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AmigaOS 3.9 Released At World of Amiga Show 80

Mike Bouma writes "A week ago a new OS upgrade for the classic 68k/PPC Amiga computer was released at the World of Amiga show. You can purchase it here. Thousands of Amigans gathered in Cologne Germany to buy the many new poducts on display at the booths or to watch the various presentations of the 20+ attending companies. Highlight announcement for me was the return of Realsoft 3D to the Amiga. Furthermore I bought the christmas issue of Amiga Active, at KDH Datentechnik`s booth a copy of Exodus: the last War and an Amiga skin for my cell phone."
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AmigaOS 3.9 Released At World of Amiga Show

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    .adf = amiga disk file Meaning that he will pirate the AmigaOS 3.9 because it's no point in buing that OS because AmigaOS 5 is coming out soon or AmigaDE as it's more known as.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Gotta chime in here ... I work at Apple.

    Recently, as the "Fortissimo" project (MacOS 9.1) was ramping up, some people in the MacOS engineering group got the MacOS running with the nanokernel/NuKernel (or whatever it's called these days) so that "carbon" applications ran with full preemptive multitasking and memory protection, while non-carbon apps all shared a single, protect environment separate from the carbon apps (much like "Classic" on MacOS X).

    Yes, really. It worked beautifully. It solved the current major problems with the MacOS, while keeping all the nifty features that make the Mac the Mac. It was truly amazing. What's more, it was faster than MacOS X. Much faster, because the Mach kernel just plain sucks. (Not that you'll ever get any of the NeXT engineers to admit that.)

    Well, guess what happened? Avie Tevanian killed that part of the project. He didn't want any competition for his pet "MacOS X" project. That bastard. If the company had just gotten behind the modernization (for lack of a better word) of the current MacOS, we could have had it released by now. As it is, several of the people who worked on it have, not surprisingly, left Apple.

    Yes, that's right. If it weren't for a certain PhD-holding-but-still-an-idiot Vice President who is trying his best to ruin Apple, Mac users could be using a fully preemptively multitasked, memory protected version of the MacOS that they all know and love, without UNIX, NeXTSTEP, and all the other crap that is going to make "MacOS X" an utter disaster.

    So, I for one welcome any attempt to provide an alternative, user-friendly OS for the Mac. Because thanks to Avie, Apple sure as hell isn't going to provide it anymore.

    Fuck Avie, and fuck all the rest of the NeXT assholes, too.

    (Posted anonymously for obvious reasons.)

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I got mine about 8 months ago from these guys:

    Cost about $110CDN.

    There's nothing special about the Amiga drives, it was their controller. It was more low-level and software controlled than a PC controller. The PC controller does MFM decoding for you already, so you can't alter that process, which is what needs to change in order to read an Amiga formatted disk (sync and such was different). The Catweasel is a custom controller though and can literally read ANY format disk you throw at it, be it 5 1/4" or 3.5". Hook up a 5.25 PC drive and read old C-64/AppleII disks!

    The only problem is the very beta drivers for Windows and Linux that noone seems to be working on. The Windows drivers can read almost all formats, but cannot write any. The Linux drivers can only read and write Amiga disks. Of course, they give you the source, and if you're a low-level junkie, it should be easy to create a driver for the disk type you want. All you need to do is get your hands on the format specs of the disk.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 16, 2000 @06:43AM (#554538)
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM
    1 REQ: .ADF for Kickstart + WB 3.9AmigaLover12/16/00 5:18 AM


  • Not the drive - the controller.
  • voodoo3 cards aren't exactly cutting-edge anymore, and G4s never were...

    * CmdrTaco is an idiot.

  • See... that is the wrong attitude. Mike shouldn't gain from the articles. We should. The whole point of this great experiment called /. is that we can get news and then hopefully insightfull comentary on the news.

    Mike has brought us news. What has the ./ community done in response? If all these negative views have occured, it is our fault, not his.
  • by tolldog ( 1571 ) on Saturday December 16, 2000 @12:53PM (#554542) Homepage Journal
    I disagree. I like seeing Amiga submissions. What does it hurt? If you don't want to read it, skip it.
    Don't turn this into another Katz type thing.
    If Mike happens to keep up on Amiga and he thinks that we are interested in some of the information he should feel obligated to share it. If the /. staff feels that this information is indeed worthy, they should feel obligated to pass it along to us.
    Just cause you are tired of seeing 5 articles in the last 5 months doesn't mean it is overkill. I could stand 1 a week if it was informative. I know I wade through that many for other OSes and hardware makers... and so on.
  • We need more high-quality competition in the computer marketplace. Good to see Amiga back.
    Apparently they've got lots of pre-orders already.

  • As a non-Amiga-knowing-person-type, I'm sorta wondering about this. I'm disputing the moderation, I'm just curious what this is about.
  • Dammit, I meant "I'm not disuputing". Stupid me.
  • Umm, I'm sure someone's already told you this, but this OS isn't for your stinky Intel box. Sure, you can run it on an Amiga emulator, but it's meant for "the classic 68k/PPC Amiga computer". You know, A4000, A1200, etc and so forth? YOu know, those machines that ruled over Wintel PCs before the people running the company thought it would be fun to fly it into a cliff?

  • Ah but it's still pretty damn impressive software... there are many things I do where the first thing I think is "yeah, real3D'll does that for me". In this day and age I see so many people wasting their lives trying to learn 3D studio... real 3D has all the power, and complexity, but it's much much more flexible and yet somehow easier to use... :)
  • I was gonna post my own rant, but I love this title so much, I just had to reply. :-)

    In short, I agree! I looked at the screenshots of AmigaOS 3.5, and saw that they'd re-written much of the GUI to use that thrice-damned ClassAct toolkit. Now, I know the mere mention of MUI used to spark never-ending discussion threads/flames by the score, and I know it processes events in the application's context, rather than at the input.device's 20 priority, and yadda, yadda, yadda, but I have never seen any GUI toolkit other than on the MacOS (with Apple's detailed guidelines) that got GUI layout so right. On the other hand, ClassAct is just butt-ugly. It gets all of the proportions almost, but not entirely, unlike what's pleasing. And now it's part of AmigaOS. Ugh!

    Furthermore, they couldn't just stick to ClassAct, could they? No, they had to come up with an MP3 player that apes WinAmp, too. Plus a QuickTime player that doesn't resemble either of the aforementioned. And if that wasn't enough, they added freakin' VINCEd, with its bizarre, unwieldy interface that's different yet.

    I've used X for the last two years after switching to FreeBSD. It's really strange that I should think the AmigaOS GUI got hit with the ugly stick by comparison, but there you go.

  • They killed Tux! []

    You bastards!
  • A USB floppy wouldn't be controlled by the PC floppy controller. Right?

    I'm sure something could be hacked together to read Amiga floppies on a USB floppy drive.

  • Er, no, you couldn't do everything you'd want to on an A1200. And this is speaking as someone who loves Amigas dearly and has 5 in the room he's in right now.

    Firstly, there's no real way of upgrading the GFX. Yes, there are add-on busboards and the like but they involve some pretty extensive (and expensive) additions so you're effectively stuck at 640*512 in 256 not that fast colours. Not pretty.

    Secondly, you'll be surprised to discover just how much CPU time some stuff takes. Decoding JPEGs is one thing I remember taking an absolute age compared to what we're used to on PCs.

    I'd say we could cover most of our needs on an A4000 - definitely one like mine with basically a ported SVGA card, an 060 processor, big drives and a load of RAM. But the 1200 isn't up to that sort of thing, speaking as someone who held out on one until '98.
  • I suspect you'd find a problem with some drives, actually.

    When the Escom machines came out, it was noticed that they couldn't play some games. Zeewolf 2 (wonderful fun!) was noticed as a problem just before release and fixed.

    Seems they'd used drives which didn't support a certain interrupt - RS-RDY or something like that, never was a programmer at that level. Anyway, this wasn't a problem for OS-legal stuff because the OS didn't use it, but some games did with their fancy formats to help protect against copying. So they didn't work on these new machines :(

    Fortunately I had one of the old ones ;)

    Anyway. It wasn't a serious issue and the disks could still be read, but you will almost certainly find standard issue PC FDDs which, no matter what you did to them, could not fully support an Amiga FDD's featureset.
  • To a degree that's a spurious question since needs, to some degree, are redefined around the possibilities. Yes, in some ways that makes them wants but let's be honest here. We managed before computers so they're really wants themselves.

    The point I was making was that an A1200 can't really hack it because the screen resolutions available make (some) document composition harder than it needs to be, while the CPU power for deciding JPEGs isn't there so you'll have a hard time on the web - that is, if you don't get irritated by the low screen resolution messing up the pages first.

    Now, I know screen resolution is less of an issue with Amigas as the programs have a lower resolution as an assumption so 640*512 is actually pretty workable for most stuff (doesn't mean I didn't enjoy 1152*864 on my GFX card ;) but it _does_ limit you. And believe me, you'd get irritated with JPEGs decoding that slowly pretty fast. Which reminds me - you'd probably want an uprated serial port to survive on the web. Easy enough to do, but it would be needed.

    Web and e-mail define a lot of our needs now, and an A1200 would begin to hit problems them. E-mail would be fine 99% of the time with most of the problems coming from attachments, but the web wouldn't.

    If you were happy to leave the web well alone, though, you could cover pretty much any non-games domestic use on an A1200 with a RAM card. Surprisingly well, too.
  • How does the AWeb browser perform? I saw some screenshots and was not impressed at all. Are you locked in 256 colours when using the Workbench or something?

    AWeb performs well, I think; supports over 256 colours if you have an external graphics card. (16 or 24 bit graphics)

    Also, does the QuickTime player support Sorenson (or any other CODEC introduced after QuickTime 2.x)?

    I thought Apple had an exclusive license...

    Does the Amiga have support for scalable fonts (Adobe Type1 or TrueType) in the GUI API or Toolkit (I don't mean bundled support with specific applications, like WP8 on Linux)?

    As third party extensions to the OS, these both exist (transparent to programs expecting Agfa Compugraphic scalable fonts, which are what it ships with support for).

    Is there a good PDF reader for Amiga?

    Dunno that one :).
  • Yes there are good PDF readers for the Amiga. Note that Amiga`s "Amiga World Magazines" has PDF and HTML versions.

    I haven't turned my Amiga on for about 3 months :(. BTW, Amiga Inc. themselves couldn't care less about Classic Amiga users, except the money they can make from them -- OS 3.9 is all done by Haage & Partner, and their new 'OS' (Tao's stuff, etc) will either run natively, or hosted on other OSs (Win, Linux, etc.) I don't think they would care about Classic users when outputting their newsletter...
  • How does the AWeb browser perform? I saw some screenshots [] and was not impressed at all. Are you locked in 256 colours when using the Workbench or something?

    Also, does the QuickTime player support Sorenson (or any other CODEC introduced after QuickTime 2.x)?

    Does the Amiga have support for scalable fonts (Adobe Type1 or TrueType) in the GUI API or Toolkit (I don't mean bundled support with specific applications, like WP8 on Linux)?

    Is there a good PDF reader for Amiga?

  • ... as it has no 'Start' button. :P

  • by ghoti ( 60903 )
    ... watch the various presentations of the 20+ attending companies.
    What is that supposed to mean? Is it really so hard to count up to 23 or 25 or whatever? This is getting ridiculous ...
  • This doesn't really qualify as competition. First, it runs only on PPC and 68k. That pretty much limits it to competing with Apple. Second, it isn't even plausible competition. Its like saying that it is good that the socialist workers party is there to keep the Dems and Reps honest. Yea, there there, but are they really?
  • The reason your school's Amiga kept crashing was that they bought the base Amiga 2000/Toaster bundle that had only a 7Mhz 68000 and only a few megs of memory. Lightwave was much happier with 10 or 20 Megs and a 68040.

    Newtek did not buy the Amiga or Commodore. Do some searches to find out more information.

    Later seasons of Bab5 were done on Windoze systems and Lightwave.

    There were rendering engines that used Alpha processors and tied into the Amiga systems... Perhaps your school should have bought one of those.
  • ... as soon as OS X comes out, mac users will want a familiar, comfortable, and non-instrusive interface to work with.
  • With all of this amiga business, I've gotten to wanting one for myself. Anyone able to point me in the right direction? Also, how much would one cost?

    Max, in America, it's customary to drive on the right.

  • Though as an Amiga user I can't help but feel slightly screwed by Realsoft for selling me old (as in having poor display ability) software without bothering to mention how long its been since they updated it... :-\

  • by 11thangel ( 103409 ) on Saturday December 16, 2000 @06:29AM (#554564) Homepage
    Of course, that assumes that FreeBSD, Openbsd, BeOS, Winblows, linux, etc, arent eating up all my available partitions... (stupid partition tables)
  • For those who still dont know how the new Amiga DE works, read this article []. Believe me, this really works! This article refers to articles in the IBM Developerworks.

    "One of the biggest questions I come up against when talking to people about the new Amiga platform, and specifically about Amiga's deals with Red Hat to be the multimedia platform for Red Hat Linux, is "Why does Linux need Amiga?" Tough question -- until today."

    Read that in this article [].

    From the beginning, Red Hat was mentioned as a supporter of the Amiga platform, together with other companies like Corel. Even RenderWare is being mentioned and perhaps NewTek wanted to return to the Amiga platform.
  • Way easiest is to use an amiga.
    since the amiga can read and write both pc and mac
  • i was about to recommand you using unix amiga emulator (uae for short) which is btw excellent for playing amiga games but i noticed this on their homepage []:

    4 x 3.5" floppy disk drives (DF0:, DF1:, DF2: and DF3:). It's not possible to read Amiga disks, so these are emulated with disk files."

    there is a site here [] that has more info on techniques that might enable you to read those disks on pc.
  • Well, amiga isn't that dated... It has most of the features of the other "modern" OS:es such as BeOS, Linux, BSD and windows.

    Yes, I know there are some things you can't do (easily) with it, but on the other hand, there are stuff that you can do in AOS that are still impossible or hard to do in other OS:es.

    The big problem isn't the OS, it is the lack of fast/inexpensive HW and some essential SW.

    I sometimes get the feeling some ppl bashing the Amiga has never used one, or wasn't around at all when they were popular. ;-)


    "I'm surfin the dead zone
  • change the moderation on the above post
  • What race and country are Amigans from? And why do they have to use so much cologne?

    Me confused.
  • Thousands of Amigans gathered in Cologne Germany to buy the many new poducts on display at the booths or to watch the various presentations of the 20+ attending companies.
    I knew it was only time before those Germans brought back pograms!

    Some spelling mistakes are better than others....

  • Damn, that's an ugly GUI. Is it so hard to hire a goddamn graphic designer to whip up something snappy? Windows, MacOS... they look great. Be looks pretty good. But there are like three themes for KDE (that aren't clones) that don't look like amateur photoshop hacks. And that Amiga amp-whatever skin looks like someone took the original winamp skin and ran a couple "noise" filters on it. How tacky can you get?

    Sorry, I had to vent that.

  • I find the humor in the fact that people are still following and for lack of a better term worshiping the Amiga platform even though there has been any real support for it for years. For its time it was way ahead of the game, but as of now, its way dated.

    Unlike cars, computers get better every year.

  • Kinda OT. This awesome software is coming to Linux. I am beta testing it now. Finally an industrial strength 3D animation software for Linux ( I know Alias Maya is being ported as well ).
  • If you like the links in the article, you'll love Everything 2 [], BSI's collaboratively filtered, profusely linked database of, well, everything.
    Tetris on drugs, NES music, and GNOME vs. KDE Bingo [].
  • BSI's Everything 2 [] BBS is profusely linked [] in much the same way. But are you trying to link to Goats [] (a comic strip) or Goatse [] (the One True Ass Pic)?
    Tetris on drugs, NES music, and GNOME vs. KDE Bingo [].
  • I actually applaud and am amazed that there even exists a GNU compiler, but then again from what I've read about it, its pretty outdated as far as front and back-end optimizations and intermediate languages.

    You're referring to the GCC 2.95.2 release, which already generates code of the same quality as Watcom's. GCC 2.97, OTOH, employs some pretty sneaky optimizations, making code run fast (especially on x86). However, Alpha generated code is still slow because the Alpha architecture has never been optimized for inter-module jumps; the expensive compilers store RTL in object files and actually generate code during linking. Is this patented?

    Tetris on drugs, NES music, and GNOME vs. KDE Bingo [].
  • If its anything like the old Amigas of yore, its cos the Amiga hardware used a palettized planar system, rather than the pcs chunky pixel system.

    The max number of bitplanes on the amiga was 8, 2^8 = 256. You load whatever colours you want into the 256 colour lookup table (in 24 bit colour, 8 bits each of r,g,b).

    On the pc, you generally just write the whole 16/24/32 bits of RGB info into one memory location. Or use an 8 bit palettized mode.
  • Have you actually *read* the results of all those submissions? Nothing but bitching, slashing, flaming, namecalling and a lot other trashing.

    If one wanted to advocate for something that's not Linux (or PS2), one would stay far far away from the Slashdot crowd.

    Mike have gained *zero* from those submissions. Apart from at bad attitude toward Amiga from the "enlighted" Slashdot-crowd...

    So please Mike, give it up...

  • Mike have an agenda: to promote/advocate Amiga. A noteworthy cause.

    But preaching to the Slashdot-crowd is just plain stupid. It's like going to a KKK-meeting and preaching that all men are equal. You'll not live to tell about it.

    So at best, Mike's efforts are just wasted... at worst, he accomplishes the opposite of his "mission goals".

    I like Amiga, and I'd like to read insightfull comments to Amiga-stories. But not on Slashdot. Anything that's not linux, GPL or PS2 sux by defintion.

  • I see it likes to insert a relevant link at every second word.


  • Thousands of Amigans gathered in Cologne Germany to buy the many new poducts on display at the booths or to watch the various presentations of the 20+ attending companies.

    I was wondering if anyone knew any URLs of sites selling these fascinating new poducts? I've already got a shakespeareduct and a hemingwayduct, and am looking into buying more!

    Eric Krout
  • They're charging $49.95 for it (upgrade price I presume?) yet earlier today we had something about making BeOS (which is free to download) Open Source. It seems to be a contradiction to me: BeOS, let's make it more Free; yet for the AmigaOS we get a shopping list of what you can buy for it.

    Why is it OK for Amiga to charge money for things when the usual cry here is for more free/Free stuff?

  • Contrary to Microsoft-sponsored opinion, most coders work in in-house departments working on bespoke systems or enhancing bought in packages. Anyway, the GPL doesn't say anything about not being able to sell software, it says that the source code should be freely available. GPL software allows people and companies to fix bugs as and when they need to, not having to wait on the whim of a large software company.
  • I wouldn't know pal. I don't care what I do, I'm in it for the money. After a 7.5 hour shift I go home and watch TV or go to the pub and see my friends. Computers are not the be-all and end-all of my life. Maybe you should get a life too.
  • According to the times displayed (in European time) only 2 of the posts were posted from my home PC, both times when I was on-call and couldn't really go and get wasted. The majority are posted from work when I'm waiting for stuff to finish, like now.
  • I think Amiga is spanish for girlfriend.

    ...and just like a jilted girlfriend this Amiga refuses to admit its finished, its over, its a deceased Amiga.

    This Amiga is in fact the proverbial Monty Python parrot...

    Its not dead its resting

  • I dunno, I have enough work-related angst that I fancy I can smell another authentic sob story. ;) I'll give the AC the benefit of the doubt, I like the story.

    Besides, it fits very well with what we know about how Apple works. Product development there has always seemed to be "ego-driven." Avie certainly has the POWER to do what was attributed to him, and he and Steve are obviously big NeXT fans. It could be true.
  • Hmmm....let's see now.

    Quicktime & AVI player, MP3 player, animated icon support, full integrated internet and networking support, suite of Iomega tools......

    What the hell kind of C64 did you have anyway??? And why the hell aren't you selling it on ebay []?!?!


  • This sort of brings a tear to the eye.

    I remember the promise of the old Amigas, and it is a shame that they never took hold of the market like some other products.

    I understand that there is a substantial differance between the latest incarnations and the earlier machines. This is understandable because of the dramatic differance in the performance of todays machines vs those of a few years back.

    I have mixed feelings about "Yet Another Unix Clone", and so I am happy to see the traditional line being advanced.

    Yet I wonder if they could develop this to take advantage of hardware advances.

    Amiga on an Imac, for example? or is this truly laffable?

  • I thought Amiga sorta died out. I was pretty sure that a few years ago, Newtek bought them out because they needed to keep them alive because of their video toaster application (ever seen Babylon 5? 100% toasters. Farms of amigas.)

    Which, BTW, when I worked on a toaster in my school's media lab, it never failed that it would crash in the middle of a rendering session that failed if it was at all interrerupted (and took on the order of 8-24 hours to complete).

    I am not bashing Amiga, I just thought that they had sorta died with the old days of future crew demos and bulletin boards.

  • The last article was just stupid. :)

    Just kidding, but seriously, I don't think everyone here reading slashdot thinks that the world would function if every piece of software on this earth was completely free.

    I actually applaud and am amazed that there even exists a GNU compiler, but then again from what I've read about it, its pretty outdated as far as front and back-end optimizations and intermediate languages.

    I mean, if you depended on your livlihood to make money as a programmer, would you really want to give every innovation you came up with away for free right away? I'd want to make at least a little bit of money on it first. I think most /.'ers would agree with that too.

  • there were prolly 21 companies, and 20+ sounds more than 21.
  • I would love to believe this. Truly. Unfortunately, it is probably a troll. Oh well.

  • I've looked into this, and from what I saw it cant be done. Amiga floppy drives were special hardware that cant be emulated by todays floppy drives, or so I read.
  • Hey all,

    Is anyone else tired of Mike Bouma shilling for Amiga Inc? I mean we have an example Here [], and Here [], and here [], AND FINALLY here []!

    Sheesh, you know I really don't mind advocacy, I used to be a huge Amiga advocate myself, but Mike Bouma's submissions contain about as much objectivity as ABC doing a review of a Disney movie.

    Hemos, please stop posting his submissions until the point that they no longer read as religious tracts.


  • by AFCArchvile ( 221494 ) on Saturday December 16, 2000 @06:59AM (#554597)
    And I'll bet that all 81 remaining Amiga owners attended.
  • It`s money well spend though. This OS requires very little hardware resources to give excellent performance and it isn`t bloated like nowadyas "modern" mainstream OSs. If you want to save yourself some cash then this is a nice purchase (Man do you have to have a kick ass system to get only decent performance out of Linux)

    Nonsense. It's a shareware/freeware bundle dressed up as a new OS. You can get 99% of the contents for free on Aminet [] anyway.
  • I've heard from various sources that not more than 256 can be displayed simultaneously, even though the total palette is 24-bit. Why is it that not more than 256 colours can be displayed simultaneously though? That seems like a huge disadvantage.

  • ... do you think the original story sets some kind of record for most obscene amount of over hyperlinking?
  • well yes, there still some fanatics, like me, i use it for design web pages, multimedia, and 3d animation (lightwave). I also have a windows NT, dual pentium at 500 mhz and 256 ram, that i use for rendering, but most of the time i prefer the Amiga, it's web browser are faster than Netscape or explorer even on machines runing at 50 mhz...

    I know it's ancient technology but still is eficient...

    Javier Delgado

  • it's fast , but you are locked to 256 colors if
    you have an 256 workbench, but it can open it's own screen.

    Of course if you have only an aga machine that it,s
    the best you cando, but If you put a graphic card it would be better.

    But i prefer voyager (version 3.2).

    Both have an incremental rendering, so usually
    they can display a partial loaded page faster
    than Explorer.

    What they lack is a goos Javascript Supports.
    They have implemented Javascript but
    they have not implementes it's bugs and idisioncracies...

    so it's not very much usefull.

    there are two PDF readers, ghoscript and APDF.
    but they don;t work well with the latest
    implementacions of PDF.

    By default Amiga suport compugrafic fonts, but
    there is a library ttf.library that user Truetype fonts.

    And some programs support Adobe, but not at system level.
  • Oh, yes, it's called Alynx,
    and of course there is Amosaic,
    but i prefer something more recent :-)

    Javier Delgado
  • *grumble* Must get into the habit of using Preview.

    The URL is []

  • by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Saturday December 16, 2000 @08:51AM (#554605) Homepage Journal
    Oh yummy. I used Amigas extensively from 1990 to 1996. I got an A500plus, which was, at the time, the lowest end Amiga - 68000, 1Meg chip RAM, Kickstart 2.04, and the rest. Despite that, it was wonderful. It needed more memory and a harddrive, but once that was added, it was my dream machine.

    And when I "sold out" in 1996, and got hold of what I needed to run Linux, I regretted it and still do. It's not that it wasn't the "right" decision, it's just Linux, wonderful though it is, is not the platform AmigaOS is. Neither are any of the other oft-proposed alternatives that I've tried. I've used OS/2 Warp 3, BeOS, QNX, and OpenStep, and while I thought all were pretty nice, they still don't quite get there.

    I'm not saying AmigaOS was perfect, it's just that it defined an environment closest to the smoothest way of working I've ever come across. From the oft-maligned screens, which with later versions of the OS were done perfectly (you could decide whether an App would run in the current screen, a new screen, a new screen dedicated to that app, etc - I've yet to come across anything as dynamic and flexible since), to the CLI/GUI integration (but Workbench should have had a REXX port), to REXX, to the pre-emptive real-time multitasking, to the microkernel 'exec' that drove the thing and made the OS design so logical and intuitive.

    Currently, a group at are trying to put together a decent platform independent version of the operating system. There are plusses and minusses to the approaches they're taking, they're keen, except on some hardware API issues, to duplicate AmigaOS as closely as possible, which means all of the good things but also some nasty holdovers like non-tracking of resources and a lack of memory protection. It's still great what they've got out so far, and I'm looking forward to the point a 'Slackware AROS' installation (or something similar...) becomes available. []

    Above all though, AmigaOS taught me something which, at the time, was an unpopular view - that the operating system makes the machine. The Amiga in 85 was revolutionary for its hardware, but if it had taken the Atari ST approach of installing a cruddy MSDOS clone and Mac-like interface emulator over the top of that harware it would have died on the spot. Amiga's genius wasn't to produce good hardware, but to, almost accidentally, produce an environment that made that hardware sing. And most of the approaches taken when building that environment could be applied to today, on hardware that is heavily influenced by what happened in 1985.

  • I'd say we could cover most of our needs on an A4000 - definitely one like mine with basically a ported SVGA card, an 060 processor, big drives and a load of RAM. But the 1200 isn't up to that sort of thing, speaking as someone who held out on one until '98.

    Now should I be wondering how on Earth did we cover most of our needs in the '85? Or especially in the early '90? Before the time of 060? Or the time of AMD Athlon? Or how can we cover those needs now, prior to those 10 GHz CPU's coming in a few years?

    My A3000, currently equipped with lots of neat hardware isn't significantly faster in simple tasks than a plain A1200. That counts using Workbench or shell, running your favorite paint program, text editor or a word processor, creating music etc. Creating a 20-meg truecolor animation, using background pictures of megs in size or decoding cd-quality music is another thing but most people don't need those to be happy using their computer. Waiting a few more seconds to decode a JPEG is more sensible than buying new hardware just to notice the new box can't play mp3's, then buying even newer hardware to notice it can't play mpg4 DivX videos and then buy even more... Uh. Not everyone considers those being really essential tasks. So why would a secretary or the famous Joe User need a high-end machine to roll a document or manage spreadsheets?

    The question is that where's the line where developing more revolutionary software and data formats (and due to those, more revolutionary processors) becomes an overkill in comparison to the the level of advance needed for doing all the basic work conveniently and not much more? We probably don't like monochrome screens no more but do we need a 1600x1200x32 at 100Hz to write a document either? I think we've crossed the line many years ago when it comes to basic, daily tasks done with a computer.

  • I'll probably never use Amiga, but it's still good to see competition in the market.

    I think that still using an Amiga is as crazy as using just any other computer system. Or should I say no more crazy than that. Competition doesn't guarantee the victory for the best and the most elegant. Still, things would probably be even worse with no competition at all. Markets ain't fair.

    From the ordinary user's point of view things haven't actually evolved much. You want ease of use, fast response time and an intuitive interface to the system having only a bit more features that you'll ever need. No more than that. Except for today's gamers most of us could very well do our daily things with the CPU and hardware power of an A1200. (Some of us did those things even before the whole Amiga era so what's the fuzz?)

    It's just that the system environments have blown up. Sure you can't properly view that five-meg MS Word document with an Amiga 1200 but the problem is the five-meg document instead of the computing power and available resources. Writing a few dozen pages of nicely structured and layouted text into a document file wouldn't need to take a Pentium or better only if the applications and the operating system had to be one percent in size of those we use today. And that problem exists not only in the Microsoft realm. The newest Mozilla 0.6 on my computer is still slower than IBrowse on an 68030 equipped Amiga. Why do I find that it's most efficient to write my documents in XEmacs (which I actually loathed few years ago for being such a bloated piece of sticky Lisp) and then layout the plaintext just before printing? Why starting name-your-favorite-office-suite takes an eternity to load up and keeps crashing too? Have I gained anything in comparison to mid 90's when I wrote my documents in WYSIWYG with FinalWriter, browsed the web and even practiced serious programming on my Amiga. (I still have her working all right but using two computers conveniently together is a pain in the ass and PC feeds my family.)

    The growth (in size and the needed cpu cycles) of user and programming environments is understandable, of course. However, most of the reasons are silly. Using the horsepower just because it exists makes not much sense. Increasing the available horsepower because of badly written applications choke makes no more sense. It's nerdish to do thing because you can, without thinking how they should be done. Technocrats seem to think that everything can only be either bloated or cryptic. You don't need all the hundreds of megabytes to build a high-level application development environment where the programmer works more with abstract modules and objects instead of writing raw code, as we once used to say. Even efficient networking doesn't take that much power and resources. And finally, Joe the User wouldn't need most of the things he has today if he hadn't been told to need them.

    Then who needs to have a lot of resources and CPU power to consume for nothing? Probably the salesmen. Even hackers are happy with a minimal system that has left something out to hack on. Joe the Users can cope with such, too. I don't think multiplying the megahertzes or gigahertzes by some numbers each year has brought us anything remarkably good, uniquely useful and meaningful. Technology and the markets just have to stabilize their growth, it seems.

    Amiga had most of the nice things we have today about ten years ago. I hope the Amiga Inc. or whatever company it is today will survive for another ten years. It's somehow comforting to have it there, somewhere.

  • My point exactly. When you have to remove a system like a 1200 from its case and add a PCB of similar size to its motherboard, I think I'm justified in stating that the modifications are sufficiently extensive and expensive as to effectively discount the argument. Same Greg here, at work.
  • This mantra is really beginning to get on my nerves. The in-house software written by the majority of "software developers" is usually boring crap (database front ends et al.). The coolest jobs are ususally in the consumer market writing fun stuff such as OSes and web browsers. If companies like Opera, Be Inc or Amiga go out of business the only jobs left will be in doing frigging servlets for some deluded moron who's trying to cash in on the "New Economy". Then we'll be able to go home and with whatever little time we've left after 14hr shifts we'll have the dubious pleasure of coding unusable apps for a mediocre unix clone [] which has nothing going for it apart from being politically correct in the eyes of a handful of commie zealots []. Get lost.
  • From your user info: "cyber-vandal has posted 21 comments (this only counts the last few weeks)"

    Sure as hell you have a hell of a life son :).

  • I'll probably never use Amiga, but it's still good to see competition in the market.
  • First, the Voodoo 3 sucks. Most people can admit to that now . nVidia has taken the hardcore gamer's market, and if you've been reading Slashdot lately, you'll remember that nVidia now owns 3dfx in the literal sense as well. :-) 3dfx is dead, and talking about them will soon be as pointless as talking about Amiga.

    Secondly, the G4 is a nice processor, but not for Mac users. Look at what the average Mac user does with his machine, and you'll realize that the G4 is just ill-suited for Apple's market. Even the Photoshop-freaks are getting most of their performance boost from Altivec, not the processor. Modern Apple hardware has too much horsepower in all the wrong places, and the customer suffers by paying more for things they didn't need in the first place. But since when has Apple cared about its customers?

    If Apple were smart (we're being completely hypothetical here) they would have taken the route that Micrsoft has thrived on for years, and developed for x86. x86 isn't the fastest or best, but its value is not even approachable by any other arcitecture. In the comsumer PC market, nothing is as fast for as cheap.

    This is moot, however, because Mac users will soon be migrating to Windows Me (the one-stop solution for the home PC user) and Windows 2000 Professional (the desktop business platform of the new millienium). That's because Apple will soon be exiting the computer industry as Steve Jobs moves to the Caribbean and fulfills his childhood dream of being a Pirate. Mr. Jobs has always wanted to be a Pirate; roaming the high-seas in a speedy clipper ship, searching for lost treasure, battling ghosts, and sharing his life with a boatful of swarthy criminal sailors. Jobs, or Captain Nobeard (as he will soon be known), is currently accepting applications for members of his Pirate crew. You can apply to become a Pirate on Apple's website.

    Anyway, since I've just easily proven you to be completely wrong, I can only assume that you are a no-brained fancy boy, attempting to be contradictory because of your deep-seating angst towards heterosexuals.

    See you in hell,
    Bill Fuckin' Gates®.

  • Does anyone know of a good way of reading AmigaDOS floppies on a PC. I've got some work on old floppies and A4000 that I had access to went poof in the night! Literally!

    Otherwise I'm gonna see if I can get an old A500 and use a null modem cable to get the files to my PC.

  • I know that the amiga floppy drive was special, and I found with goodle, Reading Amiga Floppy Disks on PC [], which has links to hardware etc... Details listed are the CatWeasel PC ISA floppy disk controller [], but i have contacted a few of the vendors listed at Jens schoenfeld's suppliers [] but still no joy.

    I also dug up a diagram for a cable to connect an amiga floppy drive to a PC's parallel port, and a program to use with it, but i cannot seem to locate it... :(

    Only other method is to get an amiga up and running, and save the files in PCDOS format, which can be read by PC's, or use a term proggy and transfer that way, or connect to a network. but since my access to my A4000 was terminated by fire and brimstone my options are limited.

Last yeer I kudn't spel Engineer. Now I are won.