Weekly Software News – March 24 to 31

weekly

And here I was, thinking on Friday “Ah, this has been a quiet week for updates and releases. PtitSeb was probably taking a (well deserved) break. I can probably do a quick summary of what happened these past days in a couple of minutes.” When I woke up on Friday morning and checked the repo again, I realized my mistake: Streak was back. With a lot of stuff. Oh no.

Alright, for those who do not know, Streak has been one of the most prolific porters ever on Pandora (while PtitSeb is clearly catching up!) since the beginning, but in recent times we have seen him come and go. He can be absent for like six months, then suddenly touch base again with everyone and releasing a bunch of stuff. I feel obligated to showcase some of his contributions: Descent 2 engine port, MAME EX, Reminiscence (Flashback), Sylpheed email client, Vice EX (C64 emulator), BeeSoft Commander, Nestopia 2, BabyPanda Browser, CLI Love (a huge compilation of Command Line Tools) and of course DosBox EX. So, welcome back, Streak!

Updates (12)

  • Battle for Wesnoth: upstream changes. Minor update.
  • Magnetic: minor fix for the intro message.
  • SpaceFM: not sure what the update was about, but the PND has a screenshot now.
  • Dillo: update to ensure the appdata works with FAT32 cards. Note that Dredd, editor at PandoraLive, did a whole post on how he ported Dillo the the Pandora. This is a must-read If you are interested in porting applications.
  • Rockdodger: minor update with a high score entry screen and others.
  • Tong: minor update on controls for this mix between Pong and Tetris.
  • Qupzilla: updated to the most recent version (previous repo version was old). Note that you should refer to our article about the browsers available on Pandora to make an educated decision as to which browser to use.
  • DOSBox EX v9: this update creates auto-loading .bat files automatically (previously you had to rename the files manually). If you are not aware what DOSBox is, it’s a shame since it makes it possible to play old DOS games from the PC world. So far I have not been able to make this version work (I get some errors and it crashes right after the splash screen) but this may just be me.
  • PandaBAS BASIC Interpreter: fixes made on the ARM-specific build.
  • PPSSPP: update to the latest git version (minor).
  • Pandora Microbes: I am assuming this is a minor update.
  • Pandora System Info: _wb_ included the possibility to modify some system settings directly from the application. I’d say it is a minor update.

New Releases (9)

  • AtariRobbo: a recreation of the Robbo game for 8 bit Atari released in 1989. 
  • Sherman’s Aquarium: a screensaver or GNOME panel applet used to simulate an aquarium.
  • Oragir: a client for the Livejournal web-based service.
  • Popstar: “a simple puzzle game involving floating stars that you must connect to form polygons”. Early feedback from a couple of users seems very positive.
  • Research Assistant: a free multi-platform open source project (C++/Qt) for researchers to ease their work in classification of any kind of information. Sounds interesting. For students, maybe?
  • LCD Tester: I have not tried it yet, but it seems to be software to find out if your LCD screen works properly and if you have dead pixels.
  • Atari800 Remix: an Atari 800, 800XL, 130XE and 5200 emulator with custom mp3 soundtrack.
  • FreeSynd: a port of the freesynd engine to run Syndicate in a more native mode. Great news, this is one of my favorite games, I cannot wait to try that out. More free time, please!!!
  • Cdrdao – PSX 2 Pandora: And so I used the power of the force to convince PtitSeb to compile the cdrdao tool I mentioned in one of my latest articles about ripping PS1 games. That tool is what enables ripping on a Linux Desktop and it was not available for Pandora so far. Now it is, but I cannot seem to run it just yet. It is a first release, so that may be just me, or some bug to fix. Anyway, when it works, it will be great to rip PS1 games directly on Pandora, everywhere. Every single day that passes makes the Pandora more useful and versatile. You got to love that.

And let’s not forget…

The final 1.54 firmware update. It took less than one week to move from the RC to the final version. Excellent job to all involved, and you can run the upgrade through the System > Upgrade Pandora OS item in your menu, but make sure that you run it twice before rebooting, or you will lose the wifi-drivers.

Wow, that was a busy week. I certainly hope that PtitSeb and Streak will not start releasing stuff at the same time. Not sure if I can keep up!

If you missed the previous weekly summaries, here they are: last weekthe week before, and the week before that one too. Net takeaway: you will have a LOT to catch up if you did not check out the Pandora scene in March. To avoid missing news, why not subscribe to our weekly newsletter?

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