Number of active BBC BASIC users

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Repton
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue 22 May 2018, 13:51

Re: Number of active BBC BASIC users

Post by Repton »

Er Richard with lots of respect . You have created a product that has actually grown beyond that of its creator. I paid for a BBCW licence which I use used. I have already raised the issue regarding the future of the BBCW code base in many ways preempting what you are saying here. What should happen is that a Custodian is found. Obviously you understand the code base, but who is going to support it going forward.

The Open source model allows the code to be updated.

Also BBC Basic 'brand' is largely know to people like me who learnt it at school.

RichardRussell
Posts: 386
Joined: Tue 15 Oct 2019, 09:10

Re: Number of active BBC BASIC users

Post by RichardRussell »

Repton wrote:
Wed 29 Jul 2020, 08:47
What should happen is that a Custodian is found. Obviously you understand the code base, but who is going to support it going forward. The Open source model allows the code to be updated.
Exactly. I was persuaded to publish the source at Github because it was suggested to me that by doing so it would increase the chances of others taking an interest, either in maintaining it or in continuing development or both. That was eighteen months ago and nobody has yet come forward.

So I believe I have done everything I can to facilitate and encourage a "custodian" who will "support it going forward". The code is Open Source, with one of the most permissive licences (zlib). It's as cross-platform as I can realistically achieve, with editions for Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android and iOS and with support for both x86 and ARM CPUs, and for both 32-bits and 64-bits.

I know that a few people have downloaded the source and have successfully built it on their own systems. If there's anything else I can do that may help, please let me know.
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Repton
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue 22 May 2018, 13:51

Re: Number of active BBC BASIC users

Post by Repton »

What about the Windows version the one that the licence is paid for? How ill that be supported and updated?
If programs were just the actual bbc basic language i one thing but there is code out there that calls the native windows or uses directx

Its a bit unclear what your business model was is.
For me I learnt BBC Basic at school im in UK it meant something. What about the US? China India or other growth countries.
Its bad enough when Microsoft decide to stop supporting there software and critical system just stop working.

From an academic view it would be interesting what the underlying code looks like in the BBCW version.

RichardRussell
Posts: 386
Joined: Tue 15 Oct 2019, 09:10

Re: Number of active BBC BASIC users

Post by RichardRussell »

Repton wrote:
Wed 29 Jul 2020, 22:51
What about the Windows version the one that the licence is paid for? How ill that be supported and updated?
I don't anticipate that BBC BASIC for Windows will need to be updated. It has remained substantially unchanged for several years with no bugs of any significance having been discovered in that time. It successfully installs and runs on all versions of Windows from Windows 95 OSR2 to the latest Windows 10, which demonstrates that its adherence to all the Windows API rules is excellent, and Microsoft remain diligent in ensuring that any changes to Windows don't impact on compatibility with 'legacy' applications.

The only foreseeable situation that could arise is if Windows eventually goes the way of other Operating Systems and drops support for 32-bit applications. But BB4W cannot be adapted to run in 64-bit Windows anyway, since it is largely written in assembly language, so at that point one would have to start from scratch using the C source code used for BBCSDL and the Console Mode editions.
but there is code out there that calls the native windows or uses directx
As I say, there is no reason to expect that BB4W will stop working. But in any case, although I don't publicise or encourage it, the Windows edition of BBC BASIC for SDL 2.0 can call native Windows API functions, including DirectX and the rest. If that didn't offer good enough compatibility with native code, a minor tweak to the published source code of BBCSDL (calling the SDL_CreateWindowFrom function) would allow it to use a native Windows window rather than an SDL window.
Its a bit unclear what your business model was is.
I don't have a business model! Although BB4W remains a paid-for product, because it always has been, all my other products are entirely free and are made available for altruistic reasons, not as any kind of 'business enterprise'. I have previously made it clear that when my death is confirmed copies of BB4W may be made freely available.
From an academic view it would be interesting what the underlying code looks like in the BBCW version.
I can assure you that the assembler source code of BB4W is not "interesting", especially given the way it has evolved from the Z80 version via the MS-DOS version and the contributions of Brandon Butterworth and Jeff Raynor. I could not in any case release the source code because it would necessarily reveal the algorithm used when the Encrypt & Compress option is selected when 'compiling' a standalone executable.
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Repton
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue 22 May 2018, 13:51

Re: Number of active BBC BASIC users

Post by Repton »

There is Abug meeting happening this weekend. Would It be possible to code a BBC micro emulator using BBC Basic?
Last edited by Repton on Thu 30 Jul 2020, 17:31, edited 1 time in total.

RichardRussell
Posts: 386
Joined: Tue 15 Oct 2019, 09:10

Re: Number of active BBC BASIC users

Post by RichardRussell »

Repton wrote:
Thu 30 Jul 2020, 12:12
Would It be possible to code a BBC micro emulator using BBC Basic?
A complete BBC Micro emulator? Running at native speed? In interpreted BASIC with no assembler? Highly unlikely I would have thought (that it's possible in JavaScript is pretty amazing). What's the reason for such a strange question? And what has it to do with a thread entitled "Number of active BBC BASIC users"?

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