TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Aranda
Volume Number:6
Issue Number:8
Column Tag:Kelly's Corner

Aranda on the CASE

By Dave Kelly, MacTutor Editorial Board

The Ideal Programming Environment

The ideal programming environment doesn’t exist. That is, as hard as they try, programmers are not perfect. I’m not talking about what compiler is used, or even which language. I’m talking about the software development process.

In the typical programming scenario, Joe Programmer has a defined objective to accomplish. The specifications are clear, precise and there are no last minute changes. He knows his job and how to do it.

Joe begins his program with a plan. He plans his programming task in advance and flow charts the entire program. The flow chart is documented well so that another programmer, the one that will later provide support to Joe’s program, can understand how the program works.

Joe documents his source code and keeps accurate notes describing the function of each part of the source code. He writes a detailed user manual which describes how to use his program.

Sounds far fetched, huh? Whether your name is Joe or not, sooner or later someone is going to try to understand your work. You should want to make it as easy as possible. Organization is the key. The problem is that many programmers don’t take the time to plan their program before they start and document their work as they go along. So, what do you do when you come across someone else’s (or even your own source code) and it isn’t documented well.

Aranda™ from Soft-SET™ (version 1.01 is referred to here) is designed to help you understand existing code making it easier to reuse, modify, and maintain. It is the latest in computer-aided software engineering (CASE) products for the Macintosh. It doesn’t generate any code and it doesn’t write your program for you. As a matter of fact, you must provide the source code before Aranda will even do anything.

Aranda parses source code and builds an abstract syntax tree (AST) of the source code information. This tree allows Aranda to provide context sensitive information about the source code. For example, you can apply a Used By tool to a global variable and Aranda will produce a listing of only those identifiers that use this global variable even if another variable has the same name. Identifier names that are used in source code comments are not reported in the usage analysis report.

Aranda allows you to selectively hide source code detail and graphically summarizes identifier relationships. Each identifier in the tree has its own unique symbol: shadow boxes for routines, ovals for variables, layered boxes for methods, etc. You can trace your way through a routine by applying the Used By tool to get a list of all the other identifiers that use the routine. A new chart comes up that shows the identifiers that use that routine. By using other tools you can get a report that shows where variables get set and which routines call a particular routine. If you double-click on a symbol in the tree, you can show/hide detail.

If you are interested in studying the logic of a particular routine, you can use the Flow Chart tool to generate a flow chart. If you hold down the command key and clicking on a block of the flow chart then Aranda will display the full source code statement to clarify the block. Tools like this one let you explore the source code and help you to develop a better grasp of how the program is put together.

Traditionally, documentation has been on the bottom of the list of the programmer’s priorities. Aranda has made it much easier to document a program. As you explore different parts of the source code, Aranda builds a collection of reports which can be the basis for all of the documentation for the project. Aranda supplies documentation templates called Notes that automatically extract identifier information and organize it onto a note that has a hypertext link to the identifier.

Notes templates are provided for routines, variables, data types, constants, and units. The Notes tool for a routine creates a form listing the routine’s name, its input and output parameters, what uses it, and what it imports. The form is automatically filled out. What’s more, the identifier names are active and can be queried just like in the other Aranda charts. There is room on the Notes form to add your own remarks, such as design diagrams, system requirements, task descriptions, comments about the use of a routine, or even add other Aranda charts or your own PICTs.

Aranda’s greatest strength is its ability to help a programmer get familiar with code that someone else wrote. There are several ways that this strength helps the programmer. Often, when a programmer is given code to work on it is to make changes or additions. Aranda helps the programmer analyze existing code in order to document how they are to integrate new units into the code. Aranda helps new program team members to get up to speed on a project. One of SoftSET’s beta tests sites said that it cut the learning time for their new programmer in half.

Aranda is a great way to learn about MacApp. Aranda’s Classes tool generates a class hierarchy for object oriented code. This may be the first CASE application that addresses object oriented code. SoftSET’s beta test sites have used Aranda to learn MacApp and the integration of MacApp into their project.

One feature that was left out in version 1.01 is multiple windows. Currently, each report or chart uses the same window to display in. This makes it difficult to view two parts at the same time. Soft-SET has assured me that multiple windows will be included in the next update which hopefully will be in August. Since they plan to update this feature I won’t complain about, but it is something that would make Aranda considerably better.

Another feature of the product that was not ready for the initial release is the ability to edit your source code within Aranda. Soft-SET is currently working on this and it will be included in an update which should be available by the time you read this. This editor is not meant to replace the text editor you are already using, but as people use Aranda more and more they want to be able to do more of their work in the Aranda environment. Also, the update will give the capability to showing you graphically (and almost instantly) how the procedure you wrote (for example) affects the rest of the project. Multiple windows and editing will be updated for no additional charge. They also plan to update the printing and layouts. There needs to be more flexibility for an organization to format their output to match company procedures and formats.

Along these same lines, the C version is in work should be in beta-test about the time you read this. It will also handle C++. The release date for this version will be September/October In early 1991, Aranda will support COBOL

Other than enhancements to the basic functionality of Aranda (more code analysis tools, page layout, etc.) and some metrics tools such as McCabe and Halstead metrics, the next major area of functionality for Aranda in 1991 will be testing tools with two planned. (1) a profiler-branch coverage tool and (2) a test driver generator that automatically generates a scaffolding so that the tester can exercise their code.

Aranda’s 80 page manual includes a reference section and a quick guide. A short tutorial gives users a quick overview of all of Aranda’s functions. The tutorial doesn’t go into much depth about how you can apply Aranda to source code documentation. Soft-SET is working on application notes which will eventually be included in an application users guide. The manual leads the user (step-by-step) through each function/tool.

Aranda is now available for Apple’s MPW Pascal, and Symantec’s THINK Pascal™. Aranda runs under both Finder and Multifinder. A 68020 or 68030 based Macintosh with a minimum of two megabytes of RAM is required. The other requirement is money. Aranda is designed for programming teams which need to work together and keep their work organized and easy for each other to understand. If you are a small (1 or 2 programmers) developer then Aranda is probably too pricey.

[Aranda, I would hope, will no doubt be essential to every developer no matter how small the project or the development group. As compilers make increasingly smaller advances in code generation quality, they will begin competing on features and ease of use. The use of tools, such as Aranda, will benefit everyone.-ed]

Aranda is available from:

Soft-SET Technologies, Inc.

1847 W. Broadway, #301

Vancouver, B.C. V6J 1Y6

phone:(604) 734-1622

fax: (604) 733-5294

AppleLink: SOFTSET

PRICE: $995 first unit

$750 unit 2-10

$675 unit 11-25

$495 unit 26-50

Education discounts apply to bonafide educational institutions at 66% off the regular list price. A special student version of Aranda limited to projects less than 5000 lines of source code is available for $50 which must be purchased through the institution.

Technical Support: free updates to Pascal version for 12 months after purchase and 30 days of free technical support. The annual rate for technical support will be $150 which will be provided free of charge to Aranda buyers who make their purchase prior to August 1.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Viber 12.4.0 - Send messages and make fr...
Viber lets you send free messages and make free calls to other Viber users, on any device and network, in any country! Viber syncs your contacts, messages and call history with your mobile device, so... Read more
OmniFocus 3.5.1 - GTD task manager with...
OmniFocus is an organizer app. It uses projects to organize tasks naturally, and then add tags to organize across projects. Easily enter tasks when you’re on the go, and process them when you have... Read more
Network Radar 2.9 - $17.99
Network Radar is an advanced network scanning and managing tool. Featuring an easy-to-use and streamlined design, the all-new Network Radar 2 has been engineered from the ground up as a modern Mac... Read more
Tidy Up 5.3.4 - Find duplicate files and...
Tidy Up is a full-featured duplicate finder and disk-tidiness utility. Features: Supports Lightroom: it is now possible to search and collect duplicates directly in the Lightroom library. Multiple... Read more
DiskCatalogMaker 8.0 - Catalog your disk...
DiskCatalogMaker is a simple disk management tool which catalogs disks. Simple, light-weight, and fast Finder-like intuitive look and feel Super-fast search algorithm Can compress catalog data for... Read more
ExpanDrive 7.4.11 - 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
OmniGraffle Pro 7.13 - Create diagrams,...
OmniGraffle Pro helps you draw beautiful diagrams, family trees, flow charts, org charts, layouts, and (mathematically speaking) any other directed or non-directed graphs. We've had people use... Read more
OmniGraffle 7.13 - Create diagrams, flow...
OmniGraffle helps you draw beautiful diagrams, family trees, flow charts, org charts, layouts, and (mathematically speaking) any other directed or non-directed graphs. We've had people use Graffle to... Read more
Airmail 4.0 - Powerful, minimal email cl...
Airmail is an mail client with fast performance and intuitive interaction. Support for iCloud, MS Exchange, Gmail, Google Apps, IMAP, POP3, Yahoo!, AOL, Outlook.com, Live.com. Airmail was designed... Read more
OmniOutliner Essentials 5.5.3 - Organize...
OmniOutliner Essentials (was OmniOutliner) is a flexible program for creating, collecting, and organizing information. Give your creativity a kick start by using an application that's actually... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Isle Escape: The House is an upcoming pu...
Isle Escape: The House is an upcoming puzzle game from Simeon Angelov that's intended to serve as an introduction to a saga they're planning on releasing in an episodic fashion. The first chapter is set to release for both iOS and Android on 29th... | Read more »
Company of Heroes, the classic RTS, is n...
Feral Interactive has finally released their highly anticipated iOS version of the strategy classic Company of Heroes. It's available now for iPad as a premium title and has had various tweaks to ensure that it's optimised for touch controls. [... | Read more »
Mario Kart Tour's Vancouver Tour ha...
With Mario Kart Tour's Valentine's Tour now at an end (suspiciously before Valentine's Day has even arrived), it's now time to move on to the all-new and exciting Vancouver Tour. This time around, the featured drivers are Hiker Wario and Aurora... | Read more »
A new PictoQuest update makes it a much...
PictoQuest is a charming little puzzle game, but it left us a little disappointed. The game just didn’t seem to use screen space effectively, to the point that using the touch controls (as opposed to the default virtual d-pad) could lead to errant... | Read more »
Alley is an atmospheric adventure game a...
Alley is an atmospheric adventure game that sees you playing as a young girl trapped in an inescapable nightmare. Surrounded by her worst fears, every step forward for her is a huge challenge that you'll help guide her through using some simple... | Read more »
Fight monsters and collect heroes in Cry...
From Final Fantasy to Chaos Rings, Japanese roleplaying games have found a large and loyal fanbase on mobile devices. If you’re seeking a more under-the-radar JRPG to escape into, Lionsfilm’s Cryptract could be the one. The game has been around... | Read more »
Circuit Dude is a top-down, tile-based p...
Circuit Dude is a tile-based puzzler that was originally released on Steam back in 2017. Now it's made it's way over to mobile devices where it's available for both iOS and Android as a premium game. [Read more] | Read more »
Liege Dragon is another upcoming RPG for...
Liege Dragon is an upcoming RPG from Kemco, who has certainly streamlined the process of making their particular brand retro-inspired turn-based games at this point. Liege Dragon will be available for both iOS and Android. [Read more] | Read more »
Hidden Survivor from Joy Brick is a hide...
Joy Brick's Hidden Survivor is an interesting title of two halves: part story-focused survival experience, part intense hide-and-seek multiplayer game. Both elements come together to form a compellingly strange and enjoyable whole. The hide-and-... | Read more »
Stupid Zombies 4 is an upcoming trick-sh...
The Stupid Zombies are preparing to make their grand return to iOS and Android in the fourth instalment of the hugely popular trick-shot shooter series. If you missed out on the earlier games, the basic idea is that you have to bounce bullets... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Sunday sale: 27″ 5K iMacs for $150 off Apple’...
B&H Photo has new 2019 27″ 5K iMacs in stock today and on sale for $150 off Apple’s MSRP. Overnight shipping is free to many locations in the US: – 27″ 3.0GHz 5K iMac: $1649.99 $150 off MSRP – 27... Read more
Sunday sale: 21″ iMacs for $100-$150 off Appl...
B&H Photo has new 21″ Apple iMacs on sale for $100 off MSRP with models available starting at $999. These are the same iMacs offered by Apple in their retail and online stores. Overnight shipping... Read more
Best Buy President’s Day Weekend 2019 sale: A...
Best Buy has Apple HomePods on sale for $249.99 as part of their President’s Day Weekend 2019 sale. Both Space Gray and White HomePods are on sale for this price. Their price is $50 off Apple’s MSRP... Read more
President’s Day Weekend Sale: 13″ 1.4GHz MacB...
Amazon has new 2019 13″ 1.4GHz MacBook Pros on sale for $200 off Apple’s MSRP, starting at $1099, as part of their President’s Day Weekend sale. These are the same MacBook Pros sold by Apple in its... Read more
President’s Day Weekend Sale: Apple AirPods f...
Amazon has new 2019 Apple AirPods on sale today ranging up to $35 off MSRP, starting at $129, as part of their President’s Day Weekend sale. Shipping is free: – AirPods Pro: $234.98 $15 off MSRP –... Read more
Save hundreds on custom 16″ MacBook Pro confi...
Save up to $920 on a custom-configured 16″ MacBook Pro with these Certified Refurbished models now available at Apple. Each MacBook Pro features a new outer case, free shipping, and includes Apple’s... Read more
Back on sale: 4 and 6-core Mac Minis for $100...
B&H Photo has 4-Core and 6-Core Mac minis on sale for $100 off Apple’s standard MSRP, with prices starting at only $699. Overnight shipping is free to many US addresses: – 3.6GHz Quad-Core mini... Read more
16″ MacBook Pros, Certified Refurbished, now...
Apple is now offering Certified Refurbished 2019 16″ MacBook Pros for up to $420 off the cost of new models, starting at $2039. Each model features a new outer case, shipping is free, and an Apple 1-... Read more
Purchase a new Apple Pro Display XDR and pay...
Apple reseller DataVision has Apple’s new Pro Display XDR models available for order including sales tax for NY, NJ, PA, and CA residents only. If you don’t reside in one of those states, you can... Read more
B&H has select 13″ 2.4GHz MacBook Pros on...
B&H Photo has select 2019 13″ 2.4GHz MacBook Pros on sale $250 off Apple’s MSRP, starting at $1549. Overnight shipping is free to many addresses in the US. These are the same MacBook Pros sold by... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Computing Professional - Best Buy (U...
**761650BR** **Job Title:** Apple Computing Professional **Job Category:** Store Associates **Store NUmber or Department:** 000217-Aurora-Store **Job Description:** Read more
Medical Assistant - *Apple* Valley Clinic -...
…provide professional, quality care to patients in the ambulatory setting at the Fairview Apple Valley Clinic, located in Apple Valley, MN. Join the **Fairview Read more
Geek Squad *Apple* Consultation Professiona...
**762475BR** **Job Title:** Geek Squad Apple Consultation Professional **Job Category:** Store Associates **Store NUmber or Department:** 001423-San Jose-Store **Job Read more
*Apple* Engineering Specialist - Amentum (Un...
Job Summary Amentum has an immediate opportunity for an Apple Engineering Solutions to support a government agencys capabilities in Washington, DC (Union Station / Read more
Best Buy *Apple* Computing Master - Best Bu...
**745058BR** **Job Title:** Best Buy Apple Computing Master **Job Category:** Store Associates **Store NUmber or Department:** 001080-Lake Charles-Store **Job Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.