Monday, June 26, 2017

#1 2006-05-14 03:56:01 am

Bill Cheeseman
Administrator
Registered: 2006-06-29
Posts: 158

Script Editor 2.0 (beta)

Shortly after AppleScript 1.9.1 was released in December of 2002, Apple also quietly posted a beta upgrade for the venerable Script Editor.  Script Editor had been largely unchanged from OS 9 to OS X, and while other development environments like FaceSpan and Smile had much nicer features, Script Editor still lacked some features that it desperately needed.  Find and replace wasn't there, nor was the ability to view the results of an AppleScript command (both of which Smile had a long time ago).

The 2.0 beta was intended for Jaguar users only, though it is not clear from the Apple download page.  Under "System Requirements" it states "Mac OS 10.1 or later," but in the actual description it says it needs "v10.2 (Jaguar)."  I believe that the beta was probably a working beta for the improved Script Editor in Mac OS X Panther (10.3) that was released to Jaguar users to at least give them a better tool than the old Editor.

More than just adding Find/Replace and a results window, the new version of the editor also includes some other niceties like :

*  A newer interface that puts the descriptive text in a side drawer instead of a collapsable pane at the top
*  Contextual menus that have often-used bits of codes and handlers that you can pop into your current cursor position
*  An event log tab at the bottom of the window
*  A customizable tool bar like other OS X applications

The Edtior window looks quite a bit different, as you can see from these snapshots.  Below is the 1.9 version that shipped with Jaguar.  Note how the long lines of code go past the right edge of the window.

http://files.macscripter.net/sourcebook/editor19.png

Here we have the newly redesigned Editor, with the customizable toolbar and tabs at the bottom for result and events.  The code is also wrapped to the size of the window (check the line that ends with an & and wraps and indents on the next line).

http://files.macscripter.net/sourcebook/editor20.png

Quite a difference, eh?  I've been using the new editor for some time (yes, I'm still on Jaguar) and the only quirk I've noticed (and probably why the program bears a "beta" in its name) is that information entered into the Info drawer doesn't stay.  When you save the script and re-open it, the comments you entered are gone.

Other than that, the new editor is a VAST improvement over the original.  Those using Panther and Tiger won't need this upgrade, as they come with later versions, but I highly recommend this upgrade for anyone still stuck using the old Script Editor.

Apple's download page also touts other improvements, including:

* No 32k limit on script size
* Long lines re-wrapped
* Multiple undo's
* Dictionary browser (for finding scriptable applications and opening their dictionaries)

The installer will not remove the old editor, and you might want to keep it around until you decide whether you like this one or not.

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