REALbasic 3.0 Ships -- REAL Software has released REALbasic 3.0, the first major upgrade since April 2000. REALbasic is a tool for building applications: you draw your interface (windows, buttons, text fields and so on), fill in the code using an easy but powerful object-oriented BASIC dialect, and compile. A wide range of functionality is built in, and you can supplement it with third-party plug-ins or by calling the Mac Toolbox directly. Although eminently suitable for hobbyists and beginners, REALbasic has been used to create some commercial applications. (Contributing Editor Matt Neuburg, who also wrote "REALbasic: The Definitive Guide," reviewed REALbasic 2.0 in "REALbasic 2.0 Gets Real" in TidBITS-493.) This version's most significant innovation is that it can both run under and compile for Mac OS X (Carbon). Since the final version of Mac OS X doesn't ship until 24-Mar-01, REAL Software promises a free update to mop up any bugs which appear. Compilation for Windows is also much improved, and there are many convenient enhancements to the development environment (editing and debugging). REALbasic costs $150, or $350 for the "professional" edition that adds database connectivity and Windows compilation; academic discounts are available. The upgrade is free for those who purchased REALbasic 2.1.2 after 01-Nov-00; upgrades to the standard version are $100, and upgrades for the professional edition are $150. You can download a 30-day free evaluation copy. [MAN]
Mac OS X Services in Snow Leopard
Mac OS X Services let one application supply its powers to another; for example, a Grab service helps TextEdit paste a screenshot into a document. Most users either don't know that Services exist, because they're in an obscure hierarchical menu (ApplicationName > Services), or they mostly don't use them because there are so many of them.
Snow Leopard makes it easier for the uninitiated to utilize this feature; only services appropriate to the current context appear. And in addition to the hierarchical menu, services are discoverable as custom contextual menu items - Control-click in a TextEdit document to access the Grab service, for instance.
In addition, the revamped Keyboard preference pane lets you manage services for the first time ever. You can enable and disable them, and even change their keyboard shortcuts.
- REALbasic 2.0 Gets Real (16 Aug 99)