Revolution vs Visual Basic

Kay C Lan lan.kc.macmail at
Thu Mar 9 09:15:10 EST 2006

On 3/9/06, Mikey <mikeythek at> wrote:
> Revolution's grandfather, HyperCard made the task of building
> prototypes a trivial enterprise.  Revolution is also easy to use to
> build prototypes.  The overhead that is usually associated with
> building a project is for the most part abssent.  You don't have to
> cast and instantiate anything.  Types are context-implied (see my
> previous example).  In short it is REALLY easy to build something
> quickly.

So is this good or bad?

Last month I visited my brother and took my mountain bike so we could ride
some trails. For various reasons my bike had road tyres on it so when I
arrived I fitted some new nobby tyres.

I enjoy cycling and have one of those cyclecomputers so I can record my
rides. Unfortunately I'd long lost the manual for the cyclecomputer so
couldn't modify the tyre diameter to reflect the new tyres. If you hit
80kmph you don't want it to only say 78.5:-) So for a couple of days I just
jotted down the ride details on a piece of paper.

Then one day when I had two hours to spare I whipped up a quick stack that
consisted of two buttons - one to select the tyre size in the computer, the
other to select the tyre size on the bike. Then 10 fields, basically 6
fields to enter the data in and 4 fields to show the 'corrected' data.
Fields like 'Time' didn't need correcting.

The longest part of the whole process was finding (on the internet, where I
could have found the procedure to enter the new diameter into my
cyclecomputer) and typing the 52 standard tyre sizes into a custom property,
the single property being used by both buttons, and then creating the switch
statement to relate these tyre sizes to their specific diameters!

The next longest part was organising to transfer the data into the stack
which stores the record of all my rides - a stack I created about 3 months
ago to takeover from an AppleWorks spreadsheet:-)

The fields and buttons only took minutes to place and size and the single
function, a simple percentage adjustment which was used by all fields that
needed correcting, took only a little longer. Could have saved on typing if
I wasn't so partial for very descriptive variable names like

Of course I do get a real kick out of the comments I get from my brother
(always ribbing me about Macs being toys, he sells U$80,000 - 140,000+
software for a living) - for a Mac user you sure seem to tinker with the
insides a lot.

So my problem with this is, I must produce one of these every couple of
weeks - OoooHhh look a problem, I could write a stack to solve that - but I
never actually FINISH anything because I've 'discovered' another problem I
could solve with REV!

I never get around to building proper menus, the aesthetic leave a lot to be
desired and I could count on one hand how many standalones I've actually
produced. I have illusions of grandeur, that one day I'll make something for
someone else, which is why I entered all 52 tyre sizes rather than just the
two I needed.

And I know I'm not the only one, I take great reassurance from the sporadic
post I read of people who run everything within the IDE because their
solutions are only for them!

 So consider yourself warned;-)

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