Skip to main content
ad info

 
CNN.com technology > computing
    Editions | myCNN | Video | Audio | Headline News Brief | Feedback  

 

  Search
 
 

 
TECHNOLOGY
TOP STORIES

Consumer group: Online privacy protections fall short

Guide to a wired Super Bowl

Debate opens on making e-commerce law consistent

(MORE)

TOP STORIES

More than 11,000 killed in India quake

Mideast negotiators want to continue talks after Israeli elections

(MORE)

MARKETS
4:30pm ET, 4/16
144.70
8257.60
3.71
1394.72
10.90
879.91
 


WORLD

U.S.

POLITICS

LAW

ENTERTAINMENT

HEALTH

TRAVEL

FOOD

ARTS & STYLE



(MORE HEADLINES)
*
 
CNN Websites
Networks image


Review: AppleScript adds powerful new features

MacWorld Online
graphic

(IDG) -- AppleScript is simultaneously one of the most-powerful and one of the least-used Macintosh utilities, the latter partially due to serious deficiencies in Apple's own Script Editor. Late Night Software's Script Debugger 2.0.3 makes AppleScript more usable by providing a powerful yet accessible development environment, though compatibility issues and high cost limit its usefulness.

Code tracing and bug tracking

The latest version of Script Debugger adds a troop of features. For example, while the previous version could debug only global variables, Script Debugger 2.0 can also track local variables. You can set break points and watch points, and the program supports the ability to step into, over, and out of handlers. The included AppleScript debugger dialect lets you follow scripts outside Script Debugger itself-a requirement for testing CGIs, droplets, and folder actions.

IDG.net INFOCENTER
IDG.net
Related IDG.net Stories
Features
Visit an IDG site


IDG.net search



The attractive tabbed-palette interface allows easy access to clippings, application dictionaries, open windows, and scripts, and you can rearrange or hide the tabs. The main editing window supports split-pane editing and optional soft wrapping.

Script Debugger's primary competitor is the recently released Scripter 2.5 from Main Event Software (www.mainevent.com). The two programs are identically priced and fairly comparable, although each has its vocal proponents. However, when Main Event released its latest upgrade, it also released a light version of Scripter-the $89 Scripter Personal Edition. If you haven't yet ventured into AppleScript's depths, you can dangle your feet in the water with Scripter Personal Edition-and save $100, to boot.

Verbose scripts no problem

If you're a hard-core scripter, you'll find a lot to like in Script Debugger 2.0. Unlike the competition, it can handle scripts larger than 32K. Also unlike the competition, Script Debugger is itself scriptable, which enables it to interact with utilities and allows its scripts to change themselves.

But these new features are not without flaws. You can't use Script Debugger to script Microsoft Word 98 or Excel 98, nor can you use the program to debug AppleScript inside Digital Technology's FaceSpan, a scripting and user-interface-creation utility.

At a glance: Script Debugger 2.0

Rating:
4 (out of five)

Pros:
Supports scripts larger than 32K; scriptable.

Cons:
Can't script some widely used programs.

List Price:
$189

Company:
Late Night Software (link below)

Macworld's Buying Advice:
If you own Script Debugger 1.X or you're hitting the 32K limit on script size, this is a must-have upgrade. But if you've never scripted before, Script Debugger 2.0 may be overkill. Main Event Software's Scripter Personal Edition offers an easier, less expensive way to get started with scripting.




RELATED STORIES:
Analysis: Java 2 for the Mac almost ready
August 8, 2000
Analysis: The evolution of the Mac interface
August 8, 2000
Mac e-mail: Finding the right program to suit your needs
February 28, 2000
Apple shines again with new OS
October 19, 1998

RELATED IDG.net STORIES:
Software on parade at Macworld Expo
(IDG.net)
Mac OS X: Know it, love it
(Macworld)
PowerBook G4 arrives
(Macworld)
Microsoft's Mac Outlook
(Macworld)
Apple faces the music with iTunes
(Macworld)
The best Mac products of 2000
(Macworld)
The Mac OS X Beta: Classic confusion
(Macworld)

RELATED SITES:
Late Night Software

Note: Pages will open in a new browser window
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.

 Search   

Back to the top  © 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.