Current Cover (3068 bytes)
Current Cover

Navigation Bar (3057 bytes)
Homepage (723 bytes)

The Bull Pen Graphic (834 bytes)
Message Board

Pen Computing Magazine Masthead (5407 bytes)


DPWeb opens web to Palm VII

Photo of DPWeb browsing the Pen Computing home page

Palm products typically don't ship with all the pieces in place. Whether by design or not, it leaves room for developers to make the product that much better. The Palm VII didn't ship with a browser, since it uses the Web Clipping paradigm, grabbing just the necessary bits from a specially designed website. Digital Paths' new DPWeb application changes all that.

DPWeb still acts much like a Palm Query Application. It has a form for entering the URL for retrieving the web page, then the query goes out to the Digital Paths server. The server then goes and gets the desired web page, and strips it of images and extraneous text, preserving the links and forms. Finally, the modified web page is sent back to the Palm VII in small chunks.

From the Start screen, the user is able to select how much of the page they want to download, in increments of 1, 2, 3, or 4K. Once the given limit is reached on the download, there's a link at the bottom of the page to the second of however many pages are left, such as "Page 2 of 5." The user can also select to download text only, which seems odd since there are no graphics, but this means that no link information is downloaded. Sites whose home pages have a little information and a lot of links, like, would be nice to access this way if all you want to read is the main story. In most situations, however, the web is about links, and regular mode gives you all the links you need most of the time. Most web masters still include text links for those with text-only browsers, and now that most wireless devices use text-only browsers, the need is becoming more and not less common.

Because the Palm VII also doesn't support frames, DPWeb allows you to download one frame at a time. A smart, simple solution that works quite well in practice. DPWeb is an excellent browser solution that has made my Seven even more useful.

A future version of the program will support SSL, bookmarks, and a better method of handling forms (the current version can split a long form in half, thus making it impossible to submit the form for processing). Digital Paths is also working with companies who need to give their workforce secure access to information on the company intranet. Also on the drawing board are browsers for WAP phones using WML (Wireless Markup Language), as well as HDML (Handheld Device Markup Language).

DPWeb is available for free download from or

-Shawn Barnett

For more information, visit their site:

[Features] [Showcase] [Developer] [Members] [Subscribe] [Resources] [Contacts] [Guidelines]

All contents ©1995-2000 Pen Computing Magazine, Inc. All rights reserved.
Unauthorized reproduction in any form is strictly prohibited.
Contact the Pen Computing Publishing Office for reprint information