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Home > Archive > Issue 48 Current Issue: No. 286 (03 June 2012)
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 |-------------------------- Acorn News Service --------------------------|
 |                     http://www.acornusers.org/ans/                     |
 | ISSUE 48                                                9 January 2000 |
 |                                                                        |
 |       An independent fortnightly newsletter for the Acorn world.       |
 |        Send your news items or comments to ans@acornusers.org.         |
 |            Featured site this issue: http://www.arcsite.de/            |

 1) Editorial
 2) General News
 3) Commercial News
 4) PD/Shareware News
 5) User Group News
 6) ANS information

  2000 is here, finally. My only comment this issue is to suggest reading
  Weaving the Web by Tim Berners-Lee - a fascinating book about the
  development of the web and his vision for the future.

  James Sears, Editor


General News

 1) New official RISC OS 4 ROM patch

  RISCOS Ltd has released a new patch to correct some problems users have
  experienced with RISC OS 4.

  Version 4 of the patch is now available from

 2) New look for ArcSite

  ArcSite now has a new and better look, a new German magazine, and better
  support for visitors who want to view the English pages.

  ArcSite http://www.arcsite.de/ is a RISC OS web site featuring German
  RISC OS news, magazine, forum, free adverts, over 800 searchable links,
  and an FTP search engine, ArcArchie, to find RISC OS programs.

  ArcSite also provides free web space for RISC OS users' homepages.

 3) Molecular Biology for RISC OS

  Robert Hartley is creating a Molecular Biology for RISC OS web site, at
  http://home.freeuk.com/r.hartley/, initially featuring cell biology
  analysis and application reviews it will be expanded to a launcher for
  biology and medical software for RISC OS.

 4) Mailing list for users of Calligraph printers

  Now that Calligraph are no longer trading, Richard Torrens has set up a
  mailing list as a mutual self-help group for users.

  To subscribe e-mail calligraph@4qd.co.uk with the subject Subscribe.

 5) Submissions for May 2000 Acorn User CD

  The May 2000 Acorn User magazine cover CD will feature fonts and clipart,
  and AU is looking for displayer and general graphics and font utilities to

  If you have any appropriate software, or would like to include your
  virtual web site (especially if relevant to the CD theme), contact

Commercial News

 1) Drobe Launch Pad adds accessible chat

  Drobe Launch Pad http://www.drobe.co.uk/, the RISC OS portal, has
  launched a new Instant Chat service for RISC OS users.

  The Java-free software is easy to use for both new and experienced users
  of chat systems, offering a user-friendly interface to well known IRC

  The service is open 24 hours a day and anyone can join in. You can log in
  from the Drobe Launch Pad homepage at http://www.drobe.co.uk/.

 2) RISC World - CD-ROM magazine for RISC OS users

  APDL will launch of RISC World, a new CD-ROM based magazine edited by
  David Matthewman, in February 2000.

  RISC World is a bi-monthly magazine intended to complement the existing
  printed publications available to RISC OS users and enthusiasts. Producing
  the magazine on a CD enables the price to be kept low, particularly for
  overseas readers, without compromising quality or content.

  RISC World will cost just GBP17.90 per year for UK subscribers, and only
  GBP19.90 overseas.

  For more information see the RISC World web site at

  RISC World is currently looking to commission contributors for one-off
  articles and series. Contact editor@riscworld.com for more details if you
  are interested.

 3) WebFX3D reduced

  WebFX3D can now be obtained for GBP25 (including postage). Details are
  available at http://www.dansoft.co.nz/webfx3d/, and there is also a new
  manual available http://www.dansoft.co.nz/manual/.

 4) RiscStations in Australia

  The first RiscStation R7500Lites assembled in Australia went to their new
  owners on Christmas Eve. The bulk of the first production is now with
  resellers, with further stock being available soon.

  Some pictures from the recent Reseller's Workshop can be seen at:

 5) KiwiSoft Virus Slayer v0.62

  Virus Slayer v0.62 is now available, and contains numerous bug fixes and
  a couple of new features, including support for RISC OS 3.00 and 4.

 6) "Digisnap" CD-ROM from Spacetech

  Spacetech has launched a new photographic resource for digital artists
  comprising over 100 digital photographs taken by the well known artist
  and photographer, David Cowell. This is the third CD in a series to
  complement his Introduction to Digital Art and Creative Digital Imaging.

  The Digisnaps CD by David Cowell is available from Spacetech Ltd for
  GBP12.50 including VAT. For details see http://www.spacetech.co.uk/.

 7) WimpBasic 2.08

  An update from WimpBasic 2.03 to version 2.08 is now available from

  This adds a quick save icon, improved icon array support and fixes for
  problems reported in 2.03.

  WimpBasic 2 is a programming language based on BBC BASIC which allows you
  write desktop applications without having to learn about Wimp SWIs and
  polling loops. Details: http://www.claresmicro.com/misc/wbasic.html.

PD/Shareware News

 1) MouseAxess

  Stefan Bellon has set up a web page to promote Christian Floter's module,
  MouseAxess. The module adds various useful functions to the RISC OS
  desktop, a feature list is available on the new web site.


 2) Millennium bugfix for older versions of PC

  Older versions of the PC card software, such as 1.92, suffer from the
  millennium bug; it does not report the correct century to DOS, it gets
  confused and so sets the clock back to 1984.

  The bug can, however, be tediously overcome by using DOS's DATE command to
  reset the clock when DOS starts up.

  PCY2K, which runs within RISC OS, creates a small batch file containing
  the date which DOS can pick up when it runs. The clock is reset to the
  correct date, and your Microsoft Windows applications are happy.

  Once installed correctly the program is transparent in operation. Download
  the 9KB archive from: http://web.ukonline.co.uk/david.thomson/.

 3) CBSA and Acorn education web sites updated

  The CBSA web site has been updated adding a new audio section, including
  various players and audio MPEG encoders. http://www.acornusers.org/cbsa/

  The education software site has also been updated, and some HTML errors
  fixed. http://www.acornusers.org/education/

  Files from both sites are also accessible with FTP in the cbsa and
  education directories of ftp://ftp.acornusers.org/pub/.

 4) Build, mapping data to HTML

  Build (provisional name) takes mapping data (Ordnance Survey grid
  references) from a number of databases and Drawfiles, and processes
  them to generate HTML. The HTML comprises an image map and a table.

  The pages reached from http://www.armage.demon.co.uk/nuff/maps/
  are an example of a set of pages created using this software.

  Build is freeware and both source and executable are available from

  In the source, and available for use by others, there is:
    * A partial implementation of a simple database in the source.
    * Functions for manipulating Ordnance Survey Grid References.
    * A start at a graphics system based on drawfiles.
    * Sundry other odds and ends that might be useful to other programmers.
      eg extra_fopenUnix(). As fopen, but takes a unix style filename.

 5) Site address change for Attacher, UUcoder, Z88Link

  http://www.bramber.org.uk/ is now the new home of John Allen's various
  programs, including Attacher, UUcoder, 64coder (for coding and decoding
  uucode and base64 attachments to e-mail or newsgroups), and Z88Link, ZLink
  and PsionLink.

  Also on the site are details of John Allen's book on the Z88, and an
  archive about using the Z88 with the BBC Micro and Arc.

 6) StrongHelp SWI manuals

  StrongHelp manuals with useful information on SWIs are available from
  http://eh.org/~koschei/manuals/. There is now also a mailing list for
  discussion of the manuals and anything else StrongHelp related.

 7) Other new software

  * FresUtils, AntUtils for Fresco
    A stripped down version of AntUtils, containing just the bits that are
    of relevance to Fresco - such as launching search engines, toggling
    cookies/Javascript on and off and altering the various faking options.

  * Toolkit, calculate icon and window flags
    Calculates either the icon or window flags for a particular window or
    icon. Requires WimpBASIC2 runtime modules and RISC OS 3.1 or above.

 8) Updated software summary

  * DigitalCD v2.44
    A desktop music player compatible with RISC OS 3.1 or later. It provides
    independent control panels for any connected CD drive and music files
    playlists. New version is easier to upgrade and can load MIDI files.

  * Nuke v0.91
    Nuke, by Tony Hopstaken, is a convenient front end for Sergio Monesi's
    powerful utility 'nuke', which enables you to overwrite the sectors
    occupied by files or free space on disc, making it impossible to recover
    the data by means of disc editors or 'undelete' utilities. The new
    version is fully compatible with RISC OS 4.

  * Planets
    Planets simulates a three body planetary system, where most of the
    parameters can be adjusted. Planets is shareware and will only run on
    a Risc PC. New version has new features and a redesigned front end.

  * RiscPCB v0.40
    RiscPCB is a freeware printed circuit board designer.

  * SibToDraw v2.00e
    A complete vector software which can be used together with Sibelius to
    build music scores of any complexity. Final version includes a thorough
    and unlimited Undo/Redo, and other major improvements. Demo from:

  * Tiles, v3.67
    Tiles is a visually attractive and entertaining crossword game that
    provides a basis for learning spelling, vocabulary, strategy and
    computer literacy. It is now been equipped with computer generated play
    so that any or all of the players can be selected to be autoplayers,
    with different levels of competence of play.

Club News

 1) Upcoming meetings

  * Southampton Acorn Users Group, Monday 10th January

  * Surrey and Sussex, Monday 10th January, with The ARM Club

  * Wolfen, Germany, Saturday 15th January

  * Welwyn Hatfield Computer Club, Friday 21 January

  * North Kent Amateur Computer Club, Thursday 13th January

ANS Information

 1) Contact ANS

  Editor         - James Sears       - james@ans.acornusers.org
  Webmaster      - Stephen Courtney  - stephen@ans.acornusers.org
  Founder        - Eytan Abrahams    - eytan@ans.acornusers.org
  Life-Webmaster - Richard Hesketh   - richard@ans.acornusers.org
  ADL Moderator  - Paul Johnson      - paul@ans.acornusers.org
  Translator     - Michael Gerbracht - michael@ans.acornusers.org

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