asie is a Polish programmer, “part-time cursed knowledge seeker, and troublemaker” (I like them already!) and they have created two pieces of software awesomeness for the WonderSwan this year.
The first is BootFriend, which is an unofficial custom firmware for the WonderSwan Color. Here are just some of the features:
- game data and save management
- the ability to flash cartridges without an external flasher
- faster boot times
The second is somehow even cooler: a revived web browser! In their blog post, asie explained that Bandai released a device called the MobileWonderGate in 1999. This gizmo allowed you to connect your WonderSwan to the Internet. Pokémon fans may hear “1999” and “handheld console internet connectivity” and think of the Game Boy Color’s ability to do the same for Pokémon Crystal. Well, there’s a direct link there; mobile network company NTT DoCoMo was behind the collaboration for both!
Alongside that internet connectivity came a web browser with some interesting Web features such as tables, GIFs, a bookmark system and cookies (before they became the scourge of the WWW). Unfortunately, this tech fell victim to time and technological advancements… until a few weeks ago because asie reverse-engineered it and created “a simple server reimplementation” that means you can access websites and stuff!
(h/t Time Extension)