what i'm scraping today: microstar graphics editor for dos.
flashback to last year when I saw this video about artists from toronto who made graphics for a short lived videotex service, Telidon.
i have no answers for question 1, but i here's what I found about question 2.
the telidon standard went on to become NAPLPS, which was used for other videotex services like viewtron, and the online service prodigy.
more info about telidon technology: http://madrona.ca/e/telidon/index.html
simtel is still around on archive.org and other places. i found the software, which is called microstar graphics editor. got it running in freeDOS. now i can make my own telidon style art. except the interface suuuuuuucks.
so NAPLPS is vector graphics + text, with palette cycling options, and apparently some escape characters for making presentations out of different screens. there are no bezier splines, so you have to make all the curves out of little straight lines.
it feels like im designing graphics for public access or the weather channel.
learned a lot more too. started reading old news articles about videotex services long gone. discovered a NAPLPS decoder for p5.js. went down the rabbithole of different vector graphics standards used in BBS doors. too much to list here.
ok i'll share this one thing. did you guys read the tedium.co article about the silent Genesis StoryTime cable channel? the graphics were all NAPLPS being sent to old telidion decoders installed at cable tv headends.