Monday, November 03, 2003

New vs. Old Palm apps

One thing I have worried about since moving to the T|E is backwards compatibility: now that Datebook, Address, ToDo, and Memopad have been replaced by Calendar, Contacts, Tasks, and Memos, and the databases on the Palm have been renamed, it seemed to me that there was a danger that one would not be able to go back to using a Palm OS PDA with the old style databases.

I have not tried that yet, but yesterday I had to Hotsync my T|E to a Windows PC I sometimes use which has the pre-T|E version of Palm Desktop. When you install the new version, you get conduits for both Calendar and Datebook (etc.), but this version only had the Datebook conduit. To my surprise the Hotsync seemed to work perfectly: all my data entered into the Calendar database on the Palm appeared on the Desktop having been converted by the Datebook conduit. When I have more time, I will do some more experimenting, but it looks to me as if PalmOne have put aliases on the T|E so that conduits and apps like Datebk5 which look for the old databases get pointed to the new ones. Very clever.

More on Notetaker

I set up the OSX conduit for Notetaker this morning and it seems to work fine. The Palm app organizes your notes into folders on a desktop, and this folder structure is reproduced in your user folder on the Mac. Set up an alias to this and you are away.

One nice thing is that the OSX preview facility makes it very easy to browse through these short text files to find the one you want, or even to read them. The author of Notetaker, Bill Sellers, says that his motives for writing it were two: the limitation of 16 categories in Memopad, and the inability of Palm Desktop to have more than one memo open at once.