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

Hopper Disassembler 4.2.13- - Binary dis...
Hopper Disassembler is a binary disassembler, decompiler, and debugger for 32- and 64-bit executables. It will let you disassemble any binary you want, and provide you all the information about its... Read more
iFFmpeg 6.4.3 - Convert multimedia files...
iFFmpeg is a comprehensive media tool to convert movie, audio and media files between formats. The FFmpeg command line instructions can be very hard to master/understand, so iFFmpeg does all the hard... Read more
Firefox 55.0.2 - Fast, safe Web browser.
Firefox offers a fast, safe Web browsing experience. Browse quickly, securely, and effortlessly. With its industry-leading features, Firefox is the choice of Web development professionals and casual... Read more
FileZilla 3.27.1 - Fast and reliable FTP...
FileZilla (ported from Windows) is a fast and reliable FTP client and server with lots of useful features and an intuitive interface. Version 3.27.1: Fixed Vulnerabilities: Change client... Read more
Merlin Project 4.2.7 - $289.00
Merlin Project is the leading professional project management software for OS X. If you plan complex projects on your Mac, you won’t get far with a simple list of tasks. Good planning raises... Read more
Dashlane 4.8.4 - Password manager and se...
Dashlane is an award-winning service that revolutionizes the online experience by replacing the drudgery of everyday transactional processes with convenient, automated simplicity - in other words,... Read more
f.lux 39.984 - Adjusts the color of your...
f.lux makes the color of your computer's display adapt to the time of day, warm at night and like sunlight during the day. Ever notice how people texting at night have that eerie blue glow? Or wake... Read more
Sketch 46.2 - Design app for UX/UI for i...
Sketch is an innovative and fresh look at vector drawing. Its intentionally minimalist design is based upon a drawing space of unlimited size and layers, free of palettes, panels, menus, windows, and... Read more
Microsoft Office 2016 15.37 - Popular pr...
Microsoft Office 2016 - Unmistakably Office, designed for Mac. The new versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and OneNote provide the best of both worlds for Mac users - the familiar Office... Read more
Slack 2.7.1 - Collaborative communicatio...
Slack is a collaborative communication app that simplifies real-time messaging, archiving, and search for modern working teams. Version 2.7.1: You're nearly finished signing in when suddenly – bonk... Read more

Bottom of the 9th (Games)
Bottom of the 9th 1.0.1 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.1 (iTunes) Description: Play the most exciting moment of baseball in this fast-paced dice and card game! | Read more »
The best apps for viewing the solar ecli...
If you somehow missed the news, many parts of the United States will be witness to a total solar eclipse on August 21 for the first time in over 90 years. It'll be possible to see the eclipse in at least some capacity throughout the continental U... | Read more »
The 5 best mobile survival games
Games like ARK: Survival Evolved and Conan Exiles have taken the world of gaming by storm. The market is now flooded with hardcore survival games that send players off into the game's world with nothing but maybe the clothes on their back. Never... | Read more »
Portal Walk (Games)
Portal Walk 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Portal Walk is adventure and relaxing platform game about Eugene. Eugene stuck between worlds and trying to find way back home.... | Read more »
Technobabylon (Games)
Technobabylon 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: City of Newton, 2087. Genetic engineering is the norm, the addictive Trance has replaced almost any need for human interaction,... | Read more »
5 reasons why 2v2 is the best mode in Cl...
Supercell has been teasing fans with 2v2 windows that allow players to team up for limited periods of time. The Summer of 2v2 was just this past July, but players are already clamoring for more of that sweet, sweet team-based action. The fans have... | Read more »
The best deals on the App Store this wee...
It seems like the week's only just started, and yet here we are with a huge pile of discounted games to sort through. There are some real doozies on sale this week. We're talking some truly stellar titles. Let's take a look at four of the best... | Read more »
Cat Quest Guide - How to become a purrfe...
Cat Quest is an absolutely charming open-world RPG that's taken the gaming world quite by storm. This game about a world populated by furry kitty warriors is actually a full-length RPG with sturdy mechanics and a lovely little story. It's certainly... | Read more »
Silly Walks Guide - How to strut your st...
Silly Walks is an all new adventure game that lives up to its name. It sees you playing as a variety of snack foods as you teeter-totter your way to rescue your friends from the evil blender and his villainous minions. It's all very . . . well... | Read more »
The best mobile point-and-click adventur...
Nostalgia for classic point-and-click adventure games has reached an all-time high in recent years, and the rise of mobile games have provided a perfect platform for this old-school genre. This week we're going to take a look at some of the best... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

New iOS 11 Productivity Features Welcome But...
The iOS community is in late summer holding mode awaiting the September arrival of the iPhone 8 and iOS 11. iOS 11 public betas have been available for months — number six was released this week —... Read more
Samsung Electronics Launches New Portable SSD...
Samsung Electronics America, Inc. has announced the launch of Samsung Portable SSD T5 – its newest portable solid state drive (PSSD) that raises the bar for the performance of external memory... Read more
TrendForce Reports YoY Gain of 3.6% for 2Q17...
Market research firm TrendForce reports that the global notebook shipments for this second quarter registered a sequential quarterly increase of 5.7% and a year-on-year increase of 3.6%, totaling 39.... Read more
Sale! 10-inch iPad Pros for $50 off MSRP, no...
B&H Photo has 10.5″ iPad Pros in stock today and on sale for $50 off MSRP. Each iPad includes free shipping, and B&H charges sales tax in NY & NJ only: – 10.5″ 64GB iPad Pro: $599, save $... Read more
Sale! 2017 13-inch Silver 2.3GHz MacBook Pro...
Amazon has new 2017 13″ 2.3GHz/128GB Silver MacBook Pro on sale today for $100 off MSRP including free shipping. Their price is the lowest available for this model from any reseller: – 13″ 2.3GHz/... Read more
WaterField Unveils Collaboratively-Designed,...
In collaboration with customers and seasoned travelers, San Francisco maker WaterField Designs set out to create the preeminent carry-on system to improve the experience of frequent fliers. The... Read more
Miya Notes Mac-Client for Google Keep (Launch...
MacPlus Software has announced te launch of Miya Notes for Google Keep 1.0, a powerful Mac-client for Google Keep. Millions of people use Google Keep on their phones and online, but a convenient Mac... Read more
Apple refurbished iMacs available starting at...
Apple has previous-generation Certified Refurbished 2015 21″ & 27″ iMacs available starting at $849. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. The following models are... Read more
2017 13-inch MacBook Airs on sale for $100 of...
B&H Photo new 2017 13″ MacBook Airs on sale today for $100 off MSRP, starting at $899: – 13″ 1.8GHz/128GB MacBook Air (MQD32LL/A): $899, $100 off MSRP – 13″ 1.8GHz/256GB MacBook Air (MQD42LL/A... Read more
12-inch MacBooks on sale for $100 off MSRP
Amazon has 2017 12″ Retina MacBooks on sale for $100 off MSRP. Shipping is free: 12″ 1.2GHz Space Gray MacBook: $1199.99 $100 off MSRP 12″ 1.2GHz Silver MacBook: $1198 $101 off MSRP 12″ 1.2GHz Gold... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Customer Experience (ACE) Leader - A...
…management to deliver on business objectivesTraining partner store staff on Apple products, services, and merchandising guidelinesCoaching partner store staff on Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Poole -...
Job Summary The people here at Apple don't just create products - they create the kind of wonder that's revolutionised entire industries. It's the diversity of those Read more
Business Development Manager, *Apple* iClou...
Job Summary Apple is seeking an entrepreneurial person to help grow the Apple iCloud business, a service that is integral to the Apple customer experience. Read more
Product Metrics Manager - *Apple* Media Pro...
Job Summary Apple is seeking a product manager responsible for overseeing the instrumentation and analysis of usage data, in order to make data driven product Read more
iOS Wallet & *Apple* Pay Engineer - App...
Job Summary The iOS Apple Pay & Wallet team is looking for talented,...now add credit and debit cards to Wallet using Apple Pay. You can use Apple Pay in Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.