Caption Competition! (bit OT)

From: <(>
Date: Thu Jan 16 18:06:01 2003

On Jan 16, 19:08, Hans Franke wrote:

> Hmm. To me the screen layout looks quite like a Teletext page.
> I have no idea how this service was called in the UK (The name
> Viewtext pops up, but I'm not shure). These are data pages,
> transmitted via 'invisible' lines, 'between' or 'below' the
> picture (As a bunch of other information also is).

That's Videotext (generic term) or Teletext (name used by the BBC and ITV).

> Now, back to the picture, what realy puzzles me is the keyboard.
> The service is strict one way, you could only select a page, and
> a regular remote is all you need.

> Of course it could be the British equivalent of our (CEPT based
> BTx system, a early online service to be used on a 1200/75
> connection with pages, made in a way to be displayed on you
> telly. But then the picture layout would be quite different.
> That service hat a quite more apropriate set of graphic
> elements.

Latterly, BTX did use different graphics, using a sort of "shift out" mode
for "high" resolution but the original Bildschirmtext was the same as the
UK's PRESTEL and French MiniTel services (generic term Viewdata), which use
the Teletext character set and graphics. Those were truly interactive
dialup services. Prestel (which predates BTX) offered information pages,
news, electronic mail, downloadable software, etc.

It became quite popular in the UK in the early 1980's and the price of
adapters fell rapidly, especially with the advent of the BBC Micro and
similar machines which could use cheap modems, and the promotion of the
MicroNet 800 service (microcomputer news, bulletin board, and telesoftware,
starting at page 800) and services like Viewfax258 (guess which start page)
and the popular MicroGnome (anyone remember Bob Clark?). Page numbers
could be up to 9 digits, and each could have 25 sub-pages so there was room
for a lot of information (I probably still have statistics somewhere, as I
had an Information Provider account then). There were even several
bulletin boards which used Viewdata protocols, and commercial services too.
 The main travel agents' service was a private Viewdata system, several
stockbrokers and financial institutions used one, and the Open University
had one.

Pete						Peter Turnbull
						Network Manager
						University of York
Received on Thu Jan 16 2003 - 18:06:01 GMT

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