Subject: Re: Development of Abiword for MacOS X ?
From: Bryan Prusha (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Mon Feb 07 2000 - 15:14:11 CST
At 13:00 -0600 2/7/00, Julian Morrison wrote:
>> Well, the kernel of MacOS X is based on the BSD kernel, but the graphics
>> and other operating system libraries are new and proprietary, and as such
>> present the same hurdle to porting as does MacOS 9 or below. There would
>> be no easy recompile, as there is for BSD-based systems using the X
>> Window System. As far as I know, no one has taken up a MacOS X port of
>They are neither particularly new nor closed-spec. Basically, they are the
>old NeXT OpenStep interfaces, warmed over and shifted from display
>Postscript to Quartz (display PDF). Unless you plan to do really flashy
>things with direct graphical drawing etc, all the old OpenStep drawing APIs
>should work fine.
>However, the text-editor component built into OsX already has 99% of a word
>processor's features right out of the box, so porting Abi Word is probably
>pointless; a kid could assemble nearly equivalent functionality with a
>couple hours and a copy of the interface-builder app.
OK, there are several ways one can code for MacOS X.
POSIX (via the full BSD layer, note there is not yet an X window
OpenStep (aka YellowBox, Cocoa, same as NeXT apps)
Carbon (old MacOS Toolbox revamped for a modern OS)
If we had an OpenStep version of AbiWord, we could recompile for
PPC, and it would Just Work. Unfortunately, there is not yet pre-X MacOS
support for OpenStep (and I don't know if there will be). Barring this,
given a MacOS Toolbox version (being constructed as we speak) it is a
relatively simple task to update it to the Carbon API, or "Carbonize" it.
There is already one Carbon SDK available from Apple, MacOS 9 ships with
CarbonLib 1.0, and soon the next version of CarbonLib, giving MacOS support
all the way back to MacOS 8.1, will be available. Personally, I think
getting the Mac version up at all will be our first task, but from there it
will be a relatively simple task to get it to run on Carbon for MacOS
support from 8.1 thru X. One of my main goals here is, particularly, to
Carbonize AbiWord. I hope this answers any questions.
Bryan Prusha Wolfram Research, Inc.
Coding is life. The rest is just 1's and 0's.
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