REALbasic 3.5 Released -- REAL Software, Inc., has released version 3.5 of REALbasic, their easy-to-use visual object-oriented development environment that many consider the true heir of HyperCard. Welcome new features abound, including support for regular expressions, Microsoft Office automation, and 3-D graphics tools, although other additions (such as DataControl for navigating databases and the RBScript expression parser) aren't as successful. REAL Software has also fixed many bugs, and while others still remain, REALbasic 3.5 is the best overall version since 2.1.2. Most impressive is its support for different operating systems - it runs on Mac OS 7.6.1 or later, and natively under Mac OS X, and can compile applications for Mac OS 8 or later (68K or PowerPC), for Mac OS X, and (less well) for Windows. REALbasic remains a great introduction to programming, a tool to make tools and build custom solutions, and even a source of commercial software. It costs $100 for the Standard version, or $300 for the Professional version that adds Windows compilation and database capabilities (a package that includes a CD and printed documentation adds another $50) Academic discounts are available ($60 for Standard; $180 for Professional) as is a time-limited feature-restricted demo. The second edition of Contributing Editor Matt Neuburg's book on REALbasic from O'Reilly will be out next month. [ACE]
Open Files with Finder's App Switcher
Say you're in the Finder looking at a file and you want to open it with an application that's already running but which doesn't own that particular document. How? Switch to that app and choose File > Open? Too many steps. Choose Open With from the file's contextual menu? Takes too long, and the app might not be listed. Drag the file to the Dock and drop it onto the app's icon? The icon might be hard to find; worse, you might miss.
In Leopard there's a new solution: use the Command-Tab switcher. Yes, the Command-Tab switcher accepts drag-and-drop! The gesture required is a bit tricky. Start dragging the file in the Finder: move the file, but don't let up on the mouse button. With your other hand, press Command-Tab to summon the switcher, and don't let up on the Command key. Drag the file onto the application's icon in the switcher and let go of the mouse. (Now you can let go of the Command key too.) Extra tip: If you switch to the app beforehand, its icon in the Command-Tab switcher will be easy to find; it will be first (or second).
- Yes, Virginia, There Is a REALbasic (17 Aug 98)
Published in TidBITS 594.
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