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PalmPGN - Main Page

Last updated: Jan 9, 2001

PalmPGN is a PGN-format chess game viewer for the PalmOS. PalmPGN will have the ability to display chess games (which are stored in PGN format) and problems (which are stored in FEN notation), and allow the entry of new games. It will not allow you to play a game of chess against your PalmPilot.

PalmPGN is an Open Source project, and will likely use or adapt code from other Open Source chess programs, such as Tim Mann's WinBoard.

Project Status: The second alpha release is now available on the SourceForge site. It's pretty barebones, and most of the menu options from the mockup, although present, do nothing at the moment. Moves can be entered and are validated, but games aren't yet saved between program sessions. Still, we've got a real app on our hands! In fact, I played through a game out of Chernev's Logical Chess over lunch yesterday, and hope to do so again tonight. It's why I wrote PalmPGN: to improve my/your chess.

The design documents (listed on the sidebar) are going to stay online, as they show what's to come, and I'll be keeping most of them updated, (especially the class diagram), after each release, in preparation for the start of the next release's coding.

I have also placed online a schedule showing what features will go in what releases. I don't plan to put dates to a schedule, as "release schedules" are all fake, anyway. (Don't tell my boss I said that, though.)

The following features will be incorporated into PalmPGN:

  • View Games: You'll be able to convert games from PGN format, the standard format to store chess games, to/from PalmPGN format, and transfer them to/from your PalmPilot. Once on your Palm, you'll be able to view these games, scrolling through the move list with the board displaying on-screen.
  • View Positions: Likewise, you'll be able to convert game positions stored in FEN notation to/from PalmPGN format, and view them as well. In addition to being able to play through these positions (typically used in chess problems), you'll be able to attach the solutions to these positions, and be able to view the solution on your PalmPilot.
  • Enter New Games or Positions: You'll also be able to enter your own games, move by move, into PalmPGN, making it useful for tracking CC games, or perhaps at tournaments. These games, of course, can then be transferred to your main computer and converted to PGN.
  • Game Databases: You'll be able to manipulate game databases on your PalmPilot. Each PGN file will convert into a separate game database, which can then be merged with other DB's on your Palm or used separately. Each DB will keep track of the last game viewed, making it possible to peruse each game in order.

As indicated above, PalmPGN runs on the PalmOS platform. As I currently only own a PalmV, I'll be targeting devices using PalmOS 3.0 or higher.


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