From the user’s standpoint, the Macintosh, with its consistent user interface, is easy to operate productively. Nevertheless, that same pleasant interface, with the familiar pull-down menus, scroll bars, cut-and-paste editing, clipboard, and so on, can prove a challenge to even the experienced programmer, who must “go back to school” to learn how to manipulate the Macintosh ROM to create the consistent software that every Macintosh user expects to see when booting up a new program.
Stephen Chernicoff, who helped write Apple’s INSIDE MACINTOSH documentation, here explores the Toolbox, a term which he defines broadly as the Macintosh operating system, the QuickDraw graphics routines built into ROM, and the user-interface toolbox. Each chapter consists of two parts: the “guidebook,” which is designed to give an overview of the subject covered, and the “handbook,” which explores chapter topics in more depth and is designed for reference use.
In UNLOCKING THE TOOLBOX, Chernicoff concentrates on the lower-level areas of the Toolbox to which the average Macintosh user is oblivious: calling the Toolbox from application programs; memory allocation; QuickDraw graphics; resources; loading code into memory; and working with different sizes and styles of typefaces. Sample programs are given in PASCAL, and material is included for assembly language programmers when appropriate.
Like its companion volume, MACINTOSH REVEALED, VOLUME TWO: PROGRAMMING WITH THE TOOLBOX, this volume uses text layout and graphics to good advantage to make its technical content more readable and includes both index and glossary.