Hypercard and Rev (was: Hobbyist License

Jim Witte jswitte at bloomington.in.us
Fri Aug 16 00:43:01 EDT 2002


> I doubt there are a lot of people in the world [..] would argue that 
> Apple is a great marketing company. Historically, in fact, they are 
> quite poor at the real guts of marketing:

   Amen to that!  Can anyone say 'Newton'?  (Horribly bad management 
there as well.)  But I digress..

> When HyperCard was in its heyday and I was traveling the world 
> promoting my books and speaking to user groups, I found literally 
> thousands of people who had "accidentally" backed into becoming 
> scripters because of the wonderfully seductive nature of the beast.

   I always thought that what Apple should have done with HC was 
integrate it directly into the Finder and the OS itself.  When I first 
looked at Applescript, I was extremely put off by the fact that the 
syntax was somehow harder to write than HC (especially the replacement 
of 'put' with 'set' - setting properties *of objects* makes sense, but 
'setting' values of *containers* doesn't IMO)  If Apple had integrated 
HC into the Finder from the beginning, allowing, say, you to put a 
button and field and such on the desktop itself, it could have had 
system-level scripting (on a GUI) at least 3-4 years before anyone else 
(well, I don't know about the timeline - I'm not an OS historian - Xerox 
PARC probably had system scripting 20 years ago!)  From an 'innovation' 
point-of-view, this would probably be a good thing; from a business 
point-of-view, it debatable; and from a historical point-of-view, it's 
probably irrelevant - someone would have done it anyway, and by 2030 it 
won't matter who does (as long as the USPTO and the courts don't through 
a large legal wrench in the works..)

   As for the 'resurgence of the xTalks' (sounds like a cult movie) - 
could Revolution be turned into a such a 'on-the-desktop' scripting 
environment?

>  I saw demonstrated fully color versions of the product running on Mac 
> and Windows. I had copies of these things (though they were 
> time-expired and have long since disappeared).

   Oh GOD!  Reminds me even more of Newton (the Dragon speech recogition 
demo).

Jim
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