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Acorn Arcade forums: News and features: Take her off the monitor, I don't want to see her face
 

Take her off the monitor, I don't want to see her face

Posted by John Hoare on 14:00, 2/3/2007 | ,
 
I'll give you a choice. You can either read a review of all current RISC OS news portals - or you can listen to a load of radio news jingles. I'm assuming if you're hanging around on this site, you'll be interested in at least one of those.

So, for all of you interested in the first option, read on. What's changed since the situation was last looked at? You may insert the standard lament for the Acorn Cybervillage here, if you think it will help. (Note that I've deliberately only reviewed English sites, and ignored sites such as ArcSite - I don't believe I could give them full justice by reviewing them through an online translator.)

AcornGamez

AcornGamez screenshot Established April 2006 Staff Cheatwarrior, DoomRider URL www.acorngamez.tk

First impressions of AcornGamez are, frankly, awful. The full-page advert on entry to the site is really annoying (and looks terrible). The stupid thing is that this is easily avoided - just publicise the URL acorngamez.blog.com instead - it's not much longer, and would also get rid of the annoying .tk ad across the top. It would also solve the irritating problem that with the .tk address, the whole site is included in a frame, and acorngamez.tk is the only address kept in the address bar - making it irritating to link to specific pages.

This feeling of sloppiness continues, with the main navbar obscuring part of the header. Oh, and the header stops halfway through the image, with an "ACORN G". This is just really bad design work. It should just be one logo, not a repeating one that gives out halfway through.

It has to be said, however, that once you get past all these annoyances, it's a pretty good site, with regular updates - an impressive feat for a platform with not much games news. Sure, the news isn't gone into in much depth - but it's a nice collating of stuff from various sources. If the .tk address was abandoned, the page was tidied up layout-wise, and the exclamation marks were laid off a bit, it would improve the site no end.

ANS - Acorn News Service

ANS screenshot Established February 1998 Staff James Sears, Stephen Courtney URL www.ans.org.uk

The first thing that hits you with the ANS site is how gorgeous it looks. Clean, simple, yet beautiful - and very easy to navigate. Excellent stuff.

This site is set up rather more differently than most other sites listed here. There's a Drobe feed on the front page - but the meat of the site is their email newsletter, sent out more-or-less every fortnight. This outlines the latest RISC OS news in a simple, clear way - it won't win any awards for analysis, but then it's hardly meant to. Of course, it's no good if you want to know the latest news immediately - but as an easy-to-read roundup, it excels.

comp.sys.acorn.announce

csaa screenshot Established July 1992 Moderator Andrew Conroy URL groups.google.com/group/ comp.sys.acorn.announce

Obviously not your usual news portal - but as it's a place where people get news, I thought I'd better cover it here. And, of course, it's extremely useful for what it is.

But it's also the ultimate example of why news portals are important. They aren't just there to blindly publish press releases. They're there to filter and to challenge. As Drobe say - is the latest special offer from a company news? No, unless it's a really good one. Is the latest version incrementation of an obscure piece of software news? Not a jot. To say nothing of proper investigative reporting, or decent tutorial articles being hugely important. And let's not forget - one of the most important jobs for a news organisation is to call bullshit.

Let's not be under any illusions that if every RISC OS news site was to shut down, then csaa would be a worthy substitute. As wonderful as it is in its own right - it wouldn't.
 

Drobe

Drobe screenshot Established October 1999 Staff Chris Williams, Ian Hawkins, Martin Hansen, Theo Markettos URL www.drobe.co.uk

Drobe's great, innit.

But I suppose I'd better write more than that. So: no other RISC OS site reports news so thoroughly. It is truly comprehensive: you never for a minute wonder if you're missing some vital piece of news, and have to go and check elsewhere. And it's proper reporting - extremely well-written, and questioning the news - not just a hastily rewritten press release. Their show coverage in particular is always extremely good. It also reports on things not covered anywhere else on the net. It's just a joy to visit. And it's more than just news - they also publish some excellent features as well.

On the minus side, I've never been particularly impressed with the current look of the site. Their logo is fantastic, and so are the graphics used in the articles. But I'm a great lover of white space on websites - and Drobe doesn't have nearly enough, making it more difficult to read than it needs to be. The layout of the articles on the standard front page could be clearer too - the 'Published' and 'Comments' lines just blend into the article text. The masthead is also too busy - I preferred it when it was just plain colours, rather than with the background image. The creased-paper background is also unnecessary, to say the least - rather 1996 Geocities. Also, it was a lot nicer when all the news stories has a proper byline naming the person who wrote the article - "By the Drobe news desk" makes the site feel rather impersonal, which is a shame.

But it's difficult to criticise the site too much - indeed, the only reason the previous complaints are worth mentioning is because the site is so good. Drobe is an essential part of the RISC OS community, and whatever disagreements have arisen between them and some people, nobody should forget this. They are absolutely vital to the future of the platform.

The Icon Bar

The Icon Bar screenshot Established March 2000 Staff Richard Goodwin, Andrew Duffell, John Hoare, Jeffrey Lee, Phil Mellor, Andrew Poole URL www.iconbar.com

Obviously, being a contributor to TIB, I can't be seen to be in any way impartial in reviewing the site. Still, it's perhaps worth giving a few thoughts on the site since our relaunch. Personally, I think we've got one of the most beautiful site designs out of any RISC OS site - and no, I didn't design it.

Mind you, part of the point of the relaunch is that we aren't really a RISC OS portal at all any more - we'll cover the odd RISC OS-related thing, but we've broadened our remit to cover... well, what we feel like posting, really. It's no secret that this decision was made due to our apathy about posting much to do with RISC OS - an apathy that was evident with the paucity of updates throughout 2005 and 2006. None of us use RISC OS as our main platform any more, and so none of us feel like posting about it much. And besides, it's rather hypocritical to promote RISC OS when you don't use it much yourself.

I was initially worried when we made the decision to become a more general geek-related site - I thought that it might be too broad a focus. Take it too far, and who wants to read TIB over Slashdot? I thought we might be better off concentrating on becoming an Acorn retro site. But this worry has been largely unfounded - mainly due to, as the blurb says, "The sensibilities that Acorn instilled in us still influence our interests and writing." There is a specific feel to the content and writing on TIB that I think makes us worth reading. And I think what we post is, in the main, interesting and well-written.

TIB has the potential to become a wonderful site again. But - and it's a big but - it's currently constrained by the lack of regular updates. With the wider subject matter covered, there should be an update at least once a day - and at least a couple of juicy articles a week. It needs more effort putting in for the site to really take off. Speaking as a contributor - if we're at all serious about making the site a success, there's no excuse for not having posted anything to the site for 11 days.

My RISC OS

My RISC OS screenshot Established August 2001 Staff cheatwarrior, Steve Potts URL www.myriscos.co.uk

In a word: poor.

The site design is bland. The logo is awful. There is an unbelievable amount of spam in the comments, which is as unprofessional as you can get. But most importantly - most of the stories are either rehashes of csaa postings - or in some instances, a direct reposting. I'm also concerned by the current top story on the site - there is nothing to say that the person posting the article is advertising their own product! It needs to start with a disclaimer, at the very least. Yes, it's obvious if you delve a little further, or know about Blasts of the Xtreme - but that's hardly the point.

The site adds absolutely nothing, and hasn't improved one jot since it was last reviewed. You'd be better off just reading csaa instead.

RISCOS.org

riscos.org screenshotEstablished July 2000 Staff Paul Vigay URL www.riscos.org

Disclaimer: Paul Vigay provides hosting for TIB at a discount. Move along, lads. No scandal here.

Now, I wouldn't dream of saying that riscos.org is a bad site. It clearly isn't - there's lots of excellent stuff on there. As a news service, however it's pretty poor. There's not nearly enough updates, and whilst the writing is fine in itself, there's not much added value to any of the announcements. Presumably, this is the exact intention - but you'd be better off reading ANS, which is more comprehensive, and updated more regularly.

In my opinion, it would be better off to get rid of the news altogether, replace it with a Drobe feed, and concentrate on the stuff the site does well - maybe some more tutorials, or feature articles. Because it's a good site - just not for news.

RONews

RONews screenshot Established November 2006 Staff Sion Cleaver URL www.ronews.2itb.com

First impressions of this site do not inspire confidence. Two sets of ads, badly laid-out? A horribly big search box? A bloody pop-under? And when I click onto another page, another bloody pop-under? Yeuck. Seriously, there is no reason for this kind of thing. Set up a free blog on webspace that isn't so awful. Anything. It makes the site look ridiculous. As for the front of the site, I can see the rationale - spreading the word, and telling people what RISC OS is. In the end, though, the front page of your site needs to be the news page - the page that's updated the most regularly. All you're doing is annoying your loyal visitors, by inflicting a "What is RISC OS?" piece on them every time they visit.

The news page itself is even worse. It's hardly updated (the last post was a month ago), and when it is, it's stuff that's either rewritten csaa posts, or reported better on Drobe. AcornGamez, co-written by the same person, is well worth a visit, despite its problems - RONews aren't doing anything that isn't done far better elsewhere. It's currently a waste of time.

Conclusion

There is, of course, clearly no question which the best RISC OS news site is - Drobe. By a country mile. You didn't need an article to tell you that.

More interesting perhaps, is the question of how useful the other sites are. The Icon Bar, whilst not now a strictly RISC OS site, has the potential to become something special - but frankly needs a lot more effort from the people writing it to make this happen. ANS does what it does very well, and csaa is also great for what it is. AcornGamez, with a bit of improvement on the design side, could also become well worth reading for games news.

With My RISC OS and RONews, it's hard to see why they bother at all, when other places do the same thing so much better. Both badly need a redesign - but more importantly, both also need a purpose. There's plenty of things they could do to differentiate themselves from the competition, with a bit of effort - if either site could do something new, then they'd be well worth doing. Do some interviews with developers, write some opinion pieces, do some software reviews - those kind of things would make the sites well worth visiting.

So, what do you think? Have I been too harsh? Or too generous? What would you like to see RISC OS portals doing?
 

  Take her off the monitor, I don't want to see her face
  This is a long thread. Click here to view the threaded list.
 
Chris Message #99313, posted by Chris at 14:21, 2/3/2007
Member
Posts: 283
I like TIB a lot. It got me into RISC OS again after I assumed it had died when Acorn did, and hosts my little site, which is great (the hosting, not my site). I appreciate the need for the recent change of focus, but hope there'll be some RISC OS stuff on here in the future (which mostly depends on more things happening, I guess).

I agree Drobe is essential, and I personally like the look and design. Without it there'd probably be no proper RISC OS 'community' on the web at all. And, although your comments on AcornGamez and RONews are spot-on, Sion deserves some encouragement for having a go (I'm sure my efforts at 13 would have been much, much worse...).

I'd be interested in general thoughts on other RISC OS websites. My feeling is that most are utter rubbish, with a few exceptions.

Good guys:
MW Software
NetSurf
ROOL (assuming it actually happens...)
Spellings

Bad guys:
RISC OS Ltd
R-Comp
Qercus

It's sad that so many are so bad, particularly as the requirements for a good site are so simple: clean, logical layout; secure downloads/ordering; reasonably regular updates.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
John Hoare Message #99316, posted by moss at 14:28, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99313

Posts: 9346
And, although your comments on AcornGamez and RONews are spot-on, Sion deserves some encouragement for having a go (I'm sure my efforts at 13 would have been much, much worse...).
Now, I nearly said this - but I didn't want to come across as patronising in the article. I wanted to treat everyone on an equal playing field. But you're quite right, of course.

Agreed with your comments about other RISC OS sites. as well.
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Andrew Rawnsley Message #99318, posted by arawnsley at 15:09, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99316
R-Comp chap
Posts: 455
We'd definately welcome any recommendations that Chris feels able to make. I appreciate this is probably mainly "secure ordering" (the merits of which have been debated before, and we use it for all computer sales). However, handling a website for a large number of products is always going to be a challenge, and any assistance/suggestions would be more than welcomed. The only solution I could come up with was the site-map front page which at least helps people find the main pages quickly.

I am very much against the secure-downloads thing though - I can't stand the way some companies only offer major pieces of software that way, limiting usablity, documenation, backup media, and making this extra complicated for no real benefit. I'll take a disc and manual any day of the week!
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Phil Mellor Message #99321, posted by monkeyson2 at 15:22, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99318
monkeyson2Please don't let them make me be a monkey butler

Posts: 12380
I'll take a disc and manual any day of the week!
Except Sundays, when there's no post, obviously.

I certainly appreciate purchasing and downloading software - particularly DiscKnight, when I corrupted my hard drive.

Why discriminate between providing software updates via downloads (which I presume you do) but distribute initial purchases on disk?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Chris Message #99324, posted by Chris at 15:28, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99318
Member
Posts: 283
We'd definately welcome any recommendations that Chris feels able to make.
That's decent of you.

My key points on the R-Comp site are:
- Each page has a different style, font, colour, etc, which makes it very disjointed. Some are within a frameset (e.g. Textures Pro page), some not (Grapevine). There is no consistent 'look and feel'.
- The textured backgrounds are mostly in 256 colours and look very dated.
- There are no set of consistent links to the index page, the ordering page, etc. Having a list of key links at the top of each page (doesn't need to be a frame) would aid navigation around the site.
- I'm not clear on the difference between R-Comp and RCI products. Both seem to sell software. Again, for the user, this makes the layout a bit confusing.

As for a secure ordering facility, I'd find it very useful. If I'm browsing the web outside office hours it's nice to be able to order a piece of software right there and then, and know that it will securely handled. As you say, this is not quite the same thing as secure downloads, of course: secure ordering could still be dealt with by a human the following day: the key thing is safe use of credit cards over the web.

If you'd like to discuss this further, I'd be happy for you to email me privately (address is on my site www.lym.iconbar.com - and feel free to point out the problems with that ). I'm no website designer, but I'd be happy to help-out if you were interested.
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Garry Message #99326, posted by thegman at 15:30, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99318
Member
Posts: 62
Andrew,
I sometimes give idle thought to buying MPro 4, but without the instant gratification of a download, I tend to lose interest before I actually decide to buy it.

If you prefer disc and manual (not that the disc is much use to an A9Home owner), that's great, but offer a download as an option.

There are some RISC OS users like me, who are more at home with buying Mac software than RISC OS software. On the Mac, 30 day trials, and online purchase/download is the absolute norm, and impulse buys are common. R-Comp does it's very best to put me off buying software, I can't try it first, and if I want to play with it over the weekend, I can't because I need to wait for it be delivered via papyrus scrolls carried by horseback

I think it is beyond question you are losing sales because of these very old-fashioned attitudes.

Actually, just out of interest, although I don't have an A9Home anymore, how would you supply MPro 4 to me, if I did?
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Andrew Rawnsley Message #99334, posted by arawnsley at 15:53, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99326
R-Comp chap
Posts: 455
Firstly, I actually bothered to read and look at the website this afternoon. I've started doing some work on it as a result, because certain things stood out and hit me between the eyes once I actually *looked* at it, rather than just adding new products.

Regarding Garry's comment, Mpro 4 comes on CD ROM with a printed manual. It can also be emailed if you wish - just put a note in (say) the fax field on the order page. That applies to any piece of software.

Unlike many companies, we do try to dispatch same day, with next day delivery. I appreciate this doesn't help on a Saturday, but if you order midweek, you'll probably receive your software next day.

I am sure I've explained why I don't want to see Mpro demos (namely, the importance of getting the first 15 minutes "right" with an email client is very important, hence the value of printed documentation and tech support). Whilst you may feel that downloading is the norm on the Mac, as a PC gamer, I virtually never buy via download. I think it depends what you're mentally attuned to. There is also the question of whether developing demos rather than the main program is best use of developer time!

Whilst there will almost always be an exception, it is actually quite doubtful that we lose (many) real sales - it is easy to say "I'd think about buying it"... Hey, I know... let's put this to the test... you agree to buy it, and by the end of the day, I'll arrange secure ordering and easier electronic distribution!

(I'll probably do the secure ordering anyway).
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Andrew Rawnsley Message #99345, posted by arawnsley at 16:54, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99334
R-Comp chap
Posts: 455
I have now put up a trial for secure ordering for the RCI section of the site. If you'd like to test this out, try ordering Uniprint or something. The Fax field has been renamed "Fax or Order Notes". Just put "This is not an order" in that field.

Garry, if you'd like an emailed copy of Mpro 4, you could put "Please email software to me" in that Order Notes field. (At least as/when I roll it out for r-comp as well).
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Adam Lloyd Message #99357, posted by adamlloyd at 17:24, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99345
Member
Posts: 155
I'm not sure if I'll get flamed for this but. . . I have a .tk domain and it does help a bit (even though the link on Google is the .Trypod.com) you can have e-mail forwarding and stuff.
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Mike Message #99361, posted by MikeCarter at 17:35, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99357
MikeCarter

Posts: 401
There better ones such as: http://www.sitelutions.com/
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Andrew Poole Message #99362, posted by andypoole at 17:40, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99357

Posts: 5552
I'm not sure if I'll get flamed for this but. . . I have a .tk domain and it does help a bit (even though the link on Google is the .Trypod.com) you can have e-mail forwarding and stuff.
Helps with what?

Why not spend the fiver to register a proper domain and use that?
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mark stephens Message #99370, posted by markee at 18:39, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99313
Member
Posts: 8
RSS feed is definitely a sign of a good site and means you know when to revisit. I'm not going to surf all the sites on the off-chance something might be new.
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Garry Message #99372, posted by thegman at 19:20, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99334
Member
Posts: 62
Hey, I know... let's put this to the test... you agree to buy it, and by the end of the day, I'll arrange secure ordering and easier electronic distribution!.
Sounds (almost) like a deal to me! But a manually sent email is unfortunately not good enough for difficult to please people like me. I'm assuming that you don't work 24/7/365, so I need the download/email to be automatic. If you make that available on the site, I'll buy a copy, no problem. It's just that I'm very impatient about these things, and do most of my RISC OS related activities out of work hours.

As for the demos, I write software for a living, I know making a demo version adds time to development, but it's not *that* hard, I really think it's a good idea. I know that you may feel that the first 15 mins are important for making or breaking a first impression, and I do see where you are coming from. For MPro 4, I'd be willing to take a chance on it without using a demo, as I hear good things, and £40 is not a fortune.

But as a general rule, I'm not willing to pay for software which I cannot try first, I've been burned once, and am not willing to do that again, unless it's very cheap. The example is ArtWorks, some people think it's great, and good for them, but after spending £170 or something on it, and then finding it does not support alpha-blended graphics made it next to useless for my purposes. A demo would have quickly pointed out that it would not meet my needs, and it's a lost sale to MW software, but it's also a customer who still has £170 to spend on something that he actually wants.
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GuestX Message #99373, posted by guestx at 21:29, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99313
Member
Posts: 102
Amusing quote from "The Day Today"!
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Andrew Rawnsley Message #99376, posted by arawnsley at 22:50, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99372
R-Comp chap
Posts: 455
No can do on the "automatic" downloads, but as people who know me will confirm, I work *nearly* 24/7/365 I'm posting at 10.50pm (wink). If you ordered now, you'd have it come saturday morning. No, its not instant, but it tastes better than fastfood

We do check for orders on Saturdays and Sundays, although I try and avoid tech support!

[Edited by arawnsley at 22:53, 2/3/2007]
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Garry Message #99377, posted by thegman at 23:00, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99376
Member
Posts: 62
I see, may ask I why not on the auto downloads?
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Andrew Rawnsley Message #99378, posted by arawnsley at 23:30, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99377
R-Comp chap
Posts: 455
Don't have the cgi scripting capability as part of our hosting, I'm afraid. Also, all our credit card transactions have to be run through traditional machines (don't you just love banks?) so there has to be a human step between sale and delivery. We have a lot of problems with "bogus" orders, so I tend to check orders by phone, esp if the people aren't well known customers of ours.

For example, we keep getting orders from one guy for the same product, with a valid card, but he doesn't actually want the item.

[Edited by arawnsley at 23:31, 2/3/2007]
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Garry Message #99379, posted by thegman at 23:48, 2/3/2007, in reply to message #99378
Member
Posts: 62
OK, I understand that, and I know it's a real pain to switch to a different merchant provider or bank.

I'm obviously not familiar with how your site works, but you could try a service like Kagi, they'll handle electronic distribution for you, and credit card payments etc. Obviously they take a cut for themselves, but I doubt it's anymore than the cost of a jiffy envelope, stamp,CD, CD case etc.

Anyway, I appreciate that you do want to provide a good service, so I expect I'll buy MPro 4 anyway.
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Andrew Message #99380, posted by andrew at 00:06, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99379
HandbagHandbag Boi
Posts: 3439
This is great "keep on their toes" material. Constructive critisicm. Good work.

No idea what the title means 'though.

[Edited by andrew at 00:07, 3/3/2007]
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Andrew Poole Message #99381, posted by andypoole at 00:06, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99379

Posts: 5552
I'm obviously not familiar with how your site works, but you could try a service like Kagi, they'll handle electronic distribution for you, and credit card payments etc. Obviously they take a cut for themselves, but I doubt it's anymore than the cost of a jiffy envelope, stamp,CD, CD case etc.
You could use Paypal for payments, too. I bought some software for my mac the other week which asked me to pay using paypal, then emailed me a registration code to put into the software automagically when I'd paid.
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Kees Meijer Message #99382, posted by EasyKees at 00:22, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99379
Member
Posts: 7


Anyway, I appreciate that you do want to provide a good service, so I expect I'll buy MPro 4 anyway.
R-Comp provide good service ?. good service is not the correct word.
I have a few products from them but support is excellent !!
(and so is MPro4 - but it takes some time to figure out all the options and things that makes live easier )

And as someone from the netherlands R-Comp have to translate my e-mails in proper english - even that seems to be no problem for them.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Adam Lloyd Message #99392, posted by adamlloyd at 11:37, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99382
Member
Posts: 155
yeah they are good, but even though I had to resist the urge to shoot them with the usb rockets at the SWShow2007
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VinceH Message #99400, posted by VincceH at 11:53, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99378
VincceH
Lowering the tone since the dawn of time

Posts: 1583
(About 'auto' downloads)

Don't have the cgi scripting capability as part of our hosting, I'm afraid.
Have you never considered the approach I use for WebChange?

Customer orders the software, and I email them a username and password (setting that up on the software's 'users' section at the same time).

Then, when the customer receives that email, they log in and download the full version of the software. The site logs tell me if anyone has logged in to download the same thing multiple times - in which case, either they're having a problem, or they're being naughty (more obvious if they seem to be downloading from different IP addresses). (If you call them and ask if they're having a problem - and they are - it makes you look really good in the customer's eyes! 1)

(Not applicable any more, obviously, given that the full (26bit) version is available for download while I slowly work towards a 32bit version inbetween doing far too much other work)

In my case, the setting up of the username and password and sending it out has to be done manually - which is less than ideal. I'd like it so that they get the details and access more or less immediately - but as it was (and probably still is) that couldn't be done2. In your case, seeing as you still have to manually deal with the credit card transaction, you could set it up in exactly the same way I did.

1. Unless they have a style mindset, in which case they'll start ranting in a paranoid way about how your software is informing you of their activities. Or something.

2. in fact, I think as it was I could probably have automated it by running one machine 24/7, having it monitor the email address at which I received notifications of purchases, and then added a username and password to the passwords file and (encrypted and) uploaded it. However, as things are now even that might not be possible. With my upgraded hosting, I can set usernames and passwords up online, but I can't seem to suss out the location of the passwords file to change it via ftp. When I have time I'm going to have a very thorough investigation. However, even if that doesn't pan out, I think there's still a way I can do it.
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Jeffrey Lee Message #99406, posted by Phlamethrower at 12:27, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99400
PhlamethrowerHot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot Hot stuff

Posts: 15055
2. in fact, I think as it was I could probably have automated it by running one machine 24/7, having it monitor the email address at which I received notifications of purchases, and then added a username and password to the passwords file and (encrypted and) uploaded it. However, as things are now even that might not be possible. With my upgraded hosting, I can set usernames and passwords up online, but I can't seem to suss out the location of the passwords file to change it via ftp. When I have time I'm going to have a very thorough investigation. However, even if that doesn't pan out, I think there's still a way I can do it.
You should be able to do all of that on the server using PHP, CGI, etc, surely? (Although it might get a bit trickier if it needs to monitor an email address instead of a purchase web page)
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VinceH Message #99407, posted by VincceH at 12:35, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99406
VincceH
Lowering the tone since the dawn of time

Posts: 1583
You should be able to do all of that on the server using PHP, CGI, etc, surely? (Although it might get a bit trickier if it needs to monitor an email address instead of a purchase web page)
Probably, but if I do it on a machine running here, then I don't have to learn any new tricks.
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Simon Challands Message #99409, posted by SimonC at 13:19, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99407
Elite
Right on, Commander!

Posts: 398
Some criticism of a dated-looking background for Drobe? Nah, nice retro feel Of course I'm only saying this because elite.acornarcade.com is incredibly dated-looking, the design being 90% identical to what it was when I started it in probably 1996. I occasionally wonder if I should bother doing something about that, then decide that probably no-one ever looks at it any more anyway. Looking at it, I suppose I should make some pointless update to prove it's not quite dead.
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Michael Drake Message #99419, posted by tlsa at 21:30, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99313

Posts: 1093
I'd be interested in general thoughts on other RISC OS websites. My feeling is that most are utter rubbish, with a few exceptions.

Good guys:
MW Software
NetSurf
ROOL (assuming it actually happens...)
Spellings
Wah, what about the PicoDrive site?

I agree Drobe is best for news and articles by far. I'm not too keen on Drobe's design though.
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Mike Message #99421, posted by MikeCarter at 21:35, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99419
MikeCarter

Posts: 401
I'd be interested in general thoughts on other RISC OS websites. My feeling is that most are utter rubbish, with a few exceptions.

Good guys:
MW Software
NetSurf
ROOL (assuming it actually happens...)
Spellings
Wah, what about the PicoDrive site?

I agree Drobe is best for news and articles by far. I'm not too keen on Drobe's design though.
I find some of the content being hidden on the right in the center column.
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Michael Drake Message #99424, posted by tlsa at 22:02, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99421

Posts: 1093
Wah, what about the PicoDrive site?

I agree Drobe is best for news and articles by far. I'm not too keen on Drobe's design though.
I find some of the content being hidden on the right in the center column.
There are only two columns. You mean the main (right) column? Maybe your window is too narrow? What browser are you using?

Admittedly, it's only been tested in NetSurf.
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Chris Message #99427, posted by Chris at 23:26, 3/3/2007, in reply to message #99419
Member
Posts: 283
Wah, what about the PicoDrive site?
The PicoDrive site is lovely .
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Acorn Arcade forums: News and features: Take her off the monitor, I don't want to see her face