From: Roger Merchberger <>
Date: Wed Jun 11 15:12:09 1997

Due to massive amounts of caffeine & sleep deprivation, Jeff Lodoen said:
>> >>Somewhere in the back of my head I had the idea that a TDP-100
>> >>was a Coco ... that Radio Shack could sell it as a color
>> >>video terminal.
>> >>
>> >They did sell a "VideoTex" terminal that sure looked like a coco. Sold it
>> >for use with CompuServe, (among others,) as I recall.
>> there are surely some in this crowd who remember the excitement over
>> VideoText back in the early 80's.
>A little confusion. CompuServe had VidTex, which was a simple
>protocol to automatically transmit and display graphics. (mono,
>RLE encoded)
>VideoText was something else...

Ah, yes, but "VideoTex" was something else, as well. There was a VideoTex
machine based on the CoCo1 from Radio Shack, and the name of the first
telecommunications package for the Color Computer was also called VideoTex
(still have my copy...)

One of the original (intended) uses for the standalone VideoTex was as an
affordable machine for farmers to get up-to-the-minute weather and crop
reports, IIRC. I'm also not sure, but CompuServe might have had a hand in
the project, prolly as the online connection to try to make this thing a
reality, and that might explain the similar names between the machine and
the protocol. Keep in mind that CompuSlurp back in those days was a
text-only online service, and that the weather reports (again, IIRC) were
supposed to include graphical data...

Hope this jars a few neurons for more important folk than I,
Roger "Merch" Merchberger
Roger Merchberger       | If at first you don't succeed,
Programmer, NorthernWay | nuclear warhead disarmament should  | *not* be your first career choice.
Received on Wed Jun 11 1997 - 15:12:09 BST

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