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Useful software, information and links for Palm devices.

Palm or Pocket PC?

Pocket PC is the new name for the old Microsoft Windows CE based devices. The original Palm devices are named after the company Palm, Inc. The main difference a user will notice first is the GUI (graphical user interface). This has some serious consequences.

The Pocket PC devices try to come as close as possible to the standard Windows environment. This is nice, because you do not have to learn a new interface, but is very bad for a mobile device, because you need color graphics and lots of computing power and memory. This makes the devices expensive and requires a lot of battery power. As the available space for batteries is very limited in handheld devices, the time the unit can run on one set or charge of batteries is very limited. But of course you can play MP3s, watch videos and so on, because you do have enough resources.

The Palm devices on the other side are developed to be as close as usefull to a standard filofax. They usually have only a greyscale display and a slow (about 16 to 30 MHz) processor, but IMHO this is enough for a filofax! The advantage is you can run the device with one set of batteries for some weeks. The user interface of the Palms is optimized for this kind of devices and with some practice you can handle them very efficiently. Additionally Palms are usually smaller than Pocket PCs and fit better in a pocket.

In my case I decided I just want a replacement for my paper filofax and therefore I bought a Palm Vx. It is very small and elegant, bears a rechargeable LiIon accu and I can connect it to my Siemens GSM cell phone via the infrared link.

Useful Free Software

There is not much software which comes with the palm. But there are tons of (free) software for it. If you are interested in developing your own software, you definitely have to look at the Palm Developer Site first. Here is my favourite list of free software I use on my Palm Vx.

Name Version Comment URLs
AlbumToGo 2.0 Want to have a image of your wife/friend/house/boat/horse/... always with you? This is the right tool for it. http://www.clubphoto.com (09/2001)
http://www.clubphoto.com/tools/atg.php (09/2001)
AvantGo 2.0 Subscribe to channels or your favorite websites, download them to your Palm and browse the content offline. http://www.avantgo.com (10/2001)
https://avantgo.com/setup/ (10/2001)
BigClock 2.83 Freeware (Alarm) Clock http://www.gacel.de/ (10/2001)
http://www.paessler.com/rupp/bigclock.htm (10/2001)
Bkgammon 3.1 Backgammon http://support.bio.upenn.edu/Palm/Games/Backgammon/readme.html (10/2001)
http://www.palmgear.com/software/showsoftware.cfm?prodID=9509 (10/2001)
Blocks 1.2e Tetris clone http://www.electronhut.com (10/2001)
http://www.electronhut.com/games/blocks/ (10/2001)
CruiseControl 1.01 Speed up your palm by accessing your DRAM faster (decreasing wait-states). Works already a long time flawlessly on my Vx. http://www.bluenomad.com (10/2001)
http://www.bluenomad.com/cc/prod_cruisecontrol_details.html (10/2001)
CryptoPad 4.08 MessagePad replacement with crypto-function from Maxime Labelle. There seems to be no real homepage as http://www.multimania.com/mlabelle does not exist anymore??? (10/2001)
http://www.palmblvd.com/software/pc/utilities.html Click on security! (10/2001)
Currency 3.2b Currency converter with exchange rate update http://members.nbci.com/HM_Martins/currex.htm (10/2001)
http://members.nbci.com/hm_martins/newpage1.htm (10/2001)
Currency Data Base Update N/A Update from the author of the Currency converter. http://members.nbci.com/HM_Martins/cupdate.pdb (10/2001)
Diddle 1.23 Small drawing utility http://blevins.simplenet.com/palm/ (10/2001)
http://blevins.simplenet.com/diddle/diddle.htm (10/2001)
Feiertage 1.5a Add Feiertage to your calendar http://www.nhueck.de/ (10/2001)
http://www.nhueck.de/Download.html (10/2001)
Filez 3.01 File manager, access and beam any file http://www.nosleep.net/software.asp (10/2001)
http://www.nosleep.net/filez.asp (10/2001)
FindIgnoreHack 1.4 Ignore certain databases in find. Requires X-Master. http://blevins.simplenet.com/palm/ (10/2001)
http://blevins.simplenet.com/fihack/index.htm (10/2001)
Funkruk-Hack N/A Korrektur von Funkruk bzw. Buro Fehler im deutschen PalmOS 3.5/4.0 http://www.linkesoft.de/ (10/2001)
http://www.linkesoft.de/funkruk/ (10/2001)
GPilotS 4.5beta7 Connect your (garmin) GPS http://www.cru.fr/perso/cc/GPilotS/ (10/2001)
HappyDays 2.07 Add Happy Days in your calendar http://jmjeong.com/palm/happydays/ (10/2001)
http://jmjeong.com/palm/happydays/download.html (10/2001)
IR Monitor 0.5 Infrared Detector http://www.jps.net/seko/main/irmenu/irm.htm (10/2001)
Keyring 1.0 Securely store secret information (PINs, Passwords, ...) http://gnukeyring.sourceforge.net/ (10/2001)
http://gnukeyring.sourceforge.net/download.html (10/2001)
MiddleCapsHack 2.6 Instead of using shift, begin writing the letter in special zones to yield uppercase letters. Requires X-Master. http://www.di.uminho.pt/~rco/pilot.html (10/2001)
Outline 1.0 Displays appointments from the Datebook database in a compact and efficient form http://www.cd.chalmers.se/~hch/outline/ (10/2001)
Paladin 4.9 Receive data from your Uwatec Aladin divecomputer and store/display it. Emulates even a memomouse. http://kuro.neko.ac/aladin (10/2001)
http://pakuro.n.is.sci.toho-u.ac.jp/aladin/paladin-e.html (10/2001)
Palm@S25 1.0 Fully use your Siemens GSM phone (SMS, phone directory, ...) http://www.mb-solutions.cz/ (10/2001)
http://www.mb-solutions.cz/palm/products.htm (10/2001)
PalmInfo 1.3.1 Information about your palm. Sets also battery types. http://home.nexgo.de/uwe.klimmek/ (10/2001)
Ptelnet 0.6 Telnet client via TCP/IP or Terminal emulator via RS232/IR http://netpage.em.com.br/mmand/ptelnet.htm (10/2001)
Sums 1.4 Multi-column automatic sums for card games or accounting http://www.linkesoft.de/ (10/2001)
http://linkesoft.com/english/sums/ (10/2001)
X-Master 1.3 Hack-Master Clone http://www.linkesoft.de/ (10/2001)
http://www.linkesoft.de/xmaster/ (10/2001)

Linux, Backup your device, ...

XXX This needs lot of improvement!

Of course you can use your palm with Linux! :)
First install the pilot-tools and jpilot, than make a symlink from the device your palm is connected to to /dev/pilot (e.g. ln -s /dev/ttyS0 /dev/pilot) and set the environmental variable PILOTRATE to the highest speed possible (e.g. export PILOTRATE=115200 for bash users on a modern computer). Then you can use jpilot or backup your palm via pilot-xfer -b.

Thomas Hopfner, 02.10.2001: Created page