Friday, 20 May 2022

Archive Magazine - Volume 25.6 Review

Last week, an email arrived from Archive Magazine editor Gavin Smith containing a link to a digital copy of the latest issue, 25.6. It was a pleasant surprise to see such a copy being sent out to subscribers of the physical magazine a few days before that arrived in the post and, as it is the Wakefield (but in Bradford) RISC OS show this weekend (which I hope to attend), I thought it timely to provide a quick review of the final edition in the current volume.

There are the usual 56 pages (including covers) and it begins with a lovely picture from Tollymore Forest Park in County Down. After a brief but informative editorial, we hit the rather lengthy newsdesk, coming in at eight pages. There are notes on forthcoming shows, a new machine from R-Comp, various software updates and the like. Indeed, there is quite a lot to take in here. 

The first feature is from Richard Hallas and covers the use of the cog logo to represent RISC OS. It's an interesting piece, not only providing a bit of background to the use of the Acorn nut in previous years, but also the reasons and benefits of changing to the increasingly familiar cog. Following that is an update from Bernard Boase to a previous article (Archive 25.3) about the various distros available for RISC OS. Here, he provides further information about the Cloverleaf Distro and some thoughts on it.  

John McCartney gives us a article on running RPCEmu on Linux Mint, as well as a link to his guide to the process, followed by four pages from Andrew Rawnsley, who provides a beginners guide to what RISC OS Developments do, their past achievements and how they operate. Chris Hall made my head explode with four pages on how to calculate the filled area of an arbitrary shape - this has nothing to do with his writing or coding, it's very much to do with my brain and maths! Once I got my head around the workings it all made perfect sense. 

Brain hurts... :-)

Gavin Wraith talks readers through queues and objects in Lua, John Schild delivers an amusing tale about printer drivers, and then Mr Wraith pops up again with two tales about text. Chris Hall's hefty five and a half pages on the steady march of progress relating to data connections from your home is one that certainly informs and gets the reader to ask questions - the most immediate one being "Is that really progress?" 

Bimal Jangra delivers some good advice on keeping your Windows PC's up to date in PC Bits, whilst in Mac Matters, Mark Stephens delves into using RPCEmu on the Mac. We get a half page for letters and emails (and yes, I remember TopModel too!), before Rob Sprowson starts a new series on the topic of PIC's - Peripheral Interface Controllers. It looks like there will be four parts to this series and I am looking forward to seeing where this goes. 

Colin Piggot returns with another Acorn Retro, with news snippets and the like for BBC Micro and Electron users, before we finish the issue off with Kevin Corney's Lives and Loves of a RO fanatic, a lovely appreciation of one person's interaction with RISC OS. Add to that a couple of small hints and tips box outs and an advert for the Wakefield show this weekend on the back cover, and that's it for a packed final edition for this volume. 

I really do like Archive, it's never less than informative and entertaining, even if the subject matter taxes the brain (which is no bad thing at all), and it's great to see the updated magazine website in operation. As you can probably have guessed, I renewed my subscription at the end last year and look forward to seeing what the next volume brings. Check Archive Magazine's website out here, where you'll find all of the relevant details about subscribing. You can also follow the magazine on Twitter here

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