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Comments on: HandEra Calls 240 by 320 Resolution an 'Emerging Standard'

HandEra has released a statement that calls QVGA an "emerging standard for Palm Powered devices". QVGA is HandEra's name for screens with 240 by 320 pixel resolution, additional display fonts, and a collapsible virtual Graffiti area. So far the only device that supports QVGA is the HandEra 330 but Mike Walter, vice president of software development for the company, said there is a "strong interest within the industry in licensing HandEra's technology," implying that we can expect to see other, non-HandEra, QVGA devices in the future. HandEra's statement says that these can be expected within the coming year.
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"Emerging standard"?

norm2002 @ 9/3/2001 3:06:46 PM #
Wishful thinking IMHO. Now that Sony has shown how 320x320 works, I can't understand why any new Palm PDAs would go back to 240x320.

RE:
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 3:49:03 PM #
Works for what, providing a small color box with double the resolution? HandEra has shown that the current Palm OS can support portrait and landscape screens. Currently 240x320 screens are readily available in color and greyscale from many vendors instead of Sony's custom 320x320 stuff. HandEra's design also scales up more nicely to other resolutions (could probably do Sony's 320x320 with minor additions) and provides APIs for that including screen rotation. As far as I know their soft graffiti area API is somewhat separate from the QVGA support, so it should be possible to support HandEra's API for soft graffiti on things like the new Samsung phone/PDA. Sony's screen may be higher resolution, but HandEra's technology is more practical and interesting.

To Palm: Please make VG(Virtual Graffiti) a standard!
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 4:21:08 PM #
Virtual Graffiti is higher on my list than 320x320 res.

I'd rather have VG be a standard before they start cramming more pixels into the same screen area.

Easy
dwarchbold @ 9/3/2001 4:56:56 PM #
To achieve the 320x320 resolution on the Clie, Sony had to add a dedicated graphics accelerator. The accelerator takes care of the line doubling for backwards compatibility as well as giving a much needed speed boost to compensate for the hi-res overhead.

Handera took a cheaper, easier and more universal (in my opinion) approach. Applications must be written to use the hi-res features. Old apps will continue to run, but only part of the screen is used.

I'm a Clie owner, and I especially love the hi-res screen. Personally, I really don't like Handera's "awkward" resolution and virtual graffiti is really something that doesn't appeal to me. However I do see this technology winning out in the long run, since it's the easiest and more universal method to implement. Unless Sony bullies their tech into the market, of course.


RE:
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 6:29:10 PM #
I suppose monochrome screens, ugly cases, and serial connectivity are also emerging standards.

RE:
ckohl23 @ 9/3/2001 9:22:10 PM #
i must be one of the few people who doesn't like the idea of virtual graffiti. something tells me it will be slower, more cumbersome, and not as responsive. increased resolution, however, is a must...i don't care what the standard is, as long as it will support older apps.

RE: 320X320 and Vitual Graffiti
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 10:29:55 PM #
WinCE had virtual graffiti area for a long time, and many people do not like it including myself. Given backward compatibility, 320x320 seems to be the way to go. Also 320x320 seems so much more cleaner than Handera's resolution anyway.

Not slow.
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 10:32:23 PM #
I just bought a Handera and I'm loving it. the VG is really nice. It's not slow at all. And the grafitti accuracy is tops. It didn't take long to get used to at all, and now I feel kinda cramped when I'm using my old IIIC. Just MHO.

RE: Handera desperate
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 10:33:11 PM #
I think Handera is desperate. It looks like Palm will be going with 320x320 resolution in the future as well.

RE: the one desperate CLIE owner
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 11:21:27 PM #
Oh boy, the one desperate CLIE owner who can't accept why anyone might like some other handheld. Get over it, and get a life. The world has it figured out who you are. You bash HandEra exactly the same way every chance you get.

RE:
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 1:40:27 AM #
Palm's going with 320x320
I think Samsung makes part of the HE330 so maybe Mr. Walter is referring to some new Samsung model aside from the phone or he's marketing department is smoking something silly.
As for the virtual graffiti, I read that one of the drawbacks is that hacks which use launch strokes (app to upper graffiti area) don't work. Can someone verify? HandEra + Pop! or McPhiling?



RE:
GrouchoMarx @ 9/4/2001 2:57:11 AM #
I didn't like the idea of virtual graffiti either, until I used it. HandEra did a very good job of making the graffiti area collapsable yet more accessible than the "pop up over" method in WinCE.

As for hacks, most hacks that use the screen and were written for the old resolution won't work, not as much because of the virtual graffiti but because of the different resolution. But they CAN be updated, like any other program. McPhling has already been updated, and was one of the developer contest winners. I've been using it on my 330 for a while now, and it works great!

Why are people so short sighted
mengshi @ 9/4/2001 6:37:09 AM #
For those who criticise the QVGA format, think about these...

1) What is there to prevent from Handera putting in a custom graphics accelerator (ala Clie) as well? I think this is very likely with a QVGA colour screen due to the processing needed.

2) The next step up from QVGA is full VGA, which is a mere doubling of QVGA. This is a very real development in the Pocket PC world. Getting into QVGA now will make the next step so much easier and open up the possibilities of doing great multimedia on the Palm (did I hear you say Be).

3) Enough bickering amongst Palm users. Getting parity with the Pocket PC crowd with their screen resolution will be a plus for the Palm platform.

4) A VGA screen in landscape format allows you to watch movie at normal film aspect ratio. Does Sony make a square TV?

RE: 320X320 and Vitual Graffiti
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 6:53:37 AM #
Talk about Handera bias!

WinCE or Pocket PC already have 240x320 resolution. Why would Palm go with the same resolution when 320x320 would offer Palm the advantage of having the best resolution in the PDA business. I know people who were set to buy PocketPC until they saw 320x320 vs. 320x240.

RE:
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 7:56:49 AM #
You can't make that square screen much bigger in a PDA form factor. Make the screens bigger and let the increased resolution follow that, instead of squishing more pixels into the same or smaller square screen.

RE: Sony
rueyeet @ 9/4/2001 12:04:26 PM #
Sony may have shown how their 320x320 works, but are notoriously bad at sharing their proprietary technology with others.

So 240x320 may well become the standard for everyone else, since Handera's willing to share, while Sony sits on its 320x320 screens and proclaims superiority.

"Standard," after all, refers to the minimums adhered to by the industry as a whole, not the top-of-the-line that may be available.

--rueyeet the semantic nitpicker

virtual graffiti
mj6798 @ 9/5/2001 2:35:26 AM #
The point of virtual graffiti is that you might like to use some other input method than graffiti. I'm pretty skilled at it, and I still think it's pretty inefficient.

Try it, you'll like it!
ilikedatabases @ 9/5/2001 12:38:55 PM #
I drooled over the Clie 320x320 color when it came out. I really wanted one. Then I saw the QVGA of the Handera. It is very clear and sharp and provides a larger actual viewing area not just a higher resolution.

Viewable area has been the one area that the WinCE/PocketPC has always had an advantage in. This is the first step in erasing that difference.

Handera has to front of the line for innovation with the 330. The screen is superior to any Palm OS PDA out there. I think color is currently more gimick than necessity.

As more color apps and QVGA apps come out and the 66Mhz DragonBall is implemented I can easliy see a Handera with a QVGA Color screen that makes the PocketPC crowd say "WOW!"

RE: size vs. resolution
dlan* @ 10/23/2001 6:40:17 PM #
"You can't make that square screen much bigger in a PDA form factor. Make the screens bigger and let the increased resolution follow that, instead of squishing more pixels into the same or smaller square screen."

Beg to differ. DO squish more pixels into the *same* size, until you get at least 200 ppi. A Palm Vx is about 75 ppi, just like a typical monitor: about 0.3mm pitch. For anything viewed at typical paper or book distances, about 0.1 mm pitch is preferable. One minute of arc would be good; 30 seconds of arc would be better. What we have now is typically about 3 minutes of arc resolution, whether on a Palm or a monitor, or from an LCD projector.


RE:
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/8/2002 12:10:25 PM #
> WinCE or Pocket PC already have 240x320 resolution.
> Why would Palm go with the same resolution when
> 320x320 would offer Palm the advantage of having the
> best resolution in the PDA business.

Because 240x320 is a standard size of screens like these. They are used in a lot of PDA's, and they're much cheaper than making your own custom screens.

RE: BOTH
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/26/2002 12:38:00 PM #
I like sony's implementation. i'm a developer and have used there sdk. If you want to use hi-res, it's the exact same API function calls as for standard PalmOS, but with the letters 'HR' prefixed to the function name. of course, the standard graphic functions are still there.

on the other hand (no pun in tended) Handeras virtual graffiti thing makes sense for the reason mention above. they double the horizontal pixels only (reletive to the top 'square') and then extend to the graffiti area. What if they also doubled on the vertical? That would mean 320 x 480!! THAT I'D LIKE TO SEE. It would give all above advantages and completely kill CE in the graphics deptarment.

Re: 2nd post

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 3:56:19 PM #
would you PLEASE stop cussing at ed when he or ryan kills your stupid posts!?! it's not his fault you're wasting web space with dumb things


RE: 2nd post
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 3:56:52 PM #
The thing is not as easy - censoring seems to happen not only at flames but at generally "unpleasent" content as well - not only flames - this surely makes palminfocenter less attractive.

A dedicated PIC visitor

RE: 2nd post
Ed @ 9/3/2001 4:08:57 PM #
All I can say is, please notice these rules on posting:
  • Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments may be moderated/deleted.
  • Want to talk about something other than this story? Try the Forums.
In general, all that gets removed is personal attacks on other users, totally off topic comments, and flamebait, which I define as comments posted for no reason other than to start an arguement that has been rehashed a million times before. We had an unofficial poll a while back on flamebait posts and I don't think anyone came out in support of them.

"I posted first" is always off topic.

For every complaint I get from someone that I deleted their flame, I get a compliment that these forums actually contain useful information. If all you want to do is carry out flame wars, there are plenty of other sites available.

---
News Editor

RE: Re: 2nd post
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 4:28:45 PM #
Big thanks to ed for being so considerate to serious users of this site. I get very annoyed with people who find that there is nothing better to do then post stupid/pointless/rude/mean comments designed to annoy other users.

On the forums, there tends to be a lot more constructive discussion going on. Part of it is that people are unable to hide behind an anonymous name, and the other part is the strong ddedication of the visitors to this site.

If you want to post something completely un-pda related, go to the forums where people have discussed tons of different things in a civil matter. And, if you want to hold a debate, theres plenty of people who are willing to present and listen to the facts in a friendly/informative manor. Who knows, they might even change your mind!

RE: Re: 2nd post
BillFugina @ 9/3/2001 5:01:15 PM #
I'm not trying to start an argument, but isn't this discussion itself totally off topic?

RE: Re: 2nd post
mikecane @ 9/4/2001 12:26:23 PM #
OT to the article, perhaps, but germane to PIC being useful. At one point, this site was deteriorating due to the sheer volume of boneheads who couldn't be bothered (or couldn't figure out how!) to register and filled the after-article discussions with irritating idiocy. If Ed and Ryan have been pruning these comments, I say more power to them! Most people come here to express their opinion of an article or topic, not to engage in the kind of meaningless dribble that too often ruins other sites.

Any resolution is the future.

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 5:07:17 PM #
Yes the screen might be 6 inch QVGA res pixels, but the OS should be able to handle any resolution, dare I say, just like Win CE, either via virtual windows or compressed format.

either way, the future is not 160*160 or 240*320, but Any resolution that user find it fits to use.

RE: Any resolution is the future.
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 6:10:20 PM #
EXACTLY. Malign Windows CE for its many faults, but handling different screen resolutions isn't one of those. Palm OS needs to adopt a similar screen handling system in order to keep developers from tearing their hair out and developing WinCE apps.

RE: Any resolution is the future.
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 11:35:07 PM #
I think the main title of this thread isn't very accurate. It isn't 240x320 that they're calling an emerging standard, it's their APIs. To support HandEra 330's screen completely, you need to support various resolutions. It's 240x320 with the virtual graffiti area closed, but 240x240 with it open. In landscape mode there's something like 320x160 with the virtual graffiti area open and 320x240 with it closed. Their APIs support all of that, and handling other resolutions seems possible if they wanted to do it that way.

RE: Any resolution is the future.
rueyeet @ 9/4/2001 12:11:30 PM #
I do think, though, that the screen is a large consideration in many PPC consumer purchases, especially given that PPC focused on multimedia to begin with. I've seen many a comment from PPC users here who admit that WinCE is more troublesome to use than the Palm OS, but the hi-res color and full multimedia support of, say, the I-Paq made the trade-off worthwhile.

Now if the Palm-powered machines could add in the hi-res color, and the multimedia support, without sacrificing the simplicity and ease-of-use of the Palm OS, that trade-off would disappear....since a Palm machine can share Microsoft apps just as well as a PPC, and that's the only remaining inducement to deal with WinCE's foibles.

So screen resolution will be important, as far as the great brand war of Palm-Powered vs. PPC goes.

Resolution

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2001 5:56:55 PM #
Let's face it folks, the new clie has upped the ante in visual quality of the Palm OS; a definite quantum leap. And those pocketpc's, they don't know the meaning of the term--low resolution. Palm better act fast.

Standards?

Davy @ 9/3/2001 9:07:33 PM #
Let's see

320 x 320: 2 Succesful Color Clies
320 x 240: Handera 330
160 x 160: Every Palm from the Palm 1000 to the m505 (at least 20 Palm models, including specialty Vx's). Every Visor (6 models). And the Sony Clie 300 and 320.

Emerging Standard? Hey Satansism's an emerging standard if you look at it like this.

RE: Standards?
kevdo @ 9/4/2001 12:18:26 AM #
When I saw this article earlier today I was skeptical. But the more I think about it, 240 x 320 may not be so crazy after all.

Look at these issues.

1) Most would agree a "soft" graffiti area is a desirable and likely future of Palm OS.

2) Pocket PC screens are 240 x 320

3) 320x320 is cool. But 320 x 320 with soft graffiti would be 320 x 480. That's probably too expensive.

The convergance of #1 and #2 make 240 x 320 actually something plausable. There would be economies of scale by matching the screen resolution of the Pocket PC screens.

It would, also, match the one thing that Pocket PC types point to as an advantage over Palm -- bigger screens.

So, as much as I think the current HandEra implementation is "cludgey" (Sony pixel doubling obviously is more elegant) - I do think that this might happen.

It all depends on what Palm thinks...

RE: Standards?
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 1:48:10 AM #
Kludgey? Not IMO. It's software-oriented, as opposed to Sony's throw-more-hardware-at-it solution. If anything, I'd think that rewriting the Palm API's to use enhanced fonts is more elegant than just slapping more hardware on the device, and getting limited backward-functioning.

The way HandEra did it, you may have less pixels, but you get more use out of the pixels you have, in more programs. It seems more elegant to me than looking at programs on a 320x320 screen emulating a 160x160 screen. :S

I woulden't push too hard for 320x320 as a standard, personally - I believe that Sony makes those screens themselves - I can't imagine them giving good pricing to Handspring, or Palm, for that matter.

For those of you who've never heard that funny german-ish word before, take a look at http://www.tuxedo.org/~esr/jargon/html/entry/kludge.html

RE: Standards?
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 12:14:48 PM #
>> It all depends on what Palm thinks... <<

Actually, since Sony's agreement with Palm allows Palm to get all the OS extensions, etc. that Sony makes, while HandEra's agreement would require Palm to negotiate a license agreement from HandEra, it really depends on what Sony thinks. Why would Palm license something from HandEra they could get for free from Sony?

RE: Standards?
rueyeet @ 9/4/2001 12:20:02 PM #
to the thread originator:

That's why the term used was "emerging standard" rather than "current standard." And I can't see anyone hoping that the current low-res standard for Palm's machines will stick around for long.

in reply to the rest of the thread:

Again, trade-offs: throw hardware at it, and it takes no software overhead, but becomes hardware-specific; do it with software, and it could be adapted to any hardware, but takes up software overhead.

I do favor the software solution, though, since it could be adapted to various hardware....consider what use landscape and virtual Graffiti capability would be if more units were developed with the Treo k180 thumb keyboard.

RE: Standards?
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 12:33:44 PM #
Palm may get get Sony's software OS extensions, but my understanding is that Sony's hi-res API is just all of Palm's calls with an "HR" stuck on the beginning of the functions and the old Palm API calls draw 2x2 pixels instead of a single pixel. Palm would still have to write new code to interface with whatever hardware they decide to use, since Sony's likely under no obligation to give them a good price on that. That's why I would expect 240x320 screens might be more appealing to some manufacturers, since they're more commonly available.

HandEra's API seems more flexible in that it mainly uses the existing Palm drawing/windowing APIs, but expects programmers to check and use what size the window/screen actually is. So it's not really fixed to 240x320 either, except that they provide functions to scale up legacy screens up to the new resolution. Probably more of a pain for some developers porting old apps, but more flexable in the long run.

a real standard or just another option?

AriB @ 9/4/2001 2:29:24 AM #
In order for qvga to become a "standard" it must be
1) adopted by at least either Palm or Handspring
2) come out in a color version
3) offer true backward compatability with 160X160 apps without distortion
Sony already has 2) and 3) and will probably get 1) as well because of that

RE: a real standard or just another option?
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 7:50:41 AM #
A standard can still be optional. There's nothing preventing a color 240x320 screen from appearing. HandEra has shown a very high level of backward compatability. The only way to avoid any distortion is to just keep doubling the screen resolution, which is a horrible route to take. The Palm OS needs to move more in the direction of supporting varying resolutions, not just two square ones.

Rumor : Prism II

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 8:45:09 AM #
PDASia refers to a Prism II, which would be also in 240x320, with 16bit color, 16Mo RAM, 33Mhz, and OS4.1H.

Maybe that's why Handera says it's becoming a std ?

but then again, maybe that's a rumor.

Phil
www.ludigames.com

What we really need

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 10:44:01 AM #
Instead of 240x320 we need 320x480. What I mean is they need to add the virtual grafitti area
the 320x320 resolution. Then we have the best of both worlds.

You can't have too much resolution.

-Eric

RE: What we really need
wilco @ 9/4/2001 11:04:36 AM #
320x480? Exactly what The Palm platform need. Of course, you need a speedy processor like the 66Mhz Dragonball to make sure there's none of the speed issues like those with the Sony CLIE 710c.

RE: What we really need
robrecht @ 9/4/2001 11:37:57 AM #
I agree completely. Are Palm, Handspring, Sony, & Handera listening?

RE: What we really need
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 12:03:56 PM #
Jumping to yet another fixed resolution would be a mistake. It hurts the ability of the Palm OS to be used for other non-PDA devices.

RE: What we really need
GrouchoMarx @ 9/4/2001 2:56:14 PM #
320x480? Now tell me,how does one extend that to the next level? Pixel double that to 640x960? Um, yuck.

The advantage of QVGA is that it is one "Quarter" of VGA resolution. Yes, it's slightly smaller now, but not by a heck of a lot. And it can then pixel-double straight to true 640x480. Have you seen a PDA-sized true VGA screen? I have, and it was drool-worthy. And it makes development a whole lot easier, because it's a standard 4:3 aspect ratio used by the rest of the universe. What do you think your desktop is running?

Of course, we all know that it's not technical superiority that wins the day, it's marketing superiority. See also: Betamax, Macintosh.

RE: 320x480
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 3:46:17 PM #
Actually 320x480 would be HVGA (HALF VGA), giving the palm os the same scalability as 240x320, but DOUBLING resolution...

RE: My vote is for 480x320
Deslock @ 9/4/2001 6:26:07 PM #
After using the IPAQ (320x240), Handera330 (320x240), several 160x160 palms, and the Clie (320x320), my favorite screen is the Clie's. So, I definitely don't want to take a step backwards to 320x240, but I'd like a virtual grafitti area too (assuming someone creates a DA launcher that works with it... or maybe this has happened already?)

A few points on the discussion... not all desktop resolutions are 4:3 and even if they were, that doesn't mean it's appropriate for a handheld. 480x320 is 3:2, which is not that much different. Also, it's twice the resolution of QVGA... the smaller pixels come in handy for displaying maps and photos on a palm device.

I see no reason to stick with 240x320 as opposed to 320x480 (which I'll call HVGA). (1) It doesn't matter if CE uses QVGA. (2) HVGQ screens are not necessarily going to be significantly more expensive. (3) Using a better video controller is not a bad thing. (4) The Clie is not slow and the upcoming 66 MHz dragonball with an upgraded video controller should be fine for 480x320.

Note that the video controller used in the Clie maxes out at 320x320 so another controller would be needed.

RE: What we really need
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/5/2001 4:47:04 PM #
A DA Launcher that works with the Handera's virtual graffiti and screen res does exist. It's a hack called EasyLaunch. It's a hack that lets you do many things via penstrokes or button combinations, and it launches DA's. I've been using it with a DA to rotate the screen for a while now on my HE330 to get screen rotation in apps that don't natively support it.

I love it!

Meirav @ 9/4/2001 12:26:37 PM #
Typical marketing schlock! It's an emerging standard, but only one of our products uses it, we're the only vendor that uses it, and we're a small player!

RE: I love it!
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 12:54:42 PM #
Except that the announcement pretty much says that there will be more products supporting it, and likely from other vendors. I would not be surprised if this certification process was actually part of a licensing deal with some other company.

RE: I love it!
Meirav @ 9/4/2001 1:53:01 PM #
No, it's an announcement of a licensing program, which is by definition an attempt to get others to adopt your scheme. If the company had announced a licensing program along with a major licensee, I would have been less skeptical, but right now, it doesn't hold water. It's just marketing bluster.

RE: I love it!
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 1:57:26 PM #
It's not an announcement of any licensing program. It's a certification program for existing and future applications. HandEra would be under NDA for any licensee of their techology. Announcing their name(s) would essentially be making a product announcement for them.

RE: I love it!
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/5/2001 4:51:17 PM #
Other PDA's (mostly PPC's) have had 320x240 resolution for some time now. So yes, that resolution is a standard, and is "emerging" in Palm based units. So no, Handera technically *isn't* the only one making/marketing this unless you severely limit your inclusion solely to Palm OS devices. It used to be they were the only player in this market, but PPC has given the market advances that have allowed it to viably compete. Additionally, Linux based PDA's are starting to arrive. They aren't much to look at yet, but neither was PPC when it was WinCE.

The attitude of "we're the only ones and so we don't need to innovate" is what has cost Palm so dearly to date. WinCE/PPC should never have become the player it is. If Palm had innovated like this in the first place, they would still hold the market share they already had, or at least a significant portion of what they no longer hold.

But what would developers do?

mikecane @ 9/4/2001 12:31:27 PM #
It's all well and good for one firm or another to claim their APIs are an "emerging standard," but the proof is their adoption by *developers*. I don't think there's anything new involved in having a current Palm program run on a CLIE. At 160x160, it still fills that 320x320 screen. On an H330, no such luck! And with certain programs, you get outright garbage if you try to scale them up. So, the real question is: Will the vast majority of developers adopt the H330 APIs -- not whether other hardware manufacturers adopt the platform.

The one thing that could make HandEra's APIs very appealing is -- a *color* unit! The H330 is a very nice piece of work. If it was color, I'd prefer it over the CLIE.

RE: But what would developers do?
Meirav @ 9/4/2001 1:55:16 PM #
That's exactly my point in "I love it," above.

RE: But what would developers do?
GrouchoMarx @ 9/4/2001 3:01:09 PM #
I don't know about what they WILL do, but I can say that adding the HandEra support to a device is quite easy for many programs. Games are hardest, for obvious reasons. No, the 330 is not the greatest gaming device, that much is a given.

However, I was able to add QVGA support to a small program in six hours. That includes the time it took to download and read the documentation. For larger programs it would of course take longer, but it's still quite doable.

There ARE programs that die on the CLIE when run in "high res" mode, so they have to be run in non-high res mode in order to function. The same is true of the 330. Both have some programs that break, but most work fine. The 330 goes a step farther because it is software-level, so for instance any system controls (buttons, etc) that you place on the screen appear with a crisper line, regardless of how the program is written.

As I said, though, that's what developers CAN do. Who knows what they WILL do. So far, most game-oriented companies have been making the CLIE their priority, and rightly so. Office application companies have been making the 330 their priority, and rightly so. We will see where it goes from here.

--GrouchoMarx

RE: But what would developers do?
mikecane @ 9/4/2001 4:02:23 PM #
It would be nice to see a biz/game merger to make developers' lives easier. Yes, apps can break when "hires" is checked on a CLIE, but they still fill the screen when "hires" is left unchecked.

I'm not sure that even Palm would end this by choosing a "standard." I think they'd rather have multiple "standards," which only makes life worse for end-users, I think.

I'm glad you chimed in to this discussion. Is the H330 your primary device? It is a hell of a piece of work.

Virtual Graffiti

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 5:04:05 PM #
I wish my palm M505 had a virtual graffiti area as when I'm showing my photos to my friends I'd have extra space on the screen. Or when I'm looking at my avantgo channels I wouldn't have to scroll down quite so often as I'd have more information on the screen. And when I did want to write something I could just bring the V.G. up. I can't see any problems with it at all. Because the V.G. area is software driven it means we will soon see clever people bring out hacks to change the layoout. Just think If you use OS 4 you do not need the menu button, that could be replaced with something more useful like a button for avantgo or what ever you want. YAY To Virtual Graffiti

RE: Virtual Graffiti
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2001 7:27:15 PM #
Why are people so enamored with virtual Graffiti? WinCE devices had them for a long time, and I hated it when I was using it. It's a nuissance. Jeff H did it right by not offering it with Palm.

RE: Virtual Graffiti
drw @ 9/4/2001 10:10:11 PM #
Palms have backlights, but not the graffiti area. Why? Many times I've had to use my palm in complete darkness. VG or not, at least light the graffiti icons and box outlines when the backlight is activated.

Any change of standard is going to be tough so I say to Palm set the standard high enough so it will last for at least 5 years, and go all the way with it. Hardware support (StrongARM) is going to be faster than software emulation. With BeOS technology, hell, change the appearance of the OS as well, while maintaining backwards compatibility.

David in Pflugerville, TX

RE: Virtual Graffiti
ganoe @ 9/5/2001 10:22:46 AM #
If you want to see a slick virtual graffiti area, look at these shots of QNX running on an iPAQ.

http://staff.qnx.com/~cdm/shots/ipaq/

Virtual graffiti is nice because it gets out of the way, giving you more screen space during non-character input tasks (which ideally most PDA use is non-character input) as well as a portrait/landscape display for image display and web browsing. You can replace it with a virtual keyboard, or even in the HandEra's case, a keyboard that you can also graffiti on top of. As someone else posted, I also like it because it's backlit and provides input echo in the dark or low light.

how about no 'standard' but several good choices?

AriB @ 9/5/2001 5:11:28 AM #
I've come to the conclusion that there should be room for both 320X320 with no virtual graffiti and 320X240 with.This way Palm device makers can offer real choices instead of "faster this and more that in a different case." Some people appreciate the extra detail in the Sony along with a graffiti area that's always there when you need it. Others will want the extra space and flexibility that virtual gives. And yet another group will want a Palm device with a keyboard and no graffiti such as the Treo k. There's no need for a single standard that tries to squish everyone's wishes into one do-it-all compromise

Handspring 240x320?

mikecane @ 9/5/2001 1:42:02 PM #
I should have thought of this yesterday. It seems so natural! HS would be the logical choice to do a 240x320 PalmOS device after HandEra.

RE: Handspring 240x320?
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/5/2001 5:08:17 PM #
I'd hate to see how badly they bungle that product launch! I can already feel the pain.....

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