Aug 86 Mousehole
|Column Tag:||Mousehole Report
By Rusty Hodge , Mousehole BBS
This month its MouseFest time again. We'll be at the Anaheim Mac MacFest show having a great time as usual. Southern California is a hotbed of Mac activity, so we're expecting a great show. Maybe we'll see you there!
If you are interested in getting on the 'Hole, drop us a SASE at Post Office Box 2323, Orange, CA 92669. Even if you don't have a modem but want to share some gossip or ask a question, write to us. We will pass on the most interesting questions to the rest of the MouseHolers. Until next time- Rusty.
Mac + Woes
I have a couple of problems with programs on the new ROMS. I use EDIT 2.0 to read my massive downloads from RR. EDIT has real problems with cut and paste with the new ROMS. I would use QUED etc. except that they all run with 32K text max. Know of any other text editors that work with large text files? Also, does anyone have the patches to MazeWars to allow it to run on the Mac+? Thanks much, and glad to hear you are back up. I missed my weekly MouseHole fix.
MazeWars is no longer an Apple freebie (it never really was); in fact it is no longer in the tech library up there. I've been told that the guys that wrote it are going to sell it along with a bunch of other Appletalk games. Oh Boy, I can't wait to shoot my Supervisor right in the eyeball! Did anybody catch the color Mac at the beginning of Short Circuit? I would bet that it was actually a kludge for the film. That is, they wanted the graphic of the robot arm in color and Apple had paid big bucks for exposure of the Mac so someone stuck a fake CRT into a dummy Mac body. Only guessing of course. I doubt the color Mac will look like that.
Stupid HFS Bug of the Week Club
Have any of you tried doing a 'set startup' to an application that sits on the desktop? The "final" version of finder (5.3) and system (3.2) only finds the path when the application is in a folder! Try it.
Those of you who have more than one Mac hooked to a Laser ...
The first one to use it after it's powered up loads the "Laser Prep", and if it happens to be an "older" version, everyone else with current drivers is locked out of printing. It tells you to turn the printer off and on. I hate doing that. I loathe things without a reset button.
So use your LW Download program to send the following PostScript program to the Laser. It resets the printer without power-cycling:
systemdict begin exit
Want to unprotect a MS Basic program? If you call the download section, there's a text file called Basic Unprotect by the Ant Killer. It's very simple and straight forward. [Note: A far easier approach is to run our unprotect program we published in last month's MacTutor. It automatically finds and unprotects the program in memory. -Ed.]
All you need is a Memory Disassembler DA that can also be found in the downloads.
Simply put, what you need to do is insert at the beginning of your program a number telling basic the length of the first line so that the interpreter can list it.
You open Basic, then open your protected program (w/out running it), then you choose new from the menu. What this does is reset (in memory) the line counters to 00 00. So using your DA you search through memory, find the beginning of your program, count the bits between the 00 00 markers, then poke it to the first 00 00, save the program, then open it and save it again.
Anyway...download the file, it is easy and straight forward and could save your life sometime.
The story of System 3.2
The reasons behind the two releases of Finder 5.3-System 3.2.... On Monday (couple of weeks ago) the System was 'frozen' and released.
The next day, an Apple employee was using 'Localizer' to change some resources for a foreign version. After the change, he/she discovered that there were still some resources that hadn't been altered. To make a long story short, they soon discovered that there were many resources duplicated in the System. About 20% by volume. The second release removes the duplicates. I guess that everybody at Apple uses hard disks, and wouldn't notice an extra 40-60k.
Being one of the luck few to get one of the first ever AT20's, I can tell you it IS superior to a HyperDrive, not only in speed, (it's at least a factor of 2 faster in some cases), but the reliability of the Micah Drive is far, far, better than Hyper. I travel with my Mac almost constantly, and the ability to 'take a lickin and keep on tickin' (sorry Timex) is important to me. I had no less than 3 Hyper 20's fail on me on business trips, once in the middle of an important presentation. The Micah has been on no less than 7 trips with me, all by air, and it still hasn't skipped a bit. I recommend them highly. Good product, great support, and good software.
Lisp, SmallTalk-80, etc...
Some time ago a question was posed as to whether or not you can use SmallTalk-80 for the Macintosh on the Mac +. I am presently using it on the Mac + with an HD 20. Though I have found some unusual features in the package, for $50 dollars you can not really go that off! The key to making SmallTalk-80 work is having the memory, disk space, and reading their docs! Now, for the first time (well, sort of), you are able to use SmallTalk-80 on your Mac (not just your Mac XL)! I highly recommend the package as a cost effective way to get into the object oriented programming environment!
Seriously there are about three people up at Apple that I have spoken to you with some consistency and they are really excited about their product and getting the public involved. They are trying to get a newsletter going, anyone want to get involved with that? To end a very dull paragraph, SmallTalk-80 is an enjoyable, productive environment to create working protos or models of problems that the software community faces today.
On that note, has anyone heard anything about a rumor that PPI (of Objective C fame) is coming out for a version for the Mac? I use their C for the Sun 3 and love it! If anyone knows anything please contact me, as right now I am forced to go to work at all hours of the day, night, weekends to accomplish tasks that could be modeled on the Mac!
I recently got the new version of ExperLisp (MACOWACO shudders!) version 1.5 w/ speech & compiler. Believe it or not I have not had a great deal of trouble with the product! It is not copy protected, though they did make it so that any registered owner would have to be nuts to give it out! It does not produce stand alone code, but it does allow saving of compiled code. The only thing that I have done with it do far is create a model of a LMI Lambda communicating via TCP/IP with a VAX running SIMSCRIPT II.5, but it did not bomb once! I did note the fact that several of the routines needed to be modified to work on the LMI (needless to say I doubt ExperTelligence is at fault there!), but I was able to create a a workable presentation for demonstrating the interface that we are creating without having to waste too much time on the VAX or LMI. Is it worth it now? Well, sort of. I will speak about ExperTelligence newest product ExperProlog // when I have had more time to play with it. On a first glance it too, was not that bad!
I finally got a return call for my troubles with MacServe (lots of random bombs).
The only thing the tech guy could tell me was to use ONLY MacServe volumes and minimize HFS volumes. Create a dummy two meg volume for system dynamics then build the volumes for other stuff. When done remove the dummy volume.
This gives a good amount of contiguous disk space for the system. I told him I want to use the HFS folders for nonserver stuff and he told me I'd get better performance if I did them all with MacServe.
Needless to say that would be a definite step backward, I told him so and he says that... "so little has been documented about HFS that there is no way of knowing to what degree the HD is fragmented." I ask you guys...is this so or what?
400K HFS Finder 5.2
Finder 5.2 normally makes 400K disks MFS (non-hierarchical) volumes.
Even if you have formatted a 400K disk with the Option key down, thereby making it an HFS volume, when you copy that volume in its entirety onto another 400K disk, the target disk is a flat volume with "little pretend folders" instead of true subdirectories.
An undocumented feature of Finder 5.2 is that, if you hold down Option when copying one 400K disk to another (by dragging the disk icon onto the other disk icon), the target volume will become an HFS volume, regardless of whether it was formatted that way in the first place.
Here are a few known bugs in the current release of System/Finder/Chooser (3.1.1, 5.2). These came from a techie at General Computer, and will soon be announced with fixes in an Apple release (3.2, 5.3).
1) The Resource Manager in the 128k ROMS, has a problem with odd sized resources. Be very careful, as this bug can trash your system totally, and if you are running a hard drive -any brand- it may cause your hard drive to be unreadable.
2) Chooser does not call _UpdateResFile after you change your printer options. This means the new printer info is not written out to disk in some cases. Suggested fix- run chooser from within another app only. This will guarantee that the changes get written out when the application closes normally.
3) Finder 5.2 does not close and update open resources when exiting via Shut Down. This can cause corruption of the resource map and leave the file unreadable.
The latest unofficial word from Apple (I called about this) is we may see System 3.2 released with the RM bugs fixed, and the rest of the bug chasing will continue into 3.3. If not there will be a fix (installer scripted) for problems, and a new Finder. It depends on a couple of other known bugs planned to be fixed in 3.2, being fixed. When 3.2 is released, a new Finder and Chooser will accompany it. If you know of any bugs in the ROMS, let them know at Tech Support and maybe we can get them fixed in this release.