RISC OS South West Show 2008

Saturday 23rd February 2008
The Webbington Hotel
Loxton, nr Axbridge
North Somerset

sw_show_2008_1.jpg - 40Kb

Slight change this year in that the show was not run by the BAUG, and for a while it looked as tho the show itself might not go ahead.
RISC OS Ltd jumped in and saved the day, with the added bonus of free admission.

Exhibitors List for this year;
ARM Club, Quercus, Fortran Friends, ROOL, APDL, Dave Snell, Archive, Netsurf Demo, RISC OS Ltd / Virtual Acorn, MW Software, CJE Micro's, R-Comp, Serious Statistical Software, IYONIX Ltd, AAUG, RISC OS NOW.

Initial impressions, very quiet. Tho things did pick up throuought the morning.

Brief comments on some of the Exhibitors I visited.

My usual first stop at any show. Picked up the new Messenger Pro 5 CD to upgrade me from my current v4.24, I also picked up the new printed User Guide for Messenger Pro, this being updated to include all the features of the new version. Also aquired the new NetFetch 3.
Forgot to bring along my old copies of Messenger Pro on CD and Netfetch so that I could prove ownership of a earlier version and qualify for the Upgrade price. But R-Comp were good and I assured them I would post the originals back to them.
This was duly done on the Monday morning, Original Messenger Pro CD + manual and Netfetch Disc. Thanks R-Comp.

Had a quick rummage through the second hand hardware they had for sale on the stand. Always amazingly cheap in the hardware department they are. So I picked up three hard drives, one 3 gig and two 4 gig for the amazing sum of one pound each. These will come in handy as spare drives for some of my older machines.

My subscription to QERCUS was due to run out after three more issues, so I reasoned it easier to re-new it at the show than wait and have to re-new later by cheque or whatever.
So I have signed up for another 12 issues and was given the choice of a free gift. Choices were some game software or various books. I did not really want any games and the only book that I thought might be of some interest was Graphics On The ARM Machines by DABS Press, so thats what i took.

I was tempted to buy one of APDL's Turbo StrongARM upgrades, but put this on hold as I had to make my funds last for the rest of the day. Apart from that, the usual good spread from APDL.

Dave Snell
As usual, Dave Snell had his large projection screen up and running so that demonstarations of his software could be seen by a larger audience. This is very effective and works every year, it draws people in from a distance.

My primary goal this year was to buy RISC OS Six, so after getting a chance to talk to Paul Middleton regards this new version of the OS I bought a copy on CD. Also, mad as I am I also bought another set of 4.39 ROMS so that I could upgrade another of my machines. The reason being I would rather have two machines networked that are all on a common version of the OS ie 4.xx + rather than at present 4.39 connected to 3.7

MW Software
A new version of ArtWorks was on sale, I looked but as I'm not into graphics as such did not buy.

CJE Micro's
The usual spread of new and older gear from CJE, tho I think that every year I visit, there stand seems to be getting smaller.

The same IYONIX's as usual for sale, along with some good deals for monitors. Unfortunatly, the IYONIX does not appear to be developing any further. I realise to make a machine for a small niche market is very expensive but I am still not convinced to buy one due to the lack of news on future developments. This I believe is why alot of people are still clinging on to their Risc PC's. If someone would come along and make a grounbreaking machine for RISC OS that was half capable of living in the modern computer world then I believe all the die-hard RISC PC users would jump and buy one.

Theatre Presentations
There were presentations during the day, but as there was no printed show quide this year I did not realise that there were any at all!
There was a small notice by the door to the theatre, and Paul Middleton announced the start of any presentation just before each was due to start. The lack of being able to plan my morning around known times for presentations led me to not attend any this year.
Final Impressions of the Day.
Another good show, but not excellent in my opinion. I achieved what I set out to do, buying software upgrades etc but the show lacked any real punch. Yes, new software versions are great at each show, but we really need the hardware side to pickup.

Rich - Classic Acorn

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