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SubjectRe: uniform input device packets?
> okay... this is my first attempt at slightly bloated protocol design.
>
> here is a sample of what could be done to unify keyboard, mouse, etc.
> input into a single protocol. this includes the realtime needs described
> recently... as well as a possible need for a /dev/keyboard (according to
> me!?).

It is maybe not so nice to differ input data stream with a
signature in its content: how about a keyboard with an embedded
mouse ? how about a nonexistent lightpen: you have to open
the device (and load the module) to know it is not there...

About standard, the DEC VT have done quite nice a thing
in the last generations (everything sending/receiving char):

- You can know/set the keyboard language, the font, the
screen size (to any value) and save/protect them in NV RAM.
- You can ask for most capabilities (if there is colors...)
- You can set a special mode where every modifier key (shift,
control, alternate, compose) send a complete and concise
status when pressed and released.
- You can set all keys in RAW mode (like for previous
modifier keys) sending coordinate when pressed/released
- You can have multiple screen/keyboard (still ONE serial
line or device) with complete state saved independantly
- They have added a nice mouse control in VT1200, where
you say when to notify (send me a report when mouse leaves
the area defined)
- you can reach and configure a printer (same serial line)
- you can localy cut and paste, or between session...
- you can switch serial protocol on the fly
- there is open doors - if you want to get temperature
of the screen...
- The ESC problem has never really existed (flames waited)
- you can do small graphics - even if it is quite slow
on a real serial line.

It is nicely designed, and could be programmed in the Linux
console (it is vt100 compatible), the two main problems
are:
- how to find time to write down the software
- how about legal things: What DEC thinks? when the VT100
standard has been "public" (pointers) ?

My Euro 0.02,
Etienne.


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