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TRIPOS 
A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 1:15:26
#1 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

For those who doesn't know, Olaf "Olsen" Barthel was the one who rewrote/ported/cleaned the original Commodore Amiga Operating System source code, making it possible to develop it further using a modern tool-chain. Without that effort, any further development (and indeed maintenance) of the OS -post Commodore- would have been very unlikely.

In that way he is an Amiga authority.

In the "Interview: Timothy De Groote - Director Hyperion Entertainment CVBA"-thread, Olaf Barthel raised some very interesting points and comments about the past, current and future situation of Amiga.

A selection (by me) of quotes from that thread follows. Any bold text was made by myself to highlight certain things, and the italic comments with smileys enclosed in square brackets are my comments:

  • "How many times the same subject has come up and kicked around only goes to show that what happened to the Amiga as a hobby, and as something to care for, went wrong, and this cannot and should not stand."

  • "You can see the results of that lack of money play out"

  • "I used to joke that when the Amiga system time base rolls over and becomes a negative number in 2046 somebody just might come knocking on my door and ask for a bug fix. Could be that the Amiga operating system will not have been open sourced by then, and people will have stopped caring for, or about it."

  • "Well, one more thing: what hurts me most, personally, is the talk about an Amiga community which could accomplish so much if only it had access to the real Amiga operating system source code. It hurts me personally, because by now I am painfully aware of how few people are left who are technically able or willing to learn how to make Amiga software. I know a thing or two about that subject. There used to be so many more around who were much more knowledgeable than I may be today. Where are they now? Who is going to assume the same responsibilities?

    Talking about the operating system without also considering how to care for it, and who could be doing it, neglects answering the more painful questions."
    [Well, this is what this thread is about! ]

  • Question: "Well, reading that, and also your post on amiga.org ("What did the availability of the source code make possible?"), would it be correct to describe you as an advocate of Open Sourcing the 3.1 source code?"

    Answer: "It's complicated (of course it is!).

    I can perfectly understand the need to open source the operating system as the means to maintain it, adapting it, fixing bugs, upgrading missing/insufficient functionality (e.g. large disk support in the mass storage drivers and the "HDToolBox" program).

    Do not put your hopes on this happening any time soon, though. In the long run my gut feeling is that it is inevitable. None of the guys who worked on the operating system are getting any younger, and right now one of the important tasks that need attention is to keep the operating system around in as decent shape as possible for the next generation of hackers to discover and make something out of it. This is the arc of Amiga operating system development and maintenance I picture right now and which I can support.

    Because this is likely going to be a long term project which has to span several years, maybe even a decade or longer, it pays to be prepared for it to become reality. If you want it to happen, you need to build alliances and try to keep in touch with the people who now (for better or worse) are the keepers of the operating system.

    Be smart about it. Criticism or flattery will get you somewhere, of course. Bring something to the table: those who currently take care of the operating system need to be sure that when open sourcing becomes an option, there is somebody around who will take good care of it. Building a community and an infrastructure for the open sourced Amiga operating system to grow around could serve as a starting point."

  • "My point is that the operating system will need to be maintained, and it becomes harder and harder to find the people who can do this job by hiring them or through consulting gigs. This would become easier if the operating system source became more accessible in the long term.

    The key word is "long term". I mentioned years, if not decades before there might be any development in this direction. I don't see any of the parties involved right now relinquishing access and control over the IPs which they acquired at great cost and effort.
    [Well, maybe there is! Look below! ]

    My advice to you was to spend the effort on making it easier for the IP owners to part with the property by providing a good home for it. When the time comes, you should be ready.

    More to the point, do not make the mistake of assuming that everything will fall into place, or that the goodwill of "the Amiga community" will be sufficient to pull this off. It is tempting to make assumptions that there will be some sort of community to rise to the challenge. We cannot predict how that community will look like after the years have gone by. Could be that all that's left will be a set of Amiga web forums in which the same people keep talking on and on about how to make something out of the Amiga again, while those who could have done just that have long retired."
    [Well indeed "the sooner, the better"! How does "it could possibly happen very soon" sound? ]

  • "The long-term strategy will persist, even if one of the players should drop out of the race or get bought-out by an outside investor."
    [i.e. putting the IP in a foundation, thus kind of giving it a life of its own, independent of any "owners"? Again, see below! ]


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TRIPOS 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 1:16:38
#2 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

Cloanto, the owner of the most important IP from the Commodore/Amiga era, the copyrights, recently made this post available to read (and discuss) here: http://cloanto.org:

A Discourse on Possible Futures

After more than 10 years as successful Commodore/Amiga developers, in 1997 Cloanto switched to "preservation mode" and released the first version of Amiga Forever. This was followed by C64 Forever, the 8-bit complement to Amiga Forever which is rightly seen by many as "CBM Forever". Since then, our work in this field has always been done at little or no pay, and with time that was taken away from other work and personal projects. Preservation was our quiet mission long before it became a celebrated buzzword. If you are familiar with what we do and why we do it, the challenges, the white hair, and the thick skin you need to run such an effort while both abiding by the law and listening to those who find fault with doing so, you already know that we don't need to wrap the same efforts under a "nonprofit" label to feel better. We do however realize that certain formal structures, while adding bureaucracy and other complications that as a lean team we are not overly enthusiastic about, may help convey trust and move towards the goals that we have been pursuing for more than 20 years.

For these reasons, at various Commodore/Amiga events which took place between September 2014 and January 2017, we started to privately and publicly discuss possible futures involving open source, a nonprofit and/or foundation, and other long-term preservation scenarios for the legacy which we worked so passionately to keep alive. A lot of work has already been done on this front (e.g. 1, 2, 3, 4), but so much more remains to be done. For now, this is only a discourse, and it needs your voice. On our side, we keep working as usual, attending community events and making things possible with the generous support of our customer-user-friends. While we already have contingency plans in place to preserve and make accessible our work in certain scenarios, one of the goals of handing over certain assets to a foundation or similar entity would be to better make it prosper during our lifetimes.

If you would like to support us in any way, or to simply express your interest in this ongoing effort, please enter your email address below. If you prefer, send us a message. Either way, we will follow up to continue the conversation.

[Then follows a form where you can submit your e-mail address]


That Cloanto has a complete package for preservationists covered is not news, but they are obviously interested in securing a long-term future of the Amiga legacy in a wider scope. They invite to an open discourse about this, and the fact that they put things on the table like "open source", "foundation", etc, suggests some evolutionist scope as well. Anything might be possible?

Cloanto obviously wants to open a discourse about this!

If you are willing to help in any way, please consider joining in! Developers etc, please consider submitting your e-mail. It's still early on in the discourse and my interpretation is that they want your input in shaping the future of Amiga to best be in the community's interest, much like what was sought for by Olaf Barthel in that other thread!



The "1, 2, 3, 4"-links in their message explains a bit (to those of you not knowing) who they are, what they have been doing, and some about their vision to secure and preserve not only the OS, games and applications, but ultimately the whole culture surrounding it, and also making it accessible for future generations.

As a service to you, fellow AW.net readers, I have undertaken the effort of transcribing the Youtube-speeches in link 2, 3 and 4, because I myself thought it was difficult to hear/understand what Michael said at some points. The posts follows in order below. I have tried to transcribe as accurately as possible, but at some points I simply couldn't understand what he said. Feel free to post corrections.

A suggestion (if you, like me, are not a native english speaker yourself) is to read the transcripts while listening to the Youtube clips.

I hope it helps someone!

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TRIPOS 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 1:17:48
#3 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

Amiga Users Ireland 2017 Meetup, 21st January in the Prince of Wales Hotel, Athlone



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8QlifyGv24

First of all, thank you Jonah(?) for organizing this, it was superbly organized Iíve been contacted and convinced to book already in November I think, and you followed up and everything was great. As usual itís the emotional, the family feeling I get at these events that also drives me here. This was totally unexpected now that he asked me to speak, I just dropped my coat, the bus was a bit late...

And yes, Iím first of all an Amiga user myself. I was a Commodore user before, I started with 8-bit programming. When the Amiga came out I thought it was the best hardware, the best software by far, at an affordable price at last, so it was my dream for like six months. When it came to Europe I started programming on it. I did some software for the handicapped, a word processor, then we expanded a little bit, we did Personal Paint, also with David Pleasanceís help we bundled it with every Amiga sold. That helped us grow, until in the nineties everything collapsed in a way, at least for us software developers when hardware sales stopped. There was no expansion anymore and we started looking for alternatives. So, we put Personal Paint and other projects on Aminet for free and we decided to do other things just to stay alive, but also to keep the fire alive by starting a legal emulation.

That was 96-97. In those years emulation was something borderline, almost criminal. You know there were companies who were stopping emulators and bringing them to the courts, there were police raids and so on. And even technology owners at the time, Gateway, were hinting in public forums that ďsomething had to be done about itĒ.

So, we approached them and we started with a license for the copyrights, trademarks and the patents, which was exclusive and which was expanded over time. Later it evolved into an acquisition of some IP, and so we kept investing in this. And you may know Amiga Forever and C64 Forever which may be/should be called ďCBM ForeverĒ because we are trying to keep alive the whole culture, also with authoring and features to support libraries and museums, and cataloguing tens of thousands of titles. So, we really do a lot of things, without government funding but all with the support, with the general support of real users who use the software.

For us the project is always a bit, almost ďin redĒ you know, itís self-sustaining, we invest also from our other business to business solutions, and the hours we put we donít even count. But as Trevor says, I think our hearts, thatís where our hearts are beating, no? So thatís why we do it.

And Iíd like to see it more in education for example. Just like Apple did Swift Playgrounds, I donít know if you have seen this in tablets, where children can start programming? Iíd like to see the documentation, an editor, a sprite editor, a sound editor, and everything where you can use it maybe in a classroom. I think Commodoreís 8-bit systems and Amiga systems are great machines, classic, they will never change, and great also to learn some about some real hardware. So, education is one front we would like to see more being done.

Mobile - hardware has been growing and making possible emulation on smaller devices. We have a long tail of ARM-based devices, Android compatible, Android devices. So, thereís a lot of cooperation and projects we are trying to expand and show what Commodore and Amiga was, and is, Forever, I think. So that was just an introduction. If you have questions thatís probably better to answer to...

Question: You were talking about Ö(?) for kids, would that be like Pico-8, which is a small educational(?) programming language

Answer: Iíve seen that. Well, uhm, Iíd like to seeÖ when I saw the Swift Playgrounds I thought thatís really what Iíd like to see on a tablet, in a school, in a classroom. Also with some features for teachers. Iíd like to see sound, sprites being editable, maybe you can drill down if you want into machine language, learn a bit of that. Hardware, custom chips, everything! These are real machines, and probably the last real machines that ďfit into your mindĒ you know, the way you could intimately know every feature and every trick of the hardware, whether itís 8, 16 or 32 bits.

Question: And itís for kids?

Answer: Yeah, so you know, maybe in tenÖ We have Raspberry Pi and many other examples, but for me the Amiga is a level beyond that, itís a classic that I think in ten years maybe they will know more about the Amiga than about the Raspberry Pi. Oops! I hope that Ė you are not recording this, are you, hehe?

Question: Is there a plan for like a full emulation Amiga Forever on Android? Because I find that emulation on Android is a real pain in the ass!

Answer: The Google Play store, and Android, has some benefits over iOS because they make possible 2-3 things that on iOS is not possible. To use Open Source under GPL license for example, which is incompatible Ė or claimed to be incompatible with the others. You can add content directly which the others donít like, and you can use emulation which also seems to be something against the rules of the other store. So already on 3 points it wins to make it possible.

As you know we have released Amiga Forever Essentials, which basically was a cooperation with other Amiga developers, I did personally meet with some of them, to see what could be done to make it really easy to one-click play, and what we are doing now on the PC-side, is that you can right-click and edit a title, I donít know if you have seen this feature? Basically Amiga Forever for Windows is a very powerful authoring platform. You can create a title, create a package where there is an XML-manifest with a configuration, the description, you can add auxiliary data like screen-shots, manuals, PDFís, texts, whatever. And this you can then play on mobile. So, you can simplify the user interface on mobile, and I think there is potential for synergy there, and we have some solutions which will just be waiting for things to happen both in terms of hardware improvements. And no need to, you know, separately download different disk images, configure everything for every title and so on. And you donít need a database also, every title is self-sufficient there.

Mike Battilana: Somebody asked me about Amiga Inc. I just wanted to say a word about wounds. Because I was in touch with Bill McEwen also recently, and when the question came up, I feel a little bit of pain for some of the wounds we have in the community. I think a lot of mistakes have been made, by different entities. We are all a little bit strange I think. If we are here in this room, if we have went through ups and downs and we invested ancient blood for the Amiga, so many hours, and still here, I think we are a bit, uhm, probably our priorities are different than those of maybe some other people.

I think there is a time also for peace and reconciliation and healing on some fronts. We are an open community and this is nice, we are inclusive, we are welcoming new members. We probably also were among the first to do radical transparency which is so powerful now in this century, and we did it by investigating some Amiga matters. We know the companies, we know everything about which Amiga company that went into what other company, and so on. But there is also real people there and they made their mistakes I think, they also tried hard, they put loans on their houses, their lives were ruined and everything. So, I think, uhm, there needs to be a balance also, and a welcoming also. And maybe where these anniversaries can be an opportunity to reembrace diversity also when mistakes were made.

So yes, I still see the signatures of Amiga Inc, the company seems to be still there, the same leadership, soÖ I guess itís not easy, because I know first hand when you are in a need, when you have maybe debt, you have to do other things to go on, as I said I can not speak for them but I see that in many, many Amiga companies. And I wish them well, and thatís something that may happen after all; there are assets like ďamiga.comĒ and other IP that maybe can be brought together in a big family again. SoÖ

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TRIPOS 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 1:18:39
#4 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

After-banquet show at the Amiga 30th in California (2015)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGxxNknzp_k&feature=youtu.be&t=9m47s

So normally when Iím here on the ground floor it feels like being with friends, but there is so many Amiga fans here that to me, Iím terrified, itís feels like testifying in congress here. So, Iíll need some help maybe, and Iíll explain why Iím here.

I started programming in the beginning with the Commodore Pet. Then I briefly wanted to experiment with colors on the Vic 20, and then the Amiga came out, and only that could be the machine. So, for more than 20 years I am an Amiga person.


Our company was incorporated based on that. We have been doing software for the handicapped, word processing, and Personal Paint was bundled with every Amiga sold in the last few months. We have the Commodore/Amiga Copyrights up to -93 and do preservation work. So, we are into Amiga Forever and C64 Forever as has been also mentioned in relation to that. So, when our software work started fading we switched to preservation. And thatís more of a passion project because we do other things for a living.


So thatís when I had more hair and some crazy...


Where is Dave? Dave, do you remember that? That was 1990. You were as yourself, I was like Amiga, Amiga something crazy.


So, this is strange, but Chuck here, and thatís me with the camera, Chuck here and Lee. We are actually still working together with like reverse-engineering pressure tablets and emulating that and so on. So, itís a strange thing, here we are Brilliance, DPaint and Personal Paint together, that must be Florida in -93 I think.

So why do we reverse engineer and these things? Because we like to preserve things, Iíll show you for just for a few seconds some things that are, havenít been shown yet.

And here for example for the first time how Andy Warhol, with color cycling enabled, which some other attempts didnít fully get, with color cycling enabled thatís how he would have seen it, in GraphiCraft. And thatís a first we are showing you tonight.


And in Personal Paint, which you now have, you can do that too. So, for example like the ballerina images from the 1985 presentation, on the back, you have this. There is to download an archive, itís more than 1.5GB, you can get all images or a windows installer if you prefer that. And there is Amiga Forever, with Personal Paint also, that you can use and you can play with it. So, Amiga Forever and C64 Forever with all the 8-bit systems as well. So thatís what we have been doing in the recent years, and thatís what you get in the archive. So, if you can get it in the next weeks itís best, because we will try to keep that online for at least two weeks, but probably for months, so...


So, things that are on my desk now, and for what I am also reaching out for help. We have cleaned up the Copyright Chain of Title, at least up to -93. Iím still working on -94 and later, so thatís basically itís updates and things about later, with other companies, to see how we can make this accessible.

Cataloguing means, you know there is thousands and thousands of titles, tens of thousands probably, combining 8-bit and Amiga more than 10,000 games alone but then there are demo scene productions, application software, personal projects like games written just for friends and family, and we need to empower the individual to preserve and catalogue that, and also institutions to make that accessible.

So, Unicode, well sinceÖ When you make a proposal for Unicode, well I have PETSCII actually here in mind, but they need you to give up some rights and since we have them now we are working to make a Unicode submission so that all listings from all magazines for example can be properly converted and retained you know. That will otherwise be lost.

We are going to support new high-DPI modes and PowerPC emulation.

And then we have to do our real work, because we areÖ you know, I cannot come with a big smile and say Iím a non-profit or a NGO or something like that. We are at loss, we need to sell Amiga Forever and C64 Forever, but we also have our business to business solutions that subsidies all work.


Yeah thatís a bit ofÖ We have 30 years now we can emulate, from the Amiga in 1985 to the PowerPC thatís coming this year, we have PCI-bridge, we have a lot of modern gigabyte RAM, PowerPC CPU, so in one system you can play and access things you may have never seen before.


And here is our friend Jason. Well, Jason is helping me, Iím very thankful for that, bringing awareness to the issue of preservation. But also as a backup plan; should you know, we die or one to die or whatever, we donít want history to repeat itself, and things be lost. So, we are in intense contact with the Internet Archives here in San Francisco to see how to best preserve things, because they have the resources, they have the long-term vision to make sure of things that we collect, with your help also, working so hard, we preserve and not lost once again. So maybe not everything can be made available for download immediately, but weíll make sure that they automatically unlock if something happens, and if we find options (or donors?) then maybe some things can be released before.


So, preservation means empowering the individualÖ In the software, you have ways to create your titles, adding description, documentation in an XML-based manifest to describe, auxiliary data, and configuration, combined with the media images. And you should be able to play this today, or in a hundred years from now. Regardless of what the emulator would be part of. So, different ways of cultures and subcultures, personally Iím a big fan of the demo scene for example, it deflects me, aspects which are quite unique of the 80ís and the 90ís, which were empowered by the Amiga for example. And we have so many personal works, people contacted us every day saying ďyou know, under my bed I have a collection of disks, I have my thesis, I have something important or something I would like to... So, we are trying to put together all the materials to for that to be accessible and hopefully also shared and definitely for long-term preservation, we want the Amiga to be remembered and answers to somethingÖ maybe pre-historic in a way, but hundreds of years(?) or whatever in the future. And thatís why we donít want to do this alone. So, a lot of complex things, we try to the top of that.


Some mentioned the legal aspects. We went through the trademarks, the copyrights...


The patents have expired, so the patents luckily have all expired now.


The trademarks is split in two with Escom and this C= Commodore Holdings, which owns the C= Commodore, everything else went to the Washington company and then the Delaware one which Bill mentioned in the video, and then settling with Hyperion and co-existing with us, we can use them too, so the trademarks are covered.


And the copyrights (canít hear? ďwe purchased themĒ?) so we are now at the end of the chain, which is also...


it feels like a burden, because we donít want to be ďevilĒ. So... thereís a give and take, and itís really difficult. When we started with emulation there were bomb threats because we ďwere going to kill the AmigaĒ in 1997. Now we ďare going to kill the PowerPCĒ, I donít know (canít hear). But itís not getting easier when you now have control over the copyrights. Luckily, unlike trademarks, we donít have to take action. But we can. So, as I said, in order to stay alive, we need to sell some things. I wish there were some large corporate donor, maybe (sorry, canít hear).


So, if you have any materials, any back-up tapes, any -whatever- under your beds, please letís get in touch, there is also my e-mail address in the archive. We really want very much to preserve that, in a high-quality way, with a long-term vision and with the right partners I think, so that there is the slightest possible chance that it will be lost again.

So, whatever. Donít worry about the copyrights, because we have those covered. And anything else we can discuss. In the long-term there will be even less problems. If you have concerns now we can have an exchange, because I am (terribly?) familiar with all the issues involved.

OK, thatís it! Thank you, itís great to be here!

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Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 1:19:39
#5 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

Saku 2014: Petro Tyschtschenko's speech (with Michael Battilana)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2L9wNzFxEh8&feature=youtu.be&t=44m50s

Petro Tyschtschenko: Yeah, so 2001 I get out of the business, but before I would like to mention my friend Mike. Heís also here, from Italy. Before I quit, before I left Amiga, I have done a license contract with Michael, who is the boss of Cloanto. I think you know him about his work, Amiga Forever. I remember, Mike, you asked me if this is a good name, do you remember? You said: I have a name, Amiga Forever, what do you think about it?

Michael Battilana: We had a list, and the consensus and Petro pushed a lot for it was for Amiga Forever was a good name. So, we contacted like a user-group in France or a publication. They had a similar name, or the same name, was it OK for them? They said yes, so we went ahead with this name and everything went fine. Thanks to Petro, in 1997 we presented at the Amiga event in KŲln.

Petro Tyschtschenko: Right, I remember. Was a nice time. Youíre a nice guy.

Michael Battilana: YOU are a nice guy, because it was difficult for you to push it also with Gateway I remember. Not everyone was convinced to licensed emulation would be a good thing, ďwould it kill the Amiga?Ē you know. It was awful, and we received bomb threats as you wrote in the book as well. So, it was a bit of tension, but Iím happy that it worked out. And this allowed to build on that license, and later also acquire some things too, and we hope that we can keep it alive for many more years to come. In the meantime, could you please sign my copy?

Janne Sirťn: And obviously Petro is here to sign whatever you like, soÖ

Petro Tyschtschenko: No, no, no! No checks!

Janne Sirťn: No, not checks, but you know, many things, Iím sure. Heís been known to sign, so his table is over there, for me on the left, on the right for you, so you can please go and talk to him also after the speech.

So, Michael, about licensing. You are still active with your Amiga Forever product and your C64 Forever product. Do you have any other products you are planning or wanting to discuss?

Michael Battilana: Well, this is a small niche. Itís wonderful in a perfectly organized event like this to see so many people. But still active users, whether they are real Amiga users or just an interest in emulation, there are not so many. So, every time we do something related to emulation, even with the support of Open Source or contributors or general supporters, itís always ... (sorry, canít hear) ... from our business solutions and investing it into emulation. So, we have some modular components in the recent versions of the players which are shared, and indeed they will allow us to make cross-platform, cross-emulation engine products, like DOS(?) Forever, Spectrum Forever, ST Forever when we have proper licenses of course. And maybe there will be something like this.

The other thing is that we are not just involved in emulation. Thanks to what started in 1997 we also inherited some of the trademarks, Ösorry, Copyrights! I must clarify this, as well as what we said about Andy Warhol, because I met him in the restroom and he said: ďPlease tell the people here that Iím not here anymoreĒ, he left us one or two years after the Amiga launch in New York. So, heís doing other things now.

But basically, the Intellectual Property that was so precious to Gateway and Escom, consisted of 3 items: Patents, trademarks and copyrights. The patents were so precious that even Gateway retained them and didnít pass them on to the next owners, they just licensed them. But in the meantime, the patents have expired, so they are not an issue anymore. When we first published Amiga Forever we also had to license the patents. So, we are left with Copyrights, which means manuals, videos, the ROMís, the floppy disk operating systems, things like that. And the trademarks. Trademarks you mentioned, Commodore was very interesting, itís also mentioned in your book, I donít want to spoil the story but itís really fascinating, some things that happened, notices being served in strange ways and so on. Commodore went to Tulip in the Netherlands already in the Escom times. But Amiga, and all the copyrights, including 8-bit and Amiga copyrights, they were handed over to Gateway and then to Amiga Inc and then later to us for the Classic systems. So, in a way we would also like to preserve the culture as a whole, not just to supply an emulation box or something like that.

It would be nice to see that, for example here we have many children you know, to have the C64 or the Amiga as a nice self-contained, easy to learn system to develop software also. To learn how a real machine works with all the subsystems, graphics and sound and low-level and operating system. So maybe that is also a thing we could do. And of course, it would be nice to introduce new generations. In a way it is cool, retro is cool even to people who has never seen an Amiga, because it was before the 80ís you mentioned before, they were born later. We also have parents and grandparents were introducing their games of their youth to new generations, and it was very nice to see them playing, and I asked: ďwhich is your favorite game?Ē, and he said: ďthis oneĒ, and so on.

And maybe we can, with the communityís help, and now with the community Ė I have to mention Toni, who did a superb work, Toni Wilen, he recently started working on PowerPC emulation as well. So again, we are ďkilling the AmigaĒ for the second time maybe, I donít know, maybe itís a new life because itís already faster than the Classic PowerPC board.

So, whatever happens there is a Plan B, and in one way even for the real hardcore Amiga fans we have this Plan B for long term support. Weíve designed five formats for preservation, we work with museums, we just finished a project with Barbican in London also related to some Andy Warhol works. We have some, some also our own copies of some floppy disk work which was recovered years ago.

And so... itís always fascinating how the digital arts, gaming, culture, demo scene and many things connect thanks to Commodore Amiga. Itís really... itís part of our heritage, and Iím really excited now speaking about this, thinking about this. But the 80ís and the 90ís are so intertwined with this that they speak of each other, and they tell a story. And I think itís very important to preserve this. We have tens of thousands of games and other titles related to Commodore and Amiga, so thatís closing the circle of what you said. We are proud to be deeply a part of the Commodore Amiga because I myself was born out of this. But yes, if we could apply this to other platforms it would be helpful, because our resources are limited so if we can re-use some of the work and experience it would be more efficient.

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Senex 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 6:39:02
#6 ]
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Posts: 113
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@TRIPOS

Thank you for the hard work of transcribing those speeches, I've pointed our readers to it.

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elwood 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 10:20:53
#7 ]
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Joined: 17-Sep-2003
Posts: 3392
From: Lyon, France

@TRIPOS

also with time always flying away, not so many people will know AmigaOS in the end.
Since we lost Gary Peake, I wonder how many of us will still be on the platform in the next decade...

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outrun1978 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 10:31:57
#8 ]
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Joined: 22-Feb-2015
Posts: 318
From: Stockport, England

@thread

positive advocacy of all the Amiga flavours (OS4/Classic/Vampire/MorphOS/Aros) is what will attract new people to the platform. The current remaining userbase has the responsibility to ensure that we are all doing our bit to promote this.

Sadly when you look on the main Amiga forums people are sadly focus on what it can't do or are still interested in insisting one flavour is better than the other and it gets a tad too political and sadly when you ram too much politics down peoples throats ad-nauseum the end result is that they get turned off....

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elwood 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 13:12:10
#9 ]
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Joined: 17-Sep-2003
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From: Lyon, France

@outrun1978

There will always be people that waste their time talking instead of working to push the OS/community forward. But the more "good people" there are, the more the "bad people" will be left out of sight in the depth of the forum

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iggy 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 13:24:24
#10 ]
Super Member
Joined: 20-Oct-2010
Posts: 1175
From: Bear, Delaware USA

@TRIPOS

Quote:
the owner of the most important IP from the Commodore/Amiga era


You definitely over estimate the value of 3.1.
The source code wasn't really that much use in creating 4.0.
It wasn't used at all to create MorphOS or AROS.

So as far as NG goes, the API was useful, but that was documented long ago.

As to Amiga OS 3.x itself, that should have been public domain by now.
Paying for it is almost as silly as paying for a copy of Win 3.1 or Win 98.

Basing new hardware on it is a bit sillier.

Your entire focus for the last several weeks seems to be around the idea that Cloanto and Hyperion will somehow free up the rights to this IP.
Hey, ain't happening.

And, as AROS 68K improves, it may not be that important.

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Hypex 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 16:05:31
#11 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 8624
From: Greensborough, Australia

@TRIPOS

At first I thought you were talking about a possible diverging of Amiga Future magazine and different ones for the future.

You have obviously put so much effort into posting this that I barely read the introduction and had only touched the surface.

But one theme does stand apart: Open source.

What seems unclear is to open source OS3.x or OS4?.x Or even a younger version. Although the original code would be seen as deity status I wonder if it would even be necessary to open source it?

Because with AmigaOS the API is publicly documented. Every function that user code can call is listed. Every function that is a system only private call can be recreated. There are even ASM source rips with comments. And some C examples of internal code.

But wait. We have AROS and MorphOS. Which have recreated AmigaOS in various levels of accuracy. Some may say they reverse engineered AmigaOS to get the info they needed. There is no need to reverse engineer when you are recreating. Infact trying to reverse engineer when you are rewriting a fresh version can work against you.

Of course in this lot is AmigaOS4. Which would only have the lead in this case because it is based off the original source. There may be original developers involved but that is not exclusive to OS4. There is only one root of any AmigaOS variant today but many opinions of developers who†have spoken through their code.

There is also a theme of possible unification between all AmigaOS divergents. But I don't see things happening this way. Nor do I desire it. It's too late for that. Just as it's too late to bring out a new Amiga. The AmigaOne tried but it was too late. There was too much gap between the Amiga and the One. There was a missing link.

You mentioned evolution here. Here's a topic. Modification and descent. Regardless of chicken or egg AmigaOS came first. And yes I may be using a modern term but AmigaOS is logically the OS of the Amiga and envelops Kickstart, Workbench, Intuition and all other Amiga OS software concepts aside from the hardware itself. AmigsOS4, MorphOS and AROS are descended in some form from the AmigaOS root kind itself with modification.

Linux is an example of this. When one distro closes another distro opens. If you are ever near a Linux bar a Linux distro is sure to be near by! And if ever there was an example of modification and descent Linux would be it. The whole family is every where. All encompassing different ideas of the Linux universe. An example of what happens when many people have their own ideas about one single idea.

I don't think the Amiga in any modern form can move forward by looking back to past source code. Even if that source is like a software god in its own right. Or the original creation of the Amiga god. 'And Amiga said. "Let there be code." And there was Kickstart. And it was good.'

What Amiga OS needs these days is new features. The first is last. And the last is first. The Amiga set the standards and others were the trailblazers. But now, the standards are considered poor and Amiga is playing catch up. Be good if Amiga could set new standards but it needs to meet standards first. And that's hard.

And that's all for now.

Last edited by Hypex on 20-Jul-2017 at 03:46 PM.
Last edited by Hypex on 17-Jul-2017 at 04:38 PM.

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iggy 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 18:43:42
#12 ]
Super Member
Joined: 20-Oct-2010
Posts: 1175
From: Bear, Delaware USA

@Hypex

Well said.
All this discussion of 'preservationists', open sourcing, etc., ... its kind of irrelevant.
Frankly, it wasn't THAT great of an operating system to begin with, and the primary reason for preserving the API is compatibility and continued development from a familiar base.

All these fantasies about how development will somehow blossom if 'real' AmigaOS is made more available are just that, fantasies.
About a silly as the idea that the word 'preservationist' applies to software that is commonly available.

Buildings, property, physical places, that's the general use for that term, not ephemeral products like software.
And its not like AmigaOS stands a chance of being lost (like MP/M and some variants of CP/M have been).

Your 'preservationists' are really just looking for a revenue stream from a threadbare claim to ownership of an IP.
So, again, they are REALLY unlikely to open this software up (as that would eliminate the chance to profit from it).

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IridiumFX 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 19:31:35
#13 ]
Member
Joined: 7-Apr-2017
Posts: 15
From: London, UK

Actually I think Mike has a valid point. Lurking for ages I learned that most of us are dreaming impossible dreams. Amiga is what it is. Dreaming of innovations, going back to the forefront of technology stack, we don't have the resources.
If even the mighty Microsoft and IBM fight to stay relevant in an age dominated by stronger players, does it make sense at all to fight each other for scraps of an era long forgotten?
There will never be a mainstream Amiga again. It won't be The Amiga OS, won't be Morphos, won't be AROS nor the AmigaOS.
Maybe the only salvation would be to stop fighting and badmouthing each "camp" and spend time coding. A platform should live of its merit, not of preachers and evangelists

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iggy 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 21:48:49
#14 ]
Super Member
Joined: 20-Oct-2010
Posts: 1175
From: Bear, Delaware USA

@IridiumFX

Actually, I'm completely baffled reading your post as to what it is you think is in contention.
Of course we need to work across various Amiga related platforms.
After all, we have a common API to work from, and doing so broadens our potential market for software.

And I'm not interested in 'bad mouthing' anyone, although I DO think its naive to insist that Cloanto is a 'preservationist'.
Its a company selling an old OS, plain and simple.
In that regard, at least Hyperion wants to sell an updated product.

Cloanto on the other hand appears to have just realized that there might be a market for an OS that has seen further development.
Since software development hasn't really factored into their marketing (unless you count polishing others public domain software), we'll have to see how that goes.

As to whether OS4, MorphOS, or any other NG OS is ever likely to be 'mainstream', I'm not sure it matters to me as I rather liked using hardware and software from alternative players before IBM and Apple came to dominate the market.
Come to think of it, was Amiga ever really 'mainstream'?

In any case, like I've posted here and on other forums recently, we seem to be experiencing a kind of renaissance in the Amiga community right now.
We have new hardware and software developments in the NG markets, and new hardware and software for legacy systems.
We are even going to see a 'new' legacy system created when Jens introduces his A1200 boards.
Factor in the developments in FPGA systems like the Vampire, and the slow but steady progress being made in PPC systems...its all pretty cool.

SO, contention I can handle (after all, its an embedded feature in the community), but things ARE looking up.

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Trixie 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 17-Jul-2017 22:47:48
#15 ]
Super Member
Joined: 1-Sep-2003
Posts: 1591
From: Czech Republic

@iggy

Quote:
I DO think its naive to insist that Cloanto is a 'preservationist'

You need to take everything Tripos says with a huge pinch of salt. Recently he has been rather vocal around here as regards OS development history, and has come up with terms such as 'preservationist', 'checkmark branch' or 'boingball branch' - terms that are entirely of his own making and that have no real meaning whatsoever outside of his own mindset.

Last edited by Trixie on 17-Jul-2017 at 10:48 PM.

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tonyw 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 18-Jul-2017 0:16:24
#16 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 8-Mar-2003
Posts: 3097
From: Sydney (of course)

@Trixie

One has to differentiate between the Classic OS (1.x - 3.1) and the current OS (4.x). There is no question of 4.x being made open source any time soon - there are too many active developers (myself included) who are not going to give away their work for free. I leave out 3.5 and 3.9 because H&P aren't going to release their sources either.

Open-sourcing the Classic OS might be less problematic, depending on who "owns" it at the time. But what would be gained by releasing 25 year-old sources? As has already been pointed out, their API has been known for years and of what use is a bunch of 68k assembler code or old C code? This is code that doesn't need to be maintained - it works and no one would reuse any part of it to write new code. Nothing would be gained.



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Zylesea 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 18-Jul-2017 0:42:32
#17 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 16-Mar-2004
Posts: 2023
From: Ostwestfalen, FRG

@tonyw

Quote:

tonyw wrote:

. But what would be gained by releasing 25 year-old sources?



You can do someting like AfA but not as a rather ugly hack hack, but with modifications/changes/replaces on the original.

Btw. there's a new release of AfA available.

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Rob 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 18-Jul-2017 0:43:19
#18 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 20-Mar-2003
Posts: 5560
From: S.Wales

@iggy

Quote:
Come to think of it, was Amiga ever really 'mainstream'?


It certainly was as a gaming platform in Europe. The operating system itself never was though since a lot of those Workbench disks that came with an A500, A600 or A1200 probably never even entered the floppy drive. As a writer in a magazine once put it, "The Amiga OS was Commodore's best kept secret".

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TRIPOS 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 18-Jul-2017 1:32:22
#19 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

@Trixie

Quote:

Trixie wrote:

You need to take everything Tripos says with a huge pinch of salt.


Oh, my. Here we go again...


Quote:
Recently he has been rather vocal around here as regards OS development history


...and everything is perfectly verifiable and already known to everyone who hasn't had their heads buried in the sand for about two decades.

My God! Sometimes I get the feeling that history-revisionism is the true hobby around here...


Quote:
and has come up with terms such as 'preservationist'




A hint: "preservationism" is more of a folk-movement than some "evil term" invented by me for some sinister purpose!

Go ahead, look it up! Google is your friend! (At least if you want to find sources of info outside "the narrow circle")

Quote:
'checkmark branch' or 'boingball branch' - terms that are entirely of his own making and that have no real meaning whatsoever outside of his own mindset.


Call them what you want, I don't care. I just thought that "Boing Ball" was kind of a clever name for that branch, since it coincided so well with the introduction of the Boing Ball graphical mark as a trade mark for marketing the various scattered post-Commodore development. Before that, however, the checkmark was more commonly used for marketing purposes, making it kind of suitable (IMHO) to illustrate the Commodore lineage branch of products.

I doubt that you can come up with any more natural and self-explanatory names/symbols for the branches. But indeed, do try! It's not like they are trade mark protected or so. Oh, wait! They are (at least the Boing Ball, which means it can't even be used by the other branch!)!

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TRIPOS 
Re: A Discourse on Possible Amiga Futures
Posted on 18-Jul-2017 1:32:56
#20 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 4-Apr-2014
Posts: 810
From: Unknown

@iggy

Quote:

iggy wrote:

Frankly, it wasn't THAT great of an operating system to begin with


Oh, boy!

This wasn't a technical discussion, not a comparison about "what OS is the best" for Christs sake!

Maybe not for you, but for many of us still remaining here, the Amiga (and the 8-bit machines before it) had a huge impact on our lives. For me personally, I'd go as far as saying the C64 (Vic20 before that) and the Amiga defined me, it made me who I am. I know for a fact that I am not alone. We are a whole generation. I want those platforms (and as much as possible of the culture and everything surrounding them) to remain. I want it to be secured for the future, to be made accessible for my children as well, and their children, and generations to come. And I know I'm not the only one!

If you don't understand what I'm talking about, if you can't even acknowledge this need, if you think "it wasn't THAT great", then maybe participation in this discussion is not for you?

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