The "Oxford Computer Group" and "Aris" (Aris UK Ltd, as part of Aris Inc) screen savers
[Camel Services Ltd is not in any way connected with any of the current "versions" of these companies. But did have a historical, indirect, connection with the screen savers' creation.]
The first of these screen savers was written by "Oxford Computer Group"
(OCG), a UK-based (Oxford) training and applications development company, in 1995. In 1997
OCG became part of (US-based) "Aris Inc" (in turn bought by Ciber Inc in 2001), the screensavers were later available
on the "Aris Education" web site (Aris Inc having sold the UK training
department in 2000 to Mentergy (in Israel)), and this was later renamed to "John
Bryce Training". In July 2002 it ceased to exist, and the assets were acquired
by Xpertise Training (in the UK). Camel
Services had an involvement in the development of the screen savers, and keeps them here
as an alternative download location. They are also now available from the reformed Oxford Computer Group website.
Design and Technology
These screen savers were developed as an alternative to corporate Christmas cards. They rely on the animation of hand-painted images to create a "natural" loook and feel.
When first developed (1995), no suitable "graphics engine" (ie "multimedia development program") existed, so a (Visual) C++ based solution was developed (which had to work with the constraints of 16 bit Windows 3). It had to be very efficient and frugal in order to deliver a good performance on the machines available at the time, not to mention be small because of slower download speeds.
The last of this "series" of screen savers was produced in 1999 (the 2000 screen saver (a toy shop) was built using one of the new multimedia tools and is not available here).
Note that these savers are designed to run during December, and that (with the exception of the Grotto) they develop day by day during the month. Please be careful if you change your computer date (especially if you are a corporate user, in which case you may not be able to).
The savers may be downloaded, used and
distributed (unchanged) freely.
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