TweetFollow Us on Twitter

CompileIt! 2.0
Volume Number:7
Issue Number:9
Column Tag:Tools of the Trade

CompileIt! 2.0!

By Dave Kelly, MacTutor Editorial Board

Most of you have seen Heizer Software’s CompileIt! 2.0 advertised. Let’s take a look at CompileIt! and what it can do for you. HyperCard is an easy going environment to work with. Because of that, HyperTalk has not been a favored language of developers. As you’ll see here, CompileIt! 2.0 overcomes nearly all of the objections to using HyperTalk as a serious development environment.

Objection #1: HyperTalk is too slow. You pay a price for convenience and ease of use. HyperTalk 1.2.x is an interpreted language. When messages are caught by a handler, the words in the handler script are turned into tokens that are interpreted by HyperCard. In HyperTalk 2.0, the handler scripts are turned into tokens and then compiled into machine language. Thus HyperCard 2.0 is faster once the handler scripts are compiled (memory permitting though since compiled handlers are purged to make room for new ones). Still, most of us don’t think that this is enough. With CompileIt! 2.0 you can boost the speed of most if not all of your handlers.

Objection #2: You can’t create a stand-alone application with HyperCard. CompileIt! doesn’t provide a solution for this problem, but there are other products appearing in the market that claim they can do this such as SuperCard which can save projects as stand-alone applications. Unless you are really short on disk space, you shouldn’t care about this that much anyway since nearly everyone has HyperCard.

Objection #3: HyperTalk doesn’t have complete access to the Macintosh ROMs. XCMDs and XFCNs provide support for virtually any ROM routine. This excuse is usually used by people that can’t or won’t program in C or Pascal. Creating externals with CompileIt! from your scripts is as easy as writing them in HyperTalk. Extensions added by CompileIt! make toolbox support much easier.

Objection #4: Protection of sensitive program code is difficult in HyperCard. Even though you can protect a stack, there are ways to break that protection. Compiled code doesn’t allow users to readily view the source code. With CompileIt! you can protect your valuable work by compiling sensitive code.

CompileIt! was designed to:

° Speed up HyperCard scripts

° translate HyperTalk scripts into 68000 machine language resulting in XCMDs and XFCNs that can be used by any HyperCard script.

° provide extensions to HyperTalk

USING CompileIt!

Although using CompileIt! comes fairly easy, it is highly recommended that you are experienced with HyperTalk scripts. You should be familiar with handlers, messages, and properties before using CompileIt!.

It’s very tempting to just paste in a script and begin compiling. The CompileIt! 2.0 program consists of a HyperCard stack that allows you to paste your script from the clipboard and then compile. It’s very interesting to note that CompileIt! 2.0 is much faster than earlier versions of CompileIt! That’s because CompileIt! 2.0 has been compiled with CompileIt! The compiling engine consists entirely of resources and only a single line of code that ties the HyperCard interface to the engine. This means that CompileIt! 2.0 can be totally customized to fit the developers needs - even going as far as creating a stand-alone application to hold it or moving it into other environments like Microphone II v3. All that is required to use the engine is a subset of the HyperCard 1.x XCMD interface.

Before using CompileIt! there are a few things that should be understood about the way CompileIt! works. The first part of CompileIt!’s 200 page manual helps you get started with a sample script. Experienced HyperTalk scripters will be able to get started quickly by going through about 7-10 pages of CompileIt! basics. Not every script can be made to run faster by compiling. Scripts that deal with HyperCard structures (that is menus, buttons, fields, cards, etc.) will not go much faster. They must still pass messages to HyperCard routines that still run the same speed. Get, Put, all forms of Repeat, Next (repeat), all forms of If-Then-Else, Abs, Add, Atan, Average, CharToNum, Cos, Delete, Divide, Exit, Exp, Exp1, Global, Length, Ln, Ln1, Log2, Min, Max, Multiply, Number(chunks), NumToChar, Offset, Param, Params, ParamCount, Pass, Random, Result, Return, Round, Sin, Sqrt, Subtract, Tan, Trunc, HyperTalk operators: Div, Mod, +, -, *, &, &&, , ¾, =, , <, >, And, Or, Not, Is Not, Is, /, ^, Constants, Ordinals, and Toolbox calls will all run faster after compiled with CompileIt!

You may need to optimize existing scripts to be sure that they don’t use too many callbacks to HyperCard. For example, the statement put x into y in the script below will make the routine run faster than if x was used throughout the script instead of y. Otherwise, the compiler would have to generate code to convert the string variable x each time it is used. Instead, the conversion from string x to local variable y is done only once. It is helpful to keep in mind that HyperTalk does a lot of conversion for you. By minimizing the amount of conversion that has to be done, the routine can run faster. Unlike HyperCard, where all variables are strings, variables can be declared at the start of a compiled handler. CompileIt! allows many more data types to be declared than are available in HyperCard. Short integers, long integers, Pointers, Handles, P-Strings (including short P-Strings), 0-terminated strings (call these HyperCard strings), OSTypes, Boolean, Character, Floating point (12-byte SANE values), and Records (default is 32 bytes but user can specify any size).

--1

-- calculate ( y)
-- by subtracting odd numbers
function squarroot x
 put x into y
 put 0 into ans
 put 1 into oddint
 repeat while y 0
 subtract oddint from y
 add 1 to ans
 add 2 to oddint
 end repeat
 return ans-1
end squarroot

Normally, Apple’s SANE routines will be used to perform all of CompileIt!’s calculations, although SANE can be turned off to force some variables to integer type. Several techniques can be used to tell CompileIt! that a particular value is floating point - putting 0.0 into a variable to initialize it, adding ^1 after the variable, or declaring it as floating point using shared variables. The manual discusses the pros and cons of using SANE vs. integer math.

Except for the routines specifically marked as “NOT IN ROM” in Inside Macintosh, all procedures and functions are included from Inside Macintosh vol. I-V. Also, selected “NOT IN ROM” routines are included such as the High-Level file manager and Print Manager (NOT IN ROM routines are included based on user demand). Many of the record structures and low-memory globals are also included. Many (but not all) of the Inside Mac VI routines and record structures are also included. CompileIt!’s Custom Symbol Edit card allows users to add additional record structures, low-memory globals, user defined constants, direct calls to other external commands (avoids a slow text callback), and other symbols on their own. Using these calls requires you to convert Inside Macintosh Pascal notation to HyperTalk/CompileIt notation. For example, a common procedure from Inside Macintosh would be: Procedure DrawString (S: Str255); the HyperTalk/CompileIt! equivalent would be: DrawString anystring. You’ll also have to setup record structures to match those in Inside Macintosh. Fortunately, CompileIt! supplies the property names for many of the common types used in Inside Macintosh. If you are not an experienced programmer, it will take some study of the CompileIt! manual sections on programming with the toolbox. Experienced programmers won’t have any trouble with it.

The process of compiling a script begins by copying your script into the clipboard. Open CompileIt! and click on the Enter New Script button. Select the destination stack where CompileIt! will put the external code. CompileIt! will use the name of the handler of the script. That is, if the script started with on mouseup then the name of the external would be mouseup and it would respond to a mouseup message. When you click on the CompileIt! button, the compile begins. It is highly recommended that users not use system messages as XCMD or XFCN names since they tend to get executed when users least expect them too. Better to use On Foo or some such. Also, the word ‘On’ results in an XCMD while the word Function results in an XFCN.

An equally great part of the CompileIt! XCMD Development System is the DebugIt! source level debugger. When you compile a script with DebugIt! turned on, debugging code is added to your external function. When you execute your compiled external, the DebugIt! window will open and execution will halt before the first line is executed. Now you can set breakpoints, view variables, and single step through the external. This gives you as much flexibility in debugging your external as you could ask for. You may find it interesting that DebugIt! is not tied to HyperCard. Externals with DebugIt! attached can be run in just about any environment that supports even a limited subset of the HyperCard 1.x XCMD interface (FoxBase, Microphone II v3, XLINK, and SuperCard are all good examples).

CompileIt! can be used to create xWindoids (external windows) for HyperCard 2.0. CompileIt! simplifies the code you need to write to support an xWindoid by treating events like system messages. HyperCard automatically tells xWindoids about various system events that apply to them such as mouseDowns, updates, menubar clicks, etc. xWindoids are a new feature of HyperCard 2.0.

CompileIt! also works with SuperCard 1.5. Since CompileIt! is shipped as HyperCard 1.2 format, SuperCard users will need to convert to SuperCard format. An appendix in the CompileIt! manual spells out what to do and what to be aware of when using SuperCard and CompileIt!

There are several reasons to go with CompileIt! The price is right at $99, and there are no fees for distribution of your compiled externals. The compile process is a snap, but you should have a good knowledge of HyperTalk. CompileIt! is a great way to speed up and protect sensitive scripts.

CompileIt! 2.0 is distributed exclusively by:

Heizer Software

P. O. Box 232019

Pleasant Hill, CA. 94523

Phone: 800--888-7667 or 415-943-7667

FAX 415-943-6882

Price: $99 (working model: $10.00 compiles scripts up to 10 lines long. The Working Model includes a $10 rebate towards the purchase of CompileIt! 2.0).

Requires: Any Macintosh that can run HyperCard. Supports all versions of HyperCard, including 2.0, and SuperCard 1.5. A moderate level of programming ability is required.

Not copy protected and no runtime fees or licenses are required to distribute externals created with CompileIt!

 
AAPL
$111.78
Apple Inc.
-0.87
MSFT
$47.66
Microsoft Corpora
+0.14
GOOG
$516.35
Google Inc.
+5.25

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Monolingual 1.6.2 - Remove unwanted OS X...
Monolingual is a program for removing unnecesary language resources from OS X, in order to reclaim several hundred megabytes of disk space. It requires a 64-bit capable Intel-based Mac and at least... Read more
NetShade 6.1 - Browse privately using an...
NetShade is an Internet security tool that conceals your IP address on the web. NetShade routes your Web connection through either a public anonymous proxy server, or one of NetShade's own dedicated... Read more
calibre 2.13 - 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 librarian... Read more
Mellel 3.3.7 - 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
ScreenFlow 5.0.1 - Create screen recordi...
Save 10% with the exclusive MacUpdate coupon code: AFMacUpdate10 Buy now! ScreenFlow is powerful, easy-to-use screencasting software for the Mac. With ScreenFlow you can record the contents of your... Read more
Simon 4.0 - Monitor changes and crashes...
Simon monitors websites and alerts you of crashes and changes. Select pages to monitor, choose your alert options, and customize your settings. Simon does the rest. Keep a watchful eye on your... Read more
BBEdit 11.0.2 - Powerful text and HTML e...
BBEdit is the leading professional HTML and text editor for the Mac. Specifically crafted in response to the needs of Web authors and software developers, this award-winning product provides a... Read more
ExpanDrive 4.2.1 - Access cloud storage...
ExpanDrive builds cloud storage in every application, acts just like a USB drive plugged into your Mac. With ExpanDrive, you can securely access any remote file server directly from the Finder or... Read more
Adobe After Effects CC 2014 13.2 - Creat...
After Effects CC 2014 is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $19.99/month (or $9.99/month if you're a previous After Effects customer). After Effects CS6 is still available... Read more
Evernote 6.0.5 - 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

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Make your own Tribez Figures (and More)...
Make your own Tribez Figures (and More) with Toyze Posted by Jessica Fisher on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
So Many Holiday iOS Sales Oh My Goodness...
The holiday season is in full-swing, which means a whole lot of iOS apps and games are going on sale. A bunch already have, in fact. Naturally this means we’re putting together a hand-picked list of the best discounts and sales we can find in order... | Read more »
It’s Bird vs. Bird in the New PvP Mode f...
It’s Bird vs. Bird in the New PvP Mode for Angry Birds Epic Posted by Jessica Fisher on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Telltale Games and Mojang Announce Minec...
Telltale Games and Mojang Announce Minecraft: Story Mode – A Telltale Games Series Posted by Jessica Fisher on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
WarChest and Splash Damage Annouce Their...
WarChest and Splash Damage Annouce Their New Game: Tempo Posted by Jessica Fisher on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] WarChest Ltd and Splash Damage Ltd are teaming up again to work | Read more »
BulkyPix Celebrates its 6th Anniversary...
BulkyPix Celebrates its 6th Anniversary with a Bunch of Free Games Posted by Jessica Fisher on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] BulkyPix has | Read more »
Indulge in Japanese cuisine in Cooking F...
Indulge in Japanese cuisine in Cooking Fever’s new sushi-themed update Posted by Simon Reed on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] Lithuanian developer Nordcurrent has yet again updated its restaurant simulat | Read more »
Badland Daydream Level Pack Arrives to C...
Badland Daydream Level Pack Arrives to Celebrate 20 Million Downloads Posted by Ellis Spice on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Far Cry 4, Assassin’s Creed Unity, Desti...
Far Cry 4, Assassin’s Creed Unity, Destiny, and Beyond – AppSpy Takes a Look at AAA Companion Apps Posted by Rob Rich on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] These day | Read more »
A Bunch of Halfbrick Games Are Going Fre...
A Bunch of Halfbrick Games Are Going Free for the Holidays Posted by Ellis Spice on December 19th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

The Apple Store offering free next-day shippi...
The Apple Store is now offering free next-day shipping on all in stock items if ordered before 12/23/14 at 10:00am PT. Local store pickup is also available within an hour of ordering for any in stock... Read more
It’s 1992 Again At Sony Pictures, Except For...
Techcrunch’s John Biggs interviewed a Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) employee, who quite understandably wished to remain anonymous, regarding post-hack conditions in SPE’s L.A office, explaining “... Read more
Holiday sales this weekend: MacBook Pros for...
 B&H Photo has new MacBook Pros on sale for up to $300 off MSRP as part of their Holiday pricing. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $1699... Read more
Holiday sales this weekend: MacBook Airs for...
B&H Photo has 2014 MacBook Airs on sale for up to $120 off MSRP, for a limited time, for the Thanksgiving/Christmas Holiday shopping season. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax... Read more
Holiday sales this weekend: iMacs for up to $...
B&H Photo has 21″ and 27″ iMacs on sale for up to $200 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. B&H will also include a free copy of Parallels Desktop software: - 21″ 1.4GHz... Read more
Holiday sales this weekend: Mac minis availab...
B&H Photo has new 2014 Mac minis on sale for up to $80 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $459 $40 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac mini: $629 $70 off MSRP... Read more
Holiday sales this weekend: Mac Pros for up t...
B&H Photo has Mac Pros on sale for up to $500 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 3.7GHz 4-core Mac Pro: $2599, $400 off MSRP - 3.5GHz 6-core Mac Pro: $3499, $... Read more
Save up to $400 on MacBooks with Apple Certif...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs available for up to $400 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and... Read more
Save up to $300 on Macs, $30 on iPads with Ap...
Purchase a new Mac or iPad at The Apple Store for Education and take up to $300 off MSRP. All teachers, students, and staff of any educational institution qualify for the discount. Shipping is free,... Read more
iOS and Android OS Targeted by Man-in-the-Mid...
Cloud services security provider Akamai Technologies, Inc. has released, through the company’s Prolexic Security Engineering & Research Team (PLXsert), a new cybersecurity threat advisory. The... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Store Leader Program (US) - Apple, I...
…Summary Learn and grow as you explore the art of leadership at the Apple Store. You'll master our retail business inside and out through training, hands-on experience, 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* 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
*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
*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
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.