Re: [NTLK] How do you use your Newton?

From: Andrei Chichak <>
Date: Tue Aug 12 2008 - 00:20:07 EDT

NAME: Andrei Chichak
AGE: 47
OCCUPATION: Computer Scientist writing programs for embedded
computers in medical equipment and other regulated industries.
LOCATION: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
NEWTON COLLECTION: Pre-production Newton Notepad, clear 110, regular
110, 3 - 2X00s, 3 - eMates

I was sitting in my lonely log cabin on the 8th floor of the Clinical
Sciences building of the University of Alberta Hospital when a
stranger knocked on the door. "I've got this Byte Magazine article
about a computer that I'd like you to see", said the stranger. "Why?
Who the heck are you?", I asked. "Manager of clinical systems, but
you can call me 'Boss'". From there it was all a blur, there were
visits from men in good suits from the Rainbow Fruit Company, Boss
telling me to go west and find the WWDC93, find a missing Canadian
named Sharp, learn what you can.

My task was to see if there was a place for Newtons in a hospital. I
wrote stuff for nurses to gather patient information (but the killer
app would have been free text nursing notes), an app for gathering
statistical information in Emerg, another for the heart clinic, one
for materials management for ordering stuff from the central stores
(Newt talked serial to a PC that used TCP/IP to talk to the big iron
in the basement).

I left that gig when an ill wind blew in from the east (new
management from Toronto) and went to a tech startup that built
medical equipment that would make the lame walk. It was configured
using a Newton via the infra-red port using our own protocol over
IRDA. Everything was going good until the day that the fruit was
taken away, we immediately decided to bend over and take our
medicine, we went for Windows CE (what a piece of crap that was).
Eventually the venture capitalists decided to take their money and
put it into internet stocks (which would take them into the new millennium).

I never really was one to use a day timer and I can't stand cell
phones, so my usage has always been different from others. I would
use PT100 to talk to embedded computers since it is a lot smaller
than a PC running hyperterm. Lately I've been doing some OBD-II work,
the Newt would make a good sniffer.

For a while, my wife was using a 2100 for her contacts but the clinic
she works in didn't have a method of dumping the data in any useful
way and she went back to paper.

I built a couple of apps for my son to help him with math and reading.

Then there is my current - on hold - project to put a USB/serial
converter into the modem slot. I'll get back to that RSN.


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Received on Tue Aug 12 00:20:57 2008

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