Originally Published: Tuesday, 7 September 1999 Author: Morten Kriek
Published to: corp_features/General Page: 1/1 - [Std View]

Amiga: A new future with Linux?

Morten Kriek attempts to piece together some recent Amiga-related news and the involvement of Linux in upcoming Amiga endeavors.

The Amiga-cult lives on! 5 Years after the bankruptcy of manufacturer Commodore, there's the announcement of the resurrection of the legendary multimedia computer. The brand name and all the other rights were bought by Gateway 2000 two years ago, and midway through June, now-former Amiga President Jim Collas made Amiga's intentions for the future clear. His position, left vacant upon his resignation on Spetmeber 2, 1999, has been filled by Tom Schmidt.

The new Amiga Operating Environment (OE) of the "Multi Media Convergence Computer", due to be released this year, will be based on an adjusted Linux-kernel. Until now, the realtime OS QNX was frequently mentioned as the potential basis for the Amiga. The turnaround was caused, explained Collas, by the rapid development of Linux over the past year. Also, the large number of available drivers and applications have played a big part. However, there have also been rumours about the possible involvement of Transmeta (http://www.transmeta.com), the company that Linus Torvalds works for. The Transmeta logo appeared in an Amiga presentation. Add to that the fact that the company which is going to deliver the new CPU of the Amiga wants to stay anonymous and one can write yet another episode in the Amiga soap: Is Torvalds going save Amiga?

In the meantime, an announcement has been made about a partnership with Corel (http://www.corel.com). Corel will provide applications as soon as the new Amiga is available.

Adding another building block, an Open Source-like Operating System by the name of AROS is currently being developped by a team of Amiga fans (http://www.aros.org). It will run under Linux as an emulation, and it has to be "binary compatible" with Amiga OS 3.5.

The Amiga is back - and Linux should be a part of it!