This past December 28th will be remembered as the day BeBits changed owners, at least to the public. Sean and Greg, founders, maintainers (not so much as of lately, as they recognize) and basically do-it-all-at-the-site guys, posted an update with not only a history lesson about the past of the site, but (mainly) with the announcement that they've turned over BeBits to a new owner.

We don't know who the new owner is, and won't know until he decides to announce it himself, but all BeBits doings are under his wing now, including all e-mail now sent to the site. According to Sean and Greg, he's an active community member with plans for the site. We'll just have to wait and see.

So congratulations are in order, to the new owner, and farewells to Sean and Greg, along with a huge Thank You, for keeping the site running for almost 10 years. You've provided an immense service to the BeOS, then Zeta, then Haiku community.

Hi everyone. We here at ICO (which means Frank and I) would like to wish everyone out there a Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah and Happy Kwanzaa. I think I covered all the bases.

We hope you all have a great time with your loved ones, eat tons of sweets (you can always diet later) and most of all just have fun. So once again, all together now, Happy Holidays! :-)

Yesterday, Christof Lutteroth sent out an e-mail to the Haiku-development mailinglist, where he announced the results of two successful final year software engineering projects at the University of Auckland. Both projects were supervised by him and his colleague Gerald Weber.

The first project really impressed us at IsComputerOn, and we hope that is the start of a whole new app_server team! The project was undertaken by Ahmed Al Hassani and Mohannad Hammadeh and is called "A more manageable multi-window interface". Ahmed and Mohannad extended the Haiku app server with functionality for tiling and stacking of windows. That is, windows can be arranged in a non-overlapping manner by snapping them to other windows, or stacked similar to tabbing in a web browser. Enough said, have a look at their screencast, which explains the new features:
Video of Stack and Tile

The two have not only implemented the new features but have also evaluated them using eye tracking equipment, showing that with a high probability stack & tile is more efficient in certain situations.

The second project is called "Multi-platform document-oriented GUIs", and was undertaken by James Kim and John Kim. They extended the Auckland Layout Model (ALM), which is a layout manager based on linear programming that has already found its way into the Haiku source tree. They implemented new functionality that allows users to switch a GUI of a running application into an "editing mode", in which a user can modify the GUI using a WYSIWIG editor. A user can customize a GUI on demand, and immediately use it afterwards. The only requirement is that ALM was used as the layout manager. Customized layouts can be loaded and saved using XML files, which can be used on different platforms (Java, .NET, Haiku) to produce the same layout. Also these two students have published a screencast showing their project:
Video of ALM

The example GUI in the screencast consists mostly of buttons, however, the layout manager and editor work with any type of control. James and John have also performed a small evaluation of the prototype, which indicated that many end-users appreciate this new feature.

Christof continues with that both projects are still ongoing, and here comes the early Christmas gift: "If there is any interest, we would be more than happy to give the code to the Haiku project. The window management functions developed in the first project might be useful as an optional feature that can be turned on and off somewhere in a preference app. The extension of ALM developed in the second project does not have any immediate impact on the system. It would only enrich the existing ALM API.

In the end of his email he thanks all the developers for answering questions on the mailing list, and especially Ingo.

We would like to thank Christof Lutteroth and Gerald Weber for choosing Haiku as base for their projects, and hope they will do so also in the future.

TuneTracker Systems just announced the immediate availability of the new Command Center 4, the latest milestone after the 2006 CC3 was released. TuneTracker Systems is, as far as I know, the number 1 commercial BeOS software company, enjoying long time sucess in the airwaves industry. Success which is more than deserved by Dane and crew.

This new version includes many new features and improvements over CC3, including for example Database-Style Output Logging, InstaCue, CueMarkers and many more, all of which you can read at the CC4 info page (prices are also listed there).

Congratulations to Dane and TT Systems, I hope this new version is their most successful yet. 


This is sad and funny at the same time, and I just had to post it here. In Austin, TX, a teacher named Karen caught one of her students showing his classmates something on his laptop. When she investigated further, she found he was showing them Linux and... *gasp*... even handing out Cd's of the damned thing! She had to take matters into her own hands of course, so she confiscated them and wrote an angry e-mail to the man behind the project the Cd's originated from, HeliOS.

You can read Ken Starks' response over at the HeliOS' blog. This whole thing is priceless.

This past Friday, DarkWyrm posted over at the Haiku site the latest (rev 2) Haiku R2 Desktop Proposal, and is now awaiting comments, suggestions, criticiisms and general opinions from everyone. People have already started throwing in their two cents, so join in if you'd like.

He consolidated two RFC's into one big bootie PDF file, 11 page long, which you can read right here. It covers a great deal of topics, from 3D acceleration, to the Deskbar, along with Window and File Management. Congrats on preparing that document DarkWyrm.

As is now the norm, a Code Sprint always follows the latest BeGeistert, and this time was no exception. As usual the results were impressive, with not only the coders present at the Youth Hostel but also others remotely, contributing to the improvement of the OS. Stephan Aßmus, aka stippi, wrote earlier today a report on the Code Sprint results. Lots of bugs were fixed, including some serious kernel ones, improvements were achieved, in behaviour, performance, etc and overall it was a leap forward for Haiku, bringing it into short distance of an Alpha release. A short, two bugs, distance! Great work everyone.

Earlier, there was a write-up on BeGeistert itself. There were several presentations (including François Revol with NetSurf), lots of coding as well and most of all, lots of fun was had by everyone (how I wish I could have been there.. grrrrr). In one picture, you can see Charlie at a brewery, looking as happy and in awe as a kid in Disneyland........

A few days ago (sorry for not checking the e-mail sooner), Pier Luigi Fiorini, aka plfiorini, wrote me about the new and improved OsDrawer dubbed v2.0. Among other improvements and changes to the site, they changed project software, leaving behind GForge and going instead with Redmine. Due to this change to Redmine, the "Submit Projects" link isn't working at the moment (they're working on it), so for now, if you have a project you'd like to submit, follow these instructions.

The two most recent projects added to OsDrawer were slaad's Feed Kit and notorious IM Kit. Awesome. IM Kit has always been a great project. Even if it came from slaad ;)

It's almost over, some have already left, while, as usual, others will stay till the very last minute. Yes, I'm talking about BeGeistert (as you could already tell from the title). This weekend, the Dusseldorf Youth Hostel (completely renovated and it looks great) hosted BeGeistert 19, codename Alphaville (is it big in Japan?).

Some information is already available about it, and I'm sure more will be in the next few days. François Revol did a presentation on his NetSurf port, which I hear is looking and performing nicely, while Stephan Asmuss (stippi) did one on Icon-o-Matic. According to Begasus, who was there Saturday only (wuss), the attendants were in the high 20s, close to 30 and all were having fun, as always. 

Giuseppe was/is there and not only did he take lots of pictures , we also did a write-up of the ongoings, almost to the minute, which you can read, in Italian, right here.

Too bad I couldn't make it this time, I miss going there and hanging out with everyone, having fun, not sleeping much, eating putten steak at 4am, etc etc. Good times :)

Oh and BeGeistert 20's date has already been set! It'll take place during the April 3-5 weekend. Awesome!

Update: The code sprint is ON!

This year Haiku was once again one of Google Summer of Code's projects but that wasn't it all, oh no. There was Haiku's own Code Drive which helped bring even more projects and students to the community. A few days ago, Axel posted the results of both these efforts.

On the bright side, we have projects which ended quite well and delivered the expected results, most notably (but not the only one) Zhao Shuai, who, with Ingo's help, implemented swap file support for Haiku. Others included Andrej Spielmann, with sub-pixel antialiasing and Salvatore Benedetto, with porting bonnie++ and UDF to Haiku.

On the other side, real life got in the way of some projects unfortunately, and in those cases, little to no code was returned. It happens sometimes and we wish them the best.

All in all, a good run this year I think, so congratulations are in order.