Posts tagged “connection”.
As I hinted at Friday, I had success connecting my Newton eMate 300 with my iBook G4, running OS X 10.4, using a Keyspan serial-to-USB dongle I recently grabbed off eBay. This has been a long time coming. I first wrote about how to connect your Newton with OS X back in March, and there are tons of resources a Google search away, but here – for the first time – I got to see first-hand how the whole process works.
And it’s such a snap.
After an eBay auction went sour and I was awarded a refund, I reminded myself that, from time to time, Newton Poetry covers subjects like…oh, I don’t know…the Newton?
So I took my $30 and lucked out on an affordable Keyspan serial-to-USB adapter – model USA-28x (above). Now we can have some fun with that eMate I picked up, do some connecting with OS X, and play around with NCX, NewtSync, and the rest of the “new” Newton connection utilities.
If you’ve ever wanted to know what those eight little pins in the serial connection do, check out this handy site that lists each pin’s job and function in the Mac system. Pretty cool.
As soon as my Keyspan adapter arrives, I’ll post some project notes on how to connect a Newton with OS X. That is, assuming the entire thing doesn’t explode in my face. But that’s part of the fun, right?
I did a search about Newton and I ended up on your great article. I have just bought an old Newton 130 (above) and I was wondering how you have it sync/connect with Mac OS X 10.5.4? I want mine to work with my MacBook and I think I need a USB serial adapter and the serial cable. None of that came with my Newton. Do you have any recommendations? How do you do it? Would be great to hear from you.
Thanks for your time.
Sad to say, I haven’t actually connected my Newton with OS X – I can’t because it’s a MP110, and runs Newton OS 1.3. You need at least OS 2.x to connect.
I found my USB serial adapter (for hooking up with OS 9) on eBay, so that’s the first place to try. A serial cable might be harder to come by, however. Luckily mine came with my Newton, but you could try some online sellers like J&K Sales or, again, eBay. I’m working on getting an updated Newton so I can actually try it out.
…Marcus, who lives in Brazil, wrote back several times to keep me up-to-date on his progress:
Thank you for answering! I went ahead and I got 2 serial cables and a Belking USB to serial adapter for Mac (for OS X). I found on Sourceforge that someone wrote a OS X version for this series of adapters, so I HOPE it might work. I don’t intent do get a classic Mac just to sync my 130.
I also found out my backlighting wasn’t working. I saw on eBay someone selling 2 screens for it, new, for $19.95. Already have taken my Newton apart multiple times, but it is scary!
Thanks again for your reply and I liked your blog.
Later, Marcus wrote me with more to say on his project:
I don’t think I got it to work. I spent all afternoon looking for drivers and trying to hack the existing one. Problem is I did not even find the sourcecode of it on the Sourceforge project page, it’s gone. The F5U003 refuses to run with the Sourceforge driver under 10.5. I think it only works up to 10.3.
I know someone did make it work with Intel and Mac os x 10.3.4 using the driver for the F5U103 (really identical inside), but the hack he did to the kext can not be found anywhere. And since I have Intel and Leopard that solution is out of the question. I just have the instructions, but they are useless without sourcecode.
So now I went ahead and got a Prolific chipset USB to serial adapter, I know they have Mac OS X drivers for Leopard actually that are current on their website. I should have it by end of the week and will give it a new try. Wish me luck! This just might work. If I get it working I will put up something on my own blog. By the way, this is my site and blog. In the meantime my 130 is sitting on my table waiting to talk to my new world MacBook, I still have hopes.
He’s quite the DIYer, isn’t he? Marcus then sent along a final, successful e-mail – with pictures!
I have managed to connect my Newton 130 to my MacBook Core 2 Duo via USB! I have attached a few pics of my wiring setup. Works like a charm.
I will probably do a blog entry with nicer photos about this when I have some time. The USB to Serial 232 adapter has a Prolific chip inside, and that driver they are providing for Mac OS X works like a charm. There is a Sourceforge generic driver for all kinds of other adapter brands, but OS X wanted me to remove the generic one and the prolific driver does the job very well. The first software I tried and that works just like the old Apple OS 9 Connection Kit is NCX 1.2. I will try Escale and the others ones as well.
Just thought you liked to know how it is going.
My next venture will be to try and get a WiFi card working in this Newton. :-)
Nice job, Marcus! Here’s a picture of his serial-to-USB setup:
Doug Parker in Orlando, FL just e-mailed the Newtontalk group announcing that he’s taking orders for Newtways.
What’s a Newtway? It’s a adapter that helps the Palm Stowaway keyboard connect to your MessagePad. “Using Daniel Padilla’s Stowaway driver, you can type on a quiet keyboard that folds to a fraction of the size of the original Newton keyboard,” says the Newtway site. Says Doug in his e-mail:
They’re $13USD each, shipping for one is $2USD, and shipping for 2 is $5USD, domestically and internationally. If you’re paying with PayPal, there’s an additional 5% fee. You can email us to confirm the receipt of your order, or simply PayPal us at newtway [at] ispinn [.] com and include the shipping address.
Doug asks that you put “Newtway order (your name or initials)” for the subject line of your e-mail.
The idea is that the Stowaway keyboard was much more portable than Apple’s own for-Newton model. With the Newtway, you can combine the two.
[Image courtesy ispinn.com]
Newton Connection, one of the applications that lets you sync your Newton MessagePad to modern OS X Macs, released a 2.1 update that allows for screenshots.
Newton Poetry covered apps like NCX, and it’s nice to know Newton developers are still working hard on viable connection solutions. NCX does everything the old Newton Connection Utilities did, but runs under OS X.
// Via Cult of Mac
One of the challenges of owning and using a Newton in the modern computing world is its lack of support for Apple’s OS X.
The idea is that, using apps like NewTen, Escale or NewtSync, you can sync your iCal and Address Book entries to Newton’s own Calendar and Names databases. It’s a beautiful idea, and a handy route for us Newton die-hards who want a more modern interface than OS 7+ offers. Who needs a Blackberry or Palm when you’ve got Apple’s original PDA?
I will say that I’ve tried a few these solutions, and none have worked for me. I think that it’s a combination of (a) my USB-to-serial adapter isn’t supported by my iBook G4 and (b) these applications require Newton OS 2.0 to run properly. Stuck at OS 1.3, there’s not much I can do but use Newton Connection Kit on my G3 Bondi iMac.
But some Newton users have used both of these programs with varied success rates. There has been plenty of dicussion in the Newtontalk mailing list about both applications, and some support is out there for Newton users having issues.
So let’s dig into these one by one, and see what each have to offer.
Want to install a package on your MessagePad – like, say, an update to the Newton’s OS – but wondering how to get started?
I noticed that my Newton 110′s OS was still stuck at version 1.2. I knew Apple.com kept a comprehensive list of old software and driver downloads, so I started there first. This is a good starting page for Newton inquiries; it breaks down your MessagePad model, and leads you to its listing of Newton OS software. Here you’ll find updates, connection software (like the Newton Connection Kit and Utilities), modem drivers, and much more. Browsing through the listing, I found my OS 1.3 listing here:
I clicked on the “read me” file just to see what I was getting into. Then I clicked on the “MP_110_1.3_345333.sea.bin” file and the download started right away. More… »