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!

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Apple Remote Desktop 3.8 - Remotely cont...
Apple Remote Desktop is the best way to manage the Mac computers on your network. Distribute software, provide real-time online help to end users, create detailed software and hardware reports, and... Read more
NeoOffice 2014.7 - Mac-tailored, OpenOff...
NeoOffice is a complete office suite for OS X. With NeoOffice, users can view, edit, and save OpenOffice documents, PDF files, and most Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents. NeoOffice 3.x... Read more
DesktopLyrics 2.6.6 - Displays current i...
DesktopLyrics is an application that displays the lyrics of the song currently playing in "iTunes" right on your desktop. The lyrics for the song have to be set in iTunes; DesktopLyrics does nothing... Read more
Ember 1.8.3 - Versatile digital scrapboo...
Ember (formerly LittleSnapper) is your digital scrapbook of things that inspire you: websites, photos, apps or other things. Just drag in images that you want to keep, organize them into relevant... Read more
Apple iTunes 12.1 - Manage your music, m...
Apple iTunes lets you organize and play digital music and video on your computer. It can automatically download new music, app, and book purchases across all your devices and computers. And it's a... Read more
LibreOffice 4.4.3 - Free, open-source of...
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
FoldersSynchronizer 4.2.1 - Synchronize...
FoldersSynchronizer is a popular and useful utility that synchronizes and backs-up files, folders, disks and boot disks. On each session you can apply special options like Timers, Multiple Folders,... Read more
Simon 4.0.2 - Monitor changes and crashe...
Simon monitors websites and alerts you of crashes and changes. Select pages to monitor, choose your alert options, and customize your settings. Simon does the rest. Keep a watchful eye on your... Read more
Cocktail 8.1.2 - General maintenance and...
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
Cyberduck 4.6.4 - FTP and SFTP browser....
Cyberduck is a robust FTP/FTP-TLS/SFTP browser for the Mac whose lack of visual clutter and cleverly intuitive features make it easy to use. Support for external editors and system technologies such... Read more

Playworld Superheroes Review
Playworld Superheroes Review By Tre Lawrence on January 30th, 2015 Our Rating: :: HERO CRAFTINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad It’s all about the imagination, fighting bad creatures — and looking good while doing so.   | Read more »
Join the SpongeBob Bubble Party in this...
Join the SpongeBob Bubble Party in this New Match 3 Bubble Poppin’ Frenzy Posted by Jessica Fisher on January 30th, 2015 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Handpick Review
Handpick Review By Jennifer Allen on January 30th, 2015 Our Rating: :: TANTALIZING SUGGESTIONSiPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad Handpick will make you hungry, as well as inspire you to cook something... | Read more »
Storm the Halls of Echo Base in First St...
Storm the Halls of Echo Base in First Star Wars: Galactic Defense Event Posted by Jessica Fisher on January 30th, 2015 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Contradiction Review
Contradiction Review By Tre Lawrence on January 30th, 2015 Our Rating: :: SPOT THE LIEiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Contradiction is a live action point and click adventure that’s pretty engaging.   Developer: Tim Follin... | Read more »
Unlock Sunshine Girl in Ironkill with th...
Unlock Sunshine Girl in Ironkill with this special 148Apps code Posted by Rob Rich on January 29th, 2015 [ permalink ] Robo-fighter Ironkill has been out on iOS a | Read more »
Crossroad Zombies Review
Crossroad Zombies Review By Jordan Minor on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: :: CROSSWALKING DEADiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Crossroad Zombies is a rough draft of a cool genre mash-up.   | Read more »
Blood Brothers 2 – Tips, Cheats, and Str...
War is hell: Is it the kind of hell you want to check out? Read our Blood Brothers 2 review to find out! Blood Brothers 2, DeNA’s follow-up to the original Blood Brothers, is an intriguing card collecting / role-playing / strategy hybrid. There’s... | Read more »
Blood Brothers 2 Review
Blood Brothers 2 Review By Nadia Oxford on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: :: AN AGGRAVATING RELATIVEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Blood Brothers 2 is built on a simple, solid foundation, but its free-to-play system... | Read more »
I AM BREAD, the Toast of the Town, is Ro...
Have you ever dreamt of being deliciously gluten-y? Do you feel passionate about Rye and Wheat? The guys at Bossa Studios do and that is why they are bringing I AM BREAD to iOS soon. The loafy app will feature all the new content that is being... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Amazon offers 15-inch 2.2GHz Retina MacBook P...
 Amazon.com has the 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1879 including free shipping. Their price is $120 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model from any reseller (except... Read more
Intel Aims to Transform Workplace With 5th-Ge...
Intel Corporation today announced the availability of its 5th generation Intel Core vPro processor family that provides cutting-edge features to enable a new and rapidly shifting workplace. To meet... Read more
iOS App Sharalike Introduces New Instant Smar...
Sharalike slideshow and photo management software for iOS, is making it easier than ever to create shareable meaningful moments with its new instant SmartShow technology. Staying organized is a goal... Read more
Apple Becomes World’s Largest Smartphone Vend...
According to the latest research data from Strategy Analytics, as global smartphone shipments grew 31 percent annually to reach a record 380 million units in the fourth quarter of 2014. Apple became... Read more
Cut the Cord: OtterBox Resurgence Power Case...
Dead batteries and broken phones are two of the biggest issues for smartphone users today. Otterbox addresses both with the new Resurgence Power Case for Apple iPhone 6, promising to make those panic... Read more
13-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to...
B&H Photo has 13″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $200 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 13″ 2.6GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro: $1199.99 save $100 - 13″ 2.6GHz/... Read more
15-inch 2.5GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for...
 B&H Photo has the 15″ 2.5GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $2319.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $180 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this... Read more
Back in stock: Refurbished iPod nanos for $99...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 16GB iPod nanos available for $99 including free shipping and Apple’s standard one-year warranty. That’s $50 off the cost of new nanos. Most colors are... Read more
Apple lowers price on refurbished 256GB MacBo...
The Apple Store has lowered prices on Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 MacBook Airs with 256GB SSDs, now available for up to $200 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included... Read more
New Good Management Suite Simplifies Enterpri...
Good Technology has announced the availability of the Good Management Suite, a comprehensive cross-platform solution for organizations getting started with mobile business initiatives. Built on the... Read more

Jobs Board

At-Home Chat Specialist- *Apple* Online Stor...
**Job Summary** At Apple , we believe in hard work, a fun environment, and the kind of creativity and innovation that only comes about when talented people from diverse Read more
Sr. Mac Expert- *Apple* Online Store - Apple...
**Job Summary** The World Wide Apple Online Store (AOS) Sales and Service team is looking for motivated, outgoing, and tech savvy individuals who want to offer Apple Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant- Retail Sales (...
**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
Event Director, *Apple* Retail Marketing -...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global engagement strategy and team. Delivering an overarching brand Read more
At-Home Chat Specialist- *Apple* Online Stor...
**Job Summary** At Apple , we believe in hard work, a fun environment, and the kind of creativity and innovation that only comes about when talented people from diverse Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.