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AppleScript: The Missing Manual: The Missing Manual


From newspapers to NASA, Mac users around the world use AppleScript to automate their daily computing routines. Famed for its similarity to English and its ease of integration with other programs, AppleScript is the perfect programming language for time-squeezed Mac fans. As beginners quickly realize, however, AppleScript has one major shortcoming: it comes without a manual.No more. You don't need a degree in computer science, a fancy system administrator title, or even a pocket protector and pair of nerdy ...

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AppleScript: The Missing Manual: The Missing Manual

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From newspapers to NASA, Mac users around the world use AppleScript to automate their daily computing routines. Famed for its similarity to English and its ease of integration with other programs, AppleScript is the perfect programming language for time-squeezed Mac fans. As beginners quickly realize, however, AppleScript has one major shortcoming: it comes without a manual.No more. You don't need a degree in computer science, a fancy system administrator title, or even a pocket protector and pair of nerdy glasses to learn the Mac's most popular scripting language; you just need the proper guide at your side. AppleScript: The Missing Manual is that guide.Brilliantly compiled by author Adam Goldstein, AppleScript: The Missing Manual is brimming with useful examples. You'll learn how to clean up your Desktop with a single click, for example, and how to automatically optimize pictures for a website. Along the way, you ll learn the overall grammar of AppleScript, so you can write your own customized scripts when you feel the need.Naturally, AppleScript: The Missing Manual isn't merely for the uninitiated scripter. While its hands-on approach certainly keeps novices from feeling intimidated, this comprehensive guide is also suited for system administrators, web and graphics professionals, musicians, scientists, mathematicians, engineers, and others who need to learn the ins and outs of AppleScript for their daily work.Thanks to AppleScript: The Missing Manual, the path from consumer to seasoned script has never been clearer. Now you, too, can automate your Macintosh in no time.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596008505
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/7/2005
  • Series: Missing Manual Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 833,184
  • Product dimensions: 7.04 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Adam Goldstein got his programming start in Kindergarten, when he first played around with Logo on an old Apple II. Through middle school, Adam wrote useless but amusing HyperCard programs. Nowadays, he runs GoldfishSoft, a shareware company that makes games and utilities for Mac OS X. Adam was a technical editor for O'Reilly's best-selling Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, and an editor for Mac OS X Panther Power User. When he's not writing books or code, Adam attends MIT.

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Table of Contents

The Missing Credits;
About the Author;
About the Creative Team;
The Missing Manual Series;
Uses for AppleScript;
Advantages and Disadvantages;
About This Book;
Part I: AppleScript Overview;
Chapter 1: Setting Up AppleScript;
1.1 The Script Menu;
1.2 Working with the Scripts You Have;
Chapter 2: Using Script Editor;
2.1 The Script Editor Look;
2.2 Script Formats;
2.3 Setting Script Editor's Preferences;
Chapter 3: Building a Script from Scratch;
3.1 Getting Started;
3.2 Commanding Other Programs;
Part II: Everyday Scripting Tasks;
Chapter 4: Manipulating Text;
4.1 String Notation;
4.2 Getting Text Back from Dialog Boxes;
4.3 Linking Strings Together;
4.4 Multiline Strings;
4.5 Scripting TextEdit;
4.6 Adding Word Count;
4.7 Commanding Microsoft Word;
4.8 Running Scripts from Text;
Chapter 5: Controlling Files;
5.1 File Path Boot Camp;
5.2 Displaying Folders;
5.3 Moving Files Around;
5.4 Backing Up Files;
5.5 Deleting Files;
5.6 Picking a File from a Dialog Box;
5.7 Saving Files;
Chapter 6: Creating Lists;
6.1 Common List Commands;
6.2 Displaying Lists;
6.3 The Ever-Useful every Keyword;
6.4 List Processing;
6.5 Joining Lists Together;
6.6 Inputting Lists;
6.7 Getting Lists from Other Programs;
Chapter 7: Organizing and Editing Graphics;
7.1 Scripting iPhoto;
7.2 Controlling Photoshop;
7.3 Image Events;
Chapter 8: Playing Sound and Video;
8.1 Scripting iTunes;
8.2 Speaking and Listening;
8.3 Scripting QuickTime;
Chapter 9: Internet and Network Scripting;
9.1 Internet Connect;
9.2 Safari;
9.3 Address Book;
9.4 Mail;
9.5 iChat Control;
9.6 URL Access Scripting;
9.7 Recalling Passwords;
Chapter 10: Organizing Information in Databases;
10.1 Record Notation;
10.2 Making a Simple AppleScript Database;
10.3 Getting File Information;
10.4 Scripting FileMaker Pro;
Part III: Power-User Features;
Chapter 11: Linking Scripts to Folders with Folder Actions;
11.1 Enabling Folder Actions;
11.2 Built-in Actions;
11.3 Running Your Own Actions;
Chapter 12: Scripting Programs That Don't Have Dictionaries;
12.1 Enabling GUI Scripting;
12.2 GUI Scripting Basics;
12.3 Controlling Menus;
12.4 Clicking Buttons;
12.5 Deciphering Interface Hierarchies;
12.6 Fake Typing;
Chapter 13: Mixing AppleScript and Unix;
13.1 Terminal;
13.2 Unix Without Terminal;
13.3 Running Superuser Commands;
13.4 Running AppleScripts from Unix;
13.5 Scheduling AppleScript Commands;
Chapter 14: Testing and Debugging Scripts;
14.1 First Line of Defense: The Compiler;
14.2 Noting Important Events;
14.3 Preventing Errors;
14.4 Isolating and Handling Errors;
14.5 The Xcode Debugger;
Chapter 15: AppleScript Studio;
15.1 What Is AppleScript Studio?;
15.2 Making a Program;
Part IV: Appendixes;
Appendix A: AppleScript Support in Common Programs;
A.1 Databases;
A.2 Email Programs;
A.3 Graphics Editors;
A.4 Page Layout Programs;
A.5 Plain Text Editors;
A.6 Word Processors;
A.7 Web Browsers;
Appendix B: Moving from HyperCard to AppleScript;
B.1 Data Types;
B.2 Dialog Boxes;
B.3 Existence;
B.4 Numbers;
B.5 Pausing;
B.6 Ranges;
B.7 Repeat Statements;
B.8 Subroutines;
B.9 Variables;
Appendix C: Where to Go from Here;
C.1 Web Sites;
C.2 Discussion Lists;
C.3 Books;

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2005

    easy to understand language

    AppleScript used to be for fairly mundane operations. It rose partly in response to DOS and unix machines having their scripting languages for automating various tasks. Well, as the Mac OS grew, so too did the scope of AppleScript. Now Goldstein shows how you can easily use it for automating many manual tasks in OS X. Unsurprisingly, since this is Apple we are talking about, the Script Editor and Script Menu facilities are very cleanly designed. As for the language itself - it is far more readable than a unix shell script or the latest Microsoft batch files. This is both good and bad, depending on your point of view. It is good in that a new user of AppleScript, who perhaps is not from a technical background, can understand it more easily. So AppleScript can outreach to a broader audience. However, if you do end up learning it, the verbosity can be a little tiresome. Experienced programmers tend to prefer brevity. But there is a countervailing point. The nice thing is that OS X is a full unix variant. Complete with various unix scripting languages. So you have several choices of languages besides AppleScript.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2005

    AppleScript, The Missing Manual - Highly Recommended!

    Title: AppleScript, The Missing Manual Author: Adam Goldstein Publisher: Pogue Press/O¿Reilly & Associates, February, 2005 ISBN: 0-596-00850-3 Reviewed by: Curt Blanchard, Tucson Macintosh Users Group Apple introduced AppleScript in 1993 as a way of automating repetitive Mac chores. Over the years, it has evolved to the point where nearly everything the Mac does can be scripted. Instead of arcane programming code, AppleScripts are written in English partly because its roots are in HyperCard. However, getting the terminology and syntax right requires a good, clear understanding of the AppleScript language. Once again, O¿Reilly Press rides to the rescue with another in their excellent Missing Manual series. This at-your- own-pace book begins with the basics of everyday scripting tasks and takes the reader through lists, network scripting, databases and ends with a very detailed power-user section. This approachable book is written in an enthusiastic, good-humored style (funny, even); important with a subject as intimidating as this. The examples and thoughtful tutorials are exceptionally clear. The author, Adam Goldstein deserves special mention - he¿s only 17 years old! In his foreword, David Pogue tells about meeting Goldstein when he was only 14 and how impressed he was. He has already been involved in several O¿Reilly books even though he¿s still a high school student in New Jersey. There can be no questions about his bright future. If you are new to AppleScript or an old hand, this well written book is highly recommended. --Curt Blanchard Tucson Macintosh Users Group

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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