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D&A Software Clarifies
In the July/August 1998 issue of The HP Palmtop Paper Conrad Cox wrote an excellent article reviewing our product WWW/LX Plus. I wish to add a few points of clarification to several aspects of the article.
1. WWW/LX Plus Version 2 which was announced in April 1998 is a package of four programs; WWW.EXE, HV.EXE, POST.EXE, and NEWS2.EXE; all of which have been updated since the prior version of the package (released in June 1997).
2. There seems to be some confusion about the naming of the product and the programs in the product. Let me clarify: WWW/LX is the basic name of the package of programs. The first such package was released in October 1996 and it was called WWW/LX. It included WWW.EXE and HV.EXE, and together this constituted a Web browser. Later, in June 1997, we released the second package called WWW/LX Plus. This included WWW.EXE and HV.EXE, as well as the email client and newsgroups client. In April 1998, we released WWW/LX Plus Version 2.
3. WWW.EXE is a TCP/IP engine, a program that manages all the communication with the ISP and the internet. HV.EXE is a WWW document interpreter. POST.EXE is the program that manages the email as well as the graphical user interface for email (and newsgroups). NEWS2. EXE is the program that sends and obtains newsgroup articles from the selected newsgroups. These articles are displayed as messages by POST.EXE. Both POST.EXE and NEWS2.EXE depend on WWW.EXE for all their communication needs, as does HV.EXE.
4. HV.EXE has always supported HTML 3. In some cases HV supports certain HTML constructs in a manner unlike what we may be used to from Netscape or MSIE.
5. Regarding Frames and Tables: These are two different constructs in HTML. HV supports both.
Frames Support: Frames are essentially multiple Web documents placed on the screen at one time. Due to the screen size limitations of the palmtop, we chose to create a screen which links to each of the Web documents that would typically appear on the screen. So you can still see all the components that make up a screen using Frames.
Table Support: This construct displays data such as columns of numbers. HV can handle tables just fine. However, many Webmasters use Tables to organize information on the screen such as text, images, etc. This presents a tough problem for HV. The screen limitations prevented us from being able to do the same "magic" as can be done on larger screens and so the choice was to either format a limited width cell, or simply string all the cells in one long vertical list. You can toggle these modes in HV by pressing Menu | Options | Tables.
6. The LXPIC topic in Conrad's article was written based on the initial release level of WWW/LX Plus Version 2. In quick succession during April-May 1998, we released several updates to the package. In one of these version we were granted permission by Stefan Peichl, the author of LXPIC, to use the programmed calls to LXPIC directly from within HV.EXE. This allowed us to "paint" JPEG images surrounded by text on the screen, just like we did GIFs before. This was a wonderful advance for our product, and we are very thankful to Stefan Peichl for this. In fact, GIFs are now also painted by LXPIC, and the speed of this program is amazing. This is the reason LXPIC is now packaged in the WWW/LX Plus Version 2 package.
7. HV really does not support FTP, the internet File Transfer Protocol. It DOES support file transfer from the server to the palmtop (i.e. downloading only). FTP, as we employ in FTP/LX n; a freeware on our Web page, www. dasoft.com; transfers files from the server to the palmtop (command GET), as well as from the palmtop to a server (command PUT). The support for downloading is identical to the support other Web browsers provide.
8. Conrad was completely correct about the similarity in the graphical user interface between Post/LX and acCIS, a CompuServe access program, by Thomas Rundel. Indeed, Thomas wrote acCIS 4.0 and the READER.EXE programs at about the same time. POST.EXE replaced READER.EXE in WWW/LX Plus Version 2, but some of the flavor was retained, because it is excellent!
President and CEO
D&A Software, Inc.
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