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BB5 on the way


Best Answer xoblite , 08 May 2020 - 04:00 PM

Hello all,

 

first of all, let me emphasize how happy I am to discover that there is still some interest out there for *box in general and obviously xoblite in particular!  :smile:

 

When I picked up the then roughly 8-year-old (!) xoblite bb4 RC3 codebase back in early October last year, it was more like a just for fun, revisiting an old love kind of thing. However, some of the foundations I had worked on for bb4 before losing interest (read: after having been at *box in a leading role for almost 10 years) turned out to be pretty solid foundations for further development, and I also had a pretty clear vision for what I thought a new xoblite release and shell for 2020 and (hopefully) beyond should be, and not be - often the more important prioritization in any form of product management. I will tell you more about everything in xoblite bb5 later, but at least in my own opinion it has turned out really well so far, and also way beyond what I was envisioning back then. I hope when I manage to wrap everything up that you will like it too, but the message is still the same as it was back in October:

xoblite will return. Expect different. Switching to bb5 mode, stay tuned... :D

 

With that I mean you should expect great things, but also something different compared to maybe what you're used to. For those of you who haven't been along for the entire journey, the xoblite and bb©Lean(Mod)(Zero) codebases have very little in common, so don't expect full feature parity with every little nitty gritty feature of those shells. Expect the old xoblite extra-large-supercharged and then some, with a long list of features not supported by any of the other branches - some of which you've seen hinted about in my various screenshots here and on boxshots. All in all, it's a pretty massive release - probably one of the biggest I've worked on at least. But again, more on this some other time.

 

So, apart from the many tens of thousands of lines of code of a project the size of xoblite, what else keeps a guy like me busy?

 

  • Hey, I'm 48 years old nowadays, and I have a wife and two kids. They probably (ahem) think (ahem) I am a bit geeky polishing pixels again, but obviously they deserve some love still...  :wink:
  • I have quite a lot to do at work, which with the covid-19 situation on top means being at home, in front of a screen, 40-50 hours a week, even before considering additional "in front of a screen" pet projects like these.
  • A good shell developer needs to properly eat his own dogfood, and I do that by working on plugins to test/harden various aspects of the shell as well as the plugin API. Last I counted (hehe), I had 6 new plugins lined up for release with or shortly after the release xoblite bb5; I will tell you more about these later too. But as a small teaser (in addition to my previous screenshots that is), they are called xDesignerGUI, xDesktopLauncher, xDesktopMeter, xDesktopAnimation, xDesktopNowPlaying, and BBCorsairCUE. Guess away!  :tongue: (and no, these are not half-assed efforts either, I don't do that really :blush2:).
  • The more mundane stuff: Packaging (read: I don't outsource anything, so I need to create some nice styles/themes/etc to go with any release), documentation especially, but also website (and later some GitHub) updating, miscellaneous logistics, suitable grassroots marketing, etc - they all need at least some level of attention. With regards to documentation, keep in mind that not all users are equal, even though everyone in this thread are of course 1337 *box die-hards. Just sayin'...  :cool:
  • Keeping a certain Greek guy with an endless list of feature requests at bay. This is probably the toughest of them all...  :wallbash: :wink:. The rest of you are peanuts by comparison...  :thumbsup:
  • Finally, maintaining the fun is key as always - without the fun it's simply not worth the hard work, and as you can understand by now, it's a LOT of work. Taking pauses and time-outs every now and then is simply necessary - in all walks of life.

Last but not least - mea culpa, I'm a bit perfectionist, and my "Release Candidates" are typically pretty solid. But though sometimes slow, I am making great progress, even though I don't want to commit to a certain release date. So, when it's done. Keep the faith!  :yes:

 

Over and out

 

BR//KHH (qwilk/@xoblite)

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#21 pitkon

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Posted 11 March 2020 - 06:23 AM

Not all plugins work with all BB builds. The idea of an open source app is that everyone can create anything using the basics, but many a time the code breaks on the way and the end result is plugins that don't work with all branches.

It's obvious none of the above works with bbzero and installing it as a shell won't fix the problem.

You can either use another branch (sometimes I use the original XZero450's BBZero, works fine with systray) or look around for another toolbar (Boxbar, bbleanskin in various permutations, systembarex). Thank goodness we have them all in our Plugins section :)


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#22 pitkon

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Posted 27 March 2020 - 09:05 AM

Just another peak preview of Xoblite 5...

Attached File  Xob 5 5470.png   3.06MB   13 downloads

Like qwilk says,

Another preview of the upcoming xoblite bb5, this time showing off the new style Designer mode, a sweet new binary clock, and hinting at some other cool upcoming stuff in the console... :) Per pixel alpha transparency FTW, btw! :D 

All I can say is, this new xDesigner is real candy for us themers, combined with 8-color gradients. But there's more to this build than meets the eye. My lips are sealed, but rest assured this is a huge step forward for Blackbox for Windows. Way to go, Karl!


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#23 meanmechanics

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Posted 30 March 2020 - 10:15 AM

Just another peak preview of Xoblite 5...

attachicon.gif Xob 5 5470.png

Like qwilk says,

Another preview of the upcoming xoblite bb5, this time showing off the new style Designer mode, a sweet new binary clock, and hinting at some other cool upcoming stuff in the console... :) Per pixel alpha transparency FTW, btw! :D 

All I can say is, this new xDesigner is real candy for us themers, combined with 8-color gradients. But there's more to this build than meets the eye. My lips are sealed, but rest assured this is a huge step forward for Blackbox for Windows. Way to go, Karl!

Attached File  Silky-sharks-waiting-by-the-boat.jpg   124.55KB   3 downloads


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www.survivingmauritius.com


#24 pitkon

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Posted 30 March 2020 - 10:57 AM

LOL That's not the Titanic, right? :D


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#25 xoblite

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Posted 30 March 2020 - 01:40 PM

ROFL  :lol:

 

Are those sharks smelling blood, or what? Also... am I the boat, the guy in it, or the combined might of the sharks?  :sweat:  :wink:

 

Speaking of which...

 

 shark.jpg

 

BR//KHH (@xoblite)


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#26 pitkon

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Posted 30 March 2020 - 03:20 PM

LMAO...


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#27 lukefury

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 03:27 AM

Just another peak preview of Xoblite 5...

attachicon.gif Xob 5 5470.png

Like qwilk says,

Another preview of the upcoming xoblite bb5, this time showing off the new style Designer mode, a sweet new binary clock, and hinting at some other cool upcoming stuff in the console... :) Per pixel alpha transparency FTW, btw! :D 

All I can say is, this new xDesigner is real candy for us themers, combined with 8-color gradients. But there's more to this build than meets the eye. My lips are sealed, but rest assured this is a huge step forward for Blackbox for Windows. Way to go, Karl!

Open mouth widely,please,we are all listening


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#28 pitkon

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:50 AM

Open mouth widely,please,we are all listening

LOL Just a few more days. Karl believes in thoroughly testing this build and I second that emotion. All I can say is it'll be worth the wait. I mean how many years have we waited for 8-color gradients? Or rounded-corner elements? Or a LOT of other stuff implemented in this build? A few more days won't matter. And, in the meanwhile, I will upload a screenie with a style of mine created on Xoblite 5 for good measure :)


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#29 xoblite

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Posted 16 April 2020 - 06:51 PM

Hello all,

 

unfortunately I've been pretty busy with work and other mundane things lately, but I figured I should at least let you know that things are slowly moving ahead if not currently at top speed. And, to prove it, and as another appetizer perhaps, post a new screenshot...  :wink:

 

xoblite_20200416.png

 

BR//KHH (qwilk/@xoblite)


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#30 gamer64

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Posted 17 April 2020 - 01:44 AM

spongebob-i-need-it-gif-20.gif

 

This looks amazing man, great work so far, can't wait to see it in action!


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#31 pitkon

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Posted 17 April 2020 - 05:53 AM

And this is just the beginning... There is so much more than meets the eye in this new Xoblite build. Karl has really outdone himself...


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#32 crowmag

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Posted 17 April 2020 - 11:10 AM

This looks really COOL! A stats plugin in the menu? That's really creative! A very minimal looking bbPager, nice. Looks like a bbStylemake type plugin as well. I take it that the desktop clock and meters are new plugins too!

What is that plugin in the bottom left corner?

Chompin" at the bit for this, I rarely gush, but I am actually gushing :laugh:


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#33 xoblite

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Posted 17 April 2020 - 09:58 PM

Another screenshot aka "GETTIN' JIGGY WIT IT"  :whistling:  :cool:  :lol:

 

xoblite_20200417-2.png

 

BR//KHH (qwilk/@xoblite)


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#34 pitkon

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 05:08 AM

This looks really COOL! A stats plugin in the menu? That's really creative! A very minimal looking bbPager, nice. Looks like a bbStylemake type plugin as well. I take it that the desktop clock and meters are new plugins too!

What is that plugin in the bottom left corner?

Chompin" at the bit for this, I rarely gush, but I am actually gushing :laugh:

The stats plugin is not in the menu, it's on the desktop.

Yes, it's a bbstylemaler-type plugin. Works VERY well. And yes, the CPU meter is a plugin, but the clock is built into the... well. build. Very configurable.



#35 crowmag

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 07:06 AM

The stats plugin is not in the menu, it's on the desktop.

Then what is that in the menu.title? Looks like CPU activity.



#36 pitkon

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 09:00 AM

Then what is that in the menu.title? Looks like CPU activity.

It's the font :) And if you mean ABOVE the menu title, that's the binary clock.



#37 crowmag

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 12:48 PM

It's the font :)

 

:blush2:

Attached Files


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#38 pitkon

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 01:06 PM

Yeah indeed :)



#39 xoblite

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 06:16 PM

*Hotkey CtrlAltWin X @Script [@xoblite Random Wallpaper|@xoblite Designer Select ToolbarWindowLabel|@xDesignerGUI PickEightColors]

 

:)

 

BR//KHH (qwilk/@xoblite)



#40 Lily

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Posted 19 April 2020 - 02:19 AM

Im really excited for the new blackbox build :D I just wanted to know, how will it be in terms of windows 10 support? I remember there being a few issues last time I tried blackbox on windows 10 so have since stopped using it, and just switched to Linux.


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