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HP Palmtop Resources on the Internet

HP Palmtop Resources on the Internet

Everything from A to Z can be found on the Internet, including support for your HP Palmtop PC.

By Conrad Cox

The Internet is really not an imposing place. Sure, it's big. In fact, its vast. And it continues to experience tremendous growth. CompuServe, America Online and other on-line services offer their subscribers access to Internet and the ability to create their own World Wide Web (WWW, or Web) pages. With this growth, how can you find what you need on Internet? Is there anything on the net for Palmtop users?

The Internet contains software for and information about the 95/100/200LX. But where can you find this information? Let's take a small tour of the Internet and the WWW, concentrating on the places Palmtoppers might visit.

We will visit different parts of the net. First we will look at a few news groups of interest to Palmtop users. Then we will stop at sites where we can view or download specific information. Next well visit a few Web pages to see how they can help accessing Internet Palmtop resources more easily. Finally we will talk about several popular sites where you can download software via ftp (file transfer protocol - a method of transferring files between computers over the Internet).

How to read this article

Subscribers to The HP Palmtop Paper ON DISK can load the file INTERNET.HTM into your favorite Web browser. While reading, select a hyperlink to take you to the site being described. To return to the article, use your Web browsers BACK button or key. Alternately, load the INTERNET .TXT file to read the article in MEMO or another text viewer.

If you don't have these files, the best way to read this article in The HP Palmtop Paper is to sit in front of your computer and use your browser to explore each Internet resource as we discuss it. Following your browsers instructions, type in the resources URL address to see the resource. If you like a site and wish to return to it, set a bookmark in your browser.

Palmtop Related News Groups

Think of a news group (or Net News as it is sometimes called) as big bulletin board with hundreds of different subject areas. Most people just sit and read the hundreds of articles posted to the news groups. Some post questions for others to answer. The news groups are a wonderful place to get information.

Most Windows and Macintosh Web browsers feature a way for users to read the Net News. Palmtop users need to acquire a separate news reader, like the one in the Minuet suite of software available on the Internet. Whole books have been written about the Net News and how it works, so Ill leave that for your own research.

One recommendation: before posting your first message, read the news group for a week. Get a feel for the kinds of questions asked and the general demeanor of the group friendly, focused, frenzied. Try to make your posting fit the observed profile. If there is a Frequently Asked Questions file about the news group posted, read it.

Locations:

news:comp.sys.palmtops

news:comp.sys.handhelds

The comp.sys.palmtops news group contains information about all palmtop computers. It also contains the most information about the Hewlett Packard line of palmtop products. Until recently, the comp.sys.handhelds news group contained less Palmtop and more calculator related traffic. A recent scan of subject titles contains as many 95/100/200LX postings as any of the other palmtop brands. Both groups are worth monitoring.

HP Palmtop Frequently Asked Question List

Locations: (Note that address 1 is a single line, wrapped here to fit the column.)

  1. 1. http://www.cis.ohio-state.edu/

  2. hypertext/faq/usenet/hp/palmtops-faq/faq.html

  3. 2. comp.sys.palmtops news group

  4.  

     

A file consisting of frequently asked questions and corresponding answers is called a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) file. Every 100LX and 200LX owner should know about and read the Usenet comp.sys.palmtops HP 100/200LX Frequently Asked Questions file. In it can be found hundreds of questions with corresponding answers organized into almost 20 categories. Read about everything from the battery life you can expect in your Palmtop to instructions on how to fix a loose hinge. Editor Richard Cochran publishes this work in progress around the middle of each month, updating it with new questions and answers.

A HTML hypertext version can be found at the Ohio State site, while the most recent full text version appears in the comp.sys.palmtops UseNet news group. The text file also shows up on many Palmtop Web pages.

Using the 100/200LX on the Internet

Location:

http://netmar.com/users/doc/local/ inet200.txt

Tom Nicastri offers a document describing how to connect the Palmtop to a UNIX shell account, read and reply to news groups using an off-line news reader, and surf the WWW. In addition to providing sources on the net for Web related software, Tom describes many of the necessary UNIX codes used to download files via FTP.

Location:

ftp://minuet.micro.umn.edu/pub/ minuet/

Those with a SLIP account will want to review the Minuet suite of software. Minuet stands for the Minnesota INternet Users Essential Tool and contains modules for E-mail, Usenet news, Telnet, Gopher, FTP and the WWW. The University of Minnesota ftp site has the latest version of Minuet.

Electronic Books

Location:

http://jg.cso.uiuc.edu/PG/ welcome.html

[Note that the Web address (URL) above has the capital letters PG in it. They have to be entered in caps because they are in the subdirectory section of the address. Case sensitivity is only true in the subdirectory section of a URL.]

When I first downloaded and tried Gilles Kohl's Vertical Reader (VR100.ZIP <See Shareware/Freeware index>) program, I thought the program would be most useful for reading shareware documentation on my Palmtop. Then I discovered Project Gutenberg. Michael Hart started Project Gutenberg in 1971 when he keyed the Declaration of Independence into a computer and made it available for downloading. Since then, with the use of volunteers, Hart has electronically published E-text text files readable via almost all computers. To date, more than 370 titles are available in the areas of computer science, the Internet, mathematics, literature, and reference material. Go to the home page (above) and find out more about Project Gutenberg and how to obtain reading and reference material you can read on your Palmtop.

Anatomy of a 100LX

Location:

http://www.st.rim.or.jp/~kaduhi/ index.html

The text in this section is mostly in Japanese, but the pictures are good.

Locate Palmtop user groups

Location:

http://www.ccnet.com/~cdcox/

Palmtop user groups usually start when someone begins looking for one. If none is found, an industrious person invites a few fellow Palmtop users to a gathering. With interest, commitment, and a little luck, a user group is born. That, at least, is how a San Francisco based Palmtop user group called the Society for Palmtop Advancement Through Meetings was started.

S.P.A.M. focuses on the 95/100/200LX Palmtops, and its site provides pictures and links to other Palmtop resources. S.P.A.M. also collects and posts information about Palmtop user groups. Over time S.P.A.M. hopes to catalog as many Palmtop user groups as possible, regardless of platform. If you are a part of a user group, you should know about this Web page.

World Wide Web Palmtop Pages

When accessing the Web, look for a few good pages that contain the links to areas that most interest you. The Web sites listed below contain links to the majority of resources mentioned in this article.

The TECH.NET 100/200LX Page

Location:

http://www.tech.net/technotes/hplx/

Albert Nurick must have been thinking one stop shopping when he created his Web page. He has links to the FAQ pages, software sites for FTP downloading, and even a list of Palmtop dealers.

Doc's HP 200LX Page

Location: (Note that the address is a single line, wrapped here to fit the column.)

http://www.webcom.com/~docline/hp200lx.shtml

Docs page offers the same all-in-one Web page service with links to all major Palmtop sites. The page even has a photo of the 200LX.

HP 100/200LX speed upgrades

Location:

http://www.bhm.tis.net/~mack/

Want more information on how to increase the clock speed of your Palmtop. Visit this Web site for an explanation of an available kit and a description of the Palmtop surgery involved. (See Hal's warning on this procedure, letter page xx.)

Yahoo PDA Resource Page

Location: (Note that the address is a single line, wrapped here to fit the column.)

http://www.yahoo.com/

Computers/Hardware/PDAs/

Hewlett_Packard_100/

Yahoo is a repository for WWW pages and resources. It is hierarchical and easy to use. Check this address to see if new Palmtop sites become available.

Sources of Palmtop-related software

The World Wide Web accesses more than hypertext pages. Many browsers allow you to download software & other information. Below are a few sites. When visiting ftp sites, you are presented with a listing of the files in the directory you are in. Look for an INDEX or README file for a short description of the files in the directory.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology eddie

Locations:

ftp://eddie.mit.edu/pub/hp95lx/NEW/

ftp://eddie.mit.edu/pub/hp95lx/hp100lx/

ftp://eddie.mit.edu/pub/hp95lx/

Eddie contains a good selection of shareware and freeware for the entire LX line. You will find the newest software in the NEW directory.

Monash University FTP Site

Location:

ftp://ftp.cc.monash.edu.au/pub/palmtop/

Located in Melbourne, Australia, this archive has software that I haven't seen on other ftp sites. Connecting to a server on the other side of the world really says something about the shrinking size of the planet and the power of the World Wide Web!

Hewlett-Packard's Electronic Information Server

Location: (Note that the address is a single line, wrapped here to fit the column.)

http://hpcvbbs.external.hp.com:80/software_archives/ftp/hp200lx/

While this site contains few software titles, it has a patch file for 200LX's Pocket Quicken sync problem. Other files of this type could be offered in the future, although HP does not make that guarantee.

Lord Jonin's 100LX Files

Location: (Note that the address is a single line, wrapped here to fit the column.)

ftp://ftp.best.com/pub/jonin/ hp-palmtop

Jonin set up this ftp site to share his personal 100LX Palmtop files and programs.

OAK Software Repository CD-ROM.COM

Locations:

ftp://oak.oakland.edu/SimTel/msdos/

 ftp://ftp.cdrom.com/pub/simtel/msdos

The SimTel mirror sites at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan and the Walnut Creek (California) CD-ROM archive hold perhaps the largest collection of software I have ever seen. While it doesn't have a specific section for Palmtop software, thousand of MS-DOS files are categorized for easy selection. Like a well stocked software superstore, one can spend much time browsing.

Some final advice

When presented with a choice of sites, always try the site that is closest to you. If that one is busy, try the other. You may experience difficulty reaching these sites during peek usage times.

As our tour of Palmtop resources on the Internet and the World Wide Web comes to a close, I hope you have discovered a few new places to find the answers to your Palmtop questions. Remember that the Web is constantly growing, constantly changing. Sites close or move daily, generating error messages when attempting to access them. New sites attach themselves to the Web every day. As the Web gets bigger, it may get slower. Don't let these minor frustrations get in the way of exploring the Web and the Internet. Have fun!

iPhone Life magazine


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