Re: Alternate low-cost platform for OVC

From: Edward Cherlin <cherlin_at_pacbell_dot_net>
Date: Fri Jul 09 2004 - 22:36:50 CDT

On Wednesday 07 July 2004 10:22 pm, David Mertz wrote:
> > On Wednesday 07 July 2004 11:29 am, Alan Dechert wrote:
> >> The only reservation I have with the Simputer is external
> >> display support.
> On Jul 8, 2004, at 1:09 AM, Edward Cherlin wrote:
> > It runs X, and can display on any size X terminal through
> > the serial port or Ethernet.
> Yikes! How long does it take to refresh a 1280x1024 screen
> over a serial port, a few minutes?! I have trouble imagining
> that would be anywhere close to fast enough, or even within an
> order of magnitude of fast enough.

"Please check your facts before posting nonsense to Usenet."
--Beable van Polasm, alt.religion.kibology

What in the World is an X Terminal?
...instead of transmitting vast amounts of X information over the
data link, the server software is executed on the host system
and eliminates the time-consuming data transfer. Sophisticated
data compression techniques and an optimized protocol then send
only the minimum amounts of display commands to the terminal.
[An X terminal] costs slightly more than an alphanumeric terminal
and A WHOLE LOT LESS than an X workstation

> Ethernet isn't bad, though still slightly sluggish for video.
> If you've used VNC you have an idea... it works, but the
> visual delays could put off voters.
> But under either model, this would imply you need a whole
> computer inside the display itself to render X11.

An embedded, single-purpose computer running only the X protocol
and renderer.

> I know
> there are smart terminals out there, but this is a whole lot
> more hardware than a dumb LCD screen.

Here is one vendor of touch-screen X terminals. You can find more
on the Web with no great difficulty.
Touch Configured Xterminals

Trident provides complete plug and play touch sensitive X
Terminals, Netstations and Network Computers. All products can
be tailored with any an array of options (such as keyboard
layouts, additional memory, local clients, video processors,
etc) to best fit your needs. Full X Window 11.5/11.6
compatibility is provided with Trident's touch solutions. In
addition, virtually all X Terminal, Netstation, and Network
Computer vendor's hardware is supported, including Sun Sunray,
Tektronix, Hewlett-Packard, NCD, Wyse, and Jupiter Systems.
Should a system exist that we do not currently have an available
off-the-shelf touch solution for, one can be developed.

These touch solutions incorporate Trident's touch screen

You can find more vendors at

> > X terminal. In any case, we can build Simputers to spec. If
> > you want a video output, no problem.
> OK, that's workable. I can't see any kind of non-video port
> as really being worth talking about.

USB 2.0 wouldn't work for you?

> But if you can put on a
> VGA port--or I guess digital video output nowadays (I've never
> used that, but I know many monitors now do that)--that should
> be a possibility.

If we put on a video port, we don't need an X terminal at all.
Just a touch screen monitor.

Edward Cherlin
Generalist & activist--Linux, languages, literacy and more
"A knot! Oh, do let me help to undo it!"
--Alice in Wonderland
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Received on Sat Jul 31 23:17:07 2004

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