Kroc Archive

Amiga X1000 Spotted in the Wild, Other News

The fabled Amiga X1000 has been spotted in the wild, in the homeliest of places--Station X, a.k.a Bletchley Park. "The AmigaOne X1000 is a custom dual core PowerPC board with plenty of modern ports and I/O interfaces. It runs AmigaOS 4, and is supported by Hyperion, a partner in the project. The most interesting bit, though, is the use of an 500Mhz XCore co-processor, which the X1000's hardware designer describes as a descendant of the transputer - once the great hope of British silicon." With thanks to Jason McGint, 'Richard' and Pascal Papara for submissions.

Why Johnny Can’t Code

"For three years son Ben, and I have engaged in a quixotic but determined quest: We've searched for a simple and straightforward way to get the introductory programming language BASIC to run on either my Mac or my PC. Why on Earth would we want to do that, in an era of glossy animation-rendering engines, game-design ogres and sophisticated avatar worlds? Because if you want to give young students a grounding in how computers actually work, there's still nothing better than a little experience at line-by-line programming." Looking beyond the immediate fear-inducing acronym BASIC, this article delves deeply into what it means to simply be in control--via a basic understanding of under the hood--of your own computer, and how our whiz-bang world of technology today is failing to bestow this understanding on this generation of would-be hackers.

Mandriva in the Storm

It seems that the previous news about Mandriva SA being for sale have been more than simple rumors. Frederic Cuif* (incorrectly unaccented due to limitations in our CMS), active member of the French-speaking Mandriva User Group has summed up the various outcomes and proposed projects he found after contacting several key members of the company in order to gather information. The result of his investigation can be found on his blog, along with a detailed analysis of the Mandriva business model and the proposed outcomes, from a renewed interest in the distribution and the community from Linagora, potential buyer, to what could be the end of the Mandriva adventure if nothing is done. (Thanks to everybody who submitted this)

What Are You Working On?

Hobbies. Where would the computer industry be without them? Arguably, there wouldn't be a computer industry had it not been for hobbyists in the first place. The ineffable need to scratch an itch does still percolate even in this closed down world of big mainstream technology from big companies opposed to the little guy innovating. OSNews asks, what are you working on? We want to hear from you about your hobby projects (technology related or otherwise) to get a sense of what the community is cooking up for love of it, rather than because you're paid to do so. Share and enjoy!

Will Apple Embrace the Web? No.

I've been meaning to write this for some time, and for all the time I delayed the more poignant the point I wanted to make started to become as new news came out further solidifying my angle. When I begun writing this article the iPad had not yet been revealed, iPhone OS 4 was not on the map and Apple had not yet purchased Lala. You've probably just noticed that all of these events in fact point toward Apple embracing the web more and in this article I will point out why this is not the case because I believe Apple's agenda here is similar to something we've already seen in recent history.

Commodore PET 65816 CPU Card

Andre Fachat has created a CPU add-in card for Commodore PET machines. "It speeds up your PET to up to 12.5MHz (at least that's the plan for the final stage, but it currently looks good!). The board uses a 65816 CPU that runs at up to 12.5MHz, plus a Xilinx CPLD as logic glue. It includes up to 1MByte fast RAM (run at CPU speed) plus 512k parallel Flash ROM, that can be used as boot ROM". Source code and schematics are provided. Via Commodore News Page.

Dear Ubuntu: I Have Some Concerns

"Dear Ubuntu, for the last couple years life has been good. Every time I've shown you to a friend or family member, they've compared you to what they're familiar with--Windows XP or Vista, mostly--and by comparison you've looked brilliant. Yeah, your ugly brown color scheme was a bit off-putting at first, but once people saw how secure, simple, and reliable you were, the response was almost universally positive. But recently, things have changed ..."

The State of Mac and Linux Gaming

Wolfire blog writes: "It's 'common knowledge' that Mac and Linux gaming are so unimportant that they might as well not exist. Everyone 'knows' that Mac games sell a tiny fraction of the amount that Windows games sell, and that Linux games simply don't exist. But are these ideas based on reality? Where did these figures come from? Anyone who has ever worked with statistics knows that it's unwise to trust 'common knowledge' without data to back it up. I decided to ask some developers about their sales distribution, and get some real data about Mac and Linux game sales."

Where Are the SmartBooks? Blame Adobe Says ARM

In 2009 ARM showed off prototype netbooks "capable of driving HD content, can surf the web for 8 hours, and will cost round and about 250 USD". Yet still, none have made it to the market. Why do you think this is so? Because ARM signed a deal with Adobe in 2008 to bring Flash and AIR to the ARM architecture, a promise they will finally deliver later this year. And you wonder why Apple won't have Flash on the iPhone when it can hold back an entire product category for two years.

A Statement Regarding OSNews’ Bias

Hello all. Over time we have had every imaginable claim of bias levied against us. We are routinely called pro-Apple, anti-Apple as well as pro-Microsoft and anti-Microsoft (even within the same discussion thread!). OSNews is an editorial site where the content is selected by a core team of volunteers who either write up news articles themselves, or take links or submissions from users on the site. Read More for the full statement.

IE9 HTML5 Video Will Be H264 Only

I am almost flabbergasted by the spin and blunt-face upon which this news is delivered. We were just discussing the pot calling the kettle black with Apple / Adobe and now Microsoft have also come out in favour of a closed video format for an open web--IE9's HTML5 video support will allow H264 only. Update Now that the initial shock is over, I've rewritten the article to actually represent news rather than something on Twitter.

Opera Drop Solaris Support

"In order to ensure a consistently high quality browser across our most popular desktop platforms we have reluctantly decided to drop support for Solaris. This will allow our UNIX development team to focus all of their attention on bringing Opera for Linux and FreeBSD up to final release quality, meaning that a 10.5x release for these platforms will happen as soon as feasibly possible". Opera assure us that this will have no effect on the existing Linux and UNIX ports.

Adobe Implement H264 Acceleration for Flash on Mac OS X

I think it's about time we got an Adobe category. Apple recently made public an API to allow OS X software access to hardware H.264 acceleration (albeit such acceleration is only available on chipsets since the Nvidia 9400M--early 2008) and Adobe have already baked this in to a beta preview of Flash 10.1 "Gala"! Update: Steve Jobs himself weighs in on Flash (via Engadget): "New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too). Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind."

ClangBSD Is Selfhosting, We Need Testers Now

Roman Divacky on behalf of the ClangBSD team writes "ClangBSD is a branch of FreeBSD that aims at integrating clang into FreeBSD, replacing GCC as a system compiler. Recently, we've achieved the state when clang can compile all of FreeBSD world on i386/amd64 platforms (including all the C++ apps we have and itself) and a bootable kernel. Thus we feel that the time has come to ask the FreeBSD community for wider testing on i386/amd64 (you sure can help with other platforms too :))."

10 Things Linux Does Better Than Windows

"To be clear about this article's intent, it's not to bash Microsoft, or Windows. Because to be fair, despite using Linux 95% of the time while I'm on the PC, I can find more faults with it than Windows. So, this article's goal is to highlight some of the major pluses of Linux, and also showcase where Windows could improve in the future, should Microsoft take heed of the suggestions."

MalaRIA – I’m in your browser, surfin your webs

Via, we get news of a cross-domain flaw using Flash or Silverlight content that allows the attacker to use the victim's browser as a proxy, including access to the user's session. Erlend Oftedal, the developer, explains how the system works and demonstrates the concept with a video. The flaw stems from developers lackadaisically allowing cross-domain requests from Flash across their whole domain (which obviously includes the user-account interactions); even Flickr and YouTube were culprits at one point.

Quake II Ported to HTML5

In November last year I stated that it would only be a matter of time before it happened. Also in November Joel Webber, a Google engineer had the inspiration to port Quake II to HTML5 from Jake2--a Java port of Quake II--using Google Web Toolkit; the same toolkit used for writing Google Mail | Maps | Wave in Java and compiling into JavaScript. With the help of two other Google engineers (Ray Cromwell and Stefan Haustein) in "20% time", it works! Just!