Monday, November 09, 2009

XSquawkBox 1.3

This will be a little bit "off topic", and I am normally pretty adamant about not blogging (or even talking) about XSquawkBox. This is because XSB is not something I do as part of my job for Laminar Research, and it is also something that I no longer have time for. Thus my normal highest priority is to make sure that no XSquawkBox users expect timely support or expect this from Laminar Research.

So as I am about to blog about all of the new and cool things coming in XSquawkBox 1.3, let me first make this painfully clear:
XSquawkBox is a piece of code that Wade and I write in our spare time. After finishing our regular job of coding, rather than sit back and read a book or take a walk in the park, we go back to our computers and write yet more code. We don't make any money off of XSB, and no one pays any money for XSB.

This type of freeware development has certain constraints: there is no time table, XSB will be on the back burner when real work comes up or when real life comes up. There is no support. There are no guarantees of features or functionality. If you don't like those terms, I will issuse you a full refund and you can use a different piece of freeware.
Okay - that was a little bit over the top. We want people to enjoy XSB - otherwise we wouldn't have published it. And 99.999% of XSB users are very understanding and appreciative of the development situation.

With that in mind, I can't resist posting some of what is coming in XSB 1.3 - I think it's going to be a really strong release. 1.3 will have the bug fixes people are waiting for, including a fix for the dreaded noise on push-to-talk on Windows. Also coming:
  • Wade programmed the server list to auto-populate off the net. How did we live without that?
  • COM2 can tune into voice channels too. COM2 has its own hardware selection for those with multiple sound cards or USB headsets.
  • You can turn on "labels" for traffic. I actually hate this feature, but I programmed it anyway - it's optional. I'll post why I did it some other time.
  • XSB can connect to itself for users with multiple X-Plane visuals. Simply run XSB on every computer, log in from one (the "master") and then connect to the master from each visual (the "slave"). You'll have traffic visible across monitors.
And of course the best feature of all (for me): Wade is doing builds. :-) People owe him a big thank-you..without him there would simply be no 1.3. I definitely don't have time for it...I maxed out my XSB time for a while contributing some of the features.

When will 1.3 go beta? I don't know...ask Wade. Wait - don't ask Wade. He'll get to it when he is able!

1 comment:

Wayne Conrad said...

Ben, Thanks for going off-topic. It's good to know that these things are coming, some day. What I have now works, so I'm not at all anxious about "when."