[NTLK] What we want on Internal Newton Extension Module by PCBMan :)

Matthias Melcher m.melcher at robowerk.de
Fri Dec 31 05:39:33 PST 2021

> On 31. Dec 2021, at 11:50, Pawel Piotrowski <newton at indigi.co.uk> wrote:
>>   * ESP connects to a MicroSD Card, accessible through the rear opening
>>     can be used to access a local copy of Unna
>>     can be used to update software in this module
> Matthias, that option for MicroSD card: Do you think that would work as ATA driver - to give us option to emulate PCMCIA memory card?

All the ideas above are for the internal modem connector. It has three serial busses available (serial data, modem, keyboard). ATA is a different protocol that only works over PCMCIA on Newtons.

My MicroSD would only be visible to the ESP32. The ESP pretends to be a modem. NewtonOS already has everything in ROM to install packages over a modem line. So we can install NIE, the Newton Internet Enabler, into an unmodified MessagePd.

With NIE installed, Newton can reach the internet using the same modem connection.

The ESP has its own microcontroller and can appear to the Newton as a docking connection, as a web server, presenting the content of the MicroSD, or as a connection to the world via Wifi.

Since this is a modem connection, you would simply "dial" different numbers to tell the ESP to behave differently. NewtonOS can dial any number, including text, so dialing "411" might connect "Dock" to a PC that provide NIE and a web browser. Dialing "1:MySSID:myPassword" might connect you to a Wifi host, and dialing "711" connects you to the local copy of "unna" and maybe other archives that the user can store on the MicroSD.

 - Matthias

PS: in the USB (but no BT) version of the ESP, it can also provide a direct connection to the original serial port, which would be very much needed to run Hammer and other debugging tools.

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