SERF

A place to discuss any and all xTalk implementations, not just LC LCC Forks, but HyperCard, SuperCard, MetaCard, Gain Momentum, Oracle MediaTalk, OpenXION, etc.
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richmond62
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SERF

Post by richmond62 »

https://web.archive.org/web/20000822032 ... com/~serf/
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You will need:

1. A Macintosh computer capable of running MacOS 7-9, or

2. A Macintosh computer (PPC) capable of running 'Classic'. or

3. A way to emulate MacOS 7-9

"It's everything you want!
For all developers from little to big, Serf is the ultimate answer. Serf supports integrated color, threading, object-oriented classes, and much more. With Serf, you don't need to give up your investment in your scripting language, and you don't need to learn new techniques and behaviors unless you want to. Serf will give you the capability to expand your scripting efforts. And the documentation is built right into the application!

It's everything you remember!

SerfTalk, the scripting language of Serf, is a superset of xTalk. You'll be able to use HyperTalk, SuperTalk, and MetaTalk scripts with almost no modifications -- it's quite compatible. It also contains new improvements, such as the apostrophe-s 'reverse of': button 1's hilite is the same as hilite of button 1 . Referring to objects is much more flexible and English-like. You can say third checkbox, or 3rd checkbox, or even (x)th checkbox! How about the first line of card #4's (x+1)th field part's contents...?

It's everything you need!

Serf has a compiled frontend coupled with an interpreted backend for especially fast execution on machines with slow or no cache (between 3x and 10x the performance of HyperTalk). As Serf matures, it will get even faster than that. Serf graphic

Serf is entirely object-oriented and supports Classes. A Class is simply a cleverly written piece of script which does the most important work for an object, such as drawing it and deciding what happens when it's clicked, all out of sight. Three commonly used classes are the 'Button', 'Field', and 'Window' classes. But there are plenty more, such as sliders, graphics, and movies. Some Classes can also be "sub-classes" of other classes. For example, in HyperCard a checkbox is a button. In Serf, a Checkbox is a subclass of a Button. You can use the script "tenth button" to get the tenth button of any kind, or you can refer to a specific checkbox as "tenth checkbox part", in which case it finds the tenth button that is specifically a checkbox. Object-oriented programming can be as simple as that. Many of the standard Serf objects are subclasses, which helps compatibility with xtalk development environments.

Fields are extremely robust, offering color, tabbing, very large amounts of text, Macintosh Drag-and-drop, and more. All of the user interface utilizes the "OS 8" look, including three types of bevel buttons. Serf is OS-8 savvy, and it even runs speedily on machines with only System 7 and older PowerPC chips.

It's everything you can't afford to be without!

Serf has a Tool Palette and Message Box for fast access to your windows and handlers. Instead of putting up dialog boxes at every turn, you can change options while you work through a sophisticated yet simple Part Information window. This palette is space-efficient and fits in any closet or underneath the bed. A 640x480 screen is sufficient to use Serf; anything larger is nice but not required."
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

http://www.zathras.de/angelweb/xtalkint ... gelder.htm
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Re: SERF

Post by OpenXTalkPaul »

Good one Richmond, I don't remember ever hearing about SERF back when.

Apostrohe 's are also used in AppleScript / AppleScriptObjC
For example:

Code: Select all

 if (searchBox's focused) = true then
AppleScript should maybe be considered an xTalk, though I've recently read that AppleScript actually evolved more from Mac Common Lisp via the SK8 project and SK8Script than it did from HyperTalk. Kevin Calhoun once said "AppleScript is LISP in disguise" and I'd guess he knows a lot about it.

Sk8 never publicly released but I've read people at Apple were using it internally.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SK8_(prog ... _language)

https://www.macintoshrepository.org/2625-apple-sk8

https://macintoshgarden.org/sites/macin ... _Guide.pdf

EDIT: I just saw you made a thread for SK8!
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

Dan Gelder, the developer of SERF behaved very oddly in that,
almost directly after that interview he dropped any further development of SERF
without any explanation at all.
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Re: SERF

Post by OpenXTalkPaul »

richmond62 wrote: Wed Sep 15, 2021 3:55 pm Dan Gelder, the developer of SERF behaved very oddly in that,
almost directly after that interview he dropped any further development of SERF
without any explanation at all.
I have a Sheepshaver based VM setup that I've slowly been specifically loading up with ALL of the retro Hyper-Media-Talk-Meta-Super-X-Card-stuff I can find, mostly for the perusing and converting of ancient stacks.

I read that archived Serf website a bit and I gathered from comments that, like many others did, Dan probably moved on when Mac OS X started to really obsolete macOS 9. That last Serf beta was from 1999, but I must say it is quite remarkable, particularly for a one-person effort.

I remember that period (1999), the 'Y2K' hysteria, trying to migrate OS X, then later trying to get into AppleScriptObjC+Interface Builder (which is still possible to use for building Mac apps, even though Apple has pretty much abandoned that like they did HC). I even purchased a SuperCard (Carbon) license at some point between 1999 and 2011 (even though I've never been a fan of SC's setup/UI). It wasn't until I found out about LCCommunity around early 2014 that I really started to get heavily back into the xTalk way.

Anyway I also came across a little utility that I built as a Standalone.app from HyperCard way back in 1995, including some FutureBASIC source code for a 'CreateFile' XCMD. I was getting into using FB to build XCMD/XFCNs for HyperCard/SC/etc. at the time. I'll have to upload it to Macintosh Garden and/or Archive.org. It's a little fun utility that exploits a little known feature of the classic macOS Finder to display arbitrary (up to 255char) warning dialogs when you click a file with a specific resource embedded in it. I used it to leave little notes on shared workstations.
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

I bet THAT made you a few friends. 8-)
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Ooh, and there's ResEdit. ;)

Trick question, Paul: "Any chance of 3 cross-platform IDEs within the next 6 weeks?"
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

Oh, and re Dan Gelder's apostrophes, there is nothing further to be said on the subject beyond reading the following poem:
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Re: SERF

Post by tperry2x »

richmond62 wrote: Thu Aug 31, 2023 6:51 am Trick question, Paul: "Any chance of 3 cross-platform IDEs within the next 6 weeks?"
Can you let us know what the progress is, and what you are currently stuck on? Rather than new features, what is holding up the build currently? If we know that maybe a library needs updating, or there's a particular item that's throwing up a problem - then hopefully it gives everyone something to focus on.

It's great that there's movement being made with "OpenXTalk Lite", but I do feel we already have a fork of OpenXTalk even though we don't have an updated IDE released. It seems to be splitting into different paths before we even get to beta 4.

That's not to take away from any work that TerryL is doing, however I simply wonder if we can all co-ordinate our efforts.
Or is it the engine rather than the IDE that is giving you problems? Compiling on Windows? Adding ARM support for MacOS... or all of the above?
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

then hopefully it gives everyone something to focus on.
Hey, although I am the equivalent of a one-legged "person of restricted growth" when it comes to almost anything outwith BBC BASIC and LiveCode, tell us, so at least I can make a fool of myself for the 700th time "having a go." 8-)
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rmCODE: where the rubber meets the, err, rubber. :lol:
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Rule #1: Keep laughing.

Rule #2: There is no Rule #2.
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Re: SERF

Post by tperry2x »

I think we are all just having a go at this point.
(And I don't mean that to sound offensive), I just mean that a news or progress update would be highly appreciated.

Even a current "snag-list" of where best to focus our efforts next, so that we might have a version that has all Livecode branding removed, and that compiles to all 3 major desktop platforms.
Arm support for MacOs a bonus (and 32bit isn't dead, not quite yet) - it's not dead if people are still relying on it.
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Re: SERF

Post by tperry2x »

I'll pick up on another point mentioned elsewhere in this forum (feel free to move as appropriate), but development on 32bit is still happening and is current.

https://mxlinux.org/download-links/

I could download this, update it with all the necessary security updates, and resurrect pretty much any 32bit desktop/laptop from the last 10 years.

So with this in mind, if that's the only hardware that some might have, and as the option is there in the community editions, why not keep the support for it going? Other people clearly are.
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

Oh, as a 'specialist' in keeping hardware out of landfills I am constantly championing 32-bit hardware. Currently setting up a load of Ukrainian refugee kids with some "new-fer-you" 32-bit boxes that my bank manager found 'holidaying' in the bank's cellar + a load of 1024x780 monitors a local PS store couldn't shift + xubuntu 18.04.

32-bit is only dead in the minds of the "ever upwards and onwards" crowd who refuse to accept that people who live in third world countries and second world countries (such as Bulgaria, where I live and work) are:

1. Entitled to a stake in the digital world.

2. But should not be excluded because they don't have a 2022 Mac, run Windows 11, and can afford commercial software.

The USA suffers from huge advantages and disadvantages:

1. It really IS a land of opportunity.

2. Its educational system is substandard, so the US needs a constant injection of new blood from outside.

2.1. If all those poor buggers in awful countries that are not the USA, Canada, or Western Europe cannot get some "JOY" from their hardware that the USA turns its collective nose up at, the US 'brain drain' is going to run dry very soon.

A 32-bit "LC Continuation" thing will do great service educationally, even if nothing else.
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Re: SERF

Post by OpenXTalkPaul »

richmond62 wrote: Thu Aug 31, 2023 6:51 am I bet THAT made you a few friends. 8-)
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Ooh, and there's ResEdit. ;)

Trick question, Paul: "Any chance of 3 cross-platform IDEs within the next 6 weeks?"
Consider this Mac DMG as a 'downpayment on that':
https://github.com/OpenXTalk-org/OpenXt ... .1-OXT-RC4
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Re: SERF

Post by tperry2x »

OpenXTalkPaul wrote: Fri Sep 01, 2023 4:18 am Consider this Mac DMG as a 'downpayment on that':
https://github.com/OpenXTalk-org/OpenXt ... .1-OXT-RC4
:D :!: :P
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

Sorry: been "otherwise engaged" until now: currently downloading the 'thang' to see what I shall see.

May bring lots more meaning to the phrase "co-dependency relationship." 8-)

Or may, even, coin a new phrase: Code-Dependency Relationship.

Love, Abuse, Whips and Chains, Richmond.
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

Will attempt to run this on macOS 12 ('Monterey') . . . assuming it will not, currently, run on macOS 14 ('Sonoma').

Wow! Takes donkey's ages to copy out of the DMG folder . . . but, at 1.66 GB [almost exactly the same size as LC 9.6.3] I suppose that should not be a huge surprise.

What is that thing in the bottom left-hand corner of the window?
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Arguably less / more sexy icon than previously . . . personally I think it is a bit cluttered.
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I am afraid that I really DISLIKE the 'charcoal' interface and the, frankly, cluttered icons:
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I don't know if you are:

1. Legally obliged to replace the 'original' LC icons, or

2. You are trying to prove something.

Certainly, if it is #2 all that you have proven, to my mind at least, is that the LC icons were far, far nicer.
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

Most of the 'tabs' (if that is what they are) in the Preferences palette DO NOT load:
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So, seemingly no way to turn off the 'charcoal' stuff at all. :(

Also no way to set the default GUI font from something small and semi-invisible to something all a bit more robust:
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OpenXTalk RC4 testing...

Post by tperry2x »

I'll try running this on my antiquated Mac and see what I find...
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

If you want to believe people like FourthWorld, my 2015 iMac (27" Retina display), which feels like "the most modern, sexiest Mac on the planet" to me, is almost contemporaneous with the dinosaurs . . . mind you, come to think of things, sex with a dinosaur might be a bit 'scratchy'. 8-)
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Re: SERF

Post by richmond62 »

BUT: on the 'POZZ' side:

#1. The messageBox receives focus. Which makes things a bloody-sight easier in far too many ways to list here. 8-)
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