TweetFollow Us on Twitter

November 93 - BAMADA Notes

BAMADA Notes

Robert Lenoil

The October BAMADA meeting featured Eric Anderson, author of Apple's Thread Manager package, and Bo Klintberg, author of Software Framework Association's soon-to-be-released OSL Scripting Components product. (There was a September meeting, but I unfortunately couldn't attend, and therefore can't report on the proceedings.)

Thread Manager

The Thread Manager is a Macintosh system extension that provides for multiple threads of execution within a single application. Multi-threaded is all the rage nowadays: Windows NT does it; OS/2 has been doing it; and like so many other "new" features in desktop computer operating systems, many flavors of UNIX have been doing it for years. Now, thanks to the efforts of Eric Anderson and company, you can use the threads model of programming on the Macintosh too.

A thread is a lightweight task within a process that shares all the process's resources (open files, address space, etc.). Basically, a thread is just a private stack and a saved program counter and registers. As context switches go, switching between two threads is fast. When you have a time consuming task to perform or are doing polled or asynchronous i/o, create a separate thread to perform the activity. Periodically or while waiting for i/o, your thread sleeps to allow other threads to run; this lets your program maintain a responsive user interface without the tedious effort of state machine-based background processing from the main event loop, à la MacApp cohandlers or similar mechanisms.

Version 1.2 of Thread Manager is on Apple's November Developer CD. It is not the thread manager described in issue 6 of Apple's d e v e l o p magazine (that thread manager was unsupported and is now obsolete) but the concepts discussed in that article do apply. It can be shipped with your commercial programs for a nominal licensing fee. Also on the developer CD is Voodoo Monkey, a threads-aware debugger (the Debugger from Jasik Designs also knows about Thread Manager); and a utility package that adds semaphores and other features built on top of the basic Thread Manager API.

Thread Manager supports two styles of thread: cooperative and preemptive. Cooperative threads are scheduled at WaitNextEvent time. The default scheduler calls all runnable cooperative threads in a round robin fashion, with special provision for activating the main thread (the initial thread, which will handle your main event loop) whenever an event is available in the OS event queue. Preemptive threads are preemptively multitasked, which means that they run until they yield to another thread or until their time quantum expires. Preemptive threads must follow the rules for code that executes at interrupt time, namely, they cannot call any trap that can cause memory to be moved and they must not call traps where reentrancy is a concern. Preemptive threads are ideal for porting bulky number crunching algorithms to the Macintosh; without any coding changes the main thread will still get processor time and allow the user interface to operate while the computation occurs in the background. Tom Becker demonstrated this technique to the audience with a thread-based version of FracApp, a program which computes and displays the Mandelbrot set.

Threads Manager does have some limitations. For starters, it is only available for applications; not for desk accessories, INITs, or drivers. Thread switching only occurs when the target application is given time by the Process Manager. Since the Process Manager uses a cooperative multiprocessing model, threads - even preemptive ones - can be kept waiting for indefinite periods of time by unfriendly foreground applications. Last, but not least, Eric Anderson announced that preemptive threads will not be supported for native mode applications on PowerPC Macintoshes. So unless you plan on running your applications on PowerPC only in 680x0 emulation mode, you should not use preemptive threads.

OSL Scripting Components

Bo Klintberg spoke to the BAMADA audience as part of his US tour of MADA affiliates. Bo hails from Sweden, where he is hard at work putting the finishing touches on his AppleEvent/AppleScript support library for MacApp. The package is very complete, with a format modeled after MacApp's. It comes with source code (C++), sample apps, an introductory guide, cookbook, class and method reference, 411 help files, and an OSL Scripting Suite reference. The documentation comes to over three hundred pages. Unlike Ken Ryall's MAScript package, which modifies the MacApp source code to add AppleEvent support to existing MacApp classes, OSL Scripting Components leaves the MacApp code untouched and provides a whole new set of classes for dealing with AppleEvents. There are separate classes for client events (which send requests) and server events (which respond to requests). To support a new AppleEvent, your subclass must override the PrepareMessage and ReplyComplete methods; most of the other work is handled for you.

OSL Scripting Components will come with demo applications for an AppleEvent client, an AppleEvent server, and an AppleScript recordable application. In the future, Bo would like to add handlers for the AppleEvent table and database suites. Personally, I wanted him to hurry up and get back to Sweden so that we could get this package sooner; it looks like a winner for AppleEvent and AppleScript programming in MacApp. Hopefully by the time you read this Software Frameworks Association will have announced availability and pricing.

Next time…

BAMADA meets the first Thursday of each month at 7pm at 4 Infinite Loop in Apple's R&D campus in Cupertino. At the November meeting, members of Apple's MacApp team will discuss the upcoming 3.1 release. Also, Tom Becker will be giving a demonstrations on drag and drop, and show a new class that does it for you with no code additions. If you're interested in speaking at an upcoming meeting, or want to be placed on the mailing list for BAMADA announcements, contact Eric Hanig or Tom Becker at ABI.FC (AppleLink), Eric_Hanig@apldbio.com (Internet), or call 800-874-9869 extension 8902.

 
AAPL
$102.47
Apple Inc.
+2.71
MSFT
$44.88
Microsoft Corpora
+0.80
GOOG
$526.54
Google Inc.
+5.70

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

RapidWeaver 6.0 - Create template-based...
RapidWeaver is a next-generation Web design application to help you easily create professional-looking Web sites in minutes. No knowledge of complex code is required, RapidWeaver will take care of... Read more
NTFS 12.0.39 - Provides full read and wr...
Paragon NTFS breaks down the barriers between Windows and OS X. Paragon NTFS effectively solves the communication problems between the Mac system and NTFS, providing full read and write access to... Read more
RestoreMeNot 2.0.3 - Disable window rest...
RestoreMeNot provides a simple way to disable the window restoration for individual applications so that you can fine-tune this behavior to suit your needs. Please note that RestoreMeNot is designed... Read more
Macgo Blu-ray Player 2.10.9.1750 - Blu-r...
Macgo Mac Blu-ray Player can bring you the most unforgettable Blu-ray experience on your Mac. Overview Macgo Mac Blu-ray Player can satisfy just about every need you could possibly have in a Blu-ray... Read more
Apple iOS 8.1 - The latest version of Ap...
The latest version of iOS can be downloaded through iTunes. Apple iOS 8 comes with big updates to apps you use every day, like Messages and Photos. A whole new way to share content with your family.... Read more
TechTool Pro 7.0.5 - Hard drive and syst...
TechTool Pro is now 7, and this is the most advanced version of the acclaimed Macintosh troubleshooting utility created in its 20-year history. Micromat has redeveloped TechTool Pro 7 to be fully 64... Read more
PDFKey Pro 4.0.2 - Edit and print passwo...
PDFKey Pro can unlock PDF documents protected for printing and copying when you've forgotten your password. It can now also protect your PDF files with a password to prevent unauthorized access and/... Read more
Yasu 2.9.1 - System maintenance app; per...
Yasu was originally created with System Administrators who service large groups of workstations in mind, Yasu (Yet Another System Utility) was made to do a specific group of maintenance tasks... Read more
Hazel 3.3 - Create rules for organizing...
Hazel is your personal housekeeper, organizing and cleaning folders based on rules you define. Hazel can also manage your trash and uninstall your applications. Organize your files using a... Read more
Autopano Giga 3.7 - Stitch multiple imag...
Autopano Giga allows you to stitch 2, 20, or 2,000 images. Version 3.0 integrates impressive new features that will definitely make you adopt Autopano Pro or Autopano Giga: Choose between 9... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Swap Heroes (Games)
Swap Heroes 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: **Half price for a limited time only** Swap Heroes is a casual turn-based strategy adventure. Form a group of heroes and guide them... | Read more »
Ghost Blade (Games)
Ghost Blade 1.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: Get the most outstanding 3D Action Game from App Store NOW! For those who dare pursue dreams. Masterpiece of Yu Shi Game ---China... | Read more »
Fiete – A Day on a Farm Review
Fiete – A Day on a Farm Review By Amy Solomon on October 21st, 2014 Our Rating: :: A MEMORABLE EXPERIENCEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Fiete – A day on a farm in an interactive app for young children full of... | Read more »
Tilt to Live: Gauntlet’s Revenge is Almo...
Tilt to Live: Gauntlet’s Revenge is Almost Here Posted by Jessica Fisher on October 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] One Man Left has announced the official release date of Tilt to Live: Gauntlet’s Re | Read more »
Sago Mini Monsters Celebrates Halloween...
Sago Mini Monsters Celebrates Halloween with Fun Costumes and Special Treats. Posted by Jessica Fisher on October 21st, 2014 [ permal | Read more »
Inferno 2 Review
Inferno 2 Review By Andrew Fisher on October 21st, 2014 Our Rating: :: TWIN STICK GOODNESSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad With tight controls and awesome, stark visuals, Inferno 2 is loads of fun.   | Read more »
Clips Review
Clips Review By Jennifer Allen on October 21st, 2014 Our Rating: :: CONVENIENT PASTINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Making copying and pasting more powerful than usual, Clips is a great way to move stuff around.   | Read more »
MonSense Review
MonSense Review By Jennifer Allen on October 21st, 2014 Our Rating: :: ORGANIZED FINANCESiPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad Organize your finances with the quick and easy to use, MonSense.   | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: October 13-17, 201...
Expert App Reviewers   So little time and so very many apps. What’s a poor iPhone/iPad lover to do? Fortunately, 148Apps is here to give you the rundown on the latest and greatest releases. And we even have a tremendous back catalog of reviews; just... | Read more »
Angry Birds Transformers Review
Angry Birds Transformers Review By Jennifer Allen on October 20th, 2014 Our Rating: :: TRANSFORMED BIRDSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Transformed in a way you wouldn’t expect, Angry Birds Transformers is a quite... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

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
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $100 o...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Read more
Strong iPhone, Mac And App Store Sales Drive...
Apple on Monday announced financial results for its fiscal 2014 fourth quarter ended September 27, 2014. The Company posted quarterly revenue of $42.1 billion and quarterly net profit of $8.5 billion... Read more
Apple Posts How-To For OS X Recovery
OS X 10.7 Lion and later include OS X Recovery. This feature includes all of the tools you need to reinstall OS X, repair your disk, and even restore from a Time Machine backup. OS X Recovery... Read more
Mac OS X Versions (Builds) Supported By Vario...
Apple Support has posted a handy resource explaining which Mac OS X versions (builds) originally shipped with or are available for your computer via retail discs, downloads, or Software Update. Apple... Read more
Deals on 2011 13-inch MacBook Airs, from $649
Daily Steals has the Mid-2011 13″ 1.7GHz i5 MacBook Air (4GB/128GB) available for $699 with a 90 day warranty. The Mid-2011 13″ 1.7GHz i5 MacBook Air (4GB/128GB SSD) is available for $649 at Other... Read more
2013 15-inch 2.0GHz Retina MacBook Pro availa...
B&H Photo has leftover previous-generation 15″ 2.0GHz Retina MacBook Pros now available for $1599 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $400 off original MSRP. B&H... Read more
Updated iPad Prices
We’ve updated our iPad Air Price Tracker and our iPad mini Price Tracker with the latest information on prices and availability from Apple and other resellers, including the new iPad Air 2 and the... Read more
Apple Pay Available to Millions of Visa Cardh...
Visa Inc. brings secure, convenient payments to iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3as well as iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Starting October 20th, eligible Visa cardholders in the U.S. will be able to use Apple Pay,... Read more
Textkraft Pocket – the missing TextEdit for i...
infovole GmbH has announced the release and immediate availability of Textkraft Pocket 1.0, a professional text editor and note taking app for Apple’s iPhone. In March 2014 rumors were all about... Read more

Jobs Board

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
Position Opening at *Apple* - Apple (United...
…customers purchase our products, you're the one who helps them get more out of their new Apple technology. Your day in the Apple Store is filled with a range of Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.