[NTLK] Clear developer's Newton 110 pops up on eBay | MacNN

James Fraser wheresthatistanbul-newtontalk at yahoo.com
Fri Jan 25 12:18:47 EST 2013


--- On Tue, 1/22/13, Mickey Sattler <mickey at sattlers.org> wrote:

> Imagine my surprise at seeing my own site and words used to illustrate > a topic I happen to love. :-)

Well, hey, imagine my own surprise (and delight) at hearing from the owner of the site himself!  Hello there! :)

>> I was impressed with the HWR ***in context*** of what came before, 

Oh, before I forget , I wanted to clarify:

>> Ironically, I was reading Mickey Sattler's website last night (he has >> one):

>> http://www.sattlers.org/mickey/tech/hardware/apple/newton/index.html

>> ...and was impressed with the HWR.  The other kind of impressed, that >> is:

That last sentence was meant to apply to me, not to you.  IOW: I wasn't attempting to put words in your mouth, only attempting to describe my reaction to the HWR abilities of NOS 1.3 in the cold light of 2013.

I readily acknowledge that, at the time it was released, the MP110 was the wonder of the world.  NOS 1.3 can, in some ways, be said to be the first "real" Newton OS in the same way that Jaguar (10.2) was said to be the first version of OS X that was ready for prime time.  

Where the "impressed" bit comes in is in contrasting a 1994 device to 
what we know of the Newton platform as of 2013.  What I was attempting to say there (admittedly, not very well), was that the HWR in the version of the NOS the 110 runs pales in comparison to later versions of the NOS in terms of utility.  

That's not to say that NOS 1.3 can't be useful, even today, only that the amount of effort required to make it so is hard to justify when NOS 2.x is now available, that's all.

> I had to deal with poor handwriting recognition (which I overcome with > Grafitti), but all in all things went pretty well...

Right, and, let's face it: the ability to install Graffiti on early MessagePads helped increase the utility of the MP.  Of course, 
after NOS 2.0, Graffiti was rendered superfluous, seeing as how the HWR in 2.0 was vastly improved and thus no longer relied heavily on
third-party help to make it palatable for everyday use.

All I was trying to say is that, while owning a clear MP110 would be great, the actual utility of such a device today (as opposed to 1994) would be limited if Graffiti is involved.  I played around with Palm devices for a while, and the fact that I had to adapt my "writing" to the machine (i.e. learn Graffiti) rather than the machine adapting itself to my writing just irritated the bejeezus out of me.  

Granted, Palm got a lot right, but I think it's harder for a user to bond with a device that first requires their hand to learn a foreign language, so to speak, before they can use it effectively than it is for them to utilize a device that adapts itself to the way their hand already works from the very beginning (despite the adaptation not being instantaneous and requiring some patience).

>...but still needed Graffiti to get any kind of throughput. 

Right.  And given that the HWR found on NOS 2.0 units is leaps and bounds ahead of that of the NOS found on the clear MP110, the 110 is a tough sell in terms of incorporating such a unit into one's everyday life today.

> The clear case is eye-catching, and of all my Newtons it's probably 
> the only one I'm really attached to. 

Yes, I have to admit that, despite all the above, I've still gotten rather attached to the thought of someday perhaps owning a clear case unit myself. :)

> (In fact, I've just gone through my gear closet and found 4 2x00s, and > a lot of programming manuals, cables, etc. I'll probably box
> it up into one bundle rather than drawing it out into many individual > orders.

I'm sorry to hear that you don't plan to part everything out (see above).  However, I can't say I blame you, either, seeing as how it's easier to sell everything all in one go.

Speaking of go, I found your experiences at GO Corporation pretty intriguing.  I'd no idea that Sandy Benett had worked there originally.   Great stuff. :D  

I also liked the Newton Roger variation near the bottom of your Newton page (on the left).  Did you create that?  I believe, but am not 100% certain, that the original Newton Roger (on the right) was created by Will Nelson of Newton Underground.


James Fraser

More information about the NewtonTalk mailing list