Finally after 4 alpha version and 6 beta versions we (McDope, Amix and me) think AmiFox, a new browser for classic Amiga, is ready for it’s first release. This is Version 0.2 so one can see it’s still in development and many things to improve but I guess many people want to try how it works. And we can test how the server behave under heavier load than in the beta tests.
There is a special page for AmiFox where you can download the program.
On thing I found really annoying with AmitFox was the scrollbars, (in the picture) because even you know you want to the end of the page (or to start) you have to click multiple times for every page and wait to let the page load. It would be much easier just to click and drag directly to the position you want it. In principle it is not difficult just remember the down position and record the position where the mouse button was released and sent both position to server instead of just this one position.
Then on server emulate a down at the starting position a move to the destination and a mouse button release. Sounds easy and it is actually. But of course the WRP is written in go and I’m not fluent in that language, therefore it took a while to understand how this stuff works. Luckily the normal mouse click routine works exactly the same way, just without the move in between, so there is a good example.
Finally it works. And good news it works awesomely one scrollbars also in Openstreetmap (even I would still prefer to use MUIMapparium 😀 ). Strangely it does not work in Google maps or Google Streetview, really weird especially because it is Chrome in WRP. Maybe I have to emulate touch movement for that needs more testing.
I was looking more into the WRP code, to check if there is any way to make file downloads work, and yes, it is possible, not a very elegant way for now but it somehow works… now I really think If I should add that before we release the first version.
Again got some ideas from Michal Bergseth (Amix , Amitopia) what to implement for Amiga. Basically it is the same idea as for AmiTube. Do something, the Amiga is too slow for, on the server and only sent the result to Amiga. This time it’s webpages… the usual webrowsers are either rather old and do not support CSS (like AWeb, Voyager), newer but still do not support CSS (iBrowse) or newer support CSS but are very slow (Netsurf).
I started with „CutyCapt“ to make a simple docker container which can load a webpage and make a screenshot. But with that you only get a screen shot nothing more. No idea how to navigate. My second try was to also load the actual HTML and parse for links. This is rather easy using the THTMLDocument class for Free Pascal but this gives you just the links and nothing more, so I put just a list under the image. This was not really a good solution.
Then I noticed when you let CutyCapt print the webpage as PDF, then the PDF contains all the links with position information. Therefore I wrote a PDF parser to get the links and position from the PDF and create a map for the image. Which worked reasonable good, but not very fast (printing is rather slow, also the transfer from PDF to PNGs is slow). But it was good enough for a first test version:
This was the first time it came a bit to public and wide audience attention. So I got some more hints that such systems already exists, some very good and some rather poor, I tried a lot of them and none really satisfied my needs. Some like wkhtml are very fast and do not need an X-Server in the docker, which is nice, but has a lot of problems with some webpages (cnn.com, image are VERY low resolution, theguardian.com all images are missing and so on).
The best I found is definitely WRP – Web Rendering Proxy which is very fast already has a lot of settings build in, it is already nicely usable in your IBrowse if you like. But there is a big BUT it is single user only, so not suitable for a public service like AmiTube is, and which is the ultimate goal.
So an other Member of the AmiTube Discord Channel (going by the name McDope) will try to create a server with this WRP which can be used by some more users. I meanwhile make a little app, which feels like a real Webbrowser but is in fact just an interface to the WRP. It solves also the problem that you cannot type in anything into any forms like search engines or so. Kinda. A little video to demonstrate.
Another wish for AmiTube was to have multiple movie directories for easier sorting of movies. I implemented a possibility to do that, now you can add MOVIEDIR1, MOVIEDIR2 and so on to the icon to have multiple movie directories. In the Project menu one can choose which movie directory should be used for next download or loading of local files.
A little preview for the next AmiTube Version, one wish was a play list like feature to play the downloaded movies automatically or by random or in a loop.
I thought about that feature, the main problem, would be how to stop the actual playing, because when you just start AGABlaster one after the other, how to stop the actual playing, therefore I decided to add a little announcement Screen for 5 seconds where you can stop the current play list.
So stay tuned and look forward to the next release.
I finished some bug reports (most related to the fancy list), big thanks to the beta testers, especially „HANsolo“ who found the most bugs, thanks very nice work.
One thing I changed, The „Auto icon load“ setting in prefs will now also set the fancy list to auto load the icons or not, that way I guess it is maybe also usable on slower Amigas as well. I tried out on my real A1200 (with TF1260, AGA 32 color screen) and even with the icon preview on, it’s not that bad, certainly fast enough to work with it. I like it.
So the changes for this Version are quite short:
Fancy movie list
updated translation for italian and french
encoding bug fixes (should show now umlauts and other non ASCII chars in title and description)
smaller bugs fixes related downloading movies
Download as always via the Updater in the Program or on the AmiTube page
Finally here it is the 1.0 of AmiTube a lot of changes. As shown before now it contains a Download queue to start more than one conversation/download job which are processed one after the other. A Typical Amiga thing is the AREXX interface, all good programs have it, therefore AmiTube needs that as well. There are commands to search and to start a convert job and play a movie.
For this new Version I will also supply a Version for AmigaOS 4 and MorphOS due to popular demand.
Next to the search bar is now a Button which opens the search history.
History for search
AROS64 ABIv11 bit version
Amiga OS4 Version
Download more Amiga-like audio only formats: mp3 and 8svx