Amiga Forever by Cloanto
Products Support

Cloanto Licenses Picasso96 Software for Amiga Emulation

October 29, 2001 - Cloanto is proud to announce that it licensed both the "Picasso96" software from Alexander Kneer and Tobias Abt, and Brian King's "UAEgfx" Monitor implementation, for use in Amiga Forever.

A shareware version of Picasso96 has been providing RTG (Amiga retargetable graphics) functionality to the emulation software which is part of Amiga Forever since 1997. With the new license Cloanto would like to acknowledge the precious contribution of the Picasso96 Team to the ease of use, compatibility and speed which made Amiga Forever so successful, and further contribute to the future development of the Picasso96 software. The new license, which covers the current version and minor updates (no upgrade privileges for future major versions)*, replaces the shareware status of the Picasso96 software included in Amiga Forever. Support will continue to be provided by Cloanto as part of the Amiga Forever product.

Thanks to the Picasso96 implementation in the Amiga emulation, when an Amiga program makes a function call to open an RTG screen, or to otherwise read or change its contents, that functionality is in most part executed as native and very fast x86 code. Furthermore, the Windows versions of the emulation programs included with Amiga Forever (i.e. WinUAE and WinFellow) fully exploit the latest versions of Microsoft DirectX, which is normally used by games and multimedia applications to provide maximum performance by providing low-level access to specialized hardware features, without having to re-write hardware-specific code. In practice this means that while other emulation programs only offer proper support for a handful of display cards, Amiga Forever has been running fine and will continue to run fine with hundreds of different display cards, including most graphics card currently available, and those which will be released with Windows drivers in the future.

The combination of Picasso96 and DirectX technologies provides palette-based, hi-color, true-color and multi-monitor screen modes well beyond the functionality and speed of the original Amiga hardware. Also, while other emulation packages do not even support simple peripherals such as a USB mouse, keyboard, joystick and speakers, DirectX includes DirectInput and DirectSound, which allow the emulation as included in Amiga Forever to support all popular input and sound devices.

The Picasso96 software is just one of the many components which have been carefully selected, preinstalled and tested for compatibility in Amiga Forever, to make Amiga emulation a simple one-click experience which works on the widest possible range of different PCs. Hundreds of other items, including for example GIF/LZW code used under license from Unisys Corporation (and not available in the version of Personal Paint included on Aminet), ColorFonts and AnimFonts by Kara Computer Graphics, and anything from entire software packages to single icons are carefully listed in the Copyright and Credits sections of the Amiga Forever documentation (which includes 8 KB of text only to list the individual third-party contributions).

In spite of increasingly difficult times Cloanto keeps improving its own software technology and licensing valued third-party contents to constantly improve Amiga Forever and offer continued support and compatibility to the Amiga community. Cloanto is grateful to all of its valued customers for supporting these efforts.

February 2019 Update: We became aware of questions being raised in relation to the Picasso96 license granted for Amiga Forever in 2001. Thus, we wanted to reiterate that such a license exists. For the sake of transparency, here is the relevant email correspondence (highlights added in color, personal information redacted in black) with details of the agreement concluded and the corresponding payment sequence.

* At the time of this writing in 2001, the Picasso96 project was owned by its original developers Alexander Kneer and Tobias Abt. Updates released by a new Picasso96 ownership were neither envisioned nor intended to be included in Amiga Forever under this license.


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