log in | register | forums
Show:
Go:
Forums
Username:

Password:

User accounts
Register new account
Forgot password
Forum stats
List of members
Search the forums

Advanced search
Recent discussions
- RISC OS Interviews - Andy Marks (Mr RiscOSBits) (News:1)
- upgrading RiscOS on the raspberry Pi 2 (Gen:2)
- ADFFS on the Pi help needed (Games:7)
- Spring Issue of Drag'n'Drop Magazine hits the shelves (News:1)
- AMCS free versions are live! (Gen:8)
- RISC OS FR : The Raspberry Pie contest (News:19)
- ADFFS on the Pi help needed (Gen:1)
- South West Show in Pictures (News:)
- South West Show Report (News:2)
- A7000 Schematics (Gen:5)
Related articles
- Mail client Pluto updated, open-sourced
- An arbitrary number of possibly influential RISC OS things
- Thunderbird ported to RISC OS
- Firefox released for RISC OS 5 [Updated]
- NetSurf 1.0 and GTK+ port
- Rounding Up February
- Your Early February Catch-up Linkfest
- Firefox port updated
- Wakefield 2005 show report (Firefox presentation)
- Risc PC RAM - CJE, Firefox and others.
Latest postings RSS Feeds
RSS 2.0 | 1.0 | 0.9
Atom 0.3
Misc RDF | CDF
Site Search
 
Article archives
Acorn Arcade forums: News and features: NetSurf may be forced to drop support for RISC OS
 

NetSurf may be forced to drop support for RISC OS

Posted by Phil Mellor on 22:00, 6/8/2009 | , ,
 
Netsurf LogoRISC OS users may be left without updates to NetSurf unless a suitable programmer can be found to continue development.
 
Although the RISC OS version of the web browser has more features than other platforms it has not been actively maintained for over two and a half years. Many of the features which were specific to the RISC OS version are now being moved to the multi-platform core which is being actively worked on.
 
NetSurf contributor Michael Drake told The Icon Bar that it was "a big shame ... no-one really wants to drop RISC OS support but there's no-one to actually keep it working at the moment." The team has made an urgent appeal for a C developer with knowledge of the WIMP to get involved.
 
The open source project began in 2002 and the first major release was in 2007. NetSurf was voted "Best non-commercial software" four times in Drobe's annual RISC OS awards. It has been ported to Linux, BeOS and AmigaOS, and the team are participating in Google's Summer of Code.
 
Link: NetSurf
 
  NetSurf may be forced to drop support for RISC OS
  tlsa (23:20 6/8/2009)
  ad (22:54 10/8/2009)
    helpful (13:19 11/8/2009)
      ad (17:54 11/8/2009)
        rich (18:41 11/8/2009)
          filecore (18:57 11/8/2009)
            rich (11:52 12/8/2009)
          bhtooefr (00:56 12/8/2009)
            filecore (07:01 12/8/2009)
            rich (12:30 12/8/2009)
              filecore (12:48 12/8/2009)
              richcheng (14:24 12/8/2009)
                filecore (16:42 12/8/2009)
                ad (19:04 12/8/2009)
                  monkeyson2 (19:23 12/8/2009)
                swirlythingy (14:30 14/8/2009)
                  Acornut (19:29 14/8/2009)
                    filecore (20:41 14/8/2009)
                    Acornut (23:38 15/8/2009)
                      Acornut (23:45 15/8/2009)
              bhtooefr (03:24 13/8/2009)
          nunfetishist (12:51 12/8/2009)
            tlsa (12:57 12/8/2009)
          Acornut (18:52 12/8/2009)
        sa110_mk (18:43 11/8/2009)
          nunfetishist (12:53 12/8/2009)
          tlsa (12:54 12/8/2009)
    jess (13:49 11/8/2009)
 
Michael Drake Message #110852, posted by tlsa at 23:20, 6/8/2009

Posts: 1093
Thanks for the article. smile

John-Mark's provided more explanation here:


http://www.drobe.co.uk/article.php?id=2526&nc=6#cid31352
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Andrew Duffell Message #110874, posted by ad at 22:54, 10/8/2009, in reply to message #110852
ad

Posts: 3229
It really doesn't surprise me that support is being dropped, there can't be many people that still seriously use RISC OS day to day with all the alternatives being so far ahead of the game.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Bryan Hogan Message #110883, posted by helpful at 13:19, 11/8/2009, in reply to message #110874
Member
Posts: 175
Following that logic, why develop NetSurf at all when "the alternatives are so far ahead of the game"?

Although following it further, only RISC OS support is worthwhile because it is the only platform on which NetSurf is ahead of the alternatives big smile
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
jess hampshire Message #110884, posted by jess at 13:49, 11/8/2009, in reply to message #110874
Member
Posts: 20
It really doesn't surprise me that support is being dropped, there can't be many people that still seriously use RISC OS day to day with all the alternatives being so far ahead of the game.
I quite happilly use RISC OS regularly. Netsurf is the main application I use when doing so. I also use Linux, OS X and Windows regularly (and symbian).

Netsurf on RISC OS is the nicest browser to use on all those platforms. (The linux version, missing the RO GUI is not as nice, and I tend to use firefox more on Linux.)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Andrew Duffell Message #110890, posted by ad at 17:54, 11/8/2009, in reply to message #110883
ad

Posts: 3229
Following that logic, why develop NetSurf at all when "the alternatives are so far ahead of the game"?smile
AFAIK NetSurf is aimed at being a small, portable web browser, and I can't think of any alternatives that are ahead of the game.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #110891, posted by rich at 18:41, 11/8/2009, in reply to message #110890
Rich
Webmaster
The Icon Bar

Posts: 6765
Following that logic, why develop NetSurf at all when "the alternatives are so far ahead of the game"?smile
AFAIK NetSurf is aimed at being a small, portable web browser, and I can't think of any alternatives that are ahead of the game.
Firefox. Opera. Both of these can be crammed on to my N810 internet tablet, and I've got Opera on my parent's Wii. I think I even installed a WebKit-based third browser on the N810 recently, but it's got a weird name so I can't remember what it's called.

I installed NetSurf on my Linux media server recently, but after a couple of minutes I was back into Firefox - the lack of JavaScript meant that many pages didn't even load, because everyone's using AJAX these days.

It's a nice enough browser, but JavaScript is a deal breaker.
________
RichGCheers,
Rich.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Paul Stewart Message #110892, posted by sa110_mk at 18:43, 11/8/2009, in reply to message #110890
Member
Posts: 144
AFAIK NetSurf is aimed at being a small, portable web browser, and I can't think of any alternatives that are ahead of the game.
How about Dillo(http://www.dillo.org)? Peter Naulls did a port of Dillo 1. I remember it being not too bad on speed at the time on my RPC. Dillo 2 is now available, complete with CSS. Last update was July of this year. Shame v2 is not available under RISC OS for users to play around with.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #110893, posted by filecore at 18:57, 11/8/2009, in reply to message #110891

Posts: 3867
the lack of JavaScript meant that many pages didn't even load, because everyone's using AJAX these days.
Ironically, with FF on Windows, I block about 75% of the Java/JS/XSS that goes on, via use of NoScript.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Eric Rucker Message #110896, posted by bhtooefr at 00:56, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110891
Member
Posts: 336
Thing is, NetSurf destroys them both for speed and size. Opera and Firefox are both bloated and slow. Portable, I'll give you.

And, while most of the sites I use use JavaScript, for the most part, they have reduced functionality modes for non-JS clients.

I use Flash more than JavaScript, honestly. (Although some sites use JavaScript in their Flash detection routine...)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #110897, posted by filecore at 07:01, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110896

Posts: 3867
Slightly off-topic (not JS, but other website annoyances): I regularly view Zero Punctuation, an excellent and hilarious insight into games and gaming (it's a games review - definitely give it a go if it's new to you). It's in video form. New one every Wednesday evening.

According to NoScript, the following sites are trying to inject content when I go to the Zero Punctuation page:

escapistmagazine.com (ZP's host domain)
mmismm.com
themis-media.com
pointomatic.com
addthis.com
warcry.com
clearspring.com
googleapis.com
google-analytics.com
quantserve.com

Of these, I chose to block all but escapistmagazine.com and themis-media.com (since the ZP page itself is on escapistmagazine, but the video is cross-fed from themis-media). But seriously: ten domains, cross-site scripting, just to provide a single page of content? And yet, even without all those other eight domains and whatever their content is, the ZP page still serves up what I want, looks good, and otherwise works perfectly.

For the record, google-analytics.com and quantserve.com are on my 'permanently blocked' list in NoScript.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #110898, posted by rich at 11:52, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110893
Rich
Webmaster
The Icon Bar

Posts: 6765
the lack of JavaScript meant that many pages didn't even load, because everyone's using AJAX these days.
Ironically, with FF on Windows, I block about 75% of the Java/JS/XSS that goes on, via use of NoScript.
I just block Java, not JavaScript. Oh, and most cookies. And adverts, which is, incidentally, a JavaScript program to remove things via CSS. And have some host file tricks to block a lot of ads, so a lot of JavaScript doesn't even get to the browser. If you have a facility in the first place, you have a choice whether to block or not. From your message, you still want about 25% of the JS etc.

Thing is, even the homepage I wrote and use on all of my browsers - including my 'phone - has JavaScript on it to add date and calendar "widgets" without having to fetch from a server. It's even Fresco compatible! So even my own starting page doesn't work on NetSurf.
________
RichGCheers,
Rich.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #110899, posted by rich at 12:30, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110896
Rich
Webmaster
The Icon Bar

Posts: 6765
Thing is, NetSurf destroys them both for speed and size. Opera and Firefox are both bloated and slow. Portable, I'll give you.
If it doesn't have key features, you can't really say it's "less bloated". I could write a web browser that doesn't have anything at all in it - no text or images or links or fetching - and it'd be even quicker and smaller, and probably quite portable. A JavaScript engine will, technically, make it larger and render slightly slower - but that's because it's rendering a whole page, not just a bastardised part of it.

Besides which, Opera is in no way massive or slow. It made its name being small and quick, and it still is - which is why it still has a niche in mobile devices. Firefox (including the mobile version) is catching up on the run speed, but takes longer to start up - but then, I can have ad blocking even on my internet tablet, because the extension system is intact. I chose to add "bloat" myself, because I had the choice in the first place.
And, while most of the sites I use use JavaScript, for the most part, they have reduced functionality modes for non-JS clients.
And you'll stick with that small subset of the Web for as long as possible, I'm sure. Most people however just want things to work. Some sites are bloated, sure, just like not all books are great literature. But that doesn't mean re-reading the same five books over and over for the rest of your life.

One of the reasons we (or at least I) haven't done a great deal of update work to this site is that we're restricted with not being able to develop for browsers with proper JavaScript and/or CSS.

I've written a whole blogging/CMS system for a few other sites, and have the freedom to do things like replace the owner of an article from a drop-down list of other staff members, or a search box (and then drop-down list of results) for other registered users, so you can re-assign documents. A simple AJAX-type trick that basically isn't available to RISC OS users. My mind boggles at just how much work would go in to degrading that for non-JavaScript users, never mind all the other stuff like image insertion, and inline attachment and tag editing. Heck, it even has WYSIWYG text editing, which means I don't have to explain HTML to the over-40s that will be editing the content. I can't even have a button that inserts tags to make text italic or bold here.

Look at the problems I faced just implementing a spoiler tag, because some people wanted it to load in a whole other page; I ended up with a compromised table-based, non-CSS, non-JavaScript version. That's ONE TAG. And then we get shit for not implementing a "proper" attachment system like other forums.

If NetSurf added JavaScript, and was small and portable enough to install on old Acorn machines without requiring a lot of module installation in the !Boot sequence (it's been so long since I installed it on RISC OS I can't remember), we could basically say "Features not working? just download this browser and all your problems are solved". But it's looking increasingly unlikely.
________
RichGCheers,
Rich.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #110900, posted by filecore at 12:48, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110899

Posts: 3867
Heck, it even has WYSIWYG text editing, which means I don't have to explain HTML to the over-40s that will be editing the content.
Conversely, you don't have to explain HTML to the under-25s either, as they seem to have bypassed HTML and learned on WYSIWYG editors. Aren't we lucky to have been involved in web design and infrastructure in that exciting but brief period when a webmaster actually had to know this stuff?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Rob Kendrick Message #110901, posted by nunfetishist at 12:51, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110891
nunfetishist
Exposing morons since 1981

Posts: 481
AFAIK NetSurf is aimed at being a small, portable web browser, and I can't think of any alternatives that are ahead of the game.
Firefox. Opera. Both of these can be crammed on to my N810 internet tablet, and I've got Opera on my parent's Wii. I think I even installed a WebKit-based third browser on the N810 recently, but it's got a weird name so I can't remember what it's called.
Firefox is hysterical on slow ARMs, and the Wii has an 800MHz PPC with powerful GPU. They are not small systems.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Rob Kendrick Message #110902, posted by nunfetishist at 12:53, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110892
nunfetishist
Exposing morons since 1981

Posts: 481
AFAIK NetSurf is aimed at being a small, portable web browser, and I can't think of any alternatives that are ahead of the game.
How about Dillo
Dillo is still way behind NetSurf in terms of quality of rendering, and is less portable.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Michael Drake Message #110903, posted by tlsa at 12:54, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110892

Posts: 1093
Dillo 2 is now available, complete with CSS. Last update was July of this year.
Its CSS support is still very primitive, but it's good that it's getting developed again.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Michael Drake Message #110904, posted by tlsa at 12:57, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110901

Posts: 1093
AFAIK NetSurf is aimed at being a small, portable web browser, and I can't think of any alternatives that are ahead of the game.
Firefox. Opera. Both of these can be crammed on to my N810 internet tablet, and I've got Opera on my parent's Wii. I think I even installed a WebKit-based third browser on the N810 recently, but it's got a weird name so I can't remember what it's called.
Firefox is hysterical on slow ARMs, and the Wii has an 800MHz PPC with powerful GPU. They are not small systems.
Here's a video of Firefox 2 and NetSurf running on a RPC. smile
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfQTb6MAXD8
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
richard cheng Message #110905, posted by richcheng at 14:24, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110899

Posts: 649
One of the reasons we (or at least I) haven't done a great deal of update work to this site is that we're restricted with not being able to develop for browsers with proper JavaScript and/or CSS.
Just out of interest, what proportion of your traffic is actually still RISC OS? I use RISC OS daily, but I've very rarely accessed the web from it since I got a proper computer.

(The Icon Bar is one of the top referrers to my personal website, and I'm still waiting for my first pageview from RISC OS.)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #110907, posted by filecore at 16:42, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110905

Posts: 3867
I use RISC OS daily, but I've very rarely [performed various everyday tasks] since I got a proper computer.
RISC OS not a proper computer shock shock, horror!

(The Icon Bar is one of the top referrers to my personal website, and I'm still waiting for my first pageview from RISC OS.)
TIB is 8/30 and 4/15 referrers of my two main domains, respectively, for each of their busiest months in the last year. In both cases, every single user agent was Mozilla or compatible, MSIE 6 or 7, Googlebot or Yahoobot or similar, with a grand total of three exceptions on both sites:

Something identifying itself as "Java/1.6.0_04"
Something identifying itself as "panscient.com"
Something identifying itself as "GingerCrawler/1.0 (Language Assistant for Dyslexics)", bizarrely enough

So, lots of TIB referrers and no RISC OS clients.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Blind Moose Message #110911, posted by Acornut at 18:52, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110891
Acornut No-eye-deer (No Idea)

Posts: 487


It's a nice enough browser, but JavaScript is a deal breaker.
So R U saying, that the RISCOS front end is 'dead in the water', then? frown
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Andrew Duffell Message #110912, posted by ad at 19:04, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110905
ad

Posts: 3229
One of the reasons we (or at least I) haven't done a great deal of update work to this site is that we're restricted with not being able to develop for browsers with proper JavaScript and/or CSS.
Just out of interest, what proportion of your traffic is actually still RISC OS?
So far this month 1.90% is from NetSurf on RISC OS. There are no other RISC OS browsers with >0.4%, but that doesn't take into account user-agent faking.

[Edit: New poll on front page: What web browser are you using to access this website?]

[Edited by ad at 19:07, 12/8/2009]
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Phil Mellor Message #110913, posted by monkeyson2 at 19:23, 12/8/2009, in reply to message #110912
monkeyson2Please don't let them make me be a monkey butler

Posts: 12380
Take a look at the second graph here: http://sam.davyson.com/weblog/firefox-usage-up-at-weekends/

I wonder how our browser change during work hours? I probably check TIB more during the day than at home, and although I consider myself a Mac/Safari user, I probably register more as a Windows/Chrome user.

Basically, you can achieve anything with a mixture of statistics and self deception.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Eric Rucker Message #110914, posted by bhtooefr at 03:24, 13/8/2009, in reply to message #110899
Member
Posts: 336
There definitely are downsides to not having JavaScript support, and it is useful. (And, my main browser is Opera on a Windows x86 PC.)

But, most sites I use gracefully degrade for non-JavaScript clients, is my point. I can use NetSurf as my main browser for a rather large portion of my browsing activity, although I choose not to because I prefer having a laptop, I prefer ridiculously high resolution screens that a RiscPC just can't do without additional hardware, and I prefer being able to run Flash content.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Martin Bazley Message #110929, posted by swirlythingy at 14:30, 14/8/2009, in reply to message #110905

Posts: 460
(The Icon Bar is one of the top referrers to my personal website, and I'm still waiting for my first pageview from RISC OS.)
Are you sure? I've certainly visited your website, and I'm using an Iyonix!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Blind Moose Message #110933, posted by Acornut at 19:29, 14/8/2009, in reply to message #110929
Acornut No-eye-deer (No Idea)

Posts: 487
and I'm still waiting for my first pageview from RISC OS.)
The trouble is Netsurf doesn't show up as a browser on my website stats. It comes up as unknown.
'Browse' shows up as Mozilla.
'Firefox as BonEcho(Firefox 2.0 development)
Ant Fresco as Ant Fresco
Arc Web as ...... Dunno! tongue

Well ArcWeb appears as Mozilla.

[Edited by Acornut at 08:49, 16/8/2009]

[Edited by Acornut at 08:54, 16/8/2009]
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Togneri Message #110938, posted by filecore at 20:41, 14/8/2009, in reply to message #110933

Posts: 3867
The trouble is Netsurf doesn't show up as a browser on my website stats. It comes up as unknown.
That's because, to 99.9% of the web-surfing community, it is!

</joke type="bad">
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Blind Moose Message #110984, posted by Acornut at 23:38, 15/8/2009, in reply to message #110933
Acornut No-eye-deer (No Idea)

Posts: 487
and I'm still waiting for my first pageview from RISC OS.)
There you go Richard, just hit your website with, Oregano, Netsurf, Fresco, and Arcweb. So those should show up in yer stats after midnight. Hope that helps.
Just need to buy a camera now! big grin
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Blind Moose Message #110985, posted by Acornut at 23:45, 15/8/2009, in reply to message #110984
Acornut No-eye-deer (No Idea)

Posts: 487
Actually, hit my site with Arcweb as well, to see what it declares itself as, if anything.
Currently, can't get Browse, or Firefox to work. Probably too tired and bleary eyed now, and the wooden stairs are calling.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 

Acorn Arcade forums: News and features: NetSurf may be forced to drop support for RISC OS