Apr 2002

The Power Of Three: XML, XSLT and PHP

PHP Beginner: “This is an introduction and presentation into the value and use of PHP and XML in a single environment. This is a series of articles that take a journey into the basics of XML and the fundamentals of PHP.”

April 2002 Developer Tools Posted

The April 2002 Developer Tools, now available to ADC online members, includes a new version of Project Builder with a flexible user interface. This long-time CodeWarrior user set it to the “Many Windows” configuration, and so far I’m pleased.

Huevos 1.0b2

Huevos 1.0b2, an open source Cocoa app, has been released. Changes include improved preferences editing and remembering your last search engine and search string between runs of the app.

Frontier Contextual Menu Plugin now Open Source

The source code to the Frontier/Radio contextual menu plugin for OS X is now available. It’s released under the BSD license.

Chimera 0.26 released

This latest release supports the OS home page and proxy settings. And you can import bookmarks.

Apple’s new eMac sports 17-inch screen

MacMegasite: “Aiming to boost its fortunes in the education market, Apple on Monday plans to unveil the eMac, an all-in-one computer similar to the original iMac, but built around a 17-inch flat-screen monitor.”

Optimal String Concatenation in UserTalk

Seth Dillingham: “UserTalk scripts often need to build large strings from smaller strings, such as assembling a web page or an RSS feed in Conversant, Manila, or even the old static site engine. In order to optimize this process as much as possible, there are two things the scripter needs to remember: ‘Avoid copying large strings whenever possible,’ and ‘trigger the secret in-place append.’”

Redirection using PHP

PHP Beginner: “Have you ever seen a webpage that, instead of loading you the information you expect, takes you ‘magically’ elsewhere? I’m sure you have. Well, that ‘magic’ is actually called redirection. Similar to those implemented in HTML but server-side, and in our case using (what else?) PHP. This article will briefly teach you its implementation.”

The Missing Cocoa Docs

Brock Brandenberg: “The Missing Cocoa Docs are intended to help you implement certain basic functionality and to teach you how to implement some of the more unique technologies like OS X’s superb glyph and type handling. For example, they won’t teach using NSViews because there are plenty of tutorials on NSViews and drawRect: methods, but there is little on NSLayoutManagers and accessing font outlines, a technique that is needed for more sophisticated graphics apps.”

Including Files (with PHP)

PHP Beginner: “Another thing we can do is ‘include’ files. This comes in handy when you have the same information on all your pages, over and over again. For example, connecting to the same database, printing the same HTML at the top or bottom of a page. It can be used for headers or footers, or for simplifying things.”

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If you’ve been thinking about learning PHP, check out the PHP Beginner site. I wish it had been around when I was learning PHP.

Building Cocoa Applications: A Step-by-Step Guide

A new Cocoa book is on the way from O’Reilly. It’s by Michael Mahoney and Simson Garfinkel.

GoLive Gets Interesting

O’Reilly: “GoLive 6 features a robust workgroup server; support for common scripting languages such as ASP, JSP, and PHP; drag-and-drop WML authoring for mobile devices; MySQL database for dynamic sites; Apache Web server; and a tighter JavaScript code generator for rollovers and other dynamic goodies.”

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Perhaps it’s time for another look at GoLive. Last time I used it, it was GoLive CyberStudio. Adobe hadn’t yet acquired it. I liked it then, but not enough to pay for upgrades.

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For nostalgia reasons only: here’s a review I wrote of GoLive in 1997.

OmniOutliner 2.0b3

The latest release adds a Scripts menu for running AppleScript scripts. Scripts can also be added to the toolbar.

Pantomime 1.0.3

Ludovic Marcotte: “Pantomime provides a set of Objective-C classes that model a mail system. Pantomime can be seen as a JavaMail 1.2 clone written in Objective-C.”

What Sessions Are

PHP Beginner: “A session is a mechanism to maintain a user’s state across some period of time. The word ‘session’ can be interpreted as the determinate usage time of your site relative to a single visitor.”

AppleScript S.O.S.

MacScripter.net: “Despite AppleScript's ‘English-like’ syntax, I like many of you have questions about the hows and whys almost every day. I would like to outline here some of the resources I have found most helpful.”

The ABCs of CMS - Part II

evolt.org: “In this installment we will cover logging in a user, presenting them with appropriate navigation according to their user level, and setting up an article table.”

XP on the PowerPC

O’Reilly: “Mac OS X is young and still maturing. Windows XP is a dominating OS that doesn’t play nice with the other kids. Wouldn’t it be great to have the best of both?”

Where’s Jini?

Developer.com: “Three years ago, Jini was touted as the sure path to ubiquitous computing. What happened to it?”

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I had completely forgotten about Jini. I remember thinking that Jini was doomed and silly from the start, though I can’t remember why.

Coffee, Conversation and ZUBB

DevShed: “I thought that I would have to design and build this forum myself from scratch—until a search on Google and Zope.org turned up a very neat little Zope Product named ZUBB, which offered all the features I needed.”

Interview with Vincent Flanders of Web Pages That Suck

WebmasterBase: “Well, I’m a marketing weasel and I hate everything that's boring—personally, I think being boring is the only sin—so I come up with an attention-grabbing name instead of an appropriate one. Not to rag on Jakob (Nielsen) because Jakob really is a cool guy, but I would imagine Jakob would have called it ‘Web Pages That Have Mistakes.’”

Apache Web-Serving for Mac OS X, Part 6

O’Reilly: “There are a decent number of modules shipped with Apache, so thus begins a two-part article concerning them, as well as the mojo-jojo that can be yours. We’ll keep these articles updated as time goes on, so they’ll always be a handy reference, whether you’re using Apache on OS X, Linux, or Windows.”

Cocoa FoundationCollectionsPalette v1.0.0

Kritter: “This palette adds Foundation Collections support to Apple’s IB; it enhances NSDictionary and NSArray, adding an attributes inspector, a connections inspector and a size inspector to both.”

Chimera Web browser in the works

MacCentral: “The Chimera project focuses on delivering a best-of-breed browser for Mac OS X, according to Steve Dagley of the project. It’s a ‘blending of the brains/brawn of the core technologies from Mozilla, such as the Gecko layout engine, with the beauty of Quartz text rendering in a Cocoa app,’ he said.”

Make BBEdit into an AppleScript Development Environment

Studio Log: “I began to try and create a script that would take the text of a BBEdit window, compile it in AppleScript and save it to a compiled script. Little did I know that it would lead to a much more interesting exercise.”

Working With Bitmap Images; Document-Based Application Redux

O’Reilly: Programming with Cocoa: “Today’s column is the first in a series that takes a closer look at a number of previously-neglected aspects of Cocoa’s document-based application feature set. The application we will build as a platform for exploring these concepts is an image viewer (and later an editor) application called ImageApp.”

The ABCs of CMS

evolt.org: “Custom content management can be approached like building an igloo, one piece at a time. Start with a solid foundation and you can build up from there.”

Your First XSLT Page

evolt.org: “Putting it simply, XSL is a kind of find-and-replace script, which is executed as the XML parser walks through the document tree.”

Browser detectors

PHP Beginner: “The first step for most of us is to detect the browser the user is using and show the appropriate page to him or her. The popular way is to use lengthy javascript, but, it is just not fair to do when we can rely on our best friend PHP.”

CamelBones 0.2

CamelBones is a high-level Objective-C framework that wraps around the Perl embedding API.


Peter Chapman’s RezBrowser tool runs in Radio UserLand and allows one to browse the contents of resource forks.

Cocoa Browser v0.3

It’s a browser for the Cocoa API reference docs. I use it and recommend it. It’s open source, so it’s also useful as sample code.

Apple releases Mac OS X 10.1.4

MacCentral: “Changes to Mac OS X 10.1.4 include improved network, security and additional disc recording device support, according to Apple.”


On my personal weblog: “I’m working on a Cocoa class for reading RSS feeds. My intent is to make it open source (BSD license) so it’s available to other Cocoa developers. I chose the BSD license so people doing commercial apps can use it too. Here’s what the API looks like. I’m seeking comments on its 1) Cocoa-ness and 2) usefulness.”

The IDEs of Mac

O’Reilly on Java IDEs for OS X: “In this article, I’ll look at JBuilder, IDEA, and a few other IDEs. There’s a bigger issue here that I’ll address in the Pre-ramble: look at the number of choices you have for developing in Java on Mac OS X.”

The Number Game

DevShed: “One of the simplest things you can add to your Web portal is an online poll, one designed to elicit responses and reactions from members to the hot-buttons issues of the day.” This tutorial shows how using Zope and MySQL.

Writing Self-Documenting PHP Code

DevShed: “Most developers can’t stand the thought of documenting their own code, finding it both tedious and a waste of their time and skills (although, strangely enough, they’re the first to complain about the ‘lack of documentation’ when it comes to someone else’s code.)”

F-Script 1.2 released

It’s an open source “lightweight object-oriented scripting layer specifically designed for Mac OS X object system (i.e. Cocoa). F-Script provides scripting and interactive access to Cocoa frameworks and custom Objective-C objects.”

Attack of the Killer Bugs!

WebmasterBase: “Perl is without doubt a very complicated programming language. The tiniest typo can yield an error message that scientists could spend years decoding. However, what most people don’t know is that Perl offers facilities that are specifically designed to eliminate the most common errors.”

Handling Users and Passwords with PHP

PHP Beginner: “Any of these applications are going to require one or more users along with their passwords. If you write it properly, handling users and passwords can be built once and used over and over again in every application you build.”

From Woeful to Wow! - 6 Steps to a Stunning Site

WebmasterBase: “Absolutely never let a user (or users) have the power to defame your site. Forms of this include guest books with undeletable entries, and other similar not-so-bright ideas. One of my favorites is the ‘Vote Me off the Net’ polls, where users may rate a site from, say, 1-5.”

Variables Inside Cocoa Objects

O’Reilly posts a second article about supporting AppleScript in Cocoa apps. “Today we’re looking at accessing the instance variables inside your Cocoa objects, and in the process we’re going to explore part of the Core Text Suite that we get for free with Cocoa.”

Getting Paid on the Internet

Webmonkey: “Several companies have developed payment systems that you can use either on a one-off basis, as a subscriber, or as a full-fledged credit merchant. Each service has its advantages and hang-ups, which is just what we’ll be looking at as we examine a variety of services in the pages that follow.”

Python 2.2.1 released

It’s a bug-fix release.


Mark Pilgrim: “This site is a repository of information for Mac OS X and OS X Server administrators. It is not a discussion forum, a bulletin board, or a place for topical Mac news. It is a wiki, free to all and freely editable by all.”

AppleScript for Google API

Steve Zellers posted AppleScript scripts for calling Google’s new SOAP API.

Fixing Your Site with the Right Doctype

A List Apart: “You’ve written valid XHTML and CSS. You’ve used the W3C standard Document Object Model (DOM) to manipulate dynamic page elements. Yet, in browsers designed to support these very standards, your site is failing. A faulty DOCTYPE is likely to blame.”

CURLHandle 1.5 released

It’s a public domain Cocoa wrapper around cURL. This latest version is built as a stand-alone framework.

Zope and MySQL

DevShed: “I’m going to show you how to hook your Zope server up to a MySQL database, and write DTML code that allows you to retrieve and manipulate MySQL table records using standard SQL commands.”

OmniObjectMeter 2.0 public beta

Omni Group: “OmniObjectMeter is a Mac OS X application that makes it easy for Cocoa and Unix developers to find and fix memory leaks, excessive memory operations, and prematurely deallocated objects. The end product is faster and more robust applications.”

Simple Stored Procedure Emulation with PHP/mySQL

Brent Ashley: “My ‘third time, automate’ rule came in handy again recently. I’m doing all sorts of PHP/mySQL work and I found myself hacking together the same SQL queries over and over with just some different filter or sort order. Being used to stored procedures, I was missing the easier syntax.”

Scalability’s New Meaning

evolt.org: “The funny thing was that many developers were finding that their applications were able to support greater demand than expected. So much more than expected, that managers were becoming less worried about the scalability of their applications and more worried about the scalability of their development teams. What caused this apparent change in attitude? A law that has governed the computer industry since its inception caused this change.”

Error Handling in PHP (Part 2)

DevShed: “In this concluding section, I will demonstrate how you can piggyback your code on top of PHP’s core engine by triggering your own errors and writing custom handlers to deal with them. I will also show you a simpler method of logging errors, and will (as usual) put the theory to the test with a couple of real-world examples. Much mayhem ahead...”


Emmanuel Décarie’s new tool converts Frontier DocServer pages to man pages.

PHP-HTML Templates: A New Working Relationship

PHPBuilder.com: “The phrase ‘HTML-embedded scripting language’ reminds me of my days in ‘dot-coms’ (‘dot-gones’ for now). I was involved in the development of corporate portal sites. My working counterparts were mainly webpage and graphic designers with little or no programming knowledge.”

Hot Java Revives Mac Programming

eWeek: “After years of being infamously unfriendly to casual programmers, the Macintosh has suddenly become the machine of choice for out-of-the-box programmability—with tools that not only generate great-looking Macintosh applications but that also generate them in Java so you can take them anywhere.”

A Quick and Dirty Blog using Zope

evolt.org: “At its simplest, then, each news item is an Object containing content and meta-content—information about the content. What we want to do is have each news object as self-contained as possible so that we can build pages and indices just by calling simple methods on that object—and that will be our entire system.”

Queue Suite Updated

Macrobyte Resources: “The Queue Suite is a queue processing daemon for Frontier and Radio. A queue daemon processes items one at a time, in the order in which they are received. This is also known as a First In First Out Processing System. The Queue Suite is used in Conversant, the AttSearchEngine, RCSearch, and various other tools and software produced by Macrobyte.”

Macintosh News Aggregator

Displays the latest Mac news gathered from various RSS feeds. It’s also searchable.

Tips for Building Web Database Applications with PHP and MySQL

O’Reilly: “PHP’s popularity stems from its power and flexibility: it is easy to include PHP scripts in HTML documents; it has a powerful performance-oriented library for accessing MySQL; and it shares syntax with other popular programming languages.”


Huevos is a free and Open Source (BSD license) Cocoa application that provides a window where you can type a search string and choose a search engine. A search is then run in your default Web browser. It’s customizable via the Preferences window: you can add, edit, and delete search engines.

Six Common Enterprise Programming Mistakes

O’Reilly: “I remember my first few years of programming when I knew that I was going to always innovate, always create, never copy, and never need any help. Of course, I later found out that most of my clever ‘innovations’ were poor solutions to well-understood problems, many with established ‘best-case’ solutions. It’s absurd to be so egotistical as to refuse to accept help when it’s offered.”

Embedding Tomcat into Java Applications

O’Reilly: “In this article, we’ll extend our Tomcat discussions to the application level by creating a Java application that manages an embedded version of the Tomcat JSP/servlet container.”

Netcraft March 2002 Survey Released

evolt.org: “The latest Netcraft Web Server Survey, for March 2002, has been released with somewhat inconclusive results. Their survey of over 38 million sites shows Microsoft’s IIS stealing ground directly from Apache to pull 10% closer.”

Using PHP with Java

DevShed: “You can do a lot of very interesting things with PHP. And one of the more interesting ones includes hooking PHP up to Java and accessing Java classes in a PHP script.”

Better Templates for iPhoto’s BetterHTMLExport

O’Reilly: “BetterHTMLExport, at version 1.3 at time of writing, provides significant improvements over the built-in HTMLExport filter, including the option for you to create your own templates.”

Transport Layer Security for Frontier and Radio Updated

Macrobyte Resources: “This product provides scripts for accessing secure websites and services from Frontier and Radio, and for serving secure websites (from the same).”

NibLocalizer 0.1 beta

NibLocalizer 0.1 beta is a free tool for localizing strings in nib files.

Objective-C Wrappers for SQLLite

Blackhole Media released SQLDatabase, “a set of Objective-C classes that wrap around the SQLite library, an embeddable SQL database engine which reads and writes directly to and from database files on disk. This is very handy for developers who need some sort of flexible database solution. The SQLite library is public domain.”

Internet Version Checking

Cocoa Dev Central: “One of the simpler ways in which you can provide functionality to your users by embracing ‘The Internet’ is by allowing users to check for new releases of your software from directly within the application. How’s it done?”

OSAShell Scripting Component

It’s an open source (BSD license) OSA component for Mac OS X. Source code is included with the download. It implements a component that allows one to write shell scripts in Apple’s Script Editor, Radio UserLand, and other OSA-savvy editors. More importantly it provides a basis for developers to write new OSA components. Here’s a screen shot.

On Using Multiple NIB Files

Bill Bumgarner: “The key—as usual—is to remember that there is no magic when developing Cocoa applications.”


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