TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Jan 99 Online

Volume Number: 15 (1999)
Issue Number: 1
Column Tag: MacTech Online

Stocking Your Toolbox

by Jeff Clites <online@mactech.com>

The Toolbox was one of the early strengths of the Macintosh platform. From the beginning, it has armed programmers with an assortment of routines to make their job easier. Even so, there are those time when you wish the Toolbox went just a little further, or helped you out in just one more area. This month we are going to look at some third-party goodies which fill in the gaps.

Text

TextEdit, the Mac's built-in text-handling package, is great for simple text-handling, but everyone is aware of its limitations - the most important one being that it can't handle more than 32K of text. Fortunately for all of us, Marco Piovanelli stepped up and create WASTE, the WorldScript-Aware Styled Text Engine. It can handle larger stretches of text, limited only by available memory, but its enhancements don't stop there. As its name implies, it is WorldScript savvy; it also supports tab stops, drag-and-drop, and embedded objects. It comes with an instructive demo application and Inside Macintosh-style documentation, and it is the basis of the its author's Style text editor, which shows off its features nicely. The WASTE API is modeled closely after TextEdit itself, and accordingly the programmer needs to be familiar with the standard Mac text editing routines in order to get the most out of WASTE. For those who want a direct comparison, the best place to look is in the source code for the SIOUX console window, which is part of Metrowerks' CodeWarrior. It has both a TextEdit and a WASTE implementation together in one file, making it easy to see how they correspond.

The WASTE Page
http://www.boingo.com/waste/

Timothy Paustian, author of the CWASTEEdit PowerPlant wrapper class for WASTE, has written a text engine of his own, the WTTextEngine (or WT++). It is still under development, and is entirely C++ based, so it's handy for those who prefer a completely object-oriented alternative. The package includes an example application which demonstrates adding multiple undo, drag-and-drop, and AppleScript support to the engine.

WTTextEngine
http://www.bact.wisc.edu/WTTextEngine/Overview.html
CWASTEEdit
http://www.bact.wisc.edu/CWASTEEdit/CWasteEdit.html

Controls

I first ran across Kyle Hammond's web pages on the trail of something known as the A List. The A List is Kyle's replacement for the Toolbox's List Manager. Unlike the List Manager, it supports cut, copy, paste, and drag-and-drop, and very large lists (for those hopefully rare occasions where it is appropriate to display a huge list using this sort of UI element). Also, since it's not an LDEF it ends up being much faster than the List Manager (which still contains emulated code), and it's more flexible. For instance, it supports the use of callbacks for drawing, highlighting, and disposing of cell data, so it is easy to supply your own routines to display lists of non-text data.

Kyle's site also has a few more handy pieces of code to help you with your interface. First there is GetMultiple, a function which uses CustomGetFile to allow users to select more than one file at a time, with an interface modeled after CodeWarrior's "Add Multiple..." command. This may be partially superceded by Navigation Services, but the usual problems of backward compatibility will render it useful for a while to come. A second set of functions, EditTextCntlExtras, help with the handling of Appearance Manager editable text controls, and there are a few other interesting things there as well. It's definitely a site worth checking out. (And generously, Kyle has made all of this code available for free.)

Kyle Hammond's Mac Programming Page
http://genbiol.cbs.umn.edu/staff/hammond/MacProgramming.html

The Universal PPP API

It is annoyingly involved to monitor and change the state of a PPP connection, because each PPP driver (OT/PPP, FreePPP, etc.) has its own interface to do this. Luckily for us, the details have been sweated out for us by Sailmaker Software. They have written the Universal PPP API, which implements a wrapper around the various PPP interfaces, so you don't have to worry about which PPP software your user is running, even if they change it without restarting your application. It is shareware, and is distributed as a binary library (callable from C, C++ and Pascal); the source code is available for an additional charge.

The Universal PPP API
http://www.sailmaker.co.uk/uppp_api.html

MoreFiles

The MoreFiles distribution is such an essential collection of routines that you have to wonder why it isn't just rolled into the Mac OS itself. MoreFiles is written by Jim Luther, and grew out of his experiences working for Apple Developer Technical Support. It contains routines for doing just about anything you might want to do with files on the Mac, but which the OS doesn't already do for you - things such as getting the full path to a file (which you should really really avoid doing except for display purposes) or iterating through a folder hierarchy. If you need to do something with the file system and you don't know how to do it, look here first. You will either see that it has already been done for you, or you'll find some useful sample code which does something similar. It is available at most Macintosh archives, but its home is on Jim Luther's curiously ftp-based web page.

Jim Luther
ftp://members.aol.com/JumpLong/index.html

These and rivers of other links are available from the MacTech Online web pages at www.mactech.com/online/.

 
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.