Welcome to this little corner, where I’ve started exploring AROS Research Operating System. AROS is:
an independent, portable, and free project, aiming at being compatible with Amiga OS at the API level, while improving on it in many areas
– AROS SourceForge Page
Pretty cool, huh? Everything needed to run AmigaOS is there, including the specialized Amiga hardware. Except that specialized hardware is now actually emulated. AROS itself runs on multiple platforms, from Intel/AMD x86/x64 to Motorola 68k to PowerPC to, believe it or not, ARM. The source code to everything, from the hardware abstraction to the ROM implementation, to AmigaDOS, to the Wanderer (think of the original WorkBench) is right there.
There is a community of hackers that have been creating and supporting AROS for years. My favorite programming language, Object Pascal, is supported via one of my favorite Pascal compilers, Free Pascal. A significant amount of work has been done to get Lazarus running in AROS, which would provide a “rapid” “drag and drop” visual development tool to AROS, and other AmigaOS platforms/variants as well. Think of Delphi or Visual Studio 6 for Amiga.
It is an exciting time for me to come across this and decide to get involved. Had it been much earlier in the process, I probably wouldn’t be interested in it due to a lack of capability and maturity. Had it been much later, everyone else would have already implemented everything and it would just be another Linux to me. But in this case, I’m here early enough that I have an opportunity to contribute to an amazing OS. The only question now is, will I be able to master coding for an Amiga well enough to actually be helpful.