the Byte archives just to read a few old nuggets.

Scot Hacker's BeOS columns for Byte, neatly archived. What an amazing treasure trove. I don't think this archive is new by any means, but it's the first time I've seen it.

Order by: Score:
Hobbiest or Madman?
by akgunkel on Wed 17th Jan 2018 02:05 UTC
Member since:

"I have decided to make my own contributions freely available, being of interest only to hobbiests and madmen."

I think that's the most accurate description of OSNews's readership. I'm truthfully not sure which of the two I am.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Hobbiest or Madman?
by LaceySnr on Wed 17th Jan 2018 03:37 UTC in reply to "Hobbiest or Madman?"
LaceySnr Member since:

Meh, who cares if it's fun? Recently got Haiku booting natively on my current PC for the first time (always had USB 3 issues prior) and also just installed my copy of BeOS R5 Pro again onto a Pentium II machine I built. Good times!

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Hobbiest or Madman?
by Sauron on Wed 17th Jan 2018 04:44 UTC in reply to "RE: Hobbiest or Madman?"
Sauron Member since:

I still run BeOS Max and Phos on a couple of old machines so I too come under the Hobbyist or Madman moniker. Bit of both I think! ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Hobbiest or Madman?
by henderson101 on Wed 17th Jan 2018 13:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Hobbiest or Madman?"
henderson101 Member since:

R5.03 on a PowerMac == biggest loony of them all.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Hobbiest or Madman?
by Morgan on Thu 18th Jan 2018 15:22 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Hobbiest or Madman?"
Morgan Member since:

I imagine at least one OSNews member has a BeBox still kicking around, maybe even in working condition.

I still hate myself for not grabbing one off eBay back in 2000. I had the money and it was a good price but I already had a room full of computer hardware I wasn't using.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Hobbiest or Madman?
by BlueofRainbow on Wed 17th Jan 2018 05:04 UTC in reply to "RE: Hobbiest or Madman?"
BlueofRainbow Member since:

Anybody encountering BeOS for the first time today - whether on a real or virtual machine - comes to appreciate the continued availability of this material on the web.

Edited 2018-01-17 05:05 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Hobbiest or Madman?
by zima on Mon 22nd Jan 2018 09:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Hobbiest or Madman?"
zima Member since:

just installed my copy of BeOS R5 Pro again onto a Pentium II machine I built. Good times!

I have a DUAL Pentium II motherboard for a badass BeOS machine. ;)

Reply Score: 2

BYTE archive
by christian on Wed 17th Jan 2018 11:39 UTC
Member since:

A subset of the byte magazines are archived at <a href="">

I've wasted many an hour browsing old magazines here.

Reply Score: 3

RE: BYTE archive
by RobG on Thu 18th Jan 2018 17:00 UTC in reply to "BYTE archive"
RobG Member since:

Thanks - takes me back a decade or two.

Reply Score: 2

RE: BYTE archive
by ssokolow on Sat 20th Jan 2018 04:00 UTC in reply to "BYTE archive"
ssokolow Member since:

When I was six years old, one of my favourite pastimes was reading my father's old BYTE magazines (I'm an aspie and, aside from being a voracious reader, computers were my first fixation) but I still remember, to this day, that I skipped over an article on computers in the Soviet Union because it wasn't technical enough to hold my interest.

Did you happen to run across any like that? I no longer have those magazines and I've been periodically trying to search up likely candidates for that article with no luck.

Edited 2018-01-20 04:00 UTC

Reply Score: 3

by chrish on Wed 17th Jan 2018 12:51 UTC
Member since:

Scot's a great writer, I'm glad he's made this bit of BeOS history available!

Reply Score: 4

No replacement
by fretinator on Wed 17th Jan 2018 14:39 UTC
Member since:

There has really been no replacement for Byte Magazine. It reported on computing in all its many facets - from Mainframe to the all the various flavors of PC's such as Mac, Windows and Linux. Since then, most PC type magazines or sites tend to be barely skinned advertising portals. The top 10 new Laptops, Printers, etc. I really miss the scientific approach of Byte that somehow remained accessible to the layman computer user. Sigh!

Reply Score: 10

by codewrangler on Wed 17th Jan 2018 16:42 UTC
Member since:

This is still a product and doing well, from what I hear.

Oh...and it runs on Haiku-OS :-)

Edited 2018-01-17 16:43 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: TuneTracker
by Kancept on Wed 17th Jan 2018 17:37 UTC in reply to "TuneTracker"
Kancept Member since:

I'm still on the TuneTracker page! W00t! I remember sending him a wireless router with a custom Be logo on it and helping with support in the early days.

Reply Score: 2

RE: TuneTracker
by Earl C Pottinger on Wed 17th Jan 2018 19:13 UTC in reply to "TuneTracker"
Earl C Pottinger Member since:

I wonder how many script-kiddies tried to hack their local radio station only to find none of their software could touch it.

Yes, I know real crackers can break into even a Haiku system, but most of the ones who call themselves hackers are really just script-kiddies who don't understand what is really going under the hood.

I met one with hundreds of copied games claiming to be a hacker but asking information on how to handle a 2D array in machine language.

Reply Score: 3

Be was just ok
by mlankton on Wed 17th Jan 2018 23:46 UTC
Member since:

I never loved it. I always wished that it was more unix-like, which I suppose would have just made it a desktop environment for X if it did what I wanted. I was a NeXT user, and Be always felt too lightweight to me, like a better classic Mac OS. Amiga has done a way better job at keeping a niche community going with almost nothing to show for it, but you can run that nothing on it's own proprietary hardware. I don't know, I'd be a lot more interested in GNUStep, too bad everyone lost interest before anything happened there. I boot up OPENSTEP in a VM and still think it's a better desktop than any modern os has.

Edited 2018-01-17 23:46 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Be was just ok
by jpkx1984 on Thu 18th Jan 2018 19:52 UTC in reply to "Be was just ok"
jpkx1984 Member since:

Moreover, BeOS had an OO C++ API which was a crappy choice. There is no universal C++ ABI, different compilers use incompatible name mangling schemes, there are even breaking changes between various versions of the same compiler and mangling is just one of potential issues. That's why BeOS/Haiku were hostages of ancient GCC 2.XX version for a very long time. Invoking pure (non-CORBA/COM) C++ functions/methods from another language is thus a non-trivial task. Conversely, interfacing C code is pretty simple.

Reply Score: 1

Highs and Lows
by PascalHaskell on Sun 21st Jan 2018 18:56 UTC
Member since:

Interesting read!
The contrast between the sheer optimism of the first article in the April 1999 - August 2001 archive and the pessimism of the last article reflects how I remember the BeOS era.
I remember that Palm was already a bit shaky when they bought BEOS but never guessed they'd be consigned to oblivion so quickly!

Reply Score: 1