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Frontier

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Of course you love your Mac, but don't you wish you could program it yourself? Instead of looking for an application that does what you need, what if you could write a program to concatenate files, change file-types, munge text? What if you could automate repetitive processes, and tie existing applications together: Have QuarkXPress construct a whole catalog based on a FileMaker database, or have Clip2GIF transform all the PICTs in a Microsoft Word file into GIFs? What if you could send email without an email ...

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Overview

Of course you love your Mac, but don't you wish you could program it yourself? Instead of looking for an application that does what you need, what if you could write a program to concatenate files, change file-types, munge text? What if you could automate repetitive processes, and tie existing applications together: Have QuarkXPress construct a whole catalog based on a FileMaker database, or have Clip2GIF transform all the PICTs in a Microsoft Word file into GIFs? What if you could send email without an email program, or download Web pages without a browser? What if you could control remote computers across a network? What if you could beef up your Web site by writing your own CGI scripts, or by generating hundreds of related Web pages automatically? With UserLand Frontier, you can do all this and more. What is Frontier?

  • It's a simple but sophisticated scripting language (UserTalk), with speed that blows AppleScript away and a far easier learning curve — plus it's multi-threaded and includes an elegant debugging environment.
  • It's an integrated database with instant access to data, text, outlines, and tables.
  • It's a totally automated environment, where scripts can create dialogs, open windows, edit text, alter menus.
  • It's a hook to the system, able to read and write files, open documents, read the clipboard.
  • It's a base for sending and receiving Apple events, so it can drive any scriptable application and can be integrated into other scripting applications.
  • It's a network application, able to function as a client or server over AppleTalk or the Internet.
  • It's a powerful scripting environment for Web site management and system level scripting.
Frontier: The Definitive Guide is the first book devoted exclusively to teaching and documenting this wonderful program. With it, you can learn all about Frontier or find out about just those aspects that interest you. Whether you're a complete Frontier beginner or an experienced hand in need of a clear, ordered reference, this book is for you.Packed with examples, advice, tricks and tips, Frontier: The Definitive Guide teaches you Frontier from the ground up. Even if you've never programmed before, you'll be cranking out Web pages or writing your own custom scripts in no time. Before you know it, you'll have joined the ranks of thousands of Macintosh power users who make Frontier their "home base."Covers Frontier 4.2.3 for the Macintosh.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781565923836
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/8/1998
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 616
  • Product dimensions: 7.06 (w) x 9.16 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Matt Neuburg started programming computers in 1968, when he was 14 years old, as a member of a literally underground high school club, which met once a week to do timesharing on a bank of PDP-10s by way of primitive teletype machines. He also occasionally used Princeton University's IBM-360/67, but gave it up in frustration when one day he dropped his punch cards. He majored in Greek at Swarthmore College, and received his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 1981, writing his doctoral dissertation (about Aeschylus) on a mainframe. He proceeded to teach Classical languages, literature, and culture at many well-known institutions of higher learning, most of which now disavow knowledge of his existence, and to publish numerous scholarly articles unlikely to interest anyone. Meanwhile he obtained an Apple IIc and became hopelessly hooked on computers again, migrating to a Macintosh in 1990. He wrote some educational and utility freeware, became an early regular contributor to the online journal TidBITS, and in 1995 left academe to edit MacTech Magazine. He is also the author of Frontier: The Definitive Guide and REALbasic: The Definitive Guide. In August 1996 he became a freelancer, which means he has been looking for work ever since. He is the author of Frontier: The Definitive Guide and REALbasic: The Definitive Guide, both for O'Reilly & Associates.

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Table of Contents

Preface
I Getting Acquainted 1
1 What Is Frontier? 3
2 Edit Windows 13
3 The Database 25
II UserTalk Basics 33
4 What a UserTalk Script Is Like 35
5 Handlers and Parameters 47
6 Referring to Database Entries 58
7 The Scope of Variables and Handlers 69
8 Addresses 82
9 Special Evaluation 91
10 Datatypes 95
11 Arrays 112
12 Control Structures 118
13 Running and Debugging Scripts 135
III Data Manipulation 147
14 Strings and Chars 149
15 Math 161
16 Dates 164
17 Objects 169
18 Non-Scalars 174
19 Datafiles 188
20 Resources 193
21 Yielding, Pausing, Threads, and Semaphores 198
22 Stacks 205
23 Extending the Language 207
IV Interface 211
24 Windows 213
25 Dialogs 223
26 Menus and Suites 240
27 Agents and Hooks 255
28 Pictures 261
29 Import/Export 264
30 Multiple Databases 279
V Border Crossings 283
31 Driving the System 285
32 Driving Other Applications 300
33 AppleScript 332
34 Driving Frontier from Outside 336
35 External Editors 347
VI Applied Frontier 355
36 ToDo List 357
37 Scheduler 358
38 TCP/IP 362
39 NetFrontier 371
40 CGIs 375
41 Web Site Management 389
42 Dynamic Web Sites 431
VII Reference 439
43 XCMDs and UCMDs 441
44 Operators 449
45 Punctuation 453
46 Verbs 455
47 Apple Event Suites 554
Index 563
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