Re: NTLK newt's fatal flaw

From: Steve Weyer (
Date: Sat Jan 08 2000 - 10:07:09 EST

>Date: Fri, 07 Jan 2000 14:04:00 +0100
>From: Marco Mailand <>
>Laurent Daudelin schrieb:
>> Yes, I think that Victor is right. If somebody is ever to start it, he
>>would be
>> better off implementing his own, *well documented*, protocol, and create a
>> package on the Newton to talk to the host application on the computer.
>The longer I think about it, I must agree.
>> However, that being said, without ever experiencing this, I've thought
>>tha NCU
>> was supposed to be expandable by adding new modules to it. So, depending
>>on the
>> documentation about how to do this, it might be easier to take this
>>route, rather
>> than re-inventing the wheel, since all the engine is there, in NCU
>>(while some
>> may argue not perfect).
>What about using Sloup the Newton side? It's well documented, but AFAIR
>does it not like to deeply nested soups. With all that MoreInfo crap in
>Names I'm afraid, Sloup will refuse to transfer.

Sloup can handle deeply nested soups.
the problem is more one of discovering/describing the soup structure.
deepness isn't usually the problem so much as having lots
of irregular (heterogeneous) entries, especially with more than 1 array
containing a variable number of elements.

>Date: Fri, 07 Jan 2000 10:30:45 -0500
>From: "Laurent Daudelin" <>
>Marco Mailand wrote:
>> Bill Moser schrieb:
>> > I looked into finding info about the
>> > Dock application a while back for another reason. What I was told is that
>> > the Dock application spits out Flattened Frames Format, which is
>> > documented. The Dock app itself is not documented anywhere. The way that
>> > info is stored in a backup file is such that you'd need info in a Newton's
>> > ROM to decrypt it.
>> That sounds very bad. My thought would be to transmit the whole soup as
>> it is and do anything else on the desktop. It means that the Dock can
>> NOT be used. But is there also ROM content necessary to interpret the
>> soup content successfully or is everything in after transmission as it
>> is?
>Without much experience on specific transfer stuff, I would nevertheless
>say that
>if you just blindly transfer the data off from the soup to the desktop,
>then you
>may have some problems trying to extract useful information after the transfer
>>from the soup.
>My idea would be to extract information from the soup, and send only the
>more or
>less human readable representation of these data. I mean, if I get to the Name
>soup, and ask for entry 1, then get the value in slot "personName", the
>value would be a string, so, in my transfer app on the Newton, I would
>send the
>string "Laurent Daudelin", with also probably a textual representation of the
>slot from which the value is sent, "personName". Where the things may be more
>complex is if you ever come over a VBO, or Virtual Binary Object, which is
>basically an container for an object that is too large to be loaded at once in
>the memory heap, but I don't think that with the standard apps that would be
>really frequent. I don't really know anything about the way that MoreInfo, for
>instance, stores its data to do its magic, and the same goes for any
>add-ons you may be using.

I think a lot of this would be addressed by the FDIL/PDIL protocols that
Apple had started to develop/distribute. but of course without good
support/documentation, this is difficult in the general case.

other approaches include exporting/importing as tab delimited text. I
think X-Port supports this, as well as Sloup. or to use something like
NPDS (exporting data from your Newton web server)

binary data, depending on how its encoded, doesn't have to be a big
problem. Sloup does a simple hex encoding -- this worked fine on Mac just
copying/pasting graphics/sounds between ResEdit resources. but the
NewtonLink folks provide a front-end for this on Unix/Linux.

NewtDevEnv, Newt's Cape, Sloup, Crypto,...

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