23 May 2000 wsanchez   » (Master)

Still recovering from WWDC. Lots of fun, but rather exhausting.

The BSD session at WWDC on Friday was a big success. Even though it was a late Friday session, and many people had already gone home, the room was packed in. I introduced the audience to BSD and what it's role in Mac OS X is, and I gave people an update on what's changed in DP4 since DP3. We have a Unified Buffer Cache, which gets rid of the separation of caches between open files and mapped files. We have POSIX semaphores and shared memory. We added OpenSSL into the release. We are also working on including a complete Kerberos library (initial work already checked into the Darwin CVS tree) and updating Tcl.

At one point, I was talking about the BSD libraries which comprise the system framework, and when I got to curses I explained that curses is the "Cocoa of the command line." Apparently that's a lot funnier than I had expected, because the whole room busted up laughing.

Jordan then came on stage and gave everyone an intro to FreeBSD, how it's organized, resources, goals, etc., and in the Q&A answered some questions from developers.

My little demo was a big hit. The demo was a small program called DropScript I wrote using Cocoa which basically just calls a shell script in its application bundle, passing it as arguments any files it was asked to open. So you can drag documents onto the app, and it will run the script on those files. The script that is built in accepts a single file which should be a shell script; the script clones DropScript, replaces the build-in script with the new script, and renames the new app with the script name. So you can write a one-line shell script called GZip.sh:

gzip -9 "$*";

and drag that script onto DropScript. DropScript will then create a new app called DropGZip which will compress any files dropped onto it. All you need to write is the script code, and Cocoa will handle the AppleEvents and so on. One of the cool features of MacPerl in Mac OS 9 is that you can make drop apps from perl scripts. Now you can do the same on Mac OS X using the unmodified Perl 5.6 for Unix.

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