TweetFollow Us on Twitter

November 91 - BAMADA Notes

BAMADA Notes

James Plamondon

AUGUST-Larry Rosenstein

An audience of 75 was treated to an evening with Larry Rosenstein, MacApp Wizard, at the August meeting of the Bay Area MacApp Developers Association.

Rosenstein is one of the authors of the original version of MacApp, and was deeply involved with the Lisa Toolkit before that. More recently, he co-wrote the book Programming with MacApp [in C++] from Addison-Wesley, along with David Wilson and Dan Schafer. Lately, he's been looking a little Pink, though he won't say why.

Windows?

The meeting began with a grumble from the assembled host regarding the presence of a traitor in their midst-namely, me-who had abandoned the Mac to program for Windows. After arguing among themselves for a while, trying to decide whether I was a turncoat, a heretic, or a pioneer, the audience collectively decided that there wasn't a term foul enough to describe my actions. My protests that I was just taking a sabbatical from the Mac, and would be back in a year, were grudgingly accepted. Later, privately, many attendees said (in hushed whispers, so that none would overhear) that they, too, were under pressure to produce Windows versions of their software, and that they wouldn't mind getting a travelogue of my journeys in Windows land. Watch for such a series in a Mac programming magazine near you.

While we were on the subject, I informally broached the question of whether MADA's charter should be expanded to include frameworks for Windows. It was hard to decide which response was louder-the hisses or the boos. Either way, the idea was universally detested. Having MADA become one rib of an umbrella organization which covered lots of frameworks was more acceptable, so long as FrameWorks didn't get cluttered up with Windows stuff.

Filtered Commands

Finally, we were ready for Rosenstein's presentation. He began with filtered commands, which are a mechanism to reduce the amount of information that one must maintain in order to undo or redo a command. Rosenstein used the example of a complex styled text document containing hundreds of different style runs-a little bold Times, some 9-point Zapf Chancery, a dash of italic Courier, etc. If the user selected all of the document's styled text, and set it to plain Geneva 12, saving the previous state of the document-with all of its different styles-could take a lot of space. In the worst case, you might have to save off the entire old version of the document.

Filtered commands solve this problem. Instead of saving the pre-change data, and then altering the document in accordance with the command, the command installs a filter into each affected piece of data which makes it look as if it has been changed. In the example above, each style run object would be filtered to look like it was plain Geneva 12. To undo the command, the filter is simply removed; to redo it, the filter is reapplied.

Filtered commands simplify the implementation of Undo and Redo significantly, and reduce storage requirements at the cost of slightly slower data access times. See chapter 25 of Rosenstein's excellent book for a detailed description of the mechanics of the approach.

Streams

After Rosenstein described filtered commands, he moved on to streams, which are a major feature of MacApp 3. By using streams for data I/O, you can handle input and output more abstractly; for instance, you can stream to a file or to the clipboard with equal ease. Streams are discussed in detail in chapter 22 of Rosenstein's book.

The TStream class is responsible for reading and writing bytes, or aggregates of bytes, from and to "something." TStream's subclasses implement the abstract methods that do the actual reading and writing. For example, a TFileStream implements reading and writing to a file, while a THandleStream implements reading and writing to a memory block. A TCountingStream doesn't read or write anything-it just counts the bytes that it was told to write. This is particularly useful when trying to find out if there's enough room on a disk to hold a file, before you actually write it out via a TFileStream.

Rosenstein did a great job presenting his material to a interested and knowledgeable audience. We look forward to a presentation on Pink at his earliest convenience. (Would you care to schedule that now, Larry?)

September- Solution-based modelling

At the September BAMADA meeting, Jeff Alger introduced a crowd of over fifty attendees to Solution-Based Modeling (SBM). SBM is the subject of a book forthcoming from Addison-Wesley entitled "Developing Object-Oriented Software for the Macintosh," and is the brainchild of Alger and his coauthor, Neal Goldstein.

SBM is an integrated, lifecycle approach to software development. It emphasizes the importance of involving marketing, management, and other diverse groups in the software development process from the outset. Where other methodologies-most notably the "waterfall" model, in which analysis "flows" into design, design into programming, and so on-look at software development as a series of separate stages, SBM takes a more incremental approach.

Despite the title of Alger and Goldstein's book, SBM is a platform and language- independent methodology. (The publisher insisted that the word "Macintosh" be in the title; their studies have shown that people prefer to buy books directed at a specific platform. This led Goldstein to suggest that the book be titled "Platform-independent Software Development for the Macintosh," to be followed by "…for Windows," "…for OSF/Motif," etc.)

Although one could, in theory, do the actual programming in a non-object-oriented language, SBM takes a very object-oriented approach to analysis and design.

Involving non-programmers in design decisions

Project scheduling and task duration estimation are key to the success of any project. SBM addresses this issue in part by involving non-programmers in the design decisions as early as possible. Doing so leads these participants to buy into the process, so that they can better understand the technical tradeoffs. In fact, throughout the talk, Alger emphasized the need to get those darn marketing types involved as early as possible, so the programmers had a chance to pound some sense into them. I wonder if the talk would have been different, if given to a marketing group…

Visual Design Language

SBM introduces yet another graphical analysis and design language to the OOP world. Aptly named the Visual Design Language (VDL), it has the singular advantage of having been designed by graphic artists, rather than programmers. As a result, it is easier to read and understand than any other I've seen (such as the Booch Notation). Various other graphical design languages have left a bad taste in my mouth, but VDL looks yummy. No application yet exists to facilitate the process of writing in VDL, but we were assured such an application would exist in the near future. But then, I'm still waiting for Eiffel for the Macintosh.

SBM's strengths

SBM admits a number of unpleasant truths that are often ignored. For example, it admits that half of the project cycle will be taken up with analysis, and emphasizes the advantages of doing this analysis up front, rather than in numerous mid-course corrections. (Once a boss of mine asked me what I was doing "staring off into space." "Thinking," I answered. He actually replied, with some heat, "Well, get back to work!" I hope that guy discovers SBM, for the sake of his current employees.)

If half of the available time is taken up in analysis, half of what's left goes to design, with the remainder going to actual programming. Alger commented that this breakdown makes code reuse look less important in the long run; under SBM, reuse of analysis is twice as important as reuse of code. On the other hand, application frameworks like MacApp encapsulate not just code, but analysis and design, as well-so the "win" from using MacApp applies to all project phases, not just programming. Look at MacApp's failure handling, memory management, and command mechanisms, for example. Most pre-MacApp applications didn't have anything like them-not because they were so hard to code, but because they were so hard to invent. (And let me tell you, so far, no Windows framework I've seen has come close to these capabilities.)

Solution-Based Modeling (SBM) looks like a good tool for use in large, real-world software development projects. If you've found that there's more to the management of your multi-programmer projects than just using Projector, spend some time with Alger and Goldstein's book when it becomes available.

Upcoming in October- Feedback to the MacApp Team

At the BAMADA meeting in October, we'll have the MacApp Team at our mercy; the evening's topic will be "Feedback to the MacApp Team." Bring neither rotting fruit nor laurel accolades, but rather your comments, suggestions, bugs, gotchas, fixes, workarounds, feature requests, insolvable dilemmas, and ingenious solutions. Whether your comments relate to MacApp 2.0 (yes, there are still a lot of people using MacApp 2.0), 3.0, or X.x, bring them over and let's see what we can do with them. We may even get demos of the latest versions of Mouser and ViewEdit, if we're sufficiently polite.

As (almost) always, we'll be meeting on the fourth Wednesday of the month-October 23rd-at 7pm, in the Mountain View room of Apple's City Center Four building, on the southwest corner of Stevens Creek and De Anza Boulevards (at 20450 Stevens Creek), in Cupertino. Come early to grab a good seat. Be there or be tetrahedral!

 
AAPL
$102.42
Apple Inc.
+0.17
MSFT
$45.28
Microsoft Corpora
+0.40
GOOG
$569.86
Google Inc.
+0.66

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

VueScan 9.4.41 - Scanner software with a...
VueScan is a scanning program that works with most high-quality flatbed and film scanners to produce scans that have excellent color fidelity and color balance. VueScan is easy to use, and has... Read more
Cloud 3.0.0 - File sharing from your men...
Cloud is simple file sharing for the Mac. Drag a file from your Mac to the CloudApp icon in the menubar and we take care of the rest. A link to the file will automatically be copied to your clipboard... Read more
LibreOffice 4.3.1.2 - Free Open Source o...
LibreOffice is an office suite (word processor, spreadsheet, presentations, drawing tool) compatible with other major office suites. The Document Foundation is coordinating development and... Read more
SlingPlayer Plugin 3.3.20.505 - Browser...
SlingPlayer is the screen interface software that works hand-in-hand with the hardware inside the Slingbox to make your TV viewing experience just like that at home. It features an array of... Read more
Get Lyrical 3.8 - Auto-magically adds ly...
Get Lyrical auto-magically add lyrics to songs in iTunes. You can choose either a selection of tracks, or the current track. Or turn on "Active Tagging" to get lyrics for songs as you play them.... Read more
Viber 4.2.2 - Send messages and make cal...
Viber lets you send free messages and make free calls to other Viber users, on any device and network, in any country! Viber syncs your contacts, messages and call history with your mobile device,... Read more
Cocktail 7.6 - General maintenance and o...
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets you clean, repair and optimize your Mac. It is a powerful digital toolset that helps hundreds of thousands of Mac users around the world get... Read more
LaunchBar 6.1 - Powerful file/URL/email...
LaunchBar is an award-winning productivity utility that offers an amazingly intuitive and efficient way to search and access any kind of information stored on your computer or on the Web. It provides... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more
BBEdit 10.5.12 - Powerful text and HTML...
BBEdit is the leading professional HTML and text editor for the Mac. Specifically crafted in response to the needs of Web authors and software developers, this award-winning product provides a... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Fire in the Hole Review
Fire in the Hole Review By Rob Thomas on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: WALK THE PLANKUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Seafoam’s Fire in the Hole looks like a bright, 8-bit throwback, but there’s not enough booty to... | Read more »
Dodo Master Review
Dodo Master Review By Jordan Minor on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: NEST EGGiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Dodo Master is tough but fair, and that’s what makes it a joy to play.   | Read more »
Motorsport Manager Review
Motorsport Manager Review By Lee Hamlet on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: MARVELOUS MANAGEMENTUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Despite its depth and sense of tactical freedom, Motorsport Manager is one of the most... | Read more »
Motorsport Manager – Beginner Tips, Tric...
The world of Motorsport management can be an unforgiving and merciless one, so to help with some of the stress that comes with running a successful race team, here are a few hints and tips to leave your opponents in the dust. | Read more »
Baseball Battle Review
Baseball Battle Review By Jennifer Allen on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SIMPLE HITTINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Simple and cute, Baseball Battle is a fairly fun baseball game for those looking for something... | Read more »
Checkmark 2.1 Update Released, and it’s...
Checkmark 2.1 Update Released, and it’s on Sale for a Limited Time Posted by Jessica Fisher on August 29th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
The Walking Dead Pinball Review
The Walking Dead Pinball Review By Blake Grundman on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: DECISIONS, DECISIONS...Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Zen Studios is at it again, taking a property that would never seem to work... | Read more »
Stupeflix Has Released a Major Update fo...
Stupeflix Has Released a Major Update for Replay Posted by Jessica Fisher on August 29th, 2014 [ permalink ] iPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad | Read more »
ALONE… Review
ALONE… Review By Jennifer Allen on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: MINIMALISTIC AND TOUGHUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Tough yet satisfying, ALONE… is a challenging endless flyer with some suitably sensitive... | Read more »
Hyperlapse Review
Hyperlapse Review By Jennifer Allen on August 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SPEEDY VIDEO SNAPSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Want to make a great time-lapse video quickly? Hyperlapse is perfect for that.   | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

13-inch 1.4GHz MacBook Air on sale for $899,...
Adorama has the new 2014 13″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $899.99 including free shipping plus NY & NJ tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Read more
It’s Official: Apple Issues Invitations To Se...
Apple has issued one of its characteristically cryptic press invitations for a special event to be held at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts in hometown Cupertino on Sept. 9, 2014 at 10:00 am... Read more
Tablet Shipments To See First On-year Decline...
TrendForce analyst Caroline Chen notes that when the iPad launched in 2010, it was an instant hit and spurred a tablet PC revolution, with tablets so popular that that notebook PC sales stagnated and... Read more
SOBERLINK Releases Apple iOS Compatible Handh...
Cypress, California based SOBERLINK, Inc., creator of the first handheld Breathalyzer designed to improve recovery outcomes, continues to show prominence in the mobile alcohol monitoring space with... Read more
New 21″ 1.4GHz iMac on sale again for $999, s...
Best Buy has the new 21″ 1.4GHz iMac on sale for $999.99 on their online store. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free local store pick up. Price is for online orders only, in-... Read more
Smartphone Outlook Remains Strong for 2014, U...
According to a new mobile phone forecast from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, more than 1.25 billion smartphones will be shipped worldwide in 2014,... Read more
Save up to $60 with Apple refurbished iPod to...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 5th generation iPod touches available starting at $149. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free. Many, but not all... Read more
12-Inch MacBook Air Coming in 4Q14 or 2015 –...
Digitimes’ Aaron Lee and Joseph Tsai report that according to Taiwan-based upstream supply chain insiders, Apple plans to launch a thinner MacBook model either at year end 2014 or in 2015, and that... Read more
Sapphire Screen “Most Wanted” iPhone 6 New Fe...
According to the ‘uSell.com iPhone Most Wanted Survey’ — a representative survey of 1,000 U.S. smartphone users conducted by used iPhone marketplace uSell.com — close to half of all smartphone users... Read more
The iPad’s Real Competitive Challenger (Not S...
It’s been my contention for some time that the iPad is suffering from something of an identity crisis, and I suspect that may be a factor in slackening sales this year. Apple can’t seem to decide... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
Senior Event Manager, *Apple* Retail Market...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global event strategy. Delivering an overarching brand story; in-store, Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.