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Winter 92 - Editor's Note



Dear Readers,

Let's talk about develop: what it is, what it might be, what it can do for you, and what you can do for it. This journal exists to meet your needs, so I hope you'll help us out by reading on and giving us your two cents (if not your articles).

Originally, develop  was thought of as "heavily commented code": along with the accompanying CD, it was meant as a vehicle for providing well-explained code that you, the developer, could plug into your application with the confidence that it would be compatible with future system software. To ensure compatibility, articles and code were written primarily by Apple engineers and heavily reviewed by other engineers at Apple.

But other types of articles have been submitted, and some have made it into print. Most notable was the ground-breaking Threads article in Issue 6, the first article for which source code was not provided. This lack of source code did not go unnoticed by our readers, yet the overall response to the Threads package was extremely favorable. So we've moved from always  providing source code to providing it if at all possible . We still make every effort, however, to give you something that won't break in future systems.

Recently we've had some requests to publish articles that describe algorithms or ideas, not code. Our current feeling is that as long as an article can help you create good Apple products, we'll consider publishing it. Please let us know what you'd like to see. There are some Apple engineers who are willing to contribute to develop  but would like to know just what developers want to see. We get a lot of input from Developer Technical Support about what you seem to need the most help with--but let us at develop  know directly, and we can try to make it happen faster.

Regarding who writes the articles: we feel that as long as the code is reviewed by Apple engineers, there's no need to rely solely on people at Apple for contributions. We'd like to encourage all of you to think about what you'd like to share with your fellow developers--something that would help them and also give you a way to showcase and release your code in a way that wouldn't otherwise be possible. We offer something those other  journals don't: not only review by Apple engineers and the assurance of future compatibility, but also an editorial process that will make your prose shine so brilliantly you'll need to wear shades. We'll assign an editor who will help turn your raw material into a polished piece--or tread lightly on it if that's all you need. We'll give your article that professional look and feel without killing the humor. So, if you're willing, please send me your ideas or outlines, and we'll take it from there.

Back to the subject of your opinions about develop : Many of you who are Apple Associates and Partners have by now been formally surveyed on how you rate various support-related materials, of which develop  is only one shining example. We'd also like to hear from the rest of you, however informally. I can't overemphasize how important your opinions are and how much they'll affect develop 's future. So please, express yourself! Tell us what's good or bad about this journal's content, format, delivery, or anything else. We're all ears.Issue 8 ended with this trivia question: What word was used instead of "click" to describe the action of pressing a button on that first mouse? The answer, which none of you have gotten as of this writing, is "bug." Maybe you'll do better on this next one: The original hardcover Inside Macintosh Volumes I-III had a running pattern of Macintosh computers across its endpapers (those heavy sheets at the very beginning and end of hardcover books). What broke this pattern, and why?

Caroline Rose Editor

CAROLINE ROSE (AppleLink: CROSE) has been writing computer documentation ever since Steve Jobs was barely a teen. When his company moved in down the block from where she worked as a writer and then a programmer, Caroline took no notice--until they asked if she wanted to write what even then was known as Inside Macintosh . Around the time she completed that three-volume tome, Steve left Apple to form NeXT, and Caroline signed on to launch NeXT's Publications group. A year ago she returned to Apple to take on the fun-filled job of being develop's editor in chief. For fun outside of work, Caroline dances up a storm, listens to music, plays with her cat and other friends, treks through the wilderness (in boots or on skis), swims like a maniac, reads fiction (not sci-fi!), studies Italian, does Tai Chi, and never stops exploring new ways to have fun.*

SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION Use the order form on the last page of this issue to subscribe to develop.  Please address all subscription-related inquiries todevelop,  Apple Computer, Inc., P.O. Box 531, Mt. Morris, IL 61054 (or AppleLink DEV.SUBS). *

BACK ISSUES For information about back issues of develop  and how to obtain them, see the reverse of the order form on the last page of this issue. Back issues are also on the Developer CD Series  disc.*


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