A Bold New Proposal


I was thinking today after I got my car pulled out of the mud about a project I'd like to see. Tentatively the LX Internet Services package, this project, if even a small part of it were completed, would open new doors to the palmtop world. My idea is a two-part internet suite which would make both the programmers and the end users happy.

The parts are as follows:

The access part, which would include an epppd-like program, probably with extensions for dial-on-demand and persistence (automatic redialing.) This would be controllable by other programs, probably through an interrupt. It would also include a TCP/IP stack TSR. Currently, I'm told, Internet programs using packet drivers still have to implement their own TCP/IP. This is obviously a waste, and a TSR would most certainly help. I considered rolling both the stack and the epppd into the same TSR, but the magic of having seperate TSRs is that the programs will never differentiate between network and modem connections. Whether you connect through a network or a modem is simply a matter of having either epppd or the network packet driver loaded underneath the TCP/IP stack.

The applications part, which will include as many Internet programs as are necessary, all available quickly and easily through HDM or a variant. I have a few ideas so far:

  1. An epppd connection control program that would give you complete control over the epppd variant which LXIS will use. I'm thinking here of controllable connection timeouts, dial-on-demand capability, and disconnect-on-demand.
  2. Basic internet services like ping, finger, host, and things like that.
  3. Telnet and ssh (encrypted telnet) would be very good for those of us with shell accounts we use over the internet.
  4. FTP and perhaps an FTP server, PAL-based and perhaps with a Filer-like interface, would almost be necessary. The Filer-like interface would provide WS_FTPan ease of use.
  5. IRC would kick serious ASCII value. I'm imagining a full PAL-based PIRCH lookalike, or maybe a BitchX port. Probably a PIRCH lookalike because of its ease of use and rugged good looks.
  6. A multithreaded Post supporting our mythical standardized TCP/IP TSR.
  7. A multithreaded WWW supporting our mythical standardized TCP/IP TSR.

And here's why it will never happen:

  1. Rod Whitby probably doesn't have the time.
  2. It would cost D&A money to make the necessary adjustments to Post and WWW, and wouldn't bring them any significant benefit. Even with the standard interface, I seriously doubt they would port those programs.
  3. Everyone that wants IRC (me and a few other people) is too dumb to write a client. [David's note: there may be a correlation here between "liking IRC" and "being too dumb." Somebody should check this out.]
  4. No one seems to have the SLIGHTEST BIT OF INTEREST IN HOW WONDERFUL IT WOULD BE TO HAVE AN ENORMOUS, GRAND INTERNET SUITE THAT WOULD MAKE THE 200LX MORE VIABLE AND OPEN THAN WINCE FOR ALL OF TIME, SINGLEHANDEDLY DESTROYING THE EVIL EMPIRE AND BRINGING PEACE AND HAPPINESS BACK TO THE LAND OF THE REAL PALMTOPS.

Thank you.


Copyright 1999, David Sargeant.
Last Updated 4-8-1999
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