OSX GUI Manipulation?

bfr at nwlink.com bfr at nwlink.com
Fri Sep 3 00:19:39 EDT 2004

> I haven't been following this thread very closely, but as you seem to
> be getting thoroughly frustrated, I thought I would stick my neck out
> too :-)
>  -AppleScript under OS X can interact with ANY application using GUI
> scripting - the application does not have to be scriptable as GUI
> scripting allows you to click, type etc.

This statement is false. See reply below.

> -Revolution can call any AppleScript and makes it much easier to apply
> variables and analyze results as well as providing a GUI for your app.
> - Applications built using Revolution can be freely distributed.
> Does this help answer your question?
> Cheers,
> Sarah
> sarahr at genesearch.com.au
> http://www.troz.net/Rev/

Thank you for your comments and your good intentions.

The OSX GUI can be scripted through Apple's System Events application.
System Events scripting is an Apple technology. Like many Apple
technologies, what you get for free from Apple is often quite useful but
it is not the same as a full featured application. For instance the PDF
features of OSX are great but they are not the same thing as Acrobat.

Unfortunately, I am very thoroughly aware of what System Events scripting
can do and more to the point, what it cannot do and we have covered this
exact ground in almost every message on this subject. My experience is
confirmed in discussions with several other very experienced scripters.

The GUI scripting features provided by System Events are not the same
thing as iKey or Quickeys or Eggplant (all GUI manipulation utilities)
System Events scripts do not work with many applications, including the
application I am trying to target. It might be best to regard the
applescript dictionary of System Events as theoretical or experimental.

It is quite conceivable that somebody who has actively and intensively
worked with System Events scripting will know more than me. I am quite
experienced in this area but I do not pretend to be the ultimate
authority. Perhaps some other expert will be able to describe effective
ways to control difficult applications. But if you just read and believe
the System Events dictionary - well, it doesn't always work that way. This
is probably the first time in recorded history that Apple technology does
not do what it claims to do ;->

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