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Apple Squashes Bugs in AppleScript 1.6

The AppleScript development team at Apple has spent the last couple of months on major bug fix release of the company's system level scripting language, sources said earlier this week.

AppleScript 1.6

The upgrade, AppleScript 1.6, will squash over 25 outstanding bugs or compatibility issues that have been lingering in the AppleScript language and its development tools, dating as far back as AppleScript 1.3. Even that annoying bug where canceling the "Where is application ?" dialog would fail to cancel the compile and repeatedly reopen itself, has been fixed.

An AppleScript Script Editor copy and paste error, which has prevented AppleScript from representing the null character as an empty space between two quotes since early releases of technology, has also been fixed in the update. Meanwhile, numerous bugs associated with AppleScript's Standard Additions Read/Write commands, have done away with.



Mac OS X Compatibility

Most importantly, however, is that the AppleScript team has continued to improve AppleScript's compatibility with Mac OS X. AppleScript 1.6 has been enhanced to handle strings of Unicode text as first-class objects. This is crucial since the Finder in Mac OS X returns all file names as Unicode text.

Much work has also been done to make Mac OS X's "bundles" or "packages" compatible with AppleScript 1.6. In version 1.6, the AppleScript "Tell" block can target a "bundled" or "packaged" Mac OS X application and Script Editor 1.6 can display the dictionary of an application configured as a "package" or "bundle." Additionally, AppleScript under version 1.6 will load Scripting Additions that are configured as "bundles" or "packages."



The End of the Line

The maintenance release will also clean up any loose ends in the interface that have been lingering in recent release. For instance, the Dialect pop-up menu has been removed from the AppleScript Formatting dialog box ( after being nonfunctional since version 1.3 of the software), and that rare problem in Script Editor 1.3 where resizing and moving the "Save As" dialog produces extra lines inside the dialog, has also been fixed.

According to sources, AppleScript 1.6 aims to tie up any and all loose end in the AppleScript implementation for Classic, before all of the teams efforts are devoted to the new Mac OS X implementation of the technology. "Apple Script is important to some of Apple's core markets and the company wants to leave those classic users with a solid implementation," one source said.

AppleScript 1.6 is currently in beta 4 and is due out in the spring.