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Thread: One-Off Issue: Convert .csv to .tda

  1. #1
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    One-Off Issue: Convert .csv to .tda

    This is something that has vexed me for a while. (In fact, I was just Googling for solutions and - for a moment - was excited that there was a lot on various boards about it. My joy was fleeting - most of the posts were mine from years ago).

    This has nothing to do with DJO, but you folks may have an answer.

    I have a ton of To-Dos (er, "Tasks") in my PD/DJO. I also, over years of database issues (minor corruptions, etc.) have a ton of dupes. I also have a ton in OneNote, Evernote, etc.

    I'd like one list to rule them all. And I need to do a lot of editing - particularly around dates. So it would be easier to edit in, say, Excel (where I can free-hand and copy/paste dates).

    I found online converter that goes converts my .tda files to .csv files. That's all Fonzie.

    But I'm perplexed on how to re-import the files back into Palm Desktop. For Tasks, it only imports .tda files. So I need some level of conversion.

    Can you help me, internet?

    Thanks!

    (I'm still plotzing that I purged all my Completed To-Dos and discovered that DJO doesn't archive them, like PD HotSync used to. I mean, I'm not bitter or anything. I'm sure I could let it go at any time.)

  2. #2
    Senior Member DJOCTO's Avatar
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    rjbinney,

    A "tda" file is not a standard format. I think what you mean here is a Palm Desktop 6 Task file. This is a proprietary format. However, this format is based on a vba file (visual basic) so if you rename it to vba, then a number of tools can open it including Excel I think.

    CompanionLink is customized to it, but only grabs data from other proprietary formats. You can try importing it into Outlook and then using CL to go Outlook to Palm Desktop.

    CompanionLink 8 has an automated dedupe utility. This works directly on the Palm Desktop 6 database. You might want to give this a try.

    So keep in mind that Palm Desktop 4 and Palm Desktop 6 are vaguely related programs; they were created 9 years apart by different teams. Although they look the same, the workings underneath are completely different. Palm Desktop 4 uses a serialized memory image from Visual Studio 2 objects as a data store. Palm Desktop 6 uses Visual Basic data files.

    Palm's method of archiving was unique to Palm. Basically, when Hotsync is run, deleted records are moved to a second file "archive". I'm not sure if they ever had a way to de-archive the data.

    CompanionLink clears records on a mobile device. This philosophy is based on the time when mobile devices had limited memory. Even though the data storage has increased, the database handling on mobile devices is very constrained, so we want to keep the stored data fast and light. When you don't use Hotsync, your old records (deleted records) are still stored in the data file (tda file). They are simply marked "deleted". So they can be recovered. You may want to try just loading the file and looking for the delete flag.

    We have a new program. We hopoe this will replace Palm Desktop. Go here to opt-in to the beta test. There's a picture to wet your appetite. https://www.companionlink.com/djcx-opt-in.php

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    Thanks. I use PD 4 because every time I install PD 6 I remember how much I hate it. Will be hard to make a switch - regardless of whether my appetites is whetted or just simply moistened.

    I knew .tda was proprietary, but was hoping someone here had figured out a way to crack it. Will try your suggestions and see.

    Thanks,

  4. #4
    Senior Member DJOCTO's Avatar
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    That all takes me back. Palm Desktop 4 was written by "Windward Group". In 1995, the year before Palm came out, Jeff and Donna were hell-bent to make Palm a Mac-Only device. They both had worked with Apple, originally on the Newton team. So they were true Apple loyalists. In late 1995 they realized it would be very limiting to target 4% of the PC market, so they hired Windward Group to write Palm Desktop. The program was written with little oversight. Keep in mind the Palm team was lovingly hand-coding the Palm Apps on the device in M68000 assembler language. I give them credit for doing a good Calendar app with such a limited toolset. Windward was as far as I understood just a general programming shop, but they did do Windows programming. Their code is just excellent, and has stood up over the years.

    I think later Windward merged with the Codewarrior folks. The name is lost in history now.

    Palm got bought by 3Com just as Palm Pilots became available. Famously, Jeff and Donna later quit to form Handspring. Handspring bought Palm from 3Com, and introduced the Treo, and then split into two companies, PalmOne and PalmSource. PalmOne was the hardware company, and PalmSource the software company. PalmOne purchased the Palm brandname from PalmSource, which got soled to ACCESS in Japan. ACCESS in Japan is the current owner of both Palm Desktop and Palm OS. Palm, the hardware company (formerly PalmOne) tried to come out with a new device, even though they had no code for OS or Desktop. The webOS device was a spectacular failure, and got bought by HP out of Pity. I'd like HP to have Pity on my and give me $2B too.

    The Palm trademark was sold in 2014 to TCL Corporation, which is rumored to be bringing out an Android based phone called a "Palm" in late 2018. https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/07/pa...urn-this-year/

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    Thanks. I remember much of that history - I lived it as a consumer.

    I tried renaming the .dat as a .vba and opeining in Excel - it just gave me noise.

    https://ibb.co/nnPPk0

    VBA.jpg

  6. #6
    Senior Member DJOCTO's Avatar
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    LOL That's a Palm Desktop 4 file. I remember well "hacking" that format so I know every byte.

    That file is a serialization; a memory image; of the structure in Palm Desktop. No attempt was made to make a stored format. The date/time stamp in the file is a memory image and that is why when you change time zones, all the times in your calendar change.

    CompanionLink can read it, because it contains our code to parse the file. So in theory you can read it to Outlook and then export the Outlook file.

    In just a few weeks, you can export it to DejaOffice PC which has "grid view". The grid view allows you to cut and paste to excel. We just finished a DJOA sprint and so that is going to market in the next week. Look for round category colors. And I'm hoping for DPC for Palm Desktop to be out around Thanksgiving time...

    https://www.companionlink.com/dpcx-opt-in.php

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    I thought I'd mentioned I was on PD4, but I guess I didn't. (I know I have, ad nauseum, in other posts!).

    Not that I'm not super-excited for you to roll out the new interface, but it will take a lot for me to give up my PD. (I know it's inefficient, but I still use the To-Dos and Memos even though OneNote kicks its ass...) I don't have a lot of love for the late 90s, except for Palm Pilot (I still call my phone my Palm Pilot half the time).

    Will it be backwards compatible? That is, if I buy your software, move my To-Do list into it, and clean it up in Excel, can I move it back into PD?

    You seem to know a lot of people named Aaliyah.

  8. #8
    Senior Member DJOCTO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjbinney View Post
    Not that I'm not super-excited for you to roll out the new interface, but it will take a lot for me to give up my PD....
    You don't have to. The system is built to keep in sync with your PDT4. So you can always switch back and forth - until we convince you to never need it...

    You seem to know a lot of people named Aaliyah.
    Ah the vagaries of testing software. That was a 60,000 record datagen test. It runs great!

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    Quote Originally Posted by rjbinney View Post
    I thought I'd mentioned I was on PD4, but I guess I didn't. (I know I have, ad nauseum, in other posts!).

    Not that I'm not super-excited for you to roll out the new interface, but it will take a lot for me to give up my PD. (I know it's inefficient, but I still use the To-Dos and Memos even though OneNote kicks its ass...) I don't have a lot of love for the late 90s, except for Palm Pilot (I still call my phone my Palm Pilot half the time).
    Following this! I too hated PD6 when I tried it, and have used PD4 since Christmas 1999, first with a IIIxe (I think) and then a Treo until I really wanted a smart phone and one less device to carry. And yes, DJO is still my Palm Pilot...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJOCTO View Post
    ... We just finished a DJOA sprint and so that is going to market in the next week. Look for round category colors. And I'm hoping for DPC for Palm Desktop to be out around Thanksgiving time...

    https://www.companionlink.com/dpcx-opt-in.php
    I'm looking more closely at this now, and am tempted to get excited about it. Not sure if I want to be a beta tester though. And I don't particularly use it as a contact manager. I also do not use Outlook at all.

    My primary uses of Palm Desktop4/CLO are, in descending order -
    Calendar, with alarms - 75%
    Tasks - 15%
    Contacts and Memos/Notes - together 10%, though I have a lot of data in each that I access as needed

    Will it have to be pinned to the desktop all the time? I don't need that.
    I probably have PDT open 1/3 of the day in total. I don't think I had many choices to set it up, but I normally have the calendar in day view, and using about 70% of the space; on the right there's a panel with 2 months' calendars at the top, and the rest is the task list by due date with today's items at the top.

    You wrote on 10/30 - "The system is built to keep in sync with your PDT4. So you can always switch back and forth - until we convince you to never need it..."
    So, if I sign up to test it, is it actually syncing 3 ways? DJO, PDT and the new version? I REALLY don't want to lose or mess up what I have in PDT.

    PS - I do like the look of the new program, and I use colors as much as possible.
    Last edited by marjoryb98; 11-02-2018 at 02:39 PM.

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