- Crypto: solve cryptogram/cipher puzzles
- Geometry Construction Set: draw lines, circles, triangles; perform geometric operations
- Hanoi: famous disk tower puzzle
- Life: Conway's cellular automata game
- Newt's Cape: web browser, e-book creator; plugins for .jpg, .zip, .bmp, .wav, .aiff, .au, ...
- NewtDevEnv: NewtonScript app development; tutorials: NewtAtut, NewtTurt
- newtVNC: Newton views/controls a remote system, and vice versa
- Pico Fermi Bagels: number guessing game
- Sloup: text/data transfer utility
- Sproing: bouncing spring simulation
- Waba: Java VM (subset), apps, development tools
Documentary: "Love Letter to Newton"
- Moosefuel Media is producing a 1.5 hour documentary about the Newton to be released in 2018 -- watch the preview. After a preliminary discussion with Noah about what made the Newton software and community so great (maybe I'll be included in the documentary), I was inspired to dust off my MessagePad 2000 to see if it could still connect to the internet and display web pages.
Connecting to the Web
- Although a lot of information and software about the Newton has disappeared, there was just enough available -- along with some trial and error -- to access the web using Newt's Cape on my MP2K.
- NCX: install packages, screenshots, backup/restore -- supported & runs on latest macOS 10.13 (High Sierra); directions #1; #2
- (Original development/sync tools, e.g., NTK, Newton Backup/Connection, Newton Press work only in Mac OS 9?)
- KeySpan serial adapter: USB to Mac, serial cable to MP2K interconnect dongle -- works with current driver, but occasional Mac crashes.
- Driver packages and directions for Newton Internet Enabler(NIE) and older, selected Ethernet and wireless cards still exist: #1; #2
- 3COM Etherlink III (3C589D-TP) PCMCIA card was recognized, and initiated an NIE connection, but errors persisted.
- Switched to Lucent Orinoco Silver Wi-Fi (PC24E-H-FC; 11Mb/sec) PCMCIA card.
- Installed the famous Hiroshi WaveLan driver; directions: see #1 above; plus: #1; #2; #3
- Note: older wireless cards use 802.11b, 2.4Ghz and 64-bit WEP; router has to be backward compatible for these slower, less secure protocols.
Accessing Sites and Pages
- Still, it's possible with some persistence and a few extra tricks, to extract and display useful content for some sites, hopefully for awhile longer -- quite an impressive feat for a 20+ year-old device and software.
- "Gracefully Degraded Content": full (often desktop) pages via regular site URL & browser settings; what can't be processed is usually ignored. Grant Hutchinson (and others) discuss and show Newton screenshots from the 2010-2012 era. Since then, many more sites support https: and provide richer layouts and interfaces -- normally very good things, but unfortunately, much more challenging for the Newton.
- It should be possible to access "mobile-friendly" pages (via Adaptive or Responsive Web Design),
- either manually by special mobile URLs ("m." or "mobile." prefix or ".mobi" domain)
- or automatically by "spoofing the User-Agent" (which Newt's Cape supports) -- server might provide pages to better match a device's capabilities.
In practice, however, since most modern devices can handle large complex pages, many sites redirect to https: or desktop versions.
If anyone would like to explore this option further, contact Steve for more details.
- A Mobile HTML Transcoder uses a Proxy server to generate a simpler (maybe smaller, more mobile-friendly) page, e.g.,
Gracefully Degraded Content
Grant Hutchinson: This series of screenshots shows Apple's questionably named HTML5 and web standards showcase pages displayed on a Newton MessagePad 2100.
The Newton was running Eckhart Köppen's lightweight, text-only Courier web browser, as well as Steve Weyer's more capable Newt's Cape browser.
That's called gracefully degraded content.
- Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the World Wide Web CERN's first web page; 3/12/2014
- HTML5 vs Newton: Stuff & Nonsense 11/27/2012
- E-books: Gallery. Creating E-Books incl. Newt's Cape; Fall 2012
- HTML5 vs Newton: The Pitch 6/2012
- Graceful Degradation on a Newton PDA 9/13/2011
- HTML5 vs Newton: The Boston Globe also see Figure 4.11 in Adaptive Web Design: Crafting Rich Experiences with Progressive Enhancement; 9/12/2011
- Newton Meets Facebook m.facebook.com; 10/18/2010
- Seven old computers you can turn into Twitter clients #4. Newt's Cape; 6/21/2010
- Apple's HTML5 showcase on the Newton 6/8/2010