Comments on: Quickies: Handspring Update, Vindigo, Silver Screen, Fictionwise

Handspring has released the Handspring 3.5.2 v.1.4 Updater for all Visor Platinum and Prism handhelds in all languages. It offers improved Graffiti on the Prism, and adds modem HotSync, and fixes connection method editing and bitmap compression on both models. -Ed

Vindigo has recieved $6.2 million in new funding and laid a few employees off. They provide free city guides, movie listings, and restaurant reviews -Ryan

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HandSpring and the Palm OS

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 8:25:44 AM #
Looks like the Visors intend to patch there way to OS 4.0. But I don't believe they will. It bothers me that they advertise that they have "the latest Palm OS." It seems deceptive. Will they be able to run programs from springboard memory just like the Palm 50X and 70X models using OS 4?

RE: HandSpring and the Palm OS
rmwilk @ 7/3/2001 9:44:50 AM #
I already run programs from the Springboard memory now, using a Visor Deluxe. That is the strength of Springboards.

RE: HandSpring and the Palm OS
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 12:45:32 PM #
Visors have been able to do this since they were introduced. It's Palm who is playing catch-up.

When will Apple learn?

GrouchoMarx @ 7/3/2001 8:44:35 AM #
Is there any company that Apple hasn't gotten upset with for "approximating their look and feel?" I'm just waiting for them to sue Palm for approximating the look and feel of the Newton. :-) Plus ca change, plus le meme chose...


RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 9:30:04 AM #
Apple has a right to defend their intellectual property. If they don't they may loose there copyright on the OS look and feel. Then anyone, including M$ can steal it.

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 10:45:19 AM #
Yes, they do have a right to ask not to distribute that. That whole row of icons at the bottom looks like it's just screen shots of Mac OS X clipped for the icon they want and scaled down to low resolution and 8-bit color. BTW It looks like they didn't do such a good job of clipping the trash can.
I'm using Mac OS X right now and I can find each of them. The red things are the goaway boxes. The spring thingy is the icon for a URL if you put it on the dock. The folder is the generic folder icon. The beam icon on H20 is the Airport signal strength icon from Mac OS X. The trash can is, well, the trash can.

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 1:49:42 PM #
The only reason Apple seems to sue alot is because all their products are dramatically different. Microsoft didn't ask Pocketsensei to remove Fenestre-a windows knock-off, because, well it's a very common thing. Especially, Apple's iMacs drew alot of (ugly) clones. Apple had every right to tell them to stop.

Give me a break
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 3:11:39 PM #
Since when does immitating the "look and feel" of a desktop OS on a handheld GUI constitute infringement of copyright? How the hell is this theme going to hurt Apple?

This BS is getting out of hand. There is virtually nothing out there that hasn't been done before in software. I think it will be a joke if people start suing others over "look and feel" of products.

I hate the way everyone thinks that M$ is the only "evil" company out there. Apple is no different. After all, let us not forget how Apple got their OS in the first place - it was a project that HP developed, and the two Apple pioneers stole.

If I draw a picture of a few icons present on the OS X desktop, and try to sell it, will I be sued?

RE: Give me a break
RoofusPennymore @ 7/3/2001 4:40:18 PM #
Yes, you can have a copyright on anything you create. That means the look and feel of an OS. If other people use their look and feel, then why buy orginal Apple works? Someone will create a "theme" for WinWhatever so that it works like a Mac. That is the threat.

Who says apple don't learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 5:32:37 PM #
The opinion often expressed on the Resexcellence site is that Apple "clamp down" on copycat themes after waiting just long enough for the theme to establish a user base and generate some publicity. H2O has been available for over a month and they only just noticed? I have my doubts

Bitmaps ripped from MacOS X
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 6:21:23 PM #
It's one thing to imitate the "look and feel" of an operating system,
but quite another to actually rip bitmaps from one.

Anyone paying attention knows that Apple hasn't sued over
"look and feel" since they lost their case against Microsoft in
the 80's. "Look and feel" is simply not defensable under
copyright law (it might be, to a limited degree, under trademark
law, but that's a whole different ballgame).

Apple hasn't been threatening legal action over look-and-feel.
They're threatening over copyright violations - i.e. theme creators
ripping bitmaps directly from MacOS and using them in themes.
That H2O SilverScreen theme is a shining example of this practice,
with all the icons on the bottom ripped directly from MacOS X.

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 1:33:29 AM #
Apple has no choice but to defend its "look and feel" against every imitation it finds, if it EVER wants to defend its "look and feel" against Microsoft or anyone else.

If courts find that you only selectively protect your intellectual property (such as trademarks, patents, service marks, registered trademarks, etc.), then it risks becoming termed "generic" by the courts, and they will allow all kinds of imitations to occur in the future.

This has happened to Xerox, Kleenex, 3M with Scotch, etc. and is now those are diminshed trademarks - generics.

I'm not a lawyer but I've worked with enough trademark lawyers to learn this much. :)

Love my m505! Just got it today! Backlight? What backlight? That thing's *always* on. (That's what I tell my PocketPC friends, anyway.)

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 2:10:13 AM #
Pleeeeez. it's obviously a total ripoff of copyrighted design elements of Apple's OS X. It's the icons straight off the Dock.

RE: Give me a break
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 2:29:54 AM #



Well, people started suing over "look and feel" quite a while ago. Apple successfully sued M$ over Windoze 3 look-and-feel back in the 80s, but I guess you were still in diapers so you probably don't remember. While you're brushing up on ancient history, you should double-check your references - it was Xerox that Steve Jobs visited to see the Smalltalk system, not HP. And there were substantial differences between the Smalltalk environment and the original MacOS - both were useful for different things, and on different price-points of hardware. Besides, the original bitmapped, mouse-driven interface was developed at Stanford, not at Xerox.

Nothing new done in software? You really must have been in diapers recently. I guess we can all stop writing software, because everything's been written already, and there's no sense trying to innovate anymore.

The advent of powerful enough hardware that made bitmapped displays and mouse-driven interfaces possible enabled new possibilities for innovation. Likewise for the development of small handheld devices, and the new round of innovation that enabled. Sometime soon there will be a new class of hardware that will enable a whole new round of innovation. Or would you rather run Windoze 20XX on your neural interface? If people can't make money on their own innovations, all you'll be left with is Windoze and Linux, neither of which have a good track record of UI innovation (unless you call buying up innovative companies "innovation").

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 6:33:13 AM #
Their "innovation" was stealing the windows concept from HP who were the FIRST to develop it. Then Gates stole it from Apple.

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 8:34:17 AM #
Ok, the problem would be the bitmaps ripping from screenshot ; but can you say it's rip when you fully make bitmaps with your favorite image manipulation tool ? (Photoshop, Gimp or whatever).
Look a little bit around the Web, you will find several tutorials to make Aqua-like buttons for instance. It's not ripping, it's making a brand new image, just near the "look and feel" of the original...

Circumstances dictate...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 6:30:26 PM #
...that Groucho is a Rush Fan.

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/5/2001 12:35:26 AM #
Yeah, sure making your own images that approximate the look and feel is OK- but that's not what that theme was. All of the icons on the bottom row were ripped straight out of Mac OS X. If anyone doesn't beleive I could put a screenshot on my webpage and give you a link,

RE: When will Apple learn?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/5/2001 11:45:14 AM #
If you are going to accuse Apple of stealing, at least get the story straight.

Apple got some of the ideas for a windowing interface after getting a glimpse of such an interface at the XEROX PARC research center. HP had nothing to do with it.

Also note that Apple -paid- XEROX for the visit, that XEROX knew that Apple was researching ideas for a new interface, and that Apple violated no agreements in using the information.


I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 8:48:58 AM #
I like Apple as a company but as usual the legal braintrust (or lack there of - and this applies to any company) is trying to justify thier exsistence. How long has window blinds:

had thier apple themes - both OS 9 and OS X up and running. BTW Silver Screens apple theme is lame.

What do you call one lawyer at the bottom of the sea?

A good start.

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 10:33:00 AM #
What do you call 10 lawyers buried up to their necks in sand?

Not enough sand.

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 10:50:21 AM #
And what do you call the last lawyer on Earth?

One too many

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 10:37:59 PM #
How do you sav ea lawyer from drowning?

Take your foot of his head.

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 1:27:37 AM #
What do you call one lawyer drowning in the ocean?

A good start.

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 1:28:31 AM #
What do you throw to a lawyer drowning in the ocean?

His partner.

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 11:56:10 AM #
One lawyer says to his partner.

"Ok get to the point, lets be honest with each other"

End of conversation.

RE: Apple
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/4/2001 9:07:51 PM #
Q: What's black and brown and looks good on a lawyer?

A: A Dobermann.

(Submitted by a lawyer.)

Hugo nominees

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/3/2001 2:43:48 PM #
If you don't want to wait for Fictionwise, you can find links to all the short-fiction Hugo nominees (available free in HTML form) at <>. If you want them readable on the Palm, use iSilo or other converter to turn them into Doc files...

Apple stealing

notme @ 7/5/2001 11:14:59 AM #
they had "borrowed" the GUI interface from XEROX not HP.
RE: Apple stealing
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/5/2001 11:25:00 AM #
That's one of the biggest urban legends on the Net. Apple paid Xerox millions for the rights just to spend a day or so in their research center.

You can read more about it here:

Apple iPad?

Ed @ 7/5/2001 3:38:23 PM #
I just read on that the latest Macworld issue (July) features a picture of the Apple iPad on the back page. Are any of you subscribers? I'd really like a scan of this picture and what they have to say about it

Please send it to me at


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