Avi's Newton Programs FAQ

These are actual questions which I have received. Some have been asked several times, and I want to publicly document the answers. For others, I just need a space to answer questions which are too obscure to put in the ReadMe. Either way, read on.


Q Your program gave me some weird error number. Fix it!
A If you would help me, with some information, that would be most helpful. If you can reproduce the error, go to the Tactile Systems website and download BugTrap. When the error occurs, BugTrap will produce an error log which will help me immensely in tracking down and eradicating the problem.

If possible, send me two logs—one with the setting Crashing inside a 'Try' set to Is Ignored, and one with it set to Is Trapped.

Avi's Backdrop

Q How do I make a picture for Avi's Backdrop?
A There is a whole document dedicated to revealing the secrets of making background pictures. It is included in the Avi's Backdrop download archive, and can be read on the web too.
Q Why isn't my background picture not appearing? It was in the pop-up menu.
A You have a MP1x0, right? If you have a grayscale background picture, it won't show up. You need a black & white background picture.

Make sure that you go to the B&W section of the Gallery. That's where all the cool black and white pictures hang out.

Q Why don't my birthdays/anniversaries show up in the lookahead?
A Starting with version 1.27, Avi's Backdrop reads birthdays and anniversaries from the datebook. So you might want to upgrade.

The most common explanation for earlier versions is that the date is only entered into the datebook, not into Names. Try this:

  1. Open Names, and go to the card of the person to whom the birthday or anniversary belongs
  2. Tap <>Add, and tap Dates
  3. On the appropriate line, write in the date
  4. Close the slip

Or, if you have SilverWARE's MoreInfo, try:

  1. Open Names, and go to the card of the person to whom the birthday or anniversary belongs
  2. Tap <>MI, and tap New Birthday or New Anniversary
  3. In the slip:
    • For a birthday, select the birthday from the B-day picker
    • For an anniversary, select the anniversary from the Date picker
  4. Close the slip

Hopefully, then the date will schedule itself in Dates and in Avi's Backdrop. There have been cases when I have not been able to figure out why birthdays do not show up.

There was a problem in versions 1.2 and 1.21 where anniversaries did not show up. If you have one of those versions, go download a new copy of the newest version.

Q How do I remove Avi's Backdrop?
A You cannot remove the active backdrop. To remove Avi's Backdrop, you must make another program the backdrop.
  1. Open the Extras drawer
  2. Select another program (if unsure, use Notes) by tapping and holding its icon until you hear a squeak. Release the stylus.
  3. From the routing menu (the envelope), select Make Backdrop
  4. Agree.

Once another program is made into the backdrop, Avi's Backdrop can be removed.

Q Can you have a "next appointment" feature?
A The problems that I've encountered with this feature are:
  • No room: There really isn't enough room on the screen. I'm hoping to figure out where I can sneak it in and how I can make it fit in to the seamless whole. Don't forget that Avi's Backdrop needs to display cleanly on a MP1x0 screen as well.
  • Integration: There are several programs that extend Dates. I would need to ensure compatibility. While that would not be a horribly big problem, this would require more time than I can currently give.

This feature is an important future direction; as soon as I can work out the issues, I will try to implement it.

On the other hand, you're free to grab the source and try to implement it yourself.

Q I have a MP130, which has backlighting, but I do not have the backlighting button on my screen. What's up?
A You need to update your system.

Download MP130 System Update 2.0 (526205) US version from Apple.

The original method of determining whether a Newton had backlighting was unwieldy, so Apple introduced a new, simpler method with the system update of the MP130. Avi's Backdrop uses the new, preferred method, so if you have an original MP130, you should update your system. In fact, running the latest system is always recommended.

To find System Updates, go to Apple's Software Updates page and wander through the links.

Q Avi's Backdrop is so good, I really have to pay you. How can I do so?
(Hey—I don't make this up!)
A Avi's Backdrop is freeware—you don't need to pay me. If you absolutely feel compelled, you can pay via Kagi. You cannot pay online; you need to get a copy of my Register program. So download Minimizer, and run the Register program that is in the archive. It will allow you to pay for Avi's Backdrop.

Back to Avi's Newton Stuff

Last modified: Tue, Mar 9, 2004 at 12:02:03 AM