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Re: Decoding and Mozilla (was Re: Enter Key / Selection by cursor)

** Reply to message from "M.C."  on Thu, 27 Jan 2005 23:06:57


> The mail files are editable without any problem. I can open them with
> Metapad. The problem is the incredible size of the files for XyWrite.

Because it's one big file -- right? Not a separate file for each message.
Most Xywrite msgs are around 2-4Kb (small). POPs ARE separate files -- when
sent, while in transit, and on your ISP's server. If Mozilla decides to
amalgamate them into one big file, I call that a fundamental problem. I import
individual Email msgs daily into XyWrite -- can't imagine not being able to do
that. However... whatever...

As Harry pointed out, at Tibbetts' prices, you are getting very close to an
Avant Stellar. And an Avant Stellar is a really good keyboard. I've never had
one of them quit on me -- and I have about ten of them (one for every computer,
and also in different locations where I spend substantial time). Northgates
DID quit -- they had a predictable lifespan, in my environment (I don't have a
light touch, plus beer, food, ashes, dandruff, all kinds of crud). Not that
many years of life, maybe 4 or so. I tossed a LOT of Northgates in the trash.
(Now wish I hadn't done that...)

Harry mentioned a programming problem with the Avant Stellar. This is worth
discussing, I suppose. It used to be that CVT (the manufacturer) offered a
single (really nifty) software program that would automatically program the
keyboard, but it only worked on Win9x or Win3.x -- with NT you were apparently
out-of-luck. I say apparently, because actually there's another way to do it:
reprogram the keyboard, write a special KBD file to disk using the Avant
program, which recorded all the changes you made, then boot DOS and run another
program they offered called AVANTDWN.EXE, which would download the KBD file to
the keyboard and reprogram it. The catch was that you couldn't program it
while attached to a notebook -- you had to take your keyboard to a desktop
machine and perform this operation there. Then you plugged your keyboard back
into the notebook -- and it worked fine. A minor inconvenience, assuming you
had easy access to a desktop machine. It may still be the case that you can't
program the keyboard with it connected to a notebook (reason is that the
notebook already has another keyboard attached, which can't be detached, and
also can't be programmed -- so there was interference).

CVT now offers a dedicated NT program for configuring the keyboard. I'm afraid
to play with it, because if it _doesn't_ work with a notebook, then I have to
put on my boots, go out in the snow to another building a kilometer away, and
reprogram the keyboard. I'm all alone in the middle of nowhere, just me and my
T23, & it is exactly... -4°F (-20°C). The hell with that. (There's a nifty
Fahrenheit-Celsius-Kelvin converter in U2 called CFK).

But the nice thing about this method is that you make this special KBD file
once, and then you just use it over and over (if you have multiple Avants).

Another quirk to point out, in conclusion, is that Hewlett-Packard computers
used to have a bad habit of "reprogramming" the Avants when they booted up.
Which was/is a genuine pain (I had an H-P Vectra that did this, and I got rid
of it). In this area, the Northgates with their hardware switches are immune.

Harry made another good point: Keyboard monitor printer -- those three things
are worth a bit extra -- your fingers, your eyes, and the result of your
labors. My 2¢.

Robert Holmgren