TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Jul 93 Tips, Tidbits
Volume Number:9
Issue Number:7
Column Tag:Tips & Tidbits

Related Info: Menu Manager

Tips & Tidbits

By Neil Ticktin, Editor-in-Chief

This column is your opportunity to spread the word about little bits of information that you find out about. These tidbits can be programming related or they can be user tips that are particularly useful to programmers.

MacTech Magazine will pay $25 for every tip used, and $50 for the Tip of the Month. Or you can take your award in orders or subscriptions.

To submit a tip, send in a letter to the magazine. E-mail is our preferred method, but feel free to send something via the US Mail. See page two for all addresses. If you do send snail mail, enclose a printed copy and a disk copy of the letter so that it does not have to be retyped.

Tip of the Month

Ever wonder how to have menus without having to give up space to the menubar? Here's how:

{1}

var
 theMenuRect: Rect;
 theMenuRgn: RgnHandle;
 
begin
 SetRect(theMenuRect,0,0,screenBits.bounds.right,GetMBarHeight);
 theMenuRgn:= NewRgn;
 RectRgn (theMenuRgn,theMenuRect);
 UnionRgn(GetGrayRgn,theMenuRgn,GetGrayRgn);
 ...
 ...  {You can now draw over the menubar if you have a valid port there}
 ...  {If the user clicks in the invisible menubar, it will still pop 
up}
 ...
 XorRgn(GetGrayRgn,theMenuRgn,GetGrayRgn);
 DisposeRgn(theMenuRgn);
end.

This can be great for games where you could really use the extra space sometimes. You just have to make sure you don't call DrawMenuBar. What happens is the menubar is re-drawn. Therefore, make sure you set up the menus before you do the above or, if you have to call DrawMenuBar, make sure you draw over the entire menubar during the update event.

Make sure you call XorRgn at the end as this step restores the GrayRgn to what it was before. It is extremely discourteous not to do so. It would also be a good idea to do this when your application goes into the backgound, however, when it comes to games, it's not likely you'll be redrawing menubars and switching back and forth between apps too much.

- Narayan Sainaney

SNR Enterprises., sainaney@unixg.ubc.ca

Booleans are Booleans are Booleans

This tip was inspired by the Tip of the Month in the April issue. If you recall, the code contained the statement

if (theMode != 0)
 return (true);
else
 return (false);

This can be written much more simply (borrowing from another tip in the April issue) as:

/* 2*/

return
 theMode != 0;

This equivalence of booleans applies in other contexts as well. For example, I have seen people write something like

If Count = 0 then
 NoMore := true
else
 NoMore := false

when they can of course write:

/* 3 */

NoMore := Count = 0
Remember: Booleans are values too!

- Lawrence D’Oliveiro, University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand

See also Apr 93 Tips, Tidbits

C and Pascal Strings

The Mac toolbox calls EqualString and UprString perform some useful string-functions (see Inside Macintosh Volume II, p. 377). However they accept only pascal-style strings. A possible coding would be:

 { char *s = "this is a Π" ;
   CtoPstr (s) ;
   UprString (s, false) ;
   PtoCstr (s) ;
 }

Causing the overhead of converting a C-string to Pascal and back. However, the assembly trap macro only needs a pointer to the string and the length:

/* 4 */

{ shortsLen ;
  char *s = "this is a Π" ;

  sLen = strlen (s) ;
  asm {
    move.l s,  A0
    move.w sLen,   D0
    _UprString
  }
}

It’s so much faster! Especially if you already have the length of the string, instead of having to do the strlen.

- Jan Bruyndonckx

Speedier Conditioning

There is a small speed advantage to writing nested IF-THEN conditions over one IF-THEN condition that contains the AND or the & operators. The condition:

IF x=5 THEN 
IF X=6 THEN

executes faster and generates more compact code than the condition:

IF (x=5) and (y=6) then 

and much faster than the condition:

IF (x=5) & (y=6)

The above conditions are semantically identical!

- Marek Hajek,

Hajek’s Solutions, Reno, Nevada

Duo Space Bar problems?

Having problems with your space bar on your Duo? Ray Jackson from Personal Support Computers in West Los Angeles tells me that many times it is simply a case of the screw (on the bottom of the Duo) being too tight. It seems that Apple didn't think through their mounting concepts well enough and sometimes the space bar suffers.

[Ray, my Duo works much better now. Thanks. - Ed.]

- Neil Ticktin, Editor-in-Chief

Timing MPW Commands

Have you ever wanted to know how long an MPW command needs to execute? Some tools and scripts provide timing functions, but many don't.

For a generic "Time" command, put this script in your :MPW: Scripts: folder:

/* 5 */

Set _started_ `date -n`
{Parameters}
Set _finished_ `date -n`
Echo -n "n# Execution time in seconds: "
Evaluate {_finished_}-{_started_}
Unset _started_, _finished_

Then, enter this in the MPW Worksheet:

Time commandName

where commandName is the name of the script or tool you want to time.

Caveats:

1) The resolution of the "Time" script is one second, and the overhead of the script itself may be up to one second on slower machines. In other words, don't bother timing commands if they take only a few seconds to execute, or if you need very precise timings.

2) This won't work for stand-alone applications. If you're using MultiFinder or System 7, the script won't wait for the application to finish its run. In Finder 6 or earlier, MPW has to shut down completely when it launches an application, and the script cannot resume when MPW reloads.

- Lee David Rimar, Oak Park, Michigan

 
AAPL
$118.63
Apple Inc.
+2.16
MSFT
$47.59
Microsoft Corpora
-0.39
GOOG
$539.27
Google Inc.
+1.77

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Carbon Copy Cloner 4.0.3 - Easy-to-use b...
Carbon Copy Cloner backups are better than ordinary backups. Suppose the unthinkable happens while you're under deadline to finish a project: your Mac is unresponsive and all you hear is an ominous,... Read more
ForeverSave 2.1.3 - Universal auto-save...
ForeverSave auto-saves all documents you're working on while simultaneously doing backup versioning in the background. Lost data can be quickly restored at any time. Losing data, caused by... Read more
Voila 3.8.1 - Capture, annotate, organiz...
Voila is a screen-capture, recording, and annotation tool that is a full-featured replacement for Mac's screen-capture and screen-recording capabilities. It has a large and robust set of editing,... Read more
SyncTwoFolders 2.0.6 - Syncs two user-sp...
SyncTwoFolders simply synchronizes two folders. It supports synchronization across mounted network drives and it is a possibility to run a simulation showing in a log what will be done. Please visit... Read more
Duplicate Annihilator 5.1.1 - Find and d...
Duplicate Annihilator takes on the time-consuming task of comparing the images in your iPhoto library using effective algorithms to make sure that no duplicate escapes. Duplicate Annihilator detects... Read more
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

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

This Week at 148Apps: November 17-21, 20...
Expert App Reviewers   So little time and so very many apps. What’s a poor iPhone/iPad lover to do? Fortunately, 148Apps is here to give you the rundown on the latest and greatest releases. And we even have a tremendous back catalog of reviews; just... | Read more »
RuPaul’s Drag Race: Dragopolis 2.0 is C...
RuPaul’s Drag Race: Dragopolis 2.0 is Coming to iOS December 4th Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 24th, 2014 [ permalink ] So Much Drama | Read more »
Crimson Keyboard (Utilities)
Crimson Keyboard 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Utilities Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Introducing a faster way to type. Crimson Keyboard adapts to your writing style and provides smart, personal and contextual... | Read more »
The Sandbox EDU Review
The Sandbox EDU Review By Nadia Oxford on November 24th, 2014 Our Rating: :: COME PLAY IN THE SANDBOX AGAINUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Like its predecessor, The Sandbox EDU offers lots for players to see, do, and... | Read more »
Taichi Panda Hits iOS in December
Taichi Panda Hits iOS in December Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 24th, 2014 [ permalink ] Snail Games has released the first official game play trailer for  | Read more »
Five Apps to Make Your Thanksgiving Plan...
Thanksgiving is nearly upon us! You know what that means? Eating too much turkey, watching the Big Game, and spending time with family (whether you like it or not). Oh, and that scary Black Friday thing, but we won’t talk about that here. For those... | Read more »
Kingdom Rush Origins HD Review
Kingdom Rush Origins HD Review By Jennifer Allen on November 24th, 2014 Our Rating: :: JUST AS GOOD AS BEFOREiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad It’s more of the same again, but that’s really no bad thing at all.   | Read more »
Skylanders, Show Off How You Fight Kaos...
Skylanders, Show Off How You Fight Kaos to Win Cool Prizes Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 24th, 2014 [ permalink ] iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad | Read more »
Mark of the Dragon – Tips, Tricks, and S...
Calling All Dragon Riders: | Read more »
Crossy Road Review
Crossy Road Review By Jennifer Allen on November 24th, 2014 Our Rating: :: ADDICTIVELY FROGGER LIKEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Frogger-like in nature, Crossy Road is an easy to recommend endless runner of sorts.   | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Jumptuit Launches One-Tap Windows 8.1 iTunes...
Jumptuit has launched Windows 8.1 support for One-Tap iTunes Sync. with which Windows 8.1 users can now easily sync their iTunes libraries with Microsoft OneDrive. Jumptuit provides easy access from... Read more
CEA Study Finds More People Recycling Electro...
A new study by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) finds that electronics recycling receives the continued and growing support of consumers. According to the CEA,s Recycling and Reuse Study,... 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 today for $1749. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. B&H will also include free copies of Parallels Desktop... Read more
27-inch 3.5GHz 5K iMac in stock today and on...
 B&H Photo has the new 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac in stock today and on sale for $2299 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available... Read more
21-inch 1.4GHz iMac on sale for $979, save $1...
B&H Photo has the new 21″ 1.4GHz iMac on sale for $979.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $120 off MSRP. B&H will also include free copies of Parallels Desktop... Read more
13-inch 1.4GHz/256GB MacBook Air on sale for...
B&H Photo has lowered their price on the 13″ 1.4GHz/256GB MacBook Air to $1059.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $140 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price for this... Read more
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

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* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**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
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**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
*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
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.