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August 91 - WAMADA Notes


Leslie Jeffries

Thanks to Mark Gerl and Yvon Perrault, the Washington D.C. area MADA group has found a home at McDonnell Douglas in Tyson's Corner, Virginia; we held our first meeting there on June 26.

We'll be meeting at our new location every third Wednesday of the month, from 7:15 p.m. until we decide to go home. If you need a map, send a message to JEFFRIES.L on AppleLink, or call me at (301) 340-5126 during east coast business hours.

THE JUNE MEETING-Upgrading from MacApp 2 to MacApp 3

The point of the June meeting was to find out how hard it is to take a MacApp 2-based application and move it to MacApp 3. Mark and Yvon have been involved in the alpha testing of MacApp since April. Yvon prepared a list of things to watch out for based on materials that came with the alpha seed. One negative aspect of MacApp 3 is the slow speed of CFront; however, the new features help make up for the wait. When asked whether they would recommend starting a new project with MacApp 3, Yvon and Mark both agreed that for new projects MacApp 3 was the only way to go.


We also received a quick demo from the Best of MacHack. Just for fun, Mark put every init and cdev in the System folder at once. We couldn't believe the Mac even booted!


Our meeting on July 17 was less of a presentation and more of a discussion group. After an initial session by Mark Gerl on adorners and adornments in MacApp 3, we discussed how to use them. For example, the project Mark and Yvon are currently working on at McDonnell Douglas displays a set of scopes, radar, and other instruments to the user in real time. One requirement is that the entire screen must be available for night vision. So they have used an adorner that sets the background color to black and the foreground color to red before a view draws.

Many in our group were not alpha testers and have only had a few weeks with MacApp 3 from ETO #4. This discussion helped get members up to speed on the new MacApp features. It also generated a few questions, such as: what exactly does TView represent now that drawing can be done by an adornment? Also, there is some confusion about whether we can use all the unused priorities for adorners. Unfortunately we can't fly the MacApp team out to the east coast for our meetings to answer questions on the spot.

Proposed Change to the MADA Charter

Also at the July meeting, we discussed the proposal of changing the MADA charter to include other object programming frameworks. Our special guest in July was James Plamondon, who just happened to be in Washington D.C. on business. Frameworks for other platforms is the topic for the July BAMADA meeting, so James had a lot of information to offer-read his article for all the details.

A very interesting point arose during our discussion: it seems that some companies have a Windows 3 version of their Macintosh product that is selling a lot more copies than the Mac version. As a result, two of the programmers at our meeting have been told that they will now be wamada notes working on the Windows version instead of the Mac. It became clear that given a choice, everyone present would rather program with MacApp. So if Apple would build a cross-platform MacApp, then MacApp would be easier to sell to management.

Could it happen-who knows? Apple is talking to IBM; we'll have to wait to see where that will lead. The conclusion of our discussion about the charter seemed to be that MADA could best serve its members by helping them explore object programming technology for other platforms, since some members are being forced to look into it anyway.


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