Right, I used the plugin created by Christian Vogelgsang for some time. While, of course, it was a huge improvement over my own first attempt, after some time I started noticing more and more issues, causing it to be somewhat unreliable every now and then. Most of those things are not Christian’s bugs of course but they are inherent to diskimage.library implementation, which both of us have used. So - yes - my first plugin suffered all of those too (and more!). Some of the reasons of the observed behaviour can be qualified as [deliberate] limitations of the library, some as bugs.

After realising this, my first thought was of course to correct things in the library code. But once I tried a few corrections here and there, my enthusiasm somehow got worn out and I gave up. Not because the library is badly written, or something like that. Rather I realised that I eventually wanted to extend the functionality well beyond what the library was intended to serve. Therefore I decided to implement my own disk-image/archive/file handling from scratch. The primary fire was burnt to be able to cope with all the images, which were giving our plugins a hard time before. The new approach does not depend on diskimage library anymore and the implementation eventually corrected all of the previously mentioned issues.

Once this was done, my appetite has grown. So I started adding more things... Next to the ubiquitous:
  • D64
  • D71
  • D81
some additional file types/formats are currently dangling around the code base:
  • T64 (came in as first non-disk-image format)
  • G64 (That one was harder than I anticipated - consider it "heavy beta" quality now...)
  • PRG (hmm... who could have thought ;-) - see notes below
  • ... more to come? (maybe ;-) - you can use sidebar poll or bottom comments to tell me your favourite, yet not supported format
I also quickly cooked a small preferences application (could somebody draw me an icon that would not use more bytes than the whole application?!)
Screen shot 2013-07-01 at 00.22.43
that is supposed to allow setting various parameters of the plugin. Currently only colours though.

And... there is one more thing! © ;-) If you checked the above mentioned corrected results page, you might have already noticed how all the previewed files are named, as opposed to how they were named when I used the earlier plugin. Guessed already what I mean? ;-)

DISCLAIMER: Currently the code is in "beta" stage and the G64 support is to be considered as "heavy beta" stage. If it crashes with huge fireballs, breaks your windows, leaves stains on your screen or does anything else you wouldn’t like it to do - you still used it at YOUR OWN RISK. I can’t be held responsible for any damage, stemming from the use of the plugin, direct or indirect. ANY. <-- period
Having said that, I sincerely believe that the worst what can happen is that it just doesn’t show you the preview it is supposed to. It might also leave a nice file in your "CrashReporter" directory. It may also occasionally display something completely different from what it should. If any of that happens I would appreciate you contacting me as well as sending me the file you tried to preview.

Installation:
  • For installing the plugin, there is no .pkg, no installer scripts, no administrator privileges, no restart required. You don’t even have to quit all your browsers ;-) Simply remove other versions of the plugin, then drop this, unpacked one into your ~/Library/QuickLook folder and either log out / log in or issue the "qlmanage -r" command inside Terminal.app
  • If you use any feline version of OS X, then the CBM font file you might have installed already is no longer needed as the plugin comes with its own fonts (Thanks Christian once more!) bundled in. This is NOT true for non-feline operating systems like Mavericks, however. If you use OS X 10.9 or (untested) higher version, then - unfortunately - the fonts have to remain installed in the appropriate Library/Fonts directory. If you haven't installed them earlier - you'll have to do it now
Download:
Notes:
  1. The plugin is still called "8bit_archives" but the name will change (do you have a nice idea for the final name?!) in the future for sure. I think of "emufiles" but somehow don’t feel too attached to this idea, so you have a chance to influence the course of history too :-)
  2. As opposed to Christian’s plugin, I didn’t implement the "Thumbnail" function. I don’t see a need for it. Do you?
  3. Apart from changing the character set, other listing tricks like clearing screen, changing colours or otherwise obfuscating the listing are deliberately not supported (of course it saves me some work too :-)
  4. PRG support uses parts of Softwolves bastext utility. To be honest - Peter must have done a very thorough research on various Commodore BASIC versions (plus some non-Commodore extenstions too!) and their corresponding tokens. I admit that I just blatantly used both his tokens.c and tokens.h files without even inserting my credit lines ;-) I hope he doesn’t mind too much.
  5. The plugin is of course "Universal" for both PPC and i386 and (of course) it does NOT require OS higher than 10.5
  6. Quick Look daemon is often capricious... please close all previews/cover flows and give it some time to accept new values set in the preferences application.

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