Re: Aw: Re: [stella] The future of Stella (i.e. debugger needed)

Subject: Re: Aw: Re: [stella] The future of Stella (i.e. debugger needed)
From: Stephen Anthony <stephena@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 21 May 2004 10:44:07 -0230
On May 21, 2004 03:16 am, Glenn Saunders wrote:

> I think the problem is that Z26 is a more accurate emulation
> currently than Stella is, but Stella is portable and Z26 is not.  So
> what we have are more accurate emulation routines locked in code
> which is not portable.  Z26 does definitely has had more active
> development going on for it since Brad gave up on Stella about 4
> years ago.  Since Stella was put into Sourceforge nobody has
> committed to putting the time in that it needs.  It's just been
> tinkered with here and there but it never really reaches its
> potential.

I agree.  I signed on to add to the Linux port, and add some features to 
the overall project as well.  But we really need Brad back again.  It's 
my impression that he will be returning in a while.

> Stella on Windows overall at least has gone through its share of
> coders.  Anyone remember the ORIGINAL StellaX written by Jeff
> Miller??

Which is the reason I converted the Stella codebase to SDL.  Now, at 
least, the latest version of Stella can run in Windows.  I'm planning 
to take StellaX and make it a frontend only which will call the 
commandline Stella SDL binary.  That's quite easy to do; I'm just 
trying to get the emulation working better for a new release.

> Stella really needs someone to take ownership of it and log some
> serious coding time on it.

Well, since I started on the project, I've added the following, in no 
particular order:

1) state loading/saving
2) pause
3) OpenGL rendering
4) in-game GUI
5) event remapping
6) switchable palettes
7) Stelladaptor support (partial at this point)
8) snapshot support
9) huge memory and space savings
10) 10x faster startup
11) developer options (change Xstart, ystart etc. while emulation is 
12) convert codebase to SDL (still working on that)
13) ini file support

That's what I can think of off the top of my head.  So I feel that I've 
done *my share*.  I'm willing to tackle other problems outside my area 
of expertise (like sound), with the caveat that people understand that 
I have zero experience in that area.

That's why I don't feel the parent email was justified.  Yes, Stella 
does have some problems.  At this point, the biggest one is sound.  
Once that's done, getting frontends up to speed will be easy.  The last 
thing remaining is then debugger support (which I already have code 
for), and support for more illegal instructions.  With all that's going 
for it, I don't feel that abandoning the project and 'making is a shell 
for z26' is an option.

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