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hardware OS4   hardware OS4 : 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
   posted by Mikey_C on 6-Jun-2005 10:33:06 (67888 reads)
Amigaworld is pleased to announce that the 20 Answers to the 20 Questions as asked by our members are now available to Read...

(Warning Not for the faint hearted)

Before answering these questions I think it is worth having a quick resume about how we all arrived at this point.

At the WoA show in Kensington, London in July 1999 Jim Collas announced a wonderful revival for the Amiga in which existing platform supporters, such as us, were meant to become very closely involved. Less than a month later he was sacked, and by the following New Year the Amiga IP had once again changed hands. In the summer of 2000 Bill & Fleecy with still some vestige of their original venture capital left, were focussing on their DE vision. That left the existing dealers such as us with no 'real' Amiga product to sell in the foreseeable future, and therefore the need to explore other, non-Amiga, avenues.

The following September Fleecy visited me and asked if we would consider project managing and funding the development/manufacture of a new PPC-based Amiga. Amiga Inc themselves were to develop - or fund the development of - a port of Amiga OS 3.9 to run on this new platform. This really was not our type of business, but as nobody else was prepared to do anything I (probably foolishly in retrospect) took up the challenge in order to prevent the Amiga as we know it from fizzling out. We spent money with Escena to produce an A1200/PPC hybrid but that in the end proved technically too complex for Escena to implement. We subsequently came to a licencing arrangement with MAI logic to use a board design that they had commissioned as an Articia development system as the basis of the new AmigaOne platform. We hold all the schematics and build files and (obviously) the licence to continue to build existing A1 products using the board manufacturer of our choice.

Amiga Inc ran out of money and so couldn't fund OS4. Ben, Fleecy and I brokered a deal whereby Hyperion ported OS4 at no charge to Amiga Inc and, in return, Hyperion would keep the subsequent sales revenues for OS4 on the AmigaOne platform. In the end this turned out to be a much, much bigger task than Hyperion had reckoned on, and several times the project came very close to folding. We had to step in on more than one occasion to keep it afloat. Please make no mistake, without Eyetech putting its money on the line there would not just have been no AmigaOne, there would have been no OS4 either.

The fact that new hardware was delivered, together with a functional version of OS4 is against all odds. And the fact that Hyperion and we ever decided to make it happen defies all commercial logic. What has been delivered is not perfect, but is absolutely remarkable given the pitifully small potential market to support the product. This is a product by enthusiasts for enthusiasts, not some mass volume high street product. It was conceived for delivery in the forgiving optimism of the Amiga community that was the defacto mood around the new millennium, and before the blue/red troll wars poisoned all genuine initiatives on both sides.

The bottom line is that we got very low volume, new (and therefore defacto not mass tested) PPC hardware into peoples hands when nobody else would do anything. We did that on the basis that we would keep the costs as low as possible for those early adopters who were prepared to share some of the risk. The alternative would have been to price the boards to cover that risk (in consumer terms) making the boards at least three times as expensive to end users. (And prices must be based on manufacturing costs for these small volumes, and not the sales prices of bare, mass-produced PC boards). More realistically this would almost certainly have represented a level of risk too far, with the result that there would have been no AmigaOnes and no OS4. After all anyone could have bought essentially the same product (without UBoot or OS4, but with full support) direct from from MAI Logic for $3900.

In fact as it stands today it would have been far cheaper for us to have given all current board owners $500 each not to buy a board and walked away from the whole Amiga scene in early 2001. We didn't - we stuck with it. In this context you can understand it is hard to feel anything but frustration when the forums are full of armchair lawyers, designers, hardware experts and business analysts who all claim to be able to do better but seem curiously reluctant to take the same risks, exposure and initiative that we have.

So in the light of this I have attempted, as always, to answer the questions as honestly as I can as of the time of writing. Also as always, things may arise in the future which are not known now, just as we now have more knowledge now than we did 2 or 3 years ago. Please note however that I am not interested in playing retrospective word games with professional point scorers and will limit my responses accordingly.

Alan Redhouse, Eyetech

1: Paulsamiga What is the current situation regarding the A1-XE & SE fixes and warranty?

There are no 'officially sanctioned' XE UDMA repairs. There is no layout issue with the motherboard as far as the IDE stuff is concerned. IDE UDMA works fine unless the ethernet driver is started. This is either a driver or (more likely IMO) a VIA initialisation issue. All the 'fix' does is to use a hardware trick to give the VIA higher bus priority which, by chance, was found to stop it putting out illegal data on the PCI bus (causing the DMA to hang) when the ethernet is in operation. It may yet turn out to have side effects and is NOT a solution recommended by us.

The XE usb is missing 15k pull down resistors on the data and clock lines due to a misinterpretation of the VIA documents by the board designer. However it works fine unless you are continuously plugging and unplugging usb devices. If you use a ~3 minihub (or a bay mounted cardreader etc) for those devices you wish to hotswap then that fixes the problem and is cheaper than any other solution, including postage.
Warranty on all products shipped by us is 12 months in the end-user's hands or 15 months from us shipping to the dealer, whichever is the shorter. This excludes damage caused by any kind of fiddling about by the end user (eg overclocking or cpu voltage experiments) and all forms of consequential loss.
We offered generous trade-in terms on the SE boards up to 12 months from purchase, as we had a commercial outlet for the traded-in boards at that time. That opportunity is now long passed, and any purchasers who did not take up this offer will have to live with their (non) decision I'm afraid.
There are no known additional USB faults on the SE boards (over that of the XE boards) and as these have been obsolete since the XE's came out we have no boards, expertise (or budget) to look into this further

2: MetalJoe: There are some concerns from a few people in the community about the chances for new companies wishing to licence hardware for AmigaOS 4. Amiga Inc have stated that any such licence approvals will be made in consultation with their partners (i.e. yourself and Hyperion), so as not to interfere with their business plans. Can you assure people that Eyetech will not hold a monopoly and will welcome other hardware solutions?

It is such a tiny market and the costs of entry are so high that no commercial concern in its right mind would get involved. Without a 'monopoly' this tiny market would be even more fragmented, making for even smaller production volumes and much higher prices.

Part of the deal that Hyperion and we struck with (the Bill and Fleecy) Amiga Inc was that there would be exclusivity on the use of the AmigaOne name for us, and of the Amiga OS4 brand for Hyperion's OS development. This was in order to protect our respective large investments in the A1/OS4 project from sudden changes of mind by Amiga Inc. In particular, as Amiga Inc were desparately short of cash at that time, both Ben and I were concerned that financial pressures may force Amiga Inc to unilaterally decide, for example, to allow MorphOS to be rebranded as OS4 even though much earlier negotiations between Amiga Inc and MorphOS had apparently irretrievably broken down. These safeguards were therefore embedded in our respective agreements, as is normal, sensible business practice.

This exclusivity is in itself no big deal. Competition only has any significant effect on prices when the market is large and unrestricted and volumes reaches mass-production (500,000+ per year) proportions. Selling at a loss to try to gain market share in a tiny, finite market is obviously unsustainable for any company that tries it (there have been examples) and is not actually in the long term interests of end users either.

3: Jahc: What details can you give us on upcoming CPU upgrade modules? Speed, price, estimated date of availability, etc..

These are being developed by third parties and are dependant largely on the price/volume of cpu's and MegArray parts. The general feeling is that the cpu prices on offer are too high to allow the developers to sell the minimum order quantities of cpu's, largely because of the current demand being generated by the Mac Mini. We expect the prices of low power consumption G4 cpus to fall later this year which will hopefully make this a viable option for those third parties.

4: Toaks: we need more developers , why not consider a renting service for AmigaOne's to potential developers?

That is something that would have to be done locally (by dealers or enterprising individuals - perhaps yourself?) to fall within specific countries credit regulations, and also to stand a reasonable chance of actually receiving monthly payments and the return of the boards at the end of the rental period.

5: Hondo_DK: Has something been planned for the release of OS4?, special cabinets, marketing, new boards, etc??

No, this would be down to individual dealers.

6: Chunder: Are the previously planned versions of the AmigaOne (e.g. A1-I, A1-XC, etc.) still going to happen? Have the specifications changed; have the boards been prototyped fully yet? Is there a scheduled production run yet (not necessarily the date, just a

No new board designs will be made (by us at any rate) specifically for the 'Amiga Enthusiast' market. It just simply is not viable given the tiny potential sales.

Both the A1-I and A1-XC have been designed and the A1-I has been prototyped. The final specification for both boards (and other designs/variations) will inevitably be modified before they go into production, if and when this happens. Boards will only go into production when we have volume orders for them from industry.

7: RWO: If/When the AmigaOne XC become a reality will there be a trade-in/exchange for SE/XE motherboards at a lower price (with/without cpu module) ?

No, not from us although individual dealers may devise such schemes. It would not be cost effective to produce/sell incomplete boards or re-test traded in boards or modules.

8: Swoop: Is there a PPC set top box planned based on AmigaOS4 ?

Not by us

9: Gnarly: What (if anything) are you doing about the problems running Linux to its full potential on the AmigaOne boards?

Nothing - that is not a general purpose market that we are addressing. Others can address it if they wish using A1 hardware, but it is difficult to see how a PPC-based general purpose computer can be cost effective against a mass produced and better supported x86 based product. For the 'embedded' (ie limited-range functionality) applications we will use the most cost effective software/firmware solutions for the job in hand (which obviously takes development status and licence fees as well as OS characteristics into account).

10: MetalJoe: What are your plans for the server market? Will you be assisting with LinuxPPC (or even BSD) support for the AmigaOnes?

We have no plans to address this market yet (see linux comments above) and therefore no plans to devote resources to it.

11: Eric_S: If a good business opportunity regarding (selling) non Mai hardware presented itself, would you act on it? Or are you tied in (directly or indirectly) your current business dealing with Mai in such a way that you can only deal/sell their hardware?

Any significant business opportunities for which we have a good prima facie chance of success (ie making an adequate financial return) will be evaluated (as always). The current 'Amiga Enthusiast' ppc board market is not such an opportunity in itself, either with the MAI or alternative northbridge components. However if you have a fully costed, realistic alternative business proposal to put to us then please do so.

BTW MAI do not make hardware (or chips for that matter) - they are a fabless chip design and marketing company.

12: Wegster: RAM seems to be causing issues for many users, going back to both the SE and XE boards, in some cases, RAM purchased from Eyetech even being incompatible. While it may be unreasonable to expect an exchange for older purchases, it remains a problem with the uA1-Cs with their 256MB of RAM and single socket limitation, as many users want to run at least 512MB of RAM to dual boot AOS and Linux. Are there plans to either offer 512MB as a standard configuration so users don't 'throw out' the 256MB they are currently forced to purchase with the uA1-C, or any plans to produce compatible 'guaranteed' RAM at a more reasonable cost?

The only instances that I am aware of where RAM from us was incompatible with the XE/SE boards is in the handful of cases where we ordered Kingston RAM with Infineon chips and were shipped DIMMs with Toshiba chips. A few got sent out before we realised - we contacted those affected and asked for them to be returned at our expense to be replaced by the correct ones. Most did, a few didn't so there may still be the odd incompatible stick out there.

For the A1 we specified that the boards were to be tested with compatible RAM before shipping to us. We specified 256MB because 512MB would have pushed the price up quite a bit and was on a long leadtime (so there would have been no A1's for Christmas).

We will look at the cost and availability of 512MB - and its effect on the end user pricing - for subsequent production runs - but no promises. Whatever the outcome all boards in a manufacturing run will have the same type/size of SODIMM.

13: Wegster: Alan, you've been fairly quiet in the community lately for some time now, while many try to ascertain the state of their warrantees for fixes of their XEs, as well as owners of the older SEs. Some feel particularly betrayed as XEs were marketed as 'consumer grade,' and the lack of public attention to this has left many users cold. Does Eyetech have any intention of honouring their warrantees, and/or provide a solution for SE owners of any kind? Can you clarify this situation for once and for all?

All these points have been dealt with elsewhere in these 20 questions

14: Argo: There have been discussions on various websites about users rather bad experiences with current dealers in regards to boards in stock, shipping, and service. Even Mr. Hare mentioned difficulty in purchasing an AmigaOne. What is Eyetech doing or planning to do to improve dealer issues?

The dealers are doing their best in the face of the tiny volumes and small overall returns they can get from the 'Amiga Enthusiast' market. Many of them are keeping going because of their love of the platform rather than for any business rationale. All have other revenue streams which dwarf their returns from the Amiga market (or they have day jobs as well) - they must have in order to eat!

Eventually dealers will polarise themselves into those addressing industrial markets and those serving the residual 'Amiga Enthusiast' market

Due to bad experiences with shipping boards to some dealers on credit terms last year we now do not send out any boards without payment clearance before shipping. In every case I have seen (which is not many) where a customer reports that a dealer has told them that they are waiting for us to ship boards, it is because we are waiting for that dealer to pay us.

On the specific issue of Amiga Inc - they asked us to save two boards for a specific dealer to build up into systems for them. We did, but the dealer never sent us the money for the boards, so we never sent the boards to him. I do not know, or wish to know, the particular arrangements that Amiga Inc entered into with the dealer concerned, whether he managed to buy boards from another dealer or even if Amiga Inc bought their systems elsewhere.

15: Zorro: The GX cpu that Eyetech fitted on almost all the A1 are causing some random issues to the users and, mostly important, to Hyperion and other developers (Ibrowse). If this will take to a hardware fault, do you plan to replace/fix those cpu modules? (this is an end-user board)

These issues are I believe down to software/firmware not being set up correctly to take account of the different cache sizes between the Fx and Gx cpus. In the cases brought to our attention it has been resolved by a UBoot update.

16: RedMelons: Up until Summer 2003, Total Amiga magazine contained the always informative 'Alan Redhouse Column', and full page advertisements for the AmigaOne. Do you intend to re-commence advertising/publicity for the AmigaOne, and hopefully also your column in Total Amiga?

No, for two reasons. Firstly our original support (adverts, my column, our promotion of individual copies and subscriptions to our own customer base) was to help get Total Amiga off the ground to the point that the subscription levels made it a more-or-less a financially viable entity. I believe that this has been achieved.

Secondly the 'Amiga Enthusiast' market does not generate sufficient profit for us to be able to indulge ourselves (in reality myself - all our former 'Amiga' staff and most of me are off doing proper revenue-earning things unconnected with the Amiga Enthusiast market) in non-essential time consuming activities. Even these 20 answers are being typed on my laptop on holiday!

In reality - because I really like the Amiga platform - I personally spend far more time on 'Amiga Enthusiast' activities than can possibly be justified from a business point of view. But we all have to make a living by doing other things (and this includes the dealers) and fit in Amiga stuff when we can.

17: Ktadd: If a large China, or other large, deal doesn't come through, is the current demand for Amiga One boards enough to support continued manufacturing and investment?

No - there never was (or will be) enough demand alone from the 'Amiga Enthusiast' market to support manufacturing and investment, either in the past or in the future. The availability of updated A1 products for the 'Amiga Enthusiast' are entirely determined by our success (or otherwise) in promoting A1/OS4 based solutions into external commercial markets. That is why we have been spending our time working hard for success in these markets, rather than with the day to day goings on in the 'Amiga Enthusiast' market as typified by the AW membership. I cannot overstress the point that it is only success in these commercial markets that will bring more advanced, lower cost A1/OS4 type products to the Amiga Enthusiast market - and not vice versa.

I have to say that the negative comments about the boards (and Eyetech) posted on AW and elsewhere do not help instil confidence in potential commercial purchasers, even though those comments do not directly relate to the specifications required by those potential customers. In other words the more vociferous the criticism the less likely you are to see new products.

18: Dauber: I have the microA1-C, which is said to be able to handle up to 2 gigabytes of RAM. How is that possible with only one SODIMM slot and with no SODIMMs bigger than 512 megs available?

Clearly the board can support SODIMM sizes up to 2GB if they are/become available. The single SODIMM slot was not a secret suddenly sneaked in to the specification after you bought your board!

19: Billt: How does one apply to become an official and/or approved rework facility for AmigaOne motherboard modifications?

There is no officially approved rework for the AmigaOne - see above.

For people with a provable reputation that they know what they are doing, and who are prepared to accept all the consequences of screwing it up then we can release the USB/UDMA 'fix' information on receipt of a signed NDA/disclaimer.

20: Mikey_C: Where do you see the Amiga platform in the short to medium term and do you hope Eyetech will still be involved?

Into industries/applications where the OS itself is not important, but where there is a major drop in cost of ownership by employing ppc and/or OS4 technology, however invisible to the end user.

We will continue to support the Amiga Enthusiast community provided it continues to be fun and, overall, pays its direct costs. I'm afraid I don't do things that aren't fun any more, other than for relatively short periods of time - life's just too short!

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 17:09:17
#201 ]
Super Member
Joined: 28-Apr-2003
Posts: 1797
From: Perth Australia


Aside from the odd stray post this thread has been really good. It's realistic and honest.

I for one agree. And there have been some really good contributions.

Greg Schofield, Perth Australia

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 17:26:34
# ]

Please forgive me for this as technicaly it's a double post.

I'm quoting my other post here as I think it has more place in this thread than where I put it.


I know a bunch of people might be shocked by the situation, but I've suspected this to be the case since before I joined this website. Remember, I came back after a long time away. You don't do that if you think the platform has died.

The situation with the hardware has ground to a halt. Not that there was anything wrong with the hardware (Bugs aside). The problem is lack of confidence.

Buisnesses don't want to get involved. Users don't trust buying the hardware and it's not surprising given the amount of bad publicity the community has generated with this stupid red v blue war.

The only logical step to take is to get away from the community and sell to a neutral buyer as stated by Alan. Sadly, anyone who types "Amiga" into google is going to find nothing but plots, deception and a whole lot of FUD.

Time to change the plan. The Amiga needs to start generating good publicity. That means people making demos, charting in these "breaking-the-code" league tables. Something, Anything to get the good vibes flowing again.
This is not going to be possible if everyone sits on their hands and waits for Eyetech/Hyperion/Amiga Inc to do something. This is something that only the community is capable of doing.

Go to your user group. Encourage people to get creative. If you want the platform to work, YOU are going to have to work to get it going again. I'm talking to everyone reading this. All you lurkers out there. Everyone.

Your computer needs YOU!

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 17:53:13
#203 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 3-Sep-2003
Posts: 439
From: ON, Canada

Thanks for the answers Alan.

I'd like to suggest to everyone to not get upset over all of this. This is after all an enthusiast market, as Alan puts it, and it should be treated as such. We wanted a next generation Amiga system, we got it. The next generation OS is in development and is hopefully to be finished sometime soon. There's lots of stuff to play around with. Don't take this stuff too seriously. There's absolutely no need to.
Also remember that there very well easily could have never been a next generation Amiga system, nor the OS, yet still we received something in the end.

p.s. someone should check on Helgis. He's been awfully quiet since the news came out (suicide?). (a bad joke, I know)

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:08:08
# ]

I like the answers, and they are quite honestly I am confident in what Eyetech tries to do, and i am confident that they are trying to do the best

My impression is that uA1-C definitely is the best buy at the moment, then it's up to us to follow the continuing development very careful. I believe in Eyetech and i do support them

Keep doing your best, Eyetech You have done so very well so far

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:08:12
#205 ]
Joined: 23-Jul-2003
Posts: 32
From: Seville, Spain


"Amigaworld has 3464 members. This means users who has actually signed up as diehard amigafreaks! - Probably all of them would buy a new Amiga if the prize was right and Amiga OS 4.0 was finished"

I am one of 3464 registered users that in these moment I dont have a1 but that in all that there appears the final version of os4, I will be going to buy me rapidly one a1/ua1+os4.

I have this the clearest, and imagine that since(as) me there will be different many(many people).

Besides I believe that i might convince at least 2 3 persons who are former amigans, showing the new one to them os4.

And I write this from Spain where the amiga market much smaller than in any other Europe/EEUU's place.

I wait that automatic translator, translates well what I say

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:21:06
#206 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 24-Oct-2003
Posts: 3199
From: Maryland, USA

But I shiver at the thought of a business lead by emotional principles rather than plain economics.

Then why are you still present in Amiga forums? There's absolutely nothing about the plain economics of the Amiga market to encourage any company to do anything here at all. The Amiga market is based on emotional principles and NOTHING ELSE. Anyone sane enough to ONLY consider the plain economics of any Amiga-related business jumped ship over a decade ago.

All glory to the Hypnotoad!

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:29:19
#207 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 9-Mar-2003
Posts: 693
From: Uppsala, Sweden


business lead by emotional principles

I never get that impression from Hyperion. I just wish they'd let us in on their plans for OS4.

Whereas it's clear that Hyperion are (of course) ruled by the necessities of economics, I on my part have never doubted that at the base it's only pure love for the platform that makes such competent professionals remain here on the meager fields of the Amiga. The same goes for Eyetech.


Thanks for the update. Factual, saddening and sombering, but in a way refreshing too. My A1-XE (no fixes) ticks away perfectly under my desk. It does everything I expect from it - it's running AmigaOS4. Regardless of all the politics -- without you, that machine wouldn't be there. That's all that matters to me.

Hang in there.

Last edited by SlimJim on 06-Jun-2005 at 06:45 PM.
Last edited by SlimJim on 06-Jun-2005 at 06:35 PM.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:33:41
#208 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 14-Mar-2003
Posts: 206
From: Londinium

I suppose harsh economic reality cannot be denied. I have to say I am now less likely to buy a AOS4/ hardware combination, but when AOS04 is finally ready, I'll have a look at the situation then. I'm not prepared to throw money away.

Time to give up now I think

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:38:05
#209 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 9-Mar-2003
Posts: 693
From: Uppsala, Sweden


I understand you.
(even though I can tell from first hand experience that there is nothing wrong with the machine per se).

And at the same time it's a sad state of affairs, since it's clear it's now people should buy their new Amigas, lest there will be no more Amigas. Ever.

EDIT: Yes, for me the A1+AOS4 is the "new Amiga". My opinion. /EDIT

Last edited by SlimJim on 06-Jun-2005 at 06:39 PM.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 18:42:47
#210 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 19-Jun-2004
Posts: 5009
From: Sweden

@ Helgis

Probably MicroA1 is the best buy that runs os4 that we
know of (i dont know these Mistery devices).

I love my XE as the need of more pci devices and more
power then my old a4000 :)

However i would like to have os4 running on Peg2/2.5 etc.
For me it looks like the hardware that is more evolving
than eyetech. I would bought it rather then A1 but there
is no os4 on it. So i went to A1. I would love to buy a
XC as this was my next plan.

After this 20 answered questions from Alan i feel little
splitted. Could meen alot of time to wait for XC or it just
never will happen i really dont know and cant say.
Waiting for a1 took long time. Then i waited for os4.
I just love it and hope too see the next update soon.
And waiting for something unsure, i dont know.
Until then ill continue to use my XE.
I hope that these mistery devices are something better and
more modern that my a1 and hopefully not fullsize motherboard
like this but still to have more pci's then microa1.

Well only see what happen. I hope the better. I still believe
in OS4. XE is only a hardware for me. And it could be replaced.
Respect to Eyetech for the hardware they did.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:01:24
#211 ]
Super Member
Joined: 29-Mar-2004
Posts: 1812
From: a place & time long long ago, when things mattered.

From being on Amigaworld, I have come to realise that there appears to be a lot of people wanting AmigaOne's but are unable to purchase one anywhere, esp in USA, am I correct in that assumption?

thats the truth MikeyC

"The system no longer works " -- Young Anakin Skywalker

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:10:35
# ]

Hi again Alan Thank you so much for providing such a honest and respectable answers, and i do fully understand you and your company. What is worrying, is that it might seem to be quite a LONG while before we ever see uA1-I and A1-XC...

I was wondering. ACK are making stand-alone motherboards combinations for A1200/A1200T based on the original AmigaOne Zico-specifications. Why don't Eyetech try to join company with big Amiga hardware-designers like ACK and others i can't figure names on? Why not even work closer with IBM to make the best possible PPC-motherboards worthy of the name AmigaOne?

Also, there is another bit worrying news or rather still rumours. Apple is believed to ditch PPC in favour of x86. If they do, it should at least be AMD x86-64. If this is the patch to go for the future, why not then try to discuss this with Hyperion, to write AmigaOS over to AMD x86-64, and letting AmigaOne use AMD x86-64, ONLY IF Apples' move to x86 would mean the END for PPC, which i hardly do believe anyway..

As i see the situation now. Most of us not having or considering a new AmigaOne, should absolutely buy a MicroA1 to help boost the sale volume, but it would be wiseable for a company like Eyetech to join forces with big hardware-companies like ACK, even working closer with IBM or any other hardware-makers. Doing all this planning alone, is not fair to either you or the company, Alan. I don't know what will happen, and i do feel a little worried. That's why i'm suggesting to join with other hardware-manufactures to make future AmigaOnes in different favours a possibility!

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:13:10
#213 ]
Joined: 18-Jun-2004
Posts: 22
From: Unknown

Vortexau wrote

Well, the fact remains that THAT competitor was taking a substancial LOSS on each board sold.

Thats simply untrue, Bplan has not sold under production costs.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:20:31
#214 ]
Joined: 28-Feb-2004
Posts: 63
From: NY

As with all of you, I'm still looking for the sunshine for the Amiga Community.

I should state that I used to own 7 different Amiga's, (ebayed all but one, my coveted 3k, which I will be putting on Ebay this month (P.S. If you want first dibs pm me.)). I use WinUAE and use a peg 2 with mos and actually had in the budget an aone for later this year.

Please make no mistake, I don't play or care about this red vs blue war that has been ongoing. I want to use a computer that will use all the software that I have heavily invested into over that last 20 years. I've enjoy the Amiga(amiga like) OS's as an end user. My software has written many letters, ran financial statements, written programs, as well as other mundane items.

I believe that the only solution for the Amiga (Amiga-like) is to work as ONE and leverage the limited opportunity. They should strategically look at the market and work towards a goal. One example that seems to be mentioned occasionally is to have OS4 ported to other platforms. This could be a good first step towards unifying the community. Yes, I do realize that there are legal issues and especially bad blood between individuals, but WHO CARES we need to be adults and move on.

Look at what Apple has done... They almost went out of business and had to join with their biggest competitor, Microsoft, in order to survive. Come on go to bed with Microsoft? And we are worried about our trivial lawsuits and personalities! We really could learn alot from Apple's moves. Our power brokers should humbly come to the table to unify the market. Find out the strengths of all development players (AOS, MOS, AROS, UAE) and leverage it.

IMHO we should not reinvent the wheel and use Apple's playbook:

1. Finish one solid os and all other OS's go prehistoric.
2. All development will now be on one common OS.
3. After you have some unifyed market stability and revenue, go invent the IPOD, Phone games, backscratchers, whatever. For the big revenue stream.

I really don't care who did what to whom, sometimes people do idiotic thing, these are the ONLY cards we have in our portfolio to give us any hope. Enough awesome talent has already left this community, they shouldn't chase the rest away or under-utilize programming effort on a fractioned OS.

Bottom line is stability, we can't have stability with 4 alternatives to emulating the same limited market. Sales revenue and volume is a numbers game, get the numbers back under one banner and move on.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:27:06
#215 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 7-Mar-2003
Posts: 3060
From: Unknown

I think you'll find that we all meant the previous owner of the peg boards

No cause is lost if there is but one fool left to fight for it.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:27:17
#216 ]
Super Member
Joined: 29-Mar-2004
Posts: 1812
From: a place & time long long ago, when things mattered.

There is a demand for Amigaone boards
but there is no money to produce them

how is this problem solved???

maybe the direction should be the same as the commodore joystick?

"The system no longer works " -- Young Anakin Skywalker

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:28:26
#217 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 7-Mar-2003
Posts: 3060
From: Unknown

Well, how many potential customers are we talking about???

I wonder if a poll for this would be useful?

No cause is lost if there is but one fool left to fight for it.

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:30:29
#218 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 18-Apr-2003
Posts: 3026
From: Yorkshire Dales, United Knigdom


Amigaworld has 3464 members. This means users who has actually signed up as diehard amigafreaks! - Probably all of them would buy a new Amiga if the prize was right and Amiga OS 4.0 was finished.

Well we may as well be positive I suppose but I think you are being massively over optimistic.

Didn't a recent poll state that only a few hundred more people were interested at the current time?

The main problem is software - what are these people supposed to run on their new Amigas? There is no modern office software, no modern browser and no recent games.


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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:31:48
#219 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 29-Nov-2004
Posts: 8554

1. ACK is not a 'big hardware company,' it's a single person as far as I know. Note we also are long overdue on an update about the ACK boards...that may or may not mean anything, but let's leave it at they're not a large company like you seem to think.

2. IBM doesn't randomly partner with someone, let alone a small company (which EyeTech is). Alan can't pick up the phone and say, "Hello, IBM? I'd like for you do do millions of dollars of design work for me so I can sell a few thousand motherboards. When will it be done?" Sorry, reality and business, let alone IBM, doesn't work like that.

I know you're enthusiastic, but let's try to let reality come in now and then...

EyeTech is NOT designing hardware, please remember that. In the event that somehow AOS4 were ever to go to another architecture (ie AMD-64), it would be easier to find a suitable 'off the shelf' board (although I think this _highly_ unlikely given the time it's taken to get to PPC native), but would be pretty unlikely to make EyeTech any money, as there are plenty of consumer level boards that are fine for this purpose...

Something like the Momentum reference board has promise for AOS, as maybe the XC does...but again, Alan seems to be waiting for some 'large industrial order' that we know nothing about, before it would even be considered to make a production run of some new board, regardless of which one it is. Note that I'm not sure that Alan's perceived/expected market would even be interested in a desktop style board, so if anything does come out of that, it's possible it would only mean seeing the availability of the uA1-I

Evidently, we'll have to wait and see if Hyperion has anything up their sleeves at some point, if AInc makes it easier to obtain a license (financially and precedurally), or if some other hardware design becomes available, as well as the nescessary funding to produce (and troubleshoot/revise) it.

Shrug, I guess we'll see. Until then, the uA1-C is OK. I personally think ignoring the Linux market is insane, but it's possible Alan's got another market targetted that won't care at all about which case the uA1 may be a good fit.

Are we not done with the same silly arguments and flames yet??!

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Re: 20 Answers with Alan Redhouse of Eyetech
Posted on 6-Jun-2005 19:37:19
# ]


I know you're right. I also tried to be realistic, but it's hard. I do feel a litte worry. Luckily uA1-C seems the best choice now...

God, i hope everything will be just alright

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