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
$100.86
Apple Inc.
-0.77
MSFT
$46.76
Microsoft Corpora
+0.52
GOOG
$579.95
Google Inc.
+6.85

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Capture One Pro 8.0.0.433 - RAW workflow...
Capture One Pro 8 is a professional RAW converter offering you ultimate image quality with accurate colors and incredible detail from more than 300 high-end cameras -- straight out of the box. It... Read more
Adobe Acrobat Pro 11.0.09 - Powerful PDF...
Adobe Acrobat allows users to communicate and collaborate more effectively and securely. Unify a wide range of content in a single organized PDF Portfolio. Collaborate through electronic document... Read more
Adobe Reader 11.0.09 - View PDF document...
Adobe Reader allows users to view PDF documents. You may not know what a PDF file is, but you've probably come across one at some point. PDF files are used by companies and even the IRS to... Read more
iFFmpeg 4.6.1 - Convert multimedia files...
iFFmpeg is a graphical front-end for FFmpeg, a command-line tool used to convert multimedia files between formats. The command line instructions can be very hard to master/understand, so iFFmpeg does... Read more
NTFS 11.3.62 - 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
OS X Yosemite 10.10 DP8 - Developer Prev...
Note: This is a Developer Preview. You must be a registered Apple Mac Developer to download this update. You can also sign up for the free OS X Beta Program to download and preview public beta... Read more
FotoMagico 4.5 - Powerful slideshow crea...
FotoMagico lets you create professional slideshows from your photos and music with just a few, simple mouse clicks. It sports a very clean and intuitive yet powerful user interface. High image... Read more
Screenshot Path 1.2.1 - Change the defau...
Screenshot Path lets you change the folder where OS X saves screenshots. Screenshots are saved by default to the user’s desktop. This is handy for the occasional screenshot but those looking to take... Read more
Fantastical 1.3.16 - Create calendar eve...
Fantastical is the Mac calendar you'll actually enjoy using. Creating an event with Fantastical is quick, easy, and fun: Open Fantastical with a single click or keystroke Type in your event details... Read more
GIMP 2.8.14 - Powerful, free image editi...
GIMP is a multi-platform photo manipulation tool. GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. The GIMP is suitable for a variety of image manipulation tasks, including photo retouching,... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Zynga Unveils First Look at Looney Tunes...
Zynga Unveils First Look at Looney Tunes Dash! Posted by Ellis Spice on September 16th, 2014 [ permalink ] Be vewy, vewy qwiet. I’m hunting wunners featuwing wabbits, and luckily, it’s duck season wunner season. | Read more »
Guardians on the Go – How to Connect to...
At this point I’m relatively certain most of the country is familiar with Destiny. And for those looking to augment their game a bit, Bungie has changed their Bungie Mobile Companion App to Destiny Companion. | Read more »
Kunin Review
Kunin Review By Jordan Minor on September 16th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SHURIKEN DO ITUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Kunin is a nervous test of ninja reflexes.   Developer: Dodreams Price: FREE Version Reviewed: 1.0.1... | Read more »
4 KEMCO Titles are Just $0.99 for a Limi...
4 KEMCO Titles are Just $0.99 for a Limited Time Posted by Jessica Fisher on September 16th, 2014 [ permalink ] KEMCO RPGs Destiny Fantasia, Infinite Dunamis, Bonds of the Sk | Read more »
Introducing Flash, the Latest Wearable F...
Introducing Flash, the Latest Wearable Fitness Monitor from Misfit Posted by Jessica Fisher on September 16th, 2014 [ permalink ] The Misfit Flash is the newly-released fitness and sleep monitor from | Read more »
Hyper Trip Review
Hyper Trip Review By Jennifer Allen on September 16th, 2014 Our Rating: :: HYPER TWITCHYUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Tough and unforgiving, Hyper Trip is a bit like Snake – if Snake was really harsh.   | Read more »
Collectible Card Game Earthcore: Shatter...
Collectible Card Game Earthcore: Shattered Elements is Set to Arrive on iOS in 2015 Posted by Ellis Spice on September 16th, 2014 [ permalink ] Polish developers | Read more »
Boogey Boy Review
Boogey Boy Review By Jennifer Allen on September 16th, 2014 Our Rating: :: PRETTY BUT BASICUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad It looks delightful but lack of Game Center support and more variety really affects the fun... | Read more »
Vizzywig 4K (Photography)
Vizzywig 4K 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Photography Price: $999.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: REQUIRES: iOS 7 on iPhone 5S with 32GB or 64GB. (Do not use iOS 8)The world's FIRST mobile 4K video capture, editing and... | Read more »
The Sleeping Prince Review
The Sleeping Prince Review By Jennifer Allen on September 15th, 2014 Our Rating: :: RESTRICTIVE KINGDOM SAVINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad The Sleeping Prince looks and feels great to play, but its lack of peril and... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Sprint offers 16GB iPad mini for $199.99 with...
Sprint is offering 1st generation 16GB iPad minis for $199.99 with a 2-year service agreement. Standard MSRP for this iPad is $429. Their price is the lowest available for this model. Read more
2.5GHz Mac mini remains on sale for $549, sav...
B&H Photo has the 2.5GHz Mac mini on sale for $549.99 including free shipping. That’s $50 off MSRP, and B&H will also include a free copy of Parallels Desktop software. NY sales tax only. Read more
Apple refurbished iMacs available for up to $...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished iMacs available for up to $300 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. These are the best prices on... Read more
13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro offered for $100 off M...
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
Free GIMP Professional Grade Graphics App Ver...
The latest 2.8.14 version of the oddly-named GIMP (acronym for: GNU Image Manipulation Program) open source, high-end image editing and creation alternative to Adobe’s Photoshop and refuge from... Read more
Apple Announces Record Pre-orders for iPhone...
Apple has released metrics showing a record number of first day pre-orders of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, with over four million sold in the first 24 hours. Demand for the new iPhones exceeds the... Read more
10% off iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Otterbox cases
Get 10% off on popular Otterbox iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus cases at MacMall through September 19th. Use code OTTERBOX10 to see the discount. Read more
15-inch MacBook Pros on sale for up to $125 o...
Amazon has the new 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $125 off MSRP including free shipping: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $1899.99 save $100 - 15″ 2.5GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $2374... Read more
27-inch 3.2GHz iMac on sale for $1698, $101 o...
Abt has the 27″ 3.2GHz iMac on sale for $1698 including free shipping. Their price is $101 off MSRP. Read more
More To Making A Larger iPad Than Expanded Sc...
CNET’s Ross Rubin has posted a thoughtful analysis of prospects for a larger display iPad Pro, noting that Microsoft and Samsung currently have the large-display touchscreen tablet category to... Read more

Jobs Board

*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...
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...
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
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.