Introduction

PilotDOC is a Newt's Cape 2.x-only plugin for converting and displaying a Palm Pilot DOC text or ImageViewer graphic file directly as a Newton book. With user feedback and as time permits, I may enhance it -- there are a number of limitations/possibilities indicated below. If you find problems, email Steve with details, including URLs of directory page and specific DOC or ImageViewer file, and version of Newt's Cape, PilotDoc and MessagePad. Of course, I'd also like to hear of successes...

Features

sites
http://www.memoware.com MemoWare
Pilot Screwdriver: Internet File Converter (create DOC/ImageViewer file from URL)
MobiPocket.com
(others?)
transfer
http
Newt's Cape: select or enter a URL to download DOC or ImageViewer file directly to Newton
Inbox requires Newt's Cape 2.0x-2(or later); select document via Newt's Cape:File:Open Inbox or Inbox:Newt's Cape Open
EE Transfer: assumes ZModem or transfer protocol that preserves file name and binary content
SimpleMail 4.0: select the .pdb or .prc file via Part picker (ignore 'no stationery' warning)
(NewtFTP? other email clients?)
MIME types
application/octet-stream, chemical/x-pdb
[1.0c2] application/x-pilot-pdb, application/x-pilot-prc, application/x-palmpilot, application/x-pilot, text/plain, */*
(others?)
file formats
files should generally have .pdb (database) or .prc (resource) file extensions (or inside .zip)
PilotDOC converts DOC files of type: "TEXt", ID: "REAd"; this includes TealDoc and RichReader documents
[1.0b2] PilotDoc converts ImageViewer (graphic) files: b&w, and grayscale; type: "vIMG", ID: "View"
[1.0c2] more .prc files recognized
[1.0d2] if HTML tag detected, prompts to process it, e.g., MobiPocket.com (although these aren't "pure" HTML)
(future? include text annotation and multiple images from same file)
PilotDoc currently rejects books (with same extensions unfortunately) in other proprietary formats: iSilo, HanDBase, JFile, TealMeal, Pandora, TealInfo, MobileDB, HandMap, and regular executable applications.
(future? with more documentation (and help from someone with a Pilot), convert/test books or data in other formats, including bookmark/link/format info).
file size
files usually contain compressed text or graphics; these are converted/expanded and then recompressed on the Newton; before downloading, be sure to have adequate space available on your default store
.zip files
www.palmzip.com
1.0c2 (or later) required since www.palmzip.com returns a different MIME type
note: component files that contain spaces require Newt's Cape 2.1a-2 (or later)
(future? fix problem with form on the http://www.palmzip.com site)
UnzipBMP Newt's Cape plugin
download .zip file
select a file to Extract
status
Newt's Cape status area displays conversion progress (for large files) or possible errors:
unknown helperApp
plugin not installed or unrecognized MIME type -- Newt's Cape doesn't download file
unknown typeID
it should be "TEXtREAd" for DOC (and TealDoc and RichReader), or "vIMGView" for ImageViewer documents; other formats not currently supported
unknown header loc
expected record header address not quite right
header not recognized
DOC record size not 4096; perhaps not necessary, but I need test examples of valid docs where this isn't true...
[1.0b2] bitdepth
ImageViewer file does not specify b&w or 4- or 16-grays, or NOS 2.0 does not convert gray
displayed book contains <tags> or control characters
TealDoc and RichReader link/format embedded extensions not currently recognized/converted
displayed book contains only title
you're probably using an older version of Newt's Cape or don't have PilotDoc installed
displayed book is truncated (and you have enough heap and storage)
try a different page size (i:General:Page Size) [built-in Newton text measurement sometimes breaks/truncates erroneously]
book containing graphic not accessible by Avi's Backdrop
set i:Other Options:BookISBN to begin with A!: and use Newt's Cape 2.0y-2 (or later)
content display
Newt's Cape displays a DOC as a plain text file in a book, i.e., like a single, large PRE tag (change font info via i:Appearance:PRE)
[1.0b2] Newt's Cape displays an ImageViewer document as a single graphic
(future? convert "bookmarks" from plain DOC to Hx tags for TOC, or other specific tag/link/format info from TealDoc or RichReader formats, though this conversion to HTML would be adhoc and slow!; display multiple images or add note text)
book title
filename appears
[Newt's Cape 2.0x-2 (or later)] original DOC/ImageViewer title appears
caching
original file cached if in Inbox, but not if transferred via http. you can save resulting Newton book as package or to NewtWorks

Other Approaches to Viewing/Creation

If you'd like to read Palm DOCs on your Newton without using Newt's Cape for download or display, you could

If you'd like to view ImageViewer files on other platforms or create your own ImageViewer files, see http://www.firepad.com/products/viewer/.

There is a large collection of plain text files at Project Gutenberg.

It may be possible to create a simple Palm DOC file for the text of any web page, e.g. palmpage; like .zip conversion earlier, append your URL to: http://pilot.screwdriver.net/convert.cgi?url= Note: it's probably best to do this on desktop; it may work directly on Newton, though it is very s-l-o-w due to lack of file length info from server.

Change History

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© Copyright 1999-2007, S. Weyer. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.