TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Jan 96 Viewpoint
Volume Number:12
Issue Number:1
Column Tag:Viewpoint

Viewpoint

By Scott T Boyd, Editor-at-Large, http://www.hax.com/

Out of circulation for some time now, all of a sudden TMON has reappeared on the scene. Rumors have circulated since before WWDC this year that TMON would make its reemergence, only to listen to deafening silence. Well, silent no more, TMON’s back! Check out http://www.tmon.com

TMON last saw major work for System 7 compatibility. Since then it has had something of a bumpy ride. For example, Waldemar Horwat, its author, spent a little time finishing up his Ph.D. at MIT. ICOM Simulations, the original publisher, was purchased by Viacom. As you might imagine, the media giant was a little less interested in a debugger, no matter how great, than in ICOM’s multimedia expertise.

My interest in TMON goes back to 1985. I was in grad school at Texas A&M, discovering how difficult grad school can be when there’s this really cool computer called Macintosh that I could spend every waking hour learning to program. Flipping through Macazine (anyone remember that great rag?) I came across a brief mention of CompUTopia, a Macintosh conference in Austin. I hopped in the car and drove to Austin.

One banquet-hall-sized room had booths all the way around, probably not more than twenty or so altogether. Just inside the entrance was a giant, inflatable Macintosh. I was having a blast hanging out with fellow Mac enthusiasts when I noticed a crowd of especially geeky types gathering around one machine. Some extremely-animated guy was driving the machine while somehow waving his arms around, too.

I went over and stared at the screen. “What on earth has he done to it?” The windows were all as wide as the monitor, and they only moved vertically, and the contents moved live. They didn’t use the standard WDEF, either. “What’s all that monospaced gunk in those windows? Wait a minute! I think I’m starting to understand.” It gradually came into focus - I was staring at a debugger, unlike anything I had ever seen.

Soon after that I purchased my first copy of TMON, and it’s served as my debugger of choice ever since. It was a great favorite among Blue Meanies during 7.0 development, too.

One of the great moments in debugging history was the moment when I asked the first PowerPC 68K emulator engineer whether TMON would work with his emulator. I don’t know whether to describe the look on his face as surprise or fear. It certainly belied his confident retort of “Yes!” Shortly thereafter I tried it out on one of the very first PDMs (which later became the 6100). Sure enough, it worked fine. It’s a mighty odd sight to see a low-level debugger, confident as ever that it’s displaying the detailed state of a 68K chip when there’s not really one inside the box

Now TMON knows about both chips. Most of the tricks it’s always known now work for the PowerPC, too - interactive assembly (just type it in) and disassembly; live displays of processor state, raw memory dumps, low memory (with names), and structure templates; and breakpoints and stepping.

TMON also knows some new tricks. For example, it indicates which direction of a branch you’ll take (just like Macsbug has done for a long time). TMON also handles CFM fragments. TMON also offers filters on heap windows, so now you can limit the blocks displayed by attribute and/or resource info. And here’s my favorite feature - stepping no longer does a screen swap unless it needs to.

Now, back to the history lesson. I spent some time looking carefully at picking up the product right after Viacom purchased ICOM. I decided to pass, but Allan Foster of Guru, Inc. got interested. After working out an arrangement with Viacom and Waldemar, Guru took it on. He did a huge chunk of work on it, adding most of the features mentioned above. Just about the time it was ready to ship, MindVision approached him with an offer he couldn’t refuse, and now TMON is shipping under the MindVision label.

Now, no mention of debugging would be complete without mentioning two other stalwarts - Macsbug and Jasik. Apple’s Jim Murphy has recently added a slew of PowerPC support items to Macsbug (too many to go into now), and it’s definitely worth checking out. It’s available in the usual places.

Likewise, Jasik has added some interesting items (http://www.jasik.com). Nosy now disassembles PEF containers, and has a fancy new resource selection dialog. The Debugger handles PowerPC-native watchpoints, and can read in the symbolic debugging info files created by Nosy’s PEF disassembly.

Debuggers for the Rest of Us

I’m excited to see the return of TMON. Macintosh developers deserve to have all the excellent tools they can get, and professionals should have them all. By and large, they all provide far more value than they cost. In addition, the longevity and expertise represented by folks like Jasik and MindVision brings a lot more to the table than just a piece of debugging software. I know of one developer who bought Jasik’s Debugger just so he could call Steve with an occasional question. It’s great to see all three debuggers undergoing active development and support!

Food For Thought

In answer to the question, “What’s the coolest stuff coming out of Apple lately?” I expected to hear about PCI machines (they’re fast), the Color LaserWriter (looks good, good price), or QTVR (too cool!). I got the following answer: “Engineers.” Ouch!

“A new tool for every project!” - Gordon Sheridan

Internet. Mention it and maybe your stock price will climb to $140/share, too! I mentioned it. Maybe it’s time for an acquisition

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Adobe Lightroom 6.10.1 - Import, develop...
Adobe Lightroom is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $9.99/month bundled with Photoshop CC as part of the photography package. Lightroom 6 is also available for purchase as a... Read more
iPhoto Library Manager 4.2.7 - Manage mu...
iPhoto Library Manager allows you to organize your photos among multiple iPhoto libraries, rather than having to store all of your photos in one giant library. You can browse the photos in all your... Read more
Smultron 9.4 - Easy-to-use, powerful tex...
Smultron 9 is an elegant and powerful text editor that is easy to use. Use it to create or edit any text document. Everything from a web page, a note or a script to any single piece of text or code.... Read more
TextSoap 8.4 - Automate tedious text doc...
TextSoap can automatically remove unwanted characters, fix up messed up carriage returns, and do pretty much anything else that we can think of to text. Save time and effort. Be more productive. Stop... Read more
Merlin Project 4.2.3 - $349.00
Merlin Project is the leading professional project management software for OS X. If you plan complex projects on your Mac, you won’t get far with a simple list of tasks. Good planning raises... Read more
QuarkXPress 13.0.0.0 - Desktop publishin...
QuarkXPress 2017 is the new version that raises the bar for design and productivity. With non-destructive graphics and image editing directly within your layout, you no longer have to choose between... Read more
Path Finder 7.5 - Powerful, award-winnin...
Path Finder makes you a master of file management. Take full control over your file system. Save your time: compare and synchronize folders, view hidden files, use Dual Pane and full keyboard... Read more
Path Finder 7.5 - Powerful, award-winnin...
Path Finder makes you a master of file management. Take full control over your file system. Save your time: compare and synchronize folders, view hidden files, use Dual Pane and full keyboard... Read more
Merlin Project 4.2.3 - $349.00
Merlin Project is the leading professional project management software for OS X. If you plan complex projects on your Mac, you won’t get far with a simple list of tasks. Good planning raises... Read more
TextSoap 8.4 - Automate tedious text doc...
TextSoap can automatically remove unwanted characters, fix up messed up carriage returns, and do pretty much anything else that we can think of to text. Save time and effort. Be more productive. Stop... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Magikarp Jump splashes onto Android worl...
If you're tired ofPokémon GObut still want something to satisfy your mobilePokémon fix,Magikarp Jumpmay just do the trick. It's out now on Android devices the world over. While it looks like a simple arcade jumper, there's quite a bit more to it... | Read more »
Purrfectly charming open-world RPG Cat Q...
Cat Quest, an expansive open-world RPG from former Koei-Tecmo developers, got a new gameplay trailer today. The video showcases the combat and exploration features of this feline-themed RPG. Cat puns abound as you travel across a large map in a... | Read more »
Jaipur: A Card Game of Duels (Games)
Jaipur: A Card Game of Duels 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ** WARNING: iPad 2, iPad Mini 1 & iPhone 4S are NOT compatible. ** *** Special Launch Price for a limited... | Read more »
Subdivision Infinity (Games)
Subdivision Infinity 1.03 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.03 (iTunes) Description: Launch sale! 40% Off! Subdivision Infinity is an immersive and pulse pounding sci-fi 3D space shooter. https://www.... | Read more »
Clash of Clans' gets a huge new upd...
Clash of Clans just got a massive new update, and that's not hyperbole. The update easily tacks on a whole new game's worth of content to the hit base building game. In the update, that mysterious boat on the edge of the map has been repaired and... | Read more »
Thimbleweed Park officially headed to iO...
Welp, it's official. Thimbleweed Park will be getting a mobile version. After lots of wondering and speculation, the developers confirmed it today. Thimbleweed Park will be available on both iOS and Android sometime in the near future. There's no... | Read more »
Pokémon GO might be getting legendaries...
The long-awaited legendary Pokémon may soon be coming to Pokémon GO at long last. Data miners have already discovered that the legendary birds, Articuno, Moltres, and Zapdos are already in the game, it’s just a matter of time. [Read more] | Read more »
The best deals on the App Store this wee...
If you’ve got the Monday blues we have just the thing to cheer you up. The week is shaping up to be a spectacular one for sales. We’ve got a bunch of well-loved indie games at discounted prices this week along with a few that are a little more... | Read more »
Honor 8 Pro, a great choice for gamers
Honor is making strides to bring its brand to the forefront of mobile gaming with its latest phone, the Honor 8 Pro. The Pro sets itself apart from its predecessor, the Honor 8, with a host of premium updates that boost the device’s graphical and... | Read more »
The 4 best outdoor adventure apps
Now that we're well into the pleasant, warmer months, it's time to start making the most of the great outdoors. Spring and summer are ideal times for a bit of trekking or exploration. You don't have to go it alone, though. There are plenty of... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

13-inch 2.0GHz MacBook Pros on sale for $100...
B&H has the non-Touch Bar 13″ 2.0GHz MacBook Pros in stock today and on sale for $100 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY & NJ sales tax only: - 13″ 2.0GHz MacBook Pro Space... Read more
15-inch 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro, Apple refu...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 2015 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pros available for $1699. That’s $300 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for a 15″ MacBook Pro. An Apple one-year warranty is... Read more
Apple refurbished 9-inch and 12-inch iPad Pro...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 9″ and 12″ Apple iPad Pros available for up to $160 off the cost of new iPads. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free: - 32GB 9″... Read more
Apple Certified Refurbished iMacs available f...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 2015 21″ & 27″ iMacs available for up to $350 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. The following models are available: - 21″ 3.... Read more
Sale! 15-inch 2.6GHz Silver Touch Bar MacBook...
DataVision has the 15″ 2.6GHz Silver Touch Bar MacBook Pro (MLW72LL/A) on sale for $2199 including free shipping. Their price is $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model (... Read more
A Kaby Lake Processor Upgrade For The MacBook...
Now they tell me! Well, actually Apple hasn’t said anything official on the subject, but last week Bloomberg News’s Mark Gurman and Alex Webb cited unnamed “people familiar with the matter”... Read more
Kodak’s Camera-First Smartphone EKTRA Launche...
The Eastman Kodak Company and Bullitt Group have announced the availability of a U.S. GSM version of the KODAK EKTRA Smartphone. The U.S. launch coincides with a software update addressing requests... Read more
Apple Launches App Development Curriculum for...
Apple today launched a new app development curriculum designed for students who want to pursue careers in the fast-growing app economy. The curriculum is available as a free download today from Apple... 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
9.7-inch 2017 iPad available for $298, save $...
Sams Club has 32GB 9.7″ Apple iPads available for $298 for Sams Club members. That’s $21 off MSRP. Order online and choose free local store pickup (if available) or free shipping. Read more

Jobs Board

Data Engineer - *Apple* Media Products - Ap...
Changing the world is all in a day's work at Apple . If you love innovation, here's your chance to make a career of it. You'll work hard. But the job comes with more Read more
*Apple* Store Leader Program - Apple, Inc (U...
…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 Read more
*Apple* Integration Specialist - A3 Solution...
Apple Integration Specialist Contract-To-HireWe are searching for dedicated, well-experienced and energetic individuals for an information technology corporation Read more
Sr. Software Engineer, *Apple* Online Store...
Changing the world is all in a day's work at Apple . If you love innovation, here's your chance to make a career of it. You'll work hard. But the job comes with more Read more
Senior Engineering Project Manager, *Apple*...
Changing the world is all in a day's work at Apple . If you love innovation, here's your chance to make a career of it. You'll work hard. But the job comes with more Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.