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[News] Amiga + Retro Computing 2002, first impressionsANN.lu
Posted on 07-Dec-2002 19:27 GMT by Diermar Eilert (Edited on 2002-12-08 02:55:19 GMT by Christophe Decanini)230 comments
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It took place in a large congress room in Aachen's Eurogress. At 16:00, it was pretty crowded in terms of visitors ...

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Just a few words about the Amiga Retro event today, I've been there for an hour or so this afternoon:

It took place in a large congress room in Aachen's Eurogress. At 16:00, it was pretty crowded in terms of visitors, maybe 100-200 people, but pretty empty in terms of dealers. If you mentally subtract Thendic, who took up 50% of the space, the whole affair would have fitted into a grocery store. Well, I guess that reflects the state of the market.

I saw one Amiga One. Maybe there were more, I didn't look hard. The one I saw didn't do anything to get exited about (a pc-style box, obviously no AmigaOS 4, bulky mainboard).

The Thendic people were at the center of attention, having something exiting to show. I don't know how many Pegasos boxes they had with them, but there were lots of them for trial. Morphos looks great, their Ambient workbench is visually stunning. A large amount of money must have gone into the direction of designers, the icons are all ultra-professional, 3D, 24bit, raytraced. If you are ever going to write software for Morphos and plan to have equally good icons, you have your work laid out for you ;-) The overall design reminds me of NeXt. Nevertheless, everything is still quite basic in terms of operating systems: I didn't see a file manager or other things I would expect with an OS. For example, an equally well-designed "Start" bar would have been nice.

Unfortunately, their boxes only had PPC native software installed or I was too dumb to find regular 68K software. I've tried for twenty minutes to find a bug, cause a crash etc. but no luck: Morphos looks fine to me with that selection of software. I would have rather testet it with "normal" software though.

Some Pegaos boxes were open, you could see the April fix and the small mainboard. It's a micro-atx-sized board, you probably have to see it to realize how small it is. If mainboards were sold on optical merits, the Amiga One would be dead. I don't understand why Tendic choose a big aluminium case for it: yes, it looks nice but if you have such a small mainboard, why not advertise the possibilities of small dimensions ?

Conclusion: Pegasos/Morphos is much more advanced than I though before. If it's all pure PPC, the worst is clearly over for them. They seem to have a nice usable small OS. What's left for them to do is to provide more "middleware" to get rid of the basic feel. I mean the small tools that normally ship with an OS: file manager, calculators, whatever. Nothing complicated.

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