TweetFollow Us on Twitter

September 93 - BAMADA Notes

BAMADA Notes

Robert Lenoil

After a winter hibernation, BAMADA-the San Francisco Bay Area MADA affiliate-is back in business, with illustrious speakers, first-peek demos, and one of the toughest audiences a presenter could ever dare to meet. BAMADA is now holding court the first Thursday of each month at 7pm in Apple's spanking new R&D campus, at 4 Infinite Loop (no, I'm not kidding) in Cupertino. Thanks to Bill Harris of Apple Computer for arranging the wonderful new meeting space. At the July meeting, attendees were treated to demos of the lightweight application framework QuickApp and the latest revision of the venerated MacApp view editor IcePick.

QuickAPP

First up were father-son duo Dave and Steve Wilson of Emergent Behavior, who demonstrated and discussed their latest entry in the frameworks wars: QuickApp. QuickApp is a C++ application framework for use with Symantec or MPW C++ that is well suited to prototyping, writing small utility programs, and other such endeavors that can benefit from a lean and mean framework. Dave Wilson's motivation to create QuickApp was his desire (need?) to program anywhere, anytime, on his PowerBook 170. Development with big macho frameworks just can't be done in "only" 8 megabytes of RAM. With QuickApp and Symantec C++, compile-run cycle times of 10-15 seconds are practical on a PowerBook 170. A do-nothing application is about 40Kb in size, over 100Kb smaller than MacApp's null application.

QuickApp owes its performance to the Wilson less-is-more design credo: "I guarantee that QuickApp has less features than your framework." It uses true pointer-based C++ objects and C++ language features. For example, objects are initialized by their constructor methods, eliminating the error prone procedure of having to create a new object and then explicitly call its initialization method. Another language feature used in QuickApp is multiple inheritance; the model for doing this is the LISP-like notion of mixin classes, which add well-defined behaviors to other classes. An example of a QuickApp mixin class is MDraggable. View objects that have MDraggable mixed in know how to be dragged, although the current implementation doesn't support multiply selected objects. Another mixin is MIdler, which lets objects perform periodic processing. Not a threads-based solution, an MIdler object must manually save and restore its context between calls to its idle method.

Is QuickApp right for you? The product is young and evolving rapidly, and therefore will not be stable like the more established frameworks. However, if you want to be productive while sitting in a doctor's waiting room (Dave Wilson had been enhancing the framework that day in just such a fashion), then the product is worth looking into. QuickApp sells for $99, and can be purchased direct from Emergent Behavior.

ICEPICK

The next guest for the evening was Chris Arbogast of Sierra Software Innovations, who trekked to Cupertino from Nevada to show off the latest version of IcePick, the view editor for MacApp. IcePick 3.0, which should be available by the time you read this, does everything that the last version does, plus it now handles the MacApp 3.0 view resource format, including sup-port for behaviors and adorners. Views can be converted back and forth between 2.0 and 3.0 formats, allowing old views to be moved to the new format, and vice-versa. There's probably not much call to port 3.0 views back to 2.0, but Chris did point out that the 3.0 view format takes nearly twice the space than an equivalent 2.0 view, so a program with large numbers of views could conceivably benefit from storing those views in 2.0 for-mat (providing that the views don't use adorners or behaviors).

A powerful new feature in this version is the ability to add support to IcePick for user-defined behaviors, adorners, and views. Users must write code to support editing and streaming of their custom classes, using objects provided by Sierra in library form. This custom code is not dynamically bound into IcePick at runtime; instead it is linked along with the IcePick code (provided in library form) and the MacApp libraries to produce a custom version of IcePick. This seems much more cumbersome than using Shared Library Manager, but is a positive first step. The distribution will include a pre-linked binary for those who don't need the customization features.

Another nice new feature for IcePick is greatly improved handling of string resources. IcePick can read STR# resources from one or more files. View parameters that point to strings (such as are found in TStaticText) can be set by choosing the desired string from a popup menu. IcePick even endeavors to filter out duplicate strings in your application; if the string you type in for a TStaticText matches an existing string, IcePick will use the resource id and index of that string; otherwise it will create a new one. Of course, the programmer might actually want two separate strings in certain circumstances (localization comes to mind); Chris took suggestions from the audience on how to accommodate everyone's needs.

If IcePick 2.0 is a reliable indicator, 3.0 could be the view editor to beat. Pricing for IcePick 3.0 is $245 retail, $195for MADA members, and free (plus shipping) for registered users of IcePick 2.0.

The final event of the evening was the customary after-meeting meeting at the Peppermill, where among other things, BAMADA regulars got to say their last good-byes to BAMADA founder James Plamondon before he left the Bay Area for Redmond, WA (will he found RAMADA there?). The current authority figure for BAMADA is Tom Becker. If you're interested in speaking at an upcoming meeting, or want to be placed on the mailing list for BAMADA announcements, contact Tom at twb@apldbio.com, or call (415) 570-6667.

AUGUST: Object Master 2.0 and AppleScript

The August BAMADA meeting was held one week later than usual due to the mass migration of people to the east coast for MacWorld. Returnees were treated to a full demonstration of the latest version of Object Master by Loïc Vandereyken of ACI US, while the proud new Newton owners in the crowd vainly tried to scribble notes with the house lights off.

Before Loïc took the stage, Steve Jasik of Jasik Designs showed off the new features in the latest release of his Macintosh debugger, The Debugger. Along with new user interface enhancements like option-shift-left bracket, The Debugger now sports a scripting language and the ability to execute MacsBug dcmds. With looping and conditional support, the scripting language allows users to perform dcmd-like things without having to code in C. Jasik showed example scripts that walked the open window list and that imitated the MacsBug drvr dcmd. He also ran the real drvr to show the dcmd support. Unlike MacsBug, dcmds can be dynamically added to The Debugger at runtime.

Object Master is ACI's source code editor magna cum laude. With its direct knowledge of C, C++, Pascal, Modula 2, and resource files, Object Master parses your source code and builds a dictionary of every function, method, class, constant, and structure. You then edit your code in a hypertext wonderland, never having to care what file a particular item is defined in. Version 2.0 Universal, shipping now, has over 150 improvements to version 1.0 - and Loïc tried to show the BAMADA audience every one of those improvements. Among the major functionality enhancements are:

  • Fully integrated Projector/SourceServer support.
  • Direct editing of class definitions.
  • Popup menus of recent text searches and recently edited functions for fast navigation.
  • AppleScript scriptability.
  • Regular expression searches.

All of these features are seamlessly tied into Object Master's existing windows. For example, while editing a method in a browser window, choose Check Out from the menu bar and Object Master checks out the file containing that method from the appropriate project. Change a method's parameter list while editing the method and Object Master volunteers to automatically update the method declaration in the object's class definition. Regular expression searching is facilitated by a commando-like interface for building search patterns without remembering what •, ≈, ¬, and ∞ mean.

The program is extremely powerful, and this power is multiplied by the use of AppleEvents and AppleScript. Double click on a resource in the resource map window and Object Master opens ResEdit (or the editor you specify) and brings up the resource for editing. Similar hooks exist for sending commands to MPW/ToolServer. The program has a high degree of support for the AppleEvent object model and can be manipulated quite readily with AppleScript. Scripts placed in the program's startup folder are executed at startup and can add menus and other functions to Object Master's repertoire. The only sore spot in the AppleScript support is that the program's actions are not recordable.

Object Master, other than being the editor with which 4D is developed, bears little relation to ACI's core database business and sometimes received little corporate attention. This appears to have changed. Loïc and ACI product manager Eric Gries (who raffled off a free copy of Object Master 2.0 at the meeting) announced a full slate of upcoming Object Master releases. A Think C version of Object Master will appear in 1-2 months. This version, tentatively priced at $255, will have Pascal, Modula 2, and MPW support removed. Around the same time, the universal version will be upgraded to version 2.1, mainly to match the bug fixes and features available in the Think version. A 3.0 version of Object Master is being planned for next year, to debut first for Microsoft Windows in Q1, and then for Macintosh in Q2. Features being considered for 3.0 include parsing of Rez files and whatever else users suggest or Loïc dreams up.

The evening concluded with a panel discussion, chaired by BAMADA organizer Tom Becker and featuring Loïc and object model personality Eric Berdahl, on strategies for adding AppleScript support to Mac applications. For Object Master, Loïc wrote a framework-independent set of classes for parsing and responding to the AppleEvent object model. He then hooked those classes into the (MacApp 2.0, Object Pascal based) Object Master source code, calling existing MacApp methods to responsd to many of the standard events (open, close, resize, etc.). The total implementation time for AppleScript support in Object Master was on the order of two months. Eric claimed that properly designing for and coding AppleScript support into an application is closer to a one year endeavor, which prompted some audience members to remark "he's obviously using Taligent time schedules." All agreed that supporting AppleScript is difficult, framework support is critical but lacking, and that small developers now have but another hurdle to jump over in order to create fully featured Macintosh applications. Perhaps Ken Ryall's MAScript package, which adds AppleScript support to MacApp, will help in this regard.

BAMADA meets the first Thursday of each month at 7 P.M. at 4 Infinite Loop in Apple's R&D campus in Cupertino. At the September meeting, the Newton team will talk about and answer questions regarding the Newton Toolkit. If you're interested in speaking at an upcoming meeting, or want to be placed on the mailing list for BAMADA announcements, contact Tom Becker.

 
AAPL
$98.15
Apple Inc.
-0.23
MSFT
$43.58
Microsoft Corpora
-0.31
GOOG
$587.42
Google Inc.
+1.81

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Knock 1.1.7 - Unlock your Mac by knockin...
Knock is a faster, safer way to sign in. You keep your iPhone with you all the time. Now you can use it as a password. You never have to open the app -- just knock on your phone twice, even when it's... Read more
Mellel 3.3.6 - Powerful word processor w...
Mellel is the leading word processor for OS X and has been widely considered the industry standard since its inception. Mellel focuses on writers and scholars for technical writing and multilingual... Read more
LibreOffice 4.3.0.4 - 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
Freeway Pro 7.0 - Drag-and-drop Web desi...
Freeway Pro lets you build websites with speed and precision... without writing a line of code! With it's user-oriented drag-and-drop interface, Freeway Pro helps you piece together the website of... Read more
Drive Genius 3.2.4 - Powerful system uti...
Drive Genius is an OS X utility designed to provide unsurpassed storage management. Featuring an easy-to-use interface, Drive Genius is packed with powerful tools such as a drive optimizer, a... Read more
Vitamin-R 2.15 - Personal productivity t...
Vitamin-R creates the optimal conditions for your brain to work at its best by structuring your work into short bursts of distraction-free, highly focused activity alternating with opportunities for... Read more
Toast Titanium 12.0 - The ultimate media...
Toast Titanium goes way beyond the very basic burning in the Mac OS and iLife software, and sets the standard for burning CDs, DVDs, and now Blu-ray discs on the Mac. Create superior sounding audio... Read more
OS X Yosemite Wallpaper 1.0 - Desktop im...
OS X Yosemite Wallpaper is the gorgeous new background image for Apple's upcoming OS X 10.10 Yosemite. This wallpaper is available for all screen resolutions with a source file that measures 5,418... Read more
Acorn 4.4 - Bitmap image editor. (Demo)
Acorn is a new image editor built with one goal in mind - simplicity. Fast, easy, and fluid, Acorn provides the options you'll need without any overhead. Acorn feels right, and won't drain your bank... Read more
Bartender 1.2.20 - Organize your menu ba...
Bartender lets you organize your menu bar apps. Features: Lets you tidy your menu bar apps how you want. See your menu bar apps when you want. Hide the apps you need to run, but do not need to... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Empire Manager (Games)
Empire Manager 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Become ruler of an empire. Manage your economy, develop technology, hire an army and conquer the world in this addictive turn-... | Read more »
Empire Manager HD (Games)
Empire Manager HD 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $7.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Become ruler of an empire. Manage your economy, develop technology, hire an army and conquer the world in this addictive... | Read more »
Star Admiral Review
Star Admiral Review By Rob Thomas on July 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: ADMIRABLE ADMIRALSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad While this new digital CCG may feel a bit familiar, Star Admiral offers a sci-fi twist and galaxy’s... | Read more »
Zap! Pow! Become a Badass Wizard in Phan...
Zap! Pow! | Read more »
Urban Trial Freestyle Review
Urban Trial Freestyle Review By Blake Grundman on July 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: RIDIN' DIRTYUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad A rough ride that has trouble keeping its wheels on the track.   | Read more »
Take Note! Noteshelf Has Recieved a Big...
Take Note! Noteshelf Has Recieved a Big Update. Posted by Jessica Fisher on July 30th, 2014 [ permalink ] iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad | Read more »
Cubama Review
Cubama Review By Nadia Oxford on July 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: TETRIIIIIS IIIIIN SPAAAAACE!Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad With its addictive challenge and interesting premise, Cubama is frantic screen-tapping fun.   | Read more »
Become a Guardians of Galactic Peace Wit...
Become a Guardians of Galactic Peace With the New Spacefaring Sim, Kairobotica. Posted by Jessica Fisher on July 30th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Soul Guardians: Age of Midgard Review
Soul Guardians: Age of Midgard Review By George Fagundes on July 30th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SO MUCH GRIND IT CRUNCHESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Swords and trading cards are fun, right? So is Soul Guardians: Age of... | Read more »
NFL Fantasy Football App Redesigned Ahea...
NFL Fantasy Football App Redesigned Ahead of Upcoming 2014 Season Posted by Ellis Spice on July 30th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Save up to $140 on an iPad Air with Apple ref...
Apple is offering Certified Refurbished iPad Airs for up to $140 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free. Stock tends to come and go with some of these... Read more
$250 price drop on leftover 15-inch Retina Ma...
B&H Photo has dropped prices on 2013 15″ Retina MacBook Pros by $250 off original MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.3GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $2249, $250 off... Read more
More iPad Upgrade Musings – The ‘Book Mystiqu...
Much discussed recently, what with Apple reporting iPad sales shrinkage over two consecutive quarters, is that it had apparently been widely assumed that tablet users would follow a two-year hardware... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999,...
Best Buy has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro available for $999.99 on their online store. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Their price is $100 off MSRP. Price is... Read more
Save up to $300 on an iMac with Apple refurbi...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished iMacs available for up to $300 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. These are the best prices on... Read more
WaterField Unveils 15″ Outback Solo & 13″...
Hard on the heels of Apple’s refreshed MacBook Pro Retina laptops announcement, WaterField Designs has unveiled a 15-inch version of the waxed-canvas and leather Outback Solo and a 13-inch version of... Read more
New Roxio Toast 12 Delivers Digital Media Pow...
Roxio Toast 12 is a hub for sharing digital media to virtually any platform or device. has introduced two new additions to its Roxio Toast product family – Roxio Toast 12 Titanium and Roxio Toast 12... Read more
The lowest prices on leftover Retina MacBook...
Best Buy has dropped prices on leftover 13″ and 15″ Retina MacBook Pros by up to $300 off original MSRP on their online store for a limited time. Choose free local store pickup (if available) or free... Read more
Apple Updates MacBook Pro with Retina Display...
Apple today updated its MacBook Pro with Retina display with faster processors and double the amount of memory in both entry-level configurations. MacBook Pro with Retina display features a Retina... Read more
Up to $250 price drop on leftover 15-inch Mac...
B&H Photo has dropped prices on 2013 15″ Retina MacBook Pros by as much as $250 off original MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.3GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $2349... Read more

Jobs Board

Sr Software Lead Engineer, *Apple* Online S...
Sr Software Lead Engineer, Apple Online Store Publishing Systems Keywords: Company: Apple Job Code: E3PCAK8MgYYkw Location (City or ZIP): Santa Clara Status: Full Read more
Sr Software Lead Engineer, *Apple* Online S...
Sr Software Lead Engineer, Apple Online Store Publishing Systems Keywords: Company: Apple Job Code: E3PCAK8MgYYkw Location (City or ZIP): Santa Clara Status: Full 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
Sr. Product Leader, *Apple* Store Apps - Ap...
**Job Summary** Imagine what you could do here. At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring 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.