TweetFollow Us on Twitter

January 92 - In Transit to MacApp 3

In Transit to MacApp 3

Howard Katz

I've been away from FrameWorks for a few months, but I haven't been away from the Mac and MacApp. I've made a move from Pascal to C in my own programming work-initially, with a lot of trepidation-and I've also done some playing around with beta versions of MacApp 3, pursuant to jumping into C++ with both feet. First, the news…

MacApp 3 final-getting close

According to Tom Chavez, MacApp's product manager at Apple, there are about 125 MacApp 3 beta sites out there, all merrily compiling away on beta number 3, digging up bugs galore. It saddens my heart to tell you this, but yes-there are bugs, though the number is diminishing with each successive beta release.

As I write, beta number 4 will soon go out to the seed list, a few short weeks before Christmas. If schedules hold, the final release of MacApp 3 should be finished and ready to go by the end of January-theoretically, about the time you're reading this. Tom says that even if that happens, though, it's unlikely that the documentation will keep pace with the software development, so you probably won't see a version that APDA can ship on the street before MADA's Orlando conference in February.

Ditto to Jesse

Jesse Feiler wrote a nice little piece for the last FrameWorks on his experiences in moving from MacApp 2 and Object Pascal to MacApp 3 and C++. I suspect the information that Jesse provided will be helpful for other developers who are going to be making the same move. It was for me.

In getting ready to move into C++, I've just made a similar though smaller transition of my own-from Pascal to C. I can strongly echo at least one of Jesse's sentiments-if you're going to make the language jump, dive right in. Stop reading about the language, just do it.

I had a lot of trepidation before making the move, and about one anxious week of trying to figure out what things weren't working and why. But that was it; it was relatively painless.

I spent four months on a C language programming project about four years ago, so this wasn't my first exposure to the language. But it didn't "take" very well the first time around. This time, for whatever reason, it did. I'm enjoying it.

Mostly bigger, hopefully better

I finally got a copy of MacApp 3 running on my system, though I haven't done anything serious with it yet. I'm still in the MacBrowse exploring stage. As it is, MacApp 3 grunts and wheezes and barely runs on my machine. I've an old, stock standard Mac II. I had to dig into the bank account to upgrade my RAM from 5 to 8 megs to get MacApp 3 to compile at all, and it complains bitterly at that. MacApp 3 development really requires 9 megs, or 8 megs and virtual memory, and that I don't have at the moment.

This seems pretty incredible to me. I can remember-though I'm not sure I want to-compiling MacApp applications on a Plus. Such a thing is no longer within the realm of possibility, even as a thought experiment. The main villain, I'm told, is CFront, which requires-this is no typo-5 megs to run. Great Caesar's ghost!

It seems that just about everything about MacApp 3 is bigger, and that doesn't necessarily mean better. Disk space requirements provide another example. I've got an external 40 meg drive hung off my machine that I use only for occasional programming projects, and amazingly enough, it's too small. I used to do everything on a 40-meg hard drive; now it's not even large enough for MacApp, let alone anything else.

It's easy to see why when you look at the numbers. My MPW folder, little changed from the way it arrived in the mail, is well over 12 meg, and my MacApp folder is over 21. The latter number, on your system, will depend on the number of different versions you need to compile MacApp in. There used to be just two: "Debug" and "NoDebug." There are now a minimum of four, when you factor in whether or not you're supporting System 7. Just my ".NoDebug Files" folder, created by MacApp, is well over 3 megs.

New idioms galore

RAM and disk requirements are a downer, and I haven't even talked about compile times yet. But everything else is peachy-keen. There are new idioms galore. How's the following for a good example of some of the potentially baffling and interesting new things in MacApp 3? This little gem is right out of TObject:
pascal void TObject::UpdateDependents(
                ChangeID theChange,
                TObject* changedObject,
                TObject* changedBy)
{
CDependentIterator iter(this);
for (   TObject* dependent = iter.FirstDependent(); iter.More();
        dependent = iter.NextDependent())
    {
        dependent->HandleUpdate( theChange, changedObject,
            changedBy);
    }
}

Coming into MacApp 3 from an MacApp 2 and Object Pascal background, I count at least five idioms here that are new to me. If you're new to C and object programming in particular, probably everything looks at least slightly bizarre. Even if you're an old and experienced C hand from way back, there are strange things happening here. The three clauses that determine the boundary-condition behavior of the "for" loop, for example, probably look somewhat, well, wrong. And yet, they do make sense-eventually.

How about the declaration "CDependentIterator iter(this)" in the above sample? That's worth at least a few minutes of silent contemplation the first time it's encountered in code. I know what a "T…" class is; what's a "C…" class? Can we all say "stack-based object" in unison? In other words, an object declaration where we really have the object itself, and not an indirect reference to one through either a pointer or a handle.

And what about the parameter the function takes-"this" in the above example? We've all been hearing about constructors; here's one in the flesh.

What else? What's a "CDependentIterator" anyway? Iterators are one thing; dependencies are something else again. The combination of the two is only slightly more potent than the nuclear-powered salsa that took my mouth out of action for two hours yesterday at lunch.

TObject, by the way, is quite a bit more beefed up than what I'm used to from earlier incarnations of MacApp. It's hard to believe this class once had a grand total of four-that's 4-methods, and that they were all we needed. By my count, TObject now has at least 36 methods. MacApp 3's new dependency-notification mechanism accounts for a good number of them.

References to the rescue

I had a few books open next to my machine as I MacBrowsed my way through the MacApp 3 source code. Occasionally I'd venture over to Harbison and Steele, the "official" C language reference manual. I'm told there's a C++ version out as well, but I haven't seen it yet.

Kernighan and Ritchie's "The C Programming Language" is also highly recommended. It's from Prentice Hall. Make sure you pick up the second edition when you go shopping.

I'll put in a plug for one other C++ language reference that I find myself dipping into and out of when I have a few moments to spare, and that's Dan Weston's Elements of C++ Macintosh Programming. Dan's discussion of C++ language features is based around a class library that he develops in the book. In many respects it looks like MacApp-two of the main classes are called "TApp" and "TDoc," respectively. Dan's a MacApp programmer from way back and makes the odd appearance at MacApp conferences. I've been enjoying the book and finding it useful.

I'll be picking up some of the other "great" C++ references over the next few weeks and will try and do some quick reviews in columns to come. In the meantime, I hope you had a good Christmas season and are looking forward to a sunny vacation in Orlando. Florida, watch out!

 
AAPL
$104.83
Apple Inc.
+1.84
MSFT
$45.02
Microsoft Corpora
+0.64
GOOG
$543.98
Google Inc.
+11.27

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Delicious Library 3.3.2 - Import, browse...
Delicious Library allows you to import, browse, and share all your books, movies, music, and video games with Delicious Library. Run your very own library from your home or office using our... Read more
Art Text 2.4.8 - Create high quality hea...
Art Text is an OS X application for creating high quality textual graphics, headings, logos, icons, Web site elements, and buttons. Thanks to multi-layer support, creating complex graphics is no... Read more
Live Interior 3D Pro 2.9.6 - Powerful an...
Live Interior 3D Pro is a powerful yet very intuitive interior designing application. View Video Tutorials It has every feature of Live Interior 3D Standard, plus some exclusive ones: Create multi... Read more
The Hit List 1.1.7 - Advanced reminder a...
The Hit List manages the daily chaos of your modern life. It's easy to learn - it's as easy as making lists. And it's powerful enough to let you plan, then forget, then act when the time is right.... Read more
jAlbum Pro 12.2.4 - Organize your digita...
jAlbum Pro has all the features you love in jAlbum, but comes with a commercial license. With jAlbum, you can create gorgeous custom photo galleries for the Web without writing a line of code!... Read more
jAlbum 12.2.4 - Create custom photo gall...
With jAlbum, you can create gorgeous custom photo galleries for the Web without writing a line of code! Beginner-friendly, with pro results Simply drag and drop photos into groups, choose a design... Read more
ExpanDrive 4.1.7 - Access remote files o...
ExpanDrive builds cloud storage in every application, acts just like a USB drive plugged into your Mac. With ExpanDrive, you can securely access any remote file server directly from the Finder or... Read more
OmniOutliner Pro 4.1.3 - Pro version of...
OmniOutliner Pro is a flexible program for creating, collecting, and organizing information. Give your creativity a kick start by using an application that's actually designed to help you think. It'... Read more
Evernote 5.6.2 - Create searchable notes...
Evernote allows you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at anytime, from... Read more
OmniOutliner 4.1.3 - Organize your ideas...
OmniOutliner is a flexible program for creating, collecting, and organizing information. Give your creativity a kick start by using an application that's actually designed to help you think. It's... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

A Few Days Left (Games)
A Few Days Left 1.01 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.01 (iTunes) Description: Screenshots are in compliance to App Store's 4+ age rating! Please see App Preview for real game play! **Important: Make... | Read more »
Toca Boo (Education)
Toca Boo 1.0.2 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.2 (iTunes) Description: BOO! Did I scare you!? My name is Bonnie and my family loves to spook! Do you want to scare them back? Follow me and I'll... | Read more »
Intuon (Games)
Intuon 1.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: Join the battle with your intuition in a new hardcore game Intuon! How well do you trust your intuition? Can you find a needle in a... | Read more »
Ravenous Rampage (Games)
Ravenous Rampage 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Partia 2 (Games)
Partia 2 1.0.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $5.99, Version: 1.0.1 (iTunes) Description: Partia 2 is a SRPG (Strategy Role-playing) video game inspired by Fire Emblem and Tear Ring Saga series. In a high fantasy... | Read more »
Puzzle to the Center of the Earth Review
Puzzle to the Center of the Earth Review By Campbell Bird on October 23rd, 2014 Our Rating: :: SPELUNKING PUZZLESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Do some puzzles to make some platforms in this smart and fun free-to-play... | Read more »
Sleep Attack TD Review
Sleep Attack TD Review By Jennifer Allen on October 23rd, 2014 Our Rating: :: A TRUE TWISTUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Sleep Attack TD is a tower defense game with a difference – you can rotate the layout – and it’s... | Read more »
Mecanic (Education)
Mecanic 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Plates, screws, wheels ... Everything you need to achieve whatever you want... MECHANICWith 'MECANIC' kids will have fun... | Read more »
Earn Your Master Camper Badge in Camp Po...
Earn Your Master Camper Badge in Camp Pokemon Posted by Jessica Fisher on October 23rd, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Garruk Gets His Revenge in a New Magic 2...
Garruk Gets His Revenge in a New Magic 2015 Expansion, Coming This November Posted by Jessica Fisher on October 23rd, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Save up to $125 on Retina MacBook Pros
B&H Photo has the new 2014 13″ and 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $125 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. They’ll also include free copies of Parallels... Read more
Apple refurbished Time Capsules available sta...
The Apple Store has certified refurbished Time Capsules available for up to $60 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each Time Capsule, and shipping is free: - 2TB Time Capsule: $255... Read more
Textilus New Word, Notes and PDF Processor fo...
Textilus is new word-crunching, notes, and PDF processor designed exclusively for the iPad. I haven’t had time to thoroughly check it out yet, but it looks great and early reviews are positive.... Read more
WD My Passport Pro Bus-Powered Thunderbolt RA...
WD’s My Passport Pro RAID solution is powered by an integrated Thunderbolt cable for true portability and speeds as high as 233 MB/s. HighlightsOverviewSpecifications Transfer, Back Up And Edit In... Read more
Save with Best Buy’s College Student Deals
Take an additional $50 off all MacBooks and iMacs at Best Buy Online with their College Students Deals Savings, valid through November 1st. Anyone with a valid .EDU email address can take advantage... Read more
iPad Air 2 & iPad mini 3 Best Tablets Yet...
The new iPads turned out to be pretty much everything I’d been hoping for and more than I’d expected.”More” particularly in terms of a drinking-from-a-firehose choice of models and configurations,... Read more
Drafts 4 Reinvents iOS Productivity App
N Richland Hills, Texas based Agile Tortoise has announced the release of Drafts 4 for iPhone and iPad. Drafts is a quick capture note taking app with flexible output actions. Drafts 4 scales from... Read more
AT&T accepting preorders for new iPads fo...
AT&T Wireless is accepting preorders for the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3, cellular models, for $100 off MSRP with a 2-year service agreement: - 16GB iPad Air 2 WiFi + Cellular: $529.99 - 64GB... Read more
Apple offering refurbished Mac Pros for up to...
The Apple Store is offering Apple Certified Refurbished 2013 Mac Pros for up to $600 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each Mac Pro, and shipping is free. The... Read more
Select MacBook Airs $100 off MSRP, free shipp...
B&H Photo has 2014 a couple of MacBook Airs on sale for $100 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. They also include free copies of Parallels Desktop and LoJack for... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Apple Inc. (U...
…important role that the ASC serves is that of providing an excellent Apple Customer Experience. Responsibilities include: * Promoting Apple products and solutions 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
Project Manager / Business Analyst, WW *Appl...
…a senior project manager / business analyst to work within our Worldwide Apple Fulfillment Operations and the Business Process Re-engineering team. This role will work Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Job Description: Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.