Posts tagged “google”.

The tablet era

March 31st, 2010

Steven Levy’s concise, polished view of the tablet revolution in this month’s Wired (I’m a magazine subscriber) gives a nod to the Newton in one of the “tablets through the ages” sidebar. It was the polite thing to do after talking about Apple’s iPad, the failed Windows Tablet, and the possibility of a Google Chrome OS tablet in the near future.

What’s amazing is that Apple has released some high-tech dopamine in tech pundit’s pleasure zones. Some connection has been made between the iPad, the future of computing, and the hypothalamus – and Levy says the victim will be the graphical user interface we know and (perhaps) love:

One thing we do know is that a heated battle is breaking out over the grave site of the GUI. While unveiling the most heralded Apple product since the iPhone, Jobs presented a powerful and compelling vision of what comes next.

This is the fascinating part of this whole storyline: that now, at the crux of touchscreens and cloud computing and the gee-whiz interface Apple has created, we’ve reached Nirvana.Wired's Newton graphic

Which makes me wonder about other visions of the future, particularly Google’s. After playing around with a few Android devices, I can imagine some powerful tablets featuring Google’s mobile operating system. Forget Chrome OS; Android, to me, offers a much more compelling option if you want to pit the iPad against a true rival.

The open app system, the configurability, the relative polish, the touchscreen interface. It’s all there. For some, the iPad’s computing appliance metaphor is what they’ve always wanted. Less details, less trouble.

But for geeks, an Android-powered tablet is a something to think about.

In any case, it’s nice that the editors at Wired gave the Newton a bit of credit for helping to usher in this Tablet Era – and rightfully so. Rarely is a technology born in the water fully-formed. There are incremental steps along the way. The plow led to the horse-drawn plow led to the John Deere A (that my father, and many farmers, collect) to the modern giant thresher. And just like farmers like to admire and appreciate the classic John Deeres (my dad used to drive one in our town’s Independence Day parade), we can appreciate the quirks and personality of the Newton.

Also, those classic tractors are still useful and running well, with some maintenance. We keep our MessagePads and eMates chugging along as well, even when iPads have passed them by.

Google (and Twitter!) on a Mac SE

November 18th, 2009


From Ken Fager, who has also been using Grackle68k, which I’ve heard about all over the place recently.

It’s geeky enough to get a Mac SE online, but it’s super cool to send toots via Grackle. Kudos to you, Ken.

[Via Ken’s Twitpic and Twitter.]

Russians heart Newtons, too

August 3rd, 2009

Original MessagePad

Morgan Aldridge at Makkintosshu points to МУЗЕЙ APPLE NEWTON, a Russian site devoted to the MessagePad. There’s a page for each of the Newton models, OMP through the eMate, with technical descriptions for each, as well as a video, photos, and original Newton documentation.

It’s a good idea to run the site through Google Translate (Russian > English) so you could read the text.

“A beautifully designed museum site for Apple Newtons in Russian,” Aldridge says. “Especially excellent device photography as well.”

He’s right: some of the close up eMate shots are spectacular.

Matt Howe: how I make Newton maps

June 30th, 2009

Matt Howe, part-time Newton developer and full-time Santa look-alike, uses a combination of Google Maps, U.S. Geological Survey topographical maps, MS MapPoint, a dash of Google Earth, and Paint Shop Pro to make hiking and driving maps for his Newton.

Howe gives the nitty-gritty on his Santa Matt’s Ramblings blog, including how to use GPSMap Lite and the Newton Toolkit to make his maps digestible to his MessagePad.

Howe even developed his own app that translates latitude and longitude into decimal degrees.

The instructions are great if you’re a hard-core Newton user with a knack for tinkering and creating your own maps. Howe’s instructions lend a bit of DIY cred to the whole process. These days I’ve become spoiled with the iPhone 3G in my pocket.

Read the my profile on Matt Howe on other Newton project he’s worked on.

Best search ever: Google April Fool’s

March 24th, 2009


It’s amazing, the referring web sites that come across WordPress’s blog stats plugin.

Take this one: Google April Fool’s search. Someone searched for “coworkers” on the parody search site and found my post from last year about me pranking my coworkers.

The site isn’t officially affiliated with Google. Instead, it was created by Philipp Lenssen, who runs the Google Blogoscoped blog.

April Fool’s Day is like Christmas for me. I celebrate it every year, much to the chagrin of my roommate and coworkers, because I love to pull pranks.

If nothing else, Google April Fool’s search offers unique job opportunities for those willing to…uh…relocate to exotic destinations.

With April Fool’s coming up soon, this is a site I will be visiting often.

Getting to know you

March 10th, 2009

Trent over at The Simple Dollar got me thinking: who, exactly, reads Newton Poetry on a regular or semi-regular basis?

Since I switched away from and onto my own server, I have access to accurate numbers regarding visitors and page views. Even subtracting “robot” views from search engines, I learned that Newton Poetry has many more readers than I assumed. Many of you read via RSS feeds in Google Reader or some other subscription-based app.

Over time, I’ve heard from many readers on a regular basis. Quite a few of you are regular commentors, but that means even more of you are content to sit back and consume content. Which is cool.

But here’s your chance to be known. Use today’s post as a way to introduce yourself. Don’t feel obligated – I’d just like to know a bit more about Newton Poetry readers.

In the comments section, let me know:

  • Which MessagePad or Newton-based PDA you use regularly
  • Why you’re a regular reader
  • What Mac or PC you use as your main machine
  • What was the first Newton Poetry post you read
  • Location, age, career – any trivia-type stuff you’d like to share
  • Any ideas you have for future posts

Feel free to do all, some, or none of those, but at least think about it. If you don’t feel comfortable using the comments forum, drop me an e-mail at newtonpoetry at gmail dot com. I love hearing from readers.

Thanks, everyone, for visiting. This thing started as a joke of sorts, running random poems through my MessagePad 110 and posting the “Newton Poetry” that came out the other end. Eventually, it grew into a how-to guide, a Newton news outlet, and a look inside the quirky community that surrounds the Newton platform.

But I couldn’t do it without you.

Newtonsearch is the Google of the Newton world

January 28th, 2009


Looking for something? is a “searchable index of web sites” for Apple’s Newton MessagePad. Think of it as the Google of Newton-topia, except Newtonsearch only searches Newton-related sites.

The site also provides a giantlist of Newton sites that it indexes “from time to time.” What I like is that there are a ton of sites Newtonsearch crawls through.

Though when I tried a few search terms myself, I noticed how many times Newtontalk conversation threads appeared in the results – which only makes sense. Newtontalk subscribers talk about everything.

I can’t wait to browse through the searched sites and add them to my own Newton Sites list.

Sorry fellas, no more hot Mac chick

December 12th, 2008


If hosting a blog has taught me only one thing, it’s that people find your site through some very interesting search site inquiries.

Take the above listing – a snapshot of Tuesday. Notice a trend?

When you type in “christmas chick” in, say, a Google Image search, a post I did last Christmas on Macenstein’s “Mac Chick of the Month” comes up third in the list. Her name is Morgan Kennedy. Except, really, nothing comes up – I deleted the post.

I appreciate all the search hits Ms. Kennedy’s pictures brought me, but in the end I decided (a) that it really wasn’t my post that was drawing the attention – Macenstein did all the work; and (b) this is a site about the Newton MessagePad, not half-naked (but very lovely) women.

Even though that original post, dating back a year ago now, is gone, the picture remains. But not for long. I’m deleting that, too. That means that I’ll sacrifice several hits a day in lost search engine traffic.

Really, they weren’t here to see me, anyway. They were here to see Morgan.

Make your own iPhone app with HTML

November 26th, 2008

Pretty cool: an app called PhoneGap lets you turn your web site into an iPhone/iTouch app using nothing but your site’s existing HTML and JavaScript. PhoneGap is:

written in Objective-C and allows developers to embed their web app (HTML, JavaScript, CSS) in Webkit within a native iPhone app. We’re big advocates of the Open Web and want JavaScript developers to be able to get access iPhone features such as a spring board icon, background processing, push, geo location, camera, local sqlLite and accelerometers without the burden of learning Objective-C and Cocoa.

Right now, PhoneGap gives your almost-app access to the iPhone’s accelerometer and geo location services, but camera and vibration options are pending. Head to their Google Group to learn more about the project.

Seems like a neat idea to me. There are already PhoneGap success stories, where Apple has approved their App Store submittal. Is there any way to create a Newton-like shell on a web site (kind of like this blog does) and then throw it onto the iPhone with PhoneGap? One can dream.

[via Webmonkey.]

Revisiting the Newton web

October 15th, 2008

2001 wasn’t all that long ago. Thanks to Google’s month-long anniversary project, we get to explore what the web was like seven years in the past.

Head over to Google (with an exclamation point!) as it was in 2001, and you can search the web as it was then. The results shown are pretty remarkable, considering the iMac G3 was the newest consumer Mac available, the iPod hadn’t been released yet (not until September of that year), and we had a brand new president.

Google provides archived versions of web sites, which allows us Newton users to explore some of the long-gone Newt web resources.

The Newton Source, above, is now a link squatting site. But back in the day, I’m sure it was a pretty handy resource for MessagePad software.

During my Newton links project, I’ve found so many sites that have disappeared. But thanks to Google’s 10-year anniversary search site, I can dig back in time and find out what the Newt web looked like only four years after development stopped.