SillyPack 2k17 released at Outline 2017

This pack contains a disk image in MyDos format with all Atari 8-bit releases of SillyVenture 2k17. It contains a proper results viewer which also acts as a menu from where you can directly start all releases and read the readmes. The menu remains memory resident, so you don't have to load it again every time. This makes watching the graphics entries and listening to the music entries much more fun, esp. on the real machine. These are the controls for the menu:

  • Pressing any key during loading the menu takes you to the DOS shell.
  • Pressing RESET in the menu performs a cold start.
  • Pressing RESET in while a release is running returns to menu, if possible.
  • Further controls are displayed in the menu itself.


SillyPack 2k17

 

The download comes with a preconfigured Altirra which you can run with the required settings by simply clicking the "SillyPack2k17.bat" file. The demo "WePlash" by Nir Dary and Motionride requires a separate hardware configuration with a SIDE II hard disk image. To run this demo click the "SillyPack2k17-WePlash.bat" file.

I have released SillyPack 2k17 at at Outline 2017, which was my first Outline. Thanks to Havoc for inviting me, it was really great. I had the opportunity to present the pack myself. That was essential to show how much work is involved to actually get it done with the right quality.


Alpha C did a good job had a hard time getting all the stuff presented correctly and unfortunately sometimes failed. My 10 minutes before dinner hack No time, No memory, just Outline! for the 128 bytes compo was shown without sound. And F#READY's excellent Outlove didn't work at all because the wrong OS was active despite the explicit note in the readme. Really a pitty, that one would have ruled the 128 bytes compo hard. Since most of the stuff is showm from emulators anyway, I really hope the compo team to record the entries upfront next time.

 

The!Cart Studio update released

Features:

  • If the title derived from the file name and the title in the cartridge database are equal, no confirmation dialog is displayed anymore.
  • Usage of the SHIFT modifier is now the same in the expert menu and the extended menu. When starting and entry with SHIFT, i.e. FIRE+SHIFT, RETURN+SHIFT or RETURN+SHIFT+CONTROL, the configuration registers of The!Cart remain unlocked. Using the CONTROL modifier in addition, i.e. RETURN+CONTROL or RETURN+SHIFT+CONTROL indicates that the inner menu of the cartridge containing the entry is started instead of starting the entry directly. Note that FIRE+CONTROL alone cannot be detected on the Atari due to way POKEY works.
  • Built-in MyPicoDOS and flasher software from hias updated from version 4.05T (2014-04-07) to 4.06T (2017-09-24):
    • Added .CAR file loader so you can load cartridge images up to 512k from the disk into the The!Cart RAM without flashing them. very useful for fast test cycles during development.
    • Attract mode is now disabled when using joystick navigation.
    • Added directory and drive switching using joystick.
    • Bugfix: Don't disable high speed SIO if reading a directory fails.
  • The generated unit test cartridges now contain more details including the The!Cart mode used for emulation. In addition the VBI is now still active, so the cartridge can be freezed using TurboFreezer to analyze problems on the real hardware.

Fixes:

  • Fixed a bug added in the 2018-05-05 version that can prevent entries from being added when they are in the cartridge database.
  • Content type "XEGS 32 KB" is now correct mapped to the The!Cart mode for "XEGS 32 KB" instead of "Switchable XEGS 32 KB" in the extended menu. With this cartridges that use bank numbers with bit 7 set now work correctly, for example "Castle Crisis".
  • Import conversion for Williams 32 KB ROM is more robust now and always generates a new filename for the converted file.
  • File and conversion errors occuring during adding new entries are now reported correctly in the status bar.

The!Cart Studio update released

Features:

  • Import of Williams 32 KB ".ROM" and ".CAR" files now automatically converts the file to a Williams 64 KB".CAR" file in case only the Williams 64 KB bank switching scheme is supported by the flash target type of the workbook.
  • The new Atari800 cartridge types and corresponding content types for "Atrax 128 KB" (68), "aDawliah 32 KB" (69) and "aDawliah 64 KB" (70) have been added to the cartridge detection and unit test generation. Note that they are not supported by The!Cart itself. But if you have used "Atarax 128" (17) - which is supported by "The!Cart" - in your your existing workbooks, you have to re-classify the corresponding entries now as "Decoded Atarax 128" (17). This is an incompatible change but I want to be 100% in sync with Atari800 and its definitions.
  • The cartridge database has been updated to Kr0tkis version from 2018-04-24. Now 839 instead of 737 known titles, 807 instead of 717 known content types.
  • If a matching entry in the cartridge database is found when adding a file, the user is prompted to decide if the proposed title from the database should be used


  • The about dialog now also displays the number of supported content types.

Fixes:

  • Import of Maxflash Programming ATRs now automatically converts the ".ATR" file to a ".CAR" file only if the Atarimax bank switching scheme is supported by the flash target type of the workbook.

Grey 39 Birthday Intro released

Shortly after SillyVenture 2k17 Grey celebrated his 39th birthday. I felt very motivated after Sillyventure, so I decided to create a remix of my ABBC Magazin 69 Intro and turn it into a Grey 39 Birthday Intro as a little suprise. And now I finally also managed to create a proper release archive and uploaded it to the productions section.

40.000 Views, 200 Likes, Revision and finally back online again

Right after the last update in January, my personal Laptop with all my coding and web site stuff ran into an irrepairable SSD failure. It took almost 3 months to get everything back in place again. Finally today I finished the last mile and am happy to publish an update once again. Meanwhile the site has received over 40.000 and over 200 likes on Facebook. That is quite a benchmark for me.

In section Making the Atari 800 Compatible with The!Cart, MyIDE II and more I have added the description of the variant that works without modifying the PCB of the Atari 800. I have also added a link to Wolfsoft's blog, where he shows how an original Atari 800 cartridge shell can be modfied to house a The!Cart V2.

Last week I attended Revision and this time biobern joined also for the first time. It was really motivating to met some Atari people in person again and to see Atari releases on the big screen. If things turn out right, I'll also be at Outline in May.

biobern, Kylearan, JAC!, Lotek Style, Samurai