TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Volume Number:2
Issue Number:12
Column Tag:Programmer's Forum

Notes From TML To LSP

By Thomas Scheiderich, Interez Travel Reservation Systems

For a while it seemed if you wanted to do any programming in Pascal on the Mac, you must either bear the cost of a Macintosh and a Lisa to do any serious programming, or you could always use MacPascal. Neither was an acceptable solution. Those with larger bank accounts could afford two machines but that was unacceptable for most of us. MacPascal was also unthinkable since it does not generate compiled code, but like most interpreters it is easier to develop code than the compile/link method.

Enter TML Pascal. When TML came onto the scene about a year ago, there were nothing but raves about the product. I was ecstatic when I started using it myself. The only capability that seemed to be missing was the ability to compile and link separate units. For many of us this was not a problem, as it was promised in a further release. So we all continued to develop our programs, and except for the units problem continued to rave about the program. How can you put down a product that measures up to equivalent compilers (C, Forth and Fortran) that cost three, four and five times as much. But as our programs got larger, compile times got longer and there was still no units capability. Four or five changes and compiles could take an hour or more.

Wouldn't it be nice to have the capabilities of both TML and MacPascal to do our development! And LightSpeed Pascal comes as close to this as I believe you are likely to see. I found I was developing code in hours that would have taken me days or weeks to do under TML.

This is not a review of LightSpeed Pascal, but an impression of the program I have from having used both TML and LightSpeed. I will be showing you some of the differences between the two development systems and some of the problems I encountered in my experience with the new program. It is important to note that these tests are run on a old 512K Mac with the old Roms and 400K drives.

First of all, for those of you who are currently using TML and wish to convert to LightSpeed, you will find the conversion very easy. The first step is to change the compiler directives. In your TML source you may have some lines similar to the following:

{$I MemTypes.ipas  }
{$I QuickDraw.ipas }
{$I OSIntf.ipas    }
{$I ToolIntf.ipas  }
{$I PackIntf.ipas  }
{$L  Grow/Rsrc }

These lines need to be removed and replaced with


The first line "{$I-}" tells the compiler that you don't want LightSpeed to do automatic initialization. You should always put this in your code or else the program may work when running in project mode and may not work when the code is converted into an application. The second line "{$R-}" tells the compiler you want range checking off. This is only necessary if you have this line in your TML code or you don't have the range checking option defined at all. This is because LightSpeed defaults to range checking on and TML defaults to range checking off. If you have range checking off in TML and range checking on in LightSpeed, code that worked under TML may not work under LightSpeed.

Second, if you are using a resource file, you must remove the ".REL" extension from the ".R." file and change it to anything else so that RMaker does not compile the resource file in REL format. LightSpeed suggests ".RSRC", but in actuality any extension or no extension will do. You must declare something, however, or RMaker won't compile the file. Then you run RMaker to create the new resource file. Next you must tell LightSpeed about the resource file by selecting "Run Options" from the Project menu. When the dialog box appears, check the resource box and choose the resource file to use (if you haven't converted the resource file from the REL format, the file won't appear).

Third, if you have your comments on multiple lines surrounded by only two curly braces you will get an error. For example:

{this comment section
must be changed}

which works in TML, must be changed to

{this comment section}
{must be changed}

for the code to work in LightSpeed.

This was all that was necessary to get my old TML code running under LightSpeed. My program is a terminal emulator for a Data General which uses multiple windows (text and drawing) and does file transfers. It currently is about 1200 lines long. I used this program for my testing and also the famous Sieve program to do comparisons between the two compilers.

The relative speeds and sizes are compared in the following tables. As can be seen from the tables, the application programs are larger (about 2k) in the LightSpeed versions. I talked to the LightSpeed people about this and apparently the program does a certain amount of routine stripping to keep the application to a reasonable size. The TML stripping linker is a little better (my application was 14K under TML version 1.0 and 8K under 1.1). Routines you reference may cause LightSpeed to pull in related routines even if they aren't used. This is apparently a tradeoff for speed. 2K seems to be close to the maximum difference between from TML and LightSpeed as can be seen from the graphs and tables.

The development speeds reflect the time it takes to make changes and and execute the programs. As can be seen you can make a change and test it in less than a minute (about 30 seconds if not saving the text). In TML this would take about 5 minutes - five to ten times longer.

The Sieve program has been used in benchmarks of other compilers and I decided to use it to compare these two. The code I used was:

 SIZE = 8190;
 GOTOXY(10, 10);
 FOR ITER := 1 TO 50 DO    {THIS IS USUALLY 1 TO 10}
 COUNT := 0;
 PRIME := i + i + 3;
 {gotoxy(10, 12);}
 {ERASE_LINE(12, 10, 10);}
 {numtostring(prime, textstring);}
 k := i + prime;
 WHILE k <= size DO
 flags[k] := false;
 k := k + prime;
 count := count + 1;
 gotoxy(10, 14);
 ERASE_LINE(14, 10, 15);
 numtostring(count, textstring);
 gotoxy(15, 14);

It was rather interesting that if you display the prime numbers as they are found, TML seems a little faster and when the numbers aren't displayed LightSpeed seems a little faster. It seems that LightSpeed's computations are a little better but TML's handling of QuickDraw may be a little faster.

I would liked to have compared the units capability of the two compilers, except as of this writing, it was not available on TML. It is now released as version 2.0.

Some notes on LightSpeed:

Type cohersion cannot always be done within a procedure or a function statement. According to LightSpeed the rule is: if the variable in the procedure is a "var" parameter you cannot use type cohersion; if not a "var", you can. They say it is a high priority to make this more like Lisa Pascal by removing this restriction.

You cannot get the assembler source like you can in TML. This may be a problem if you want to optimize a piece of code. This is apparently not a high priority item with them. It would also be a little more difficult to do, according to them, because the compilation doesn't go through the normal "compile to assembler source" and then assemble that code. They go directly from Pascal source to machine code.

Segmentation is handled differently. LSP requires segmentation at unit boundaries, while TML allows the segment option to be placed directly in the code. Also, LSP uses all the space in the first segment for it's libraries so that your main program must be limited to about 5K in the first segment, with everything else in units placed in the second segment. Yet when the application is built, your program may fit entirely within segment one. Thus our 14K program required two segments with only a 5K main in segment one.

LSP also does not have objects and LS is moving slow on this. TML on the other hand supports objects in 2.0.

All in all, I was very impressed with the product and had no problems with it, once I found out about the range checking, REL resource and curly brackets differences. I think there is going to be less of a demand for MPW with this around.


Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

TruckSimulation 16 guide: How to succeed...
Remember those strangely enjoyable truck missions in Grand Theft Auto V whereit was a disturbing amount of fun to deliver cargo? TruckSimulation 16 is reminiscent of that, and has you play the role of a truck driver who has to deliver various... | Read more »
The best GIF making apps
Animated GIFs have exploded in popularity recently which is likely thanks to a combination of Tumblr, our shorter attention spans, and the simple fact they’re a lot of fun. [Read more] | Read more »
The best remote desktop apps for iOS
We've been sifting through the App Store to find the best ways to do computer tasks on a tablet. That gave us a thought - what if we could just do computer tasks from our tablets? Here's a list of the best remote desktop apps to help you use your... | Read more »
Warhammer 40,000: Freeblade guide - How...
Warhammer 40,000: Freebladejust launched in the App Store and it lets you live your childhood dream of blowing up and slashing a bunch of enemies as a massive, hulking Space Marine. It's not easy being a Space Marine though - and particularly if... | Read more »
Gopogo guide - How to bounce like the be...
Nitrome just launched a new game and, as to be expected, it's a lot of addictive fun. It's called Gopogo, and it challenges you to hoparound a bunch of platforms, avoiding enemies and picking up shiny stuff. It's not easy though - just like the... | Read more »
Sago Mini Superhero (Education)
Sago Mini Superhero 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: KAPOW! Jack the rabbit bursts into the sky as the Sago Mini Superhero! Fly with Jack as he lifts impossible weights,... | Read more »
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes guide - How...
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is all about collecting heroes, powering them up, and using them together to defeat your foes. It's pretty straightforward stuff for the most part, but increasing your characters' stats can be a bit confusing because it... | Read more »
The best cooking apps (just in time for...
It’s that time of year again, where you’ll be gathering around the dinner table with your family and a huge feast in front of you. [Read more] | Read more »
Square Rave guide - How to grab those te...
Square Rave is an awesome little music-oriented puzzle game that smacks of games like Lumines, but with its own unique sense of gameplay. To help wrap your head around the game, keep the following tips and tricks in mind. [Read more] | Read more »
Snowboard Party 2 (Games)
Snowboard Party 2 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Crowned the best snowboarding game available on the market, Snowboard Party is back to fulfill all your adrenaline needs in... | Read more »

Price Scanner via

Holiday weekend: Apple Watch on sale for $50-...
B&H Photo has the Apple Watch on sale today for $50-$100 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - Apple Watch Sport: $50 off - Apple Watch: $50-$100 off Read more
Holiday weekend: iPad Air 2s on sale for up t...
B&H Photo has iPad Air 2s on sale for up to $80 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 16GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $459 $40 off - 64GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $569 $30 off - 128GB iPad Air... Read more
Holiday weekend Mac sales roundup: B&H Ph...
B&H Photo continues to have all new Macs on sale for up to $500 off MSRP as part of their Black Friday/Holiday weekend sale. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina... Read more
iMobie Releases its Ace iOS Cleaner PhoneClea...
iMobie Inc. has announced the new update of PhoneClean 4, its iOS cleaner designed to reclaim wasted space on iPhone/iPad for use and keep the device fast. Alongside, iMobie hosts a 3-day giveaway of... Read more
U.S. Cellular Offering iPad Pro
U.S. Cellular today announced that it is offering the new iPad Pro with Wi-Fi + Cellular, featuring a 12.9-inch Retina display with 5.6 million pixels — the most ever in an iOS device. U.S. Cellular... Read more
Newegg Canada Unveils Black Friday Deals for...
Newegg Canada is offering more than 1,000 deep discounts to Canadian customers this Black Friday, available now through Cyber Monday, with new deals posted throughout the week. “Black Friday is... Read more
Black Friday: Macs on sale for up to $500 off...
BLACK FRIDAY B&H Photo has all new Macs on sale for up to $500 off MSRP as part of their early Black Friday sale including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $... Read more
Black Friday: Up to $125 off iPad Air 2s at B...
BLACK FRIDAY Walmart has the 16GB iPad Air 2 WiFi on sale for $100 off MSRP on their online store. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available): - 16GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $399, save $... Read more
Black Friday: iPad mini 4s on sale for $100 o...
BLACK FRIDAY Best Buy has iPad mini 4s on sale for $100 off MSRP on their online store for Black Friday. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available): - 16GB iPad mini 4 WiFi: $299.... Read more
Black Friday: Apple Watch for up to $100 off...
BLACK FRIDAY Apple resellers are offering discounts and bundles with the purchase of an Apple Watch this Black Friday. Below is a roundup of the deals being offered by authorized Watch resellers:... Read more

Jobs Board

Specialist *Apple* /Mac Desktop - University...
…technical support, expertise and user training for a variety of Apple /Macintosh hardware, software and devices.Researches, analyzes and resolves complex Apple Read more
*Apple* Site Security Manager - Apple (Unite...
# Apple Site Security Manager Job Number: 42975010 Culver City, Califo ia, United States Posted: Oct. 2, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** The Apple Site Read more
WiSE *Apple* Pay Quality Engineer - Apple (...
# WiSE Apple Pay Quality Engineer Job Number: 44313381 Santa Clara Valley, Califo ia, United States Posted: Nov. 13, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** Join our Read more
Holiday Retail Associate with *Apple* Knowl...
…and assertive.Someone who can troubleshoot iOS devices (iPhone and iPad) and Apple Mail issues.Someone who can offer solutions.Someone who can work weekends.Someone with Read more
*Apple* Systems Engineer (Mclean, VA and NYC...
Summary:Assist in providing strategic direction and technical leadership within the Apple portfolio, including desktops, laptops, and printing environment. This person Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.