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AmigaWorld (ANF)

Weekly Q&A's mit Fleecy Moss - Runde 3
Das englischsprachige Online-Magazin AmigaWorld hat die Folge 3 der wöchentlichen Fragen und Antworten an und von Fleecy Moss, CTO bei AMIGA, Inc., veröffentlicht (Update, 17.03.2012, cg: Meldung um das eigentliche Interview ergänzt, da das ursprüngliche Dokument nicht mehr verfügbar ist):

1) Derfs : is there an ETA on the t-shirts ? and if there isnt can you tell us anything about the delay?

Fleecy: We don't as yet have a delivery date for the Club Amiga T-shirts but we are working hard on sorting the situation out. I can't go into the reasons why we have had such issues but the delay is as irritating for Amiga as it is for those who are waiting for them. Resolution of this situation is pretty close to the top of our agenda.

2) BrianHoskins : Is there a time scale on planned multi-processor support for AOS4?

Fleecy: When moving Exec forwards into ExecSG, great care was taken to provide a foundation for a lot of features. These will be implemented as the need for them arises both from the development of the operating system itself and the requirements from third party developers.

That said, SMP support is planned for release in either 4.1 or 4.2; with the rider that plans can change. I would also caution against the desire for or claims made on behalf of Symmetric Multi-Processing or SMP. It has its uses but ultimately is limited, rather like sticking more and more engines onto a four wheel car. Proper parallel computing through a matrix of separate processor elements, all with their own schedulers and organisation models - authoritarian, pluralist, service,
anarchic etc offers a much better long term solution and is far more in the mould of 'Amiga, doing it first'.

3) Jose: Will there be various versions of AmigaOS, one for the continuation of the Classic OS on PPC hardware like the users/supporters wish, and the other the so called server, etc. OS that OS5 is to be?

Fleecy: AmigaOS will develop a service based architecture which will allow users to construct the environment that they wish. If a person doesn't want 'server' targeted services then they don't need to use them. For example if you just want a simple filing system with no security, then that could be selected. If you want a secure filing system, you can select that service.

In this way it will be possible to produce targeted builds, a family product, a developer product, a business product etc built using Amiga technology. The core and more importantly, the framework will be the same.

4) jumpship: Is there likely to be a public demostration of an OS4 beta in the near future? I understand that not everyone (ie the whole community) would be able to attend, but maybe at a mayjor user group meeting, similar to WoA, and get someone to video tape it. That way it would be hard for people to say "I could make that in XYZ program.

Fleecy: Having a publicly demonstratable build of AmigaOS4.0 that runs on CSPPC and the AmigaOne occupies our every waking breath. We are well aware that once that is shown, the rumours and untruths will then have nowhere from which to grow.

However, the nature of the project is that all the pieces are now being integrated and being an integrated whole, the public demonstration will actually come pretty close to the end of the project, when most things are actually working together. To demonstrate just a piece of it would actually take time away from the project because we would have to unwrap many of the dependencies that would be inherent in a less than whole demonstration, as well as again opening us up to the charges of 'see, told you they had only done a bit of it'.

Believe me, when we can finally demonstrate the product, the world will hear our screams of joy. I am not even going to give a time though because it is an imprecise art to predict when it will be ready for demonstration. I'd rather just tell you when it is and that moment is not now.

I can tell you that one of the current test suites being run is the process of booting a standard 68k OS3.9 on ExecSG through the 68K emulation service. That is OS3.9 being run via emulation on a PPC processor. This is just part of the validation of the AmigaOS4.0 product. Supporting the CSPPC product has cost us time and effort though because, to say the least, it is an imperfect piece of hardware. The AmigaOne is a much cleaner product and if we had had only to support it then the situation might be different.

5) z5: What are you [Amiga Inc] contributing to OS4?

Fleecy: AmigaOS4.0 is the product that begins the transition from Amiga Generation 1 to Amiga Generation 2. It has several tasks, the most important of which are to move the entire platform to a new processor and to create an abstract hardware interface which allows us to far more easily adapt to other potential hardware markets.

This skillset requires a very detailed knowledge of both the existing 68k AmigaOS as well as the PPC processor family. This is one of the reasons why we contracted this work out to Hyperion, who themselves have pulled many of the brightest and best from the Amiga developer community into the project.

Amiga Inc itself has been concentrating on the future of the AmigaOS, in particular the Amiga Generation 2 (AG2) project. The next release of the Club Amiga Magazine (CAM) carries an article about this but as AmigaOS4.0 ships, more and more of this plan will be revealed.

The future of the Amiga platform isn't just a question of technology, it is a question of application as well. It is a business, and a business requires income which requires sales. Whilst we are comfortable with slowly developing the desktop market for the Amiga, to be able to fund it properly needs other markets.

Technology and busines have to work together to bring success and Amiga is concentrating on that at the moment, allowing Hyperion and the AmigaOS4.0 team to make that first step because they are the ones best equiped to make that first step.

6) AmigaGuy: I'd like to know if there are plans (maybe it already does) to have AmigaAnywhere available through web browsers. Something sort of in the way Java or Flash work. It might be cool to write an entire web site in C++

Fleecy: Amiga Anywhere currently runs as a player, on ROM and RAM cards, as standalone host transparent applications and as a run time engine. We have blue skyed the concept of providing a browser integration solution but given those already in that space, and the fact that the player will develop into an self sufficient Internet environment of its own, we are not pursuing that path.

7) Spacemonkey: Will Amiga Inc be porting Samba 2.7 or 3.0 for AOS 4.0 or will it be relying on 3rd party/End User to provide this functionality.

Fleecy: Olaf Barthel, one of the chief AmigaOS4.0 developers is also a key member of the Amiga Samba project. His opinion mirrors my own, that Samba is a monster and that it really doesn't fit into the Amiga model.

We are looking at including the Samba project as a contribution to AmigaOS4.0 but given the large list of requirements already clogging our desks, I do not see it as a priority.

Most people will be happy to be able to network with other computers running other platforms so that they can share file and resource access. Of course,if the requirement changes then we will look again at this area.

8) Blomberg: What are the plans for the OS4 audio system beyond the current state of AHI?

Fleecy: The Audio services provided by the Amiga will be one of the first that are developed in AG2. Indeed the core audio architecture for this has been fermenting and prototyping over the past year, arising from AmigaDE audio work.

Our commitment is simple. The AmigaOS will strive to have the best audio services of any operating system. We fully intend to push ourselves forwards as a viable and attractive alternative to any offering out there, both at the hobby level and in the professional world.

9) z5: why didn't the microsoft deal come through?

Fleecy: We have a strategic relationship with Microsoft, which means that they believe our technology enhances their PocketPC and Smartphone product line. Actual deals arise out of this relationship, both directly with Microsoft and via them pushing us towards their partners who also use PocketPC and Smartphone. For example, at the CTIA show held in New Orleans last week, they provided a number of Gamecards as freebies to their partner Samsung who were launching a new PocketPC Phone Edition product. This has led to direct contact with Samsung following a successful reception, and also a number of other contacts with Samsung competitors who also expressed an interest in the Gamecard content and product.

As far as an actual deal goes, Microsoft have been selling rebadged Gamecards (2 of them at the moment) in select CompUSA stores for the past two weeks. We have not announced this both because they are not currently selling them on their website (CompUSA that is) and also because of the difficulty of synchronising a web press release with Microsoft.

We have been criticised in the past for such practices and we are trying to ensure that any press release is independently verifiable.

Microsoft are very pleased with this initial batch of Gamecards and want to move to bigger volumes, and increase the number of Gamecards (2 are in the initial launch, we have 2 more ready to go and can make another 3 quite quickly) by the summer. These were supposed to have debuted in November but technical difficulties with both the card sourcing and then with issues in PocketPC, discovered and reported by Amiga led to a 3-4 month delay.

Indeed, the first appearance of Amiga product in a mainstream computing channel has also witnessed our old friend, piracy, returning to the platform. Dean Brown, our hardware guru found three of the Gamecard packs in the Bellevue CompUSA and someone had cut one open with a scalpel and stolen the Gamecard!

10) Hooligan: How does AInc plan to ensure steady development of software?

Fleecy: Developers create software either because there is money in it for them or because they simply enjoy creating for a platform and community. Whilst we are looking at seeding some core application development, the proper solution is to create a market that is commercially viable.

This means enough users to buy enough of the product to make the cost of development of that product worthwhile. Our efforts are thus focused on increasing the size of that market, through successful launch and post launch activities in the sales and marketing domains, and in reducing the cost of development for the platform, primarily through ensuring that development can proceed as rapidly and trouble free as possible; in other words a developer toolchain, documentation and lots of support.

(Copyright © 2003 All rights reserved.
Originally available at
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[Meldung: 31. Mär. 2003, 11:51] [Kommentare: 49 - 03. Apr. 2003, 09:31]
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