TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Prograph 2.0
Volume Number:7
Issue Number:1
Column Tag:Tools of the Trade

Prograph 2.0

By Dave Kelly, MacTutor Editorial Board

Prograph Grows Up

As announced earlier in 1990, TGS Systems’ compiler for the Prograph object-oriented programming environment is here. Refer to the March 1990 (Vol. 6 No. 3) MacTutor for an introduction to the Prograph environment. Prograph is now a real development environment. If you have been waiting for the Prograph compiler to try Prograph, the waiting is over. Prograph is a delightful language to use. I have enjoyed working with it. Now that the compiler is available, Prograph has been added to the list of viable development languages available on the Macintosh.

There are a few improvements from Prograph Editor/Interpreter version 1.2 to 2.0. Some of the improvements include:

• Undo of Delete

• Propagate Comments

• cmd key equivalents improved (cmd-I for Info etc.)

• Ability to Hide/Show classes

• Memory Status item in Info menu

• Check Program status in Info menu for checking syntax.

• Improved Options panel: Option to not close editor windows when executing a method; option to make backups automatically.

• Paste pictures and icons directly from the clipboard into Pict (System Class) and Icon window items in Application builder.

• use shift-option-command-click to open a value window

• Menu item editor permits menu items to have either style information or multi-key key equivalents.

• wind-draw-prep method provided in class Window to do SetPort on the window.

• Window-items with click methods now provide the event record as an input to the click method.

• several new primitive (methods provided by Prograph) and full support of Inside Macintosh volumes I-V is provided (with a few exceptions).

• XPrim C-code protocol has been changes to that the same code may be used in both the interpreter and the compiler, with only a compiler switch.

• New XPrim called XLink™ from CEL Software that lets you call HyperCard XCMDs and XFCNs.

THE COMPILER

The obvious advantages to compiling a program is that compiled programs run faster than interpreted programs, large interpreted programs take up more space than compiled programs, and interpreted programs require that the interpreter be present (they are not stand alone). In addition, most developers don’t want their programs modified; interpreted programs are open to modifications.

You can almost use the Prograph Compiler blindfolded. The compiler can be launched directly from the interpreter and in Multifinder, you can switch between the two applications. To compile a program, you must create a Prograph project. Clicking in the blank area of the project window prompts you for your program file and adds two special library files automatically. One file, SCLibrary, contains code for the Prograph system classes, and must be present if your Prograph program uses the system classes. The file Library contains runtime and Mac Toolbox code; this file must always be included. Next, just select Build Application from the Project menu and a dialog prompts you to give a name for you new application. Or you may choose Run and run the program immediately after compiling. It’s as simple as that.

There are a few compiler options available too. Options include use of 68020/30 instructions, Integer Only Arithmetic, Multifinder settings, creator signature and other options. You may also add THINK C or MPW C object files. This code cannot be run under the interpreter. Calls to these routines must have empty methods, or stubs, when you run your Prograph program in the interpreter environment.

PERFORMANCE

You’re probably wondering just how the Prograph compiler compares to other compilers. The smallest application that can be created with Prograph is about 50K. The Prograph Library adds 50K to any application. Then if you use system classes (which most people will), you add another 80K, a total of 130K overhead). After the overhead, the code size varies depending on what is in the code.

Before doing any benchmark comparisons with regard to this, I must caution you to realize that there are many other factors which effect the overall performance that benchmarks cannot adequately show. With that in mind, here are some results of benchmarks I ran with Prograph. I only checked the compiler response since I’m not interested in comparing interpreters. The Prograph interpreter is great for development, debugging, and testing your program. However, any interpreter is SLOW! no matter how you look at it especially when compared to a compiled system.

Remember the accuracy benchmark I used to compare BASIC a few years ago. This program re-written for Prograph is shown in the first program. (The printout was generated from Prograph printed output). The accuracy method shown at the bottom first gets the tick count and then calls the main loop with the initial conditions set. In the main loop, s is added to x times x and x is added to .00123. This loop is repeated 1000 times and then the answer is displayed. On a Macintosh Plus, the benchmark gave the correct answer of s=503.5438021499999912 and x=1.229999999999999985 in 9.25 seconds. The same routine took .85 seconds on a IIci (with cache card). As you can see there was some round off errors past the 8th significant digit, but the result was acceptable. The time should be ignored since I also used the System class (i.e. the Macintosh shell) running when I ran the benchmark. I suspect that this slows down performance because of event handling. Also, the Evaluate operation (for evaluating mathematical expressions) is more efficient for math operations. I’m not using the Evaluate operation; the effect of different operations will effect the results.

The next benchmark is the familiar Sieve of Erastothenes. The version shown below is the fastest of the versions of the Sieve that I ran and I am still cautious when looking at these results. Depending on the implementation of the loops and allocation of memory for variables, etc. the speed can vary quite a bit. The routine shown executes the prime number generation only one time. In the comparisons I have done in the past, I ran 10 iterations. In this case I multiplied the result by 10 to approximate what the result would be for 10 iterations. The Macintosh Plus generated 1899 primes (10 iterations) in 126 seconds. This turns out to be about the same time as True Basic (Ref. The Complete MacTutor, Vol. 2, pg. 380-381). On the IIci, the time was about 14 seconds.

As I stated to begin with, the results don’t necessarily represent the overall performance. According to these results, it is evident that there is some performance lost in exchange for the ability to use object oriented programming. This implies that if speed is a requirement Prograph may not be the best choice to use.

Mark Szpakowski of Prograph sums it all up: “We did comparison benchmarks between Prograph 2.0 and Parc Place Systems’ Smalltalk-80 on a Mac CX, both running compiled, and found performance about the same (some things we were better, some things they were better). Comparing integer and float computations with ThinkC, ThinkC is much faster. However, comparing OOP operations, such as method selection based on class of input data, we have a slight edge over ThinkC 4.0. The bottom line is that if someone wants or needs high performance in math computations, they can write their code in Think or MPW C or assembler, and then link that with their compiled Prograph code. For most stuff, though, Prograph is not only productive, but, fun!”

Learning and using Prograph is fun and the learning curve is much shorter than for other languages. In spite of the benchmark results, I still like Prograph enough to continue using it to develop real applications. In addition, C object code can be used to speed up the slower routines.

Prograph 2.0 is available from:

TGS Systems

1127 Barrington St.,Suite 19

Halifax, NS B3H 2P8

Canada

(902) 429-5642

FAX: (902) 425-0561

Order toll free from the US: 1-800-565-1978

AppleLink: CDA0242

CompuServe: 73300,3460

BIX: szpak

Bitnet: gunakar@tuns

America Online: szpak

The W.E.L.L.: szpak

Price: $395 + $5 shipping

Requires: Mac Plus with 128K ROM; 1M RAM

No copy protection

In addition a Prograph BBS operated by TGS Systems is at (902) 423-4921, accessible at 300/1200/2400 baud, 8 bits, no parity, almost 24 hrs/day. This has private mail, public message areas, and file areas for uploading and downloading Prograph code.

 
AAPL
$116.47
Apple Inc.
+0.16
MSFT
$47.98
Microsoft Corpora
-0.72
GOOG
$537.50
Google Inc.
+2.67

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Cobook 3.0.7 - Intelligent address book....
Cobook Contacts is an intuitive, engaging address book. Solve the problem of contact management with Cobook Contacts and its simple interface and powerful syncing and integration possibilities.... Read more
StatsBar 1.9 - Monitor system processes...
StatsBar gives you a comprehensive and detailed analysis of the following areas of your Mac: CPU usage Memory usage Disk usage Network and bandwidth usage Battery power and health (MacBooks only)... Read more
Cyberduck 4.6 - FTP and SFTP browser. (F...
Cyberduck is a robust FTP/FTP-TLS/SFTP browser for the Mac whose lack of visual clutter and cleverly intuitive features make it easy to use. Support for external editors and system technologies such... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more
Evernote 6.0.1 - Create searchable notes...
Evernote allows you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at anytime, from... Read more
calibre 2.11 - Complete e-library manage...
Calibre is a complete e-book library manager. Organize your collection, convert your books to multiple formats, and sync with all of your devices. Let Calibre be your multi-tasking digital... Read more
Herald 5.0.1 - Notification plugin for M...
Note: Versions 2.1.3 (for OS X 10.7), 3.0.6 (for OS X 10.8), and 4.0.8 (for OS X 10.9) are no longer supported by the developer. Herald is a notification plugin for Mail.app, Apple's Mac OS X email... Read more
Firetask 3.7 - Innovative task managemen...
Firetask uniquely combines the advantages of classical priority-and-due-date-based task management with GTD. Stay focused and on top of your commitments - Firetask's "Today" view shows all relevant... Read more
TechTool Pro 7.0.6 - 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
PhotoDesk 3.0.1 - Instagram client for p...
PhotoDesk lets you view, like, comment, and download Instagram pictures/videos! (NO Uploads! / Image Posting! Instagram forbids that! AND you *need* an *existing* Instagram account). But you can do... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Ubisoft Gives Everyone Two New Ways to E...
Ubisoft Gives Everyone Two New Ways to Earn In-Game Stuff for Far Cry 4 Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Golfinity – Tips, Tricks, Strategies, an...
Dig this: Would you like to know what we thought of being an infinite golfer? Check out our Golfinity review! Golfinity offers unlimited ways to test your skills at golf. Here are a few ways to make sure your score doesn’t get too high and your... | Read more »
Dark Hearts, The Sequel to Haunting Meli...
Dark Hearts, The Sequel to Haunting Melissa, is Available Now Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Meowza! Toyze Brings Talking Tom to Life...
Meowza! | Read more »
Square Enix Announces New Tactical RPG f...
Square Enix Announces New Tactical RPG for Mobile, Heavenstrike Rivals. Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] With their epic stories and gorgeous graphics, | Read more »
Quest for Revenge (Games)
Quest for Revenge 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: The great Kingdom of the west has fallen. The gods ignore the prayers of the desperate. A dark warlord has extinguished... | Read more »
Threadz is a New Writing Adventure for Y...
Threadz is a New Writing Adventure for You and Your Friends Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 21st, 2014 [ permalink ] In the tradition of round-robin storytelling, | Read more »
SteelSeries Stratus XL Hardware Review
Made by: SteelSeries Price: $59.99 Hardware/iOS Integration Rating: 4 out of 5 stars Usability Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars Reuse Value Rating: 4.25 out of 5 stars Build Quality Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars Overall Rating: 4.31 out of 5 stars | Read more »
ACDSee (Photography)
ACDSee 1.0.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Photography Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Capture, perfect, and share your photos with ACDSee. The ACDSee iPhone app combines an innovative camera, a powerful photo... | Read more »
ProTube for YouTube (Entertainment)
ProTube for YouTube 2.0.2 Device: iOS Universal Category: Entertainment Price: $1.99, Version: 2.0.2 (iTunes) Description: ProTube is the ultimate, fully featured YouTube app. With it's highly polished design, ProTube offers ad-free... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Save up to $400 with Apple refurbished 2014 1...
The Apple Store has restocked Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros for up to $400 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping... Read more
New 13-inch 1.4GHz MacBook Air on sale for $8...
 Adorama has the 2014 13″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $899.99 including free shipping plus NY & NJ tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. B&H Photo has the 13″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook... Read more
Apple Expected to Reverse Nine-Month Tablet S...
Apple and Samsung combined accounted for 62 percent of the nearly 36 million branded tablets shipped in 3Q 2014, according to early vendor shipment share estimates from market intelligence firm ABI... Read more
Stratos: 30 Percent of US Smartphone Owners t...
Stratos, Inc., creator of the Bluetooth Connected Card Platform, has announced results from its 2014 Holiday Mobile Payments Survey. The consumer survey found that nearly one out of three (30 percent... Read more
2014 1.4GHz Mac mini on sale for $449, save $...
 B&H Photo has lowered their price on the new 1.4GHz Mac mini to $449.99 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $50 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this new... Read more
Check Apple prices on any device with the iTr...
MacPrices is proud to offer readers a free iOS app (iPhones, iPads, & iPod touch) and Android app (Google Play and Amazon App Store) called iTracx, which allows you to glance at today’s lowest... Read more
64GB iPod touch on sale for $249, save $50
Best Buy has the 64GB iPod touch on sale for $249 on their online store for a limited time. Their price is $50 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale price for... Read more
15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $17...
 B&H Photo has the 2014 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1799.99 for a limited time. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. B&H will also include free copies of... Read more
New Logitech AnyAngle Case/Stand Brings Flexi...
Logitec has announced the newest addition to its suite of tablet products — the Logitech AnyAngle. A protective case with an any-angle stand for iPad Air 2 and all iPad mini models, AnyAngle is the... Read more
Notebook PC Shipments Rise Year-Over-Year as...
According to preliminary results from the upcoming DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report, the global notebook PC market grew 10 percent year-over-year in Q3’14 to 49.4... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC)- Retail S...
**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, *Apple* Financial Services...
**Job Summary** Apple Financial Services (AFS) offers consumers, businesses and educational institutions ways to finance Apple purchases. We work with national and Read more
*Apple* Store Leader Program - College Gradu...
Job Description: Job Summary As an Apple Store Leader Program agent, you can continue your education as you major in the art of leadership at the Apple Store. You'll Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
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
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.