TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Jul 91 Letters
Volume Number:7
Issue Number:7
Column Tag:Letters

Open Letter on the Dialog Manager

By Kirk Chase, Editor

To the Developer Community

Rodney K. Magnuson

Leonard Development Group

With the incarnation of System 6.0.4, the Dialog Manager has not been handling purgeable dialog resources correctly. And it has become worse with 6.0.5, 6.0.6, and 6.0.7.

What this means is that any application you have developed that contains purgeable PICTs, cicns, WDEFs, dctbs, and others used as dialog items will now bomb under tight memory conditions when purging is necessary. I have sent a couple of links to DTS on the matter and the following reply explains their attitude towards the issue.

------

The dialog manager NEVER handled purgeable resource correctly. The dialog manager was designed to handle small and specific cases in controlled situations. This was probably a mistake in the very first version, since it is guaranteed that, given a large pool of developers, there will be some that push it to/beyond its limits.

The problem is that the dialog manager is a most convenient thing. There are some dialog items, such as TextEdit items, that are a real pain to use if you are not using the dialog manager. I can understand the reluctance to use a regular window, when the dialog manager takes care of such stuff.

Given that the dialog manager has always been this way, I don’t expect that it will get fixed anytime soon. I am just stating opinion here, but I do have a good amount of history to back me on this one.

What can you do about it? Well, one thought is that you could write a routine that walks the DITL and makes the resources non-purgeable. Once you are done with the dialog, you could walk the DITL again and once again make them purgeable. This would make using the dialog manager in these instances completely safe.

Another solution is to not use the dialog manager at all. You mentioned using MacApp to accomplish this. You could do it this way, but you can also not use the dialog manager and not use MacApp at the same time.

Along this approach, I have recently written a TextEdit control. With a single call, you can add a TextEdit control to a regular window. This control can be read/write or-read only. It can have a horizontal and/or vertical scrollbar. Scroll is automatically taken care of. Drag-selecting as well. You can set a limit to the number of characters that can be inserted. It has code to update the edit menu to reflect selection choices and whether or not something is in the clipboard. It is a complete implementation. I am currently using it in a 7.0 AppleEvents sample that I wrote and it is working just great. I can send it to you if you are interested.

Given such alternative methods, which are actually better than using the dialog manager, it is hard to justify continuing to use the dialog manager, when the work-around code necessary to use it is larger than alternative implementation methods.

------

Is Apple’s recommending not to use the Dialog Manager because it’s buggy? Is Apple’s telling me to use MacApp or do the same thing that MacApp does, just to overcome the bugs in the Dialog Manager? This to me is irresponsible! What about all of the applications that people use every day? Should the users of these applications upgrade their applications, when and if the developer ever gets an update out, so that they will not bomb? Should the users of these applications use systems earlier than 6.0.4? If this is the answer, than Classic, LC, and SI owners are trouble. I would say the answer is 6.0.8. Apple needs to address this problem! Are they hoping that everyone is going to use 7.0? What are they thinking?

I wonder if Mr. Sculley knows about this, because he should. End users are experiencing more bombs. And bombs should be caused, if they should ever occur, by applications (well, I guess I should say INITs, since they are the main scapegoat these days). I guess it’s the developer’s fault for using the dialog manager/pushing it beyond its limits. What’ll go next? The menu manager?

I want to note that the respondent tries to help, I mean him/her no harm in my response. I would also like to see an article on his TextEdit control. [I would be very interested to see it, too-ed]

TMON Professional

ICOM Simulations

648 S. Wheeling Road

Wheeling, IL 60090

(708) 520-4440

ICOM Simulations has announced the release of TMON Professional, their latest version of monitor/debugger for the Macintosh. TMON Professional is listed at $249 or a $100 upgrade to registered users who send in their original TMON disks. TMON Professional is a multi-window monitor/debugger that allows you to view all heap zones, even in MultiFinder. You can add menu items that correspond to TMON functions. A new feature allows you to view the resource map of any open file letting you track resources more carefully. TMON Professional supports Discipline and dcmds, 68XXX, 32-bit memory management, and color. And their are a host of other features.

32-Bit QuickDraw

Lawrence D’Oliveiro

Hamilton, New Zealand

I read in the February issue with great interest as usual (for some reason, it arrived almost simultaneously with the January and March issues), but I was quite perplexed by Hugh Fisher’s article “Colorizing the Mac”. It seems to me much of his hard work was completely unnecessary.

According to my documentation for 32-Bit QuickDarw, that software add-on includes (among other things) a great many enhancements to the Palette Manager. In particular, it is possible to set up the colour table for an off-screen PixMap so that CopyBits will map the pixels to animating entries in the window palette-which would have solved Hugh’s problem!

How do you do this? St bit 14 in the ctFlags field of the off-screen CLUT. Then, in the “value” field of each ctTable entry, put the index of the palette entry which is mapped to the corresponding source pixel value. That is, if a pixel in the source PixMap has the value x, then ctTable[x].value specifies the palette entry to be used for drawing the pixel on the screen.

In short, you don’t need 16- or 32-bit-per-pixel display hardware to take advantage of many of the capabilities of 32-Bit QuickDraw. Among its other features are

• Enhancements to the Palette Manager, as already mentioned. These also include the ability to control precisely which palette entries take effect in which screen modes, so that you can ensure that your display looks the best at whatever mode the user chooses.

• Easy creation and manipulation off off-screen PixMaps of any depth (1, 2, 4, 8, 16 or 32 bits per pixel) and with any set of colours you choose, regardless of the settings or capabilities of your actual display hardware.

• An option to perform error diffusion when displaying, say, a 32-bit-per-pixel image on an 8-bit screen. This option sacrifices some of the fine detail-giving you a slightly grainier picture-in order to display a truer rendition of the original colours of the image.

32-Bit QuickDraw has been the official release since about the middle of 1989, and has been bundled with system software since System 6.0.5. It’s built in to the ROM of all colour-capable Macs beginning with the IIci (that is, the IIci, IIfx, IIsi and LC). On models older than this (the II, IIx, IIcx, and SE/30), the cost of installing the add-on is only about 100K of RAM.

I suspect a lot of people believe that, unless you’ve got a display that can show thousands or millions of colours, it’s not worth bothering with 32-Bit QuickDraw. I hope the above point will convince a few people otherwise.

I agree 32-Bit QuickDraw appears to be a bit of a “pot-pourri” of all kinds of functionality. In particular, the documentation doesn’t make it clear whether the useful new function BitMapToRegion--which doesn’t have anything to do with colour at all!--is available on black-and-white Macs. Also, it would have been nice if the Palette Manager enhancements, at least, could have been made available as an ordinary System patch. This could appeal to some people with older Macs, who think that the RAM overhead of installing the whole 32-Bit QuickDraw is a bit too much.

Another point that Hugh makes, that I must take issue with, is his assertion that “the Palette Manager is present on all Macs” (including non-colour-capable ones). It can’t be.

The Toolbox trap table on black-and-white Macs has room for 512 entries, allowing you (or rather, Apple) to define trapes in the range $A800 to $A9FF. The colour-capable Macs have 1024 entries in their Toolbox trap tables, allowing them to have the additional traps $AA00 to $ABFF. If you check the interface files, you’ll see that all the Color QuickDraw and 32-Bit QuickDraw traps (with the notable exceptions of BitMapToRegion and the Color Picker Package) are in the latter range. Any attempt to call (or use GetTrapAddress on) an upper-range trap on a non-colour-capable machine will give you one of the lower 512 traps instead--for example, attempting to call or determine the address of NewPalette ($AA91) will get you LineTo ($A891) and so on. On a black-and-white machine, the trap dispatcher effectively ignores the setting of bit 9.

I found this out the hard way. I used to check if a machine supported colour by seeing if the OpenCPort trap was defined. Then I ran my code on an SE under System 6.0.7. Result--crash! The reason, of course, was that my GetTrapAddress call on OpenCPort ($AA00) was returning the address of the new 6.0.7 SndDispatch trap ($A800) instead.

On The UserLand Frontier

Userland Software, Inc.

490 California Ave.

Palo Alto, CA 94306

(415) 325-5700

Userland has announced their plans to ship UserLand Frontier in October of this year. You may recall that Userland beat Apple to the inter-application communication punch by releasing UserLand IAC Toolkit; this product allowed IAC applications to be developed for both System 6 and System 7. Frontier will do the same in the OS scripting capabilities.

Frontier is a scripting system that will allow for “batch” type operations that have been sorely needed in the interactive windowing world. Applications can now take advantage of IAC by providing an interface to scripting services such as Frontier. This will allow control of applications such as Finder, databases, or yours through a script (programming language). For example, a script might be set up to back up your hard disk or send files over a modem without user action.

Frontier takes an outlining approach to scripting. This allows the scripter to hide the details of a handler or a structure so he can see the overall flow of the script (makes you wish you could do the same in your editor so you could hide all the details of procedures you are finished with). Source level debugging is also available, as well as an intelligent object database for script variables. A QuickScript feature is also included which can act like a command line interpreter.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

VMware Fusion 11.5.6 - Run Windows apps...
VMware Fusion and Fusion Pro - virtualization software for running Windows, Linux, and other systems on a Mac without rebooting. The latest version includes full support for Windows 10, macOS Mojave... Read more
Alfred 4.1 - Quick launcher for apps and...
Alfred is an award-winning productivity application for OS X. Alfred saves you time when you search for files online or on your Mac. Be more productive with hotkeys, keywords, and file actions at... Read more
Dashlane 6.2032.0 - Password manager and...
Dashlane is an award-winning service that revolutionizes the online experience by replacing the drudgery of everyday transactional processes with convenient, automated simplicity - in other words,... Read more
Skype 8.63.0.76 - Voice-over-internet ph...
Skype is a telecommunications app that provides HD video calls, instant messaging, calling to any phone number or landline, and Skype for Business for productive cooperation on the projects. This... Read more
Mellel 5.0.3 - The word processor for sc...
Mellel is the leading word processor for OS X and has been widely considered the industry standard for long form documents since its inception. Mellel focuses on writers and scholars for technical... Read more
A Better Finder Rename 11.20 - File, pho...
A Better Finder Rename is the most complete renaming solution available on the market today. That's why, since 1996, tens of thousands of hobbyists, professionals and businesses depend on A Better... Read more
TunnelBear 3.9.10 - Subscription-based p...
TunnelBear is a subscription-based virtual private network (VPN) service and companion app, enabling you to browse the internet privately and securely. Features Browse privately - Secure your data... Read more
Dropbox 103.4.383 - Cloud backup and syn...
Dropbox for Mac is a file hosting service that provides cloud storage, file synchronization, personal cloud, and client software. It is a modern workspace that allows you to get to all of your files... Read more
Daylite 2020.29.1 - Dynamic business org...
Daylite helps businesses organize themselves with tools such as shared calendars, contacts, tasks, projects, notes, and more. Enable easy collaboration with features such as task and project... Read more
HoudahSpot 5.1.5 - Advanced file-search...
HoudahSpot is a versatile desktop search tool. Use HoudahSpot to locate hard-to-find files and keep frequently used files within reach. HoudahSpot will immediately feel familiar. It works just the... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Motorball is a car football game from No...
A few years back Noodlecake Studios announced that they would be dipping in the multiplayer gaming realm with two different games. The first of those, Golf Blitz, released a while back and has proven to be very popular. Now, the second has arrived... | Read more »
SINoALICE's latest update introduce...
SINoALICE's latest update has now arrived, adding several fan-favourite characters from popular RPG series NieR. Young Nier, Kaine, and Young Emil are available in-game as part of a limited-time crossover event set to run until August 20th. [Read... | Read more »
Rocat Jumpurr is an intense roguelite pl...
Rocat Jumpurr is a roguelite platformer from developer Mousetrap Games. You might already be familiar with it if you follow the Big Indie Pitch, where it won first place during this year's Pocket Gamer Connects London competition. Following its... | Read more »
PUBG Mobile's Play As One campaign...
Back in mid-July, we reported that PUGB Mobile had teamed up with Direct Relief to help raise money for the charity's COVID-19 response project. It focused on an in-game running challenge for players, which lead to the PUBG Mobile donating $2... | Read more »
Marvel Contest of Champions' latest...
Marvel Contest of Champions' latest motion comic has arrived, and it shows off new fighters Air-Walker and Dragon Man. Both characters are set to arrive in-game this month. [Read more] | Read more »
Clash Royale: The Road to Legendary Aren...
Supercell recently celebrated its 10th anniversary and their best title, Clash Royale, is as good as it's ever been. Even for lapsed players, returning to the game is as easy as can be. If you want to join us in picking the game back up, we've put... | Read more »
Global Spy is an intriguing 2D spy sim f...
Developer Yuyosoft Innovations' Global Spy launched last month for iOS and Android, though if you missed it at the time, we're here to tell you why it's well worth a go. This one's all about international espionage, tracking down elusive spies,... | Read more »
Distract Yourself With These Great Mobil...
There’s a lot going on right now, and I don’t really feel like trying to write some kind of pithy intro for it. All I’ll say is lots of people have been coming together and helping each other in small ways, and I’m choosing to focus on that as I... | Read more »
Hyena Squad is sci-fi turn-based strateg...
Wave Light Games has just revealed its latest release, Hyena Squad, a turn-based RPG set in a space station infested by gross aliens and the living dead. The announcement was first reported on by Touch Arcade. [Read more] | Read more »
Idle Guardians: Never Die is a pixel art...
SuperPlanet has been fairly prolific with game releases so far this year with both Evil Hunter Tycoon and Lucid Adventure releasing earlier this year. Now, they've released another idle RPG called Idle Guardians: Never Die, which you can download... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Apple restocks refurbished 2020 13″ MacBook A...
Apple has restocked Certified Refurbished 2020 13″ MacBook Airs starting at only $849 and up to $200 off the cost of new Airs. Each MacBook features a new outer case, comes with a standard Apple one-... Read more
Apple restocks clearance 2019 13″ 2.4GHz MacB...
Apple has restocked Certified Refurbished 2019 13″ 2.4GHz 4-Core Touch Bar MacBook Pros starting at $1359 and up to $560 off original MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is included, shipping is free,... Read more
Apple restocks refurbished iPhone XR models s...
Apple has restocked Certified Refurbished, unlocked, iPhone XR models in the refurbished section of their online store starting at $539. Each iPhone comes with Apple’s standard one-year warranty,... Read more
Price drops! $100-$200 off clearance 27″ 5K i...
B&H Photo has dropped prices on clearance, previous-generation 27″ 5K iMacs by up to $200 off Apple’s original MSRP: – 27″ 3.0GHz 6-Core 5K iMac: $1699 $100 off original MSRP – 27″ 3.1GHz 6-Core... Read more
Woot offers Apple Watch and iPhone models fro...
Amazon-owned Woot has refurbished Apple Watch and iPhone models available from $99-$749 through August 6th. According to Woot, the items may show some wear, but they have all been fully tested and... Read more
Apple’s Phil Schiller Steps Down As SVP OF Wo...
NEWS: 08.05.20 – Former Apple senior Vice President of worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller, is stepping down from his long time role at the company in order to focus on spending more time with family... Read more
Expercom offers $320 discount on the 6-core 1...
Apple reseller Expercom has the Silver 16″ 6-core MacBook Pro on sale for a limited time for $2079 shipped. Their price is $320 off Apple’s MSRP for this model, and it’s the cheapest price currently... Read more
Apple announces Education pricing for new 202...
Purchase a new 2020 iMac or iMac Pro at Apple using Apple’s Education discount, and take up to $400 off MSRP. All teachers, students, and staff of any educational institution with a .edu email... Read more
Apple reseller Expercom offers $256 discount...
Expercom has Apple’s new 2020 10-core iMac Pro available for order and on sale for $4743 shipped. Their price is $256 off Apple’s MSRP for this new model, and it’s the cheapest price we’ve seen so... Read more
Apple releases refreshed 2020 27″ iMacs with...
Apple today released updated versions of their 27″ iMacs featuring 10th generation Intel processors, SSDs across the board, a better 5K display, and improvements to the camera, speakers, and mic.... Read more

Jobs Board

Executive Team Leader GM Sales (Assistant Man...
…(Assistant Manager General Merchandise and Operations) - Apple Valley, CaliforniaApply NowJob ID:R0000082364job family:Store Managementschedule:Full Read more
Cub Foods - *Apple* Valley - Now Hiring Par...
Cub Foods - Apple Valley - Now Hiring Part Time! United States of America, Minnesota, Apple Valley New Retail Post Date 2 days ago Requisition # 122305 Sign Up Read more
Part-time Geek Squad *Apple* Consultation P...
**770829BR** **Job Title:** Part-time Geek Squad Apple Consultation Professional-Store 384(Ithaca) **Job Category:** Store Associates **Store Number or Department:** Read more
Product Manager, *Apple* Commercial Sales -...
Product Manager, Apple Commercial Sales Austin, TX, US Requisition Number:77652 As an Apple Product Manager for the Commercial Sales team at Insight, you Read more
Cub Foods - *Apple* Valley - Now Hiring Par...
Cub Foods - Apple Valley - Now Hiring Part Time! United States of America, Minnesota, Apple Valley New Retail Post Date 1 day ago Requisition # 122305 Sign Up Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.