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/.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

How to be a star in Britney Spears: Amer...
If you've ever wanted to be a star, baby, then you've probably already checked out Britney Spears: American Dream and are happily making your way up the charts. But fame doesn't come easy, and everyone needs a helping hand sometimes. So we've got... | Read more »
AppSpy is hiring a part time Staff Write...
| Read more »
How to save lives in ER Surgery Simulato...
A serious earthquake has struck a nearby town in ER Surgery Simulator - Emergency Doctor, and it’s up to you to save the victims. [Read more] | Read more »
Tips and tricks to get a high score in G...
Ketchapp Games loves the endless runner genre. And its newest game, Gravity Switch, is no exception. Gravity Switch takes a fresh approach, though, as you move a block, suspended in zero gravity, safely through a maze of shifting pillars. If the... | Read more »
Tips and tricks to get a high score in S...
Smash Fu is a high-paced tile-tapping game that requires quick reflexes and some practice. You’ll have to smash bricks with the skill of a seasoned black belt to get a high score. To raise the stakes a bit, you’ll also have to avoid tapping any... | Read more »
How to keep the ball rolling in Dropple
If you're new to the minimalist puzzler Dropple, you may find yourself struggling to make it beyond the first couple of steps before your ball falls into the endless abyss below. [Read more] | Read more »
How not to die in Traffic Rider
Traffic Rider, an Out Run-esque game in which your ride a motorcycle recklessly into trffic, might not seem particularly complicated. [Read more] | Read more »
How to adjust your chess game for Regici...
At first glance you might likenWarhammer 40,000: Regicide to Chess - and you'd be right. Regicideputs its own spin on the classic board game though, so some of your tried and true methods may not work quite so well here. [Read more] | Read more »
Rush Rally 2 (Games)
Rush Rally 2 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: -- Rush Rally 2 is the most authentic and thrilling rally simulation on your mobile, all running at an astounding 60fps. Console... | Read more »
Warhammer 40000: Regicide (Games)
Warhammer 40000: Regicide 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ++NOTE: Optimized for with iPad Air, iPad mini 2, iPhone 5 and up. ++ "“This game has no right to be as good as it... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Textkraft Professional Becomes A Mobile Produ...
The new update 4.1 of Textkraft Professional for the iPad comes with many new and updated features that will be particularly of interest to self-publishers of e-books. Highlights include import and... Read more
SnipNotes 2.0 – Intelligent note-taking for i...
Indie software developer Felix Lisczyk has announced the release and immediate availability of SnipNotes 2.0, the next major version of his productivity app for iOS devices and Apple Watch.... Read more
Pitch Clock – The Entrepreneur’s Wingman Laun...
Grand Rapids, Michigan based Skunk Tank has announced the release and immediate availability of Pitch Clock – The Entrepreneur’s Wingman 1.1, the company’s new business app available exclusively on... Read more
13-inch 2.9GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 2.9GHz Retina MacBook Pro (model #MF841LL/A) on sale for $1599 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $200 off MSRP. Amazon also has the 13″ 3.9GHz Retina... Read more
Apple price trackers, updated continuously
Scan our Apple Price Trackers for the latest information on sales, bundles, and availability on systems from Apple’s authorized internet/catalog resellers. We update the trackers continuously: - 15″... Read more
Clearance 12-inch Retina MacBooks available s...
B&H Photo has dropped prices on leftover 2015 12″ Retina MacBooks with models now available starting at $999. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 12″ 1.1GHz Gray Retina MacBook... 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
New 2016 13-inch 256GB MacBook Air on sale fo...
B&H Photo has the new 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air (model MMGG2LL/A) on sale for $1149 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $50 off MSRP. Amazon has the 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB... Read more
Apple refurbished iPad Air 2s available start...
Apple has Certified Refurbished iPad Air 2 available starting at $339. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free: - 128GB Wi-Fi iPad Air 2: $499 - 64GB Wi-Fi iPad... Read more
Accenture and Vatican Opera Romana Pellegrina...
Accenture has announced that the official mobile application for the Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy declared by Pope Francis has been built and launched by Accenture Mobility, part of Accenture... Read more

Jobs Board

ISCS *Apple* ID Site Support Engineer - APP...
…position, we are looking for an individual who has experience supporting customers with Apple ID issues and enjoys this area of support. This person should be Read more
Automotive Sales Consultant - Apple Ford Linc...
…you. The best candidates are smart, technologically savvy and are customer focused. Apple Ford Lincoln Apple Valley is different, because: $30,000 annual salary Read more
*Apple* Support Technician II - Worldventure...
…global, fast growing member based travel company, is currently sourcing for an Apple Support Technician II to be based in our Plano headquarters. WorldVentures is Read more
Restaurant Manager (Neighborhood Captain) - A...
…in every aspect of daily operation. WHY YOU'LL LIKE IT: You'll be the Big Apple . You'll solve problems. You'll get to show your ability to handle the stress and Read more
Editor, *Apple* News - APPLE (United States...
Job Summary The Apple News team is looking for a passionate...a news organization. Description * Program Top Stories in Apple News * Post on Apple News Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.