[Oberon] Re: Oberon Digest, Vol 30, Issue 24

easlab at absamail.co.za easlab at absamail.co.za
Wed Mar 29 20:40:46 CEST 2006

Rory L. Starkweather wrote:
>  I would like to try Native Oberon, but, as I mentioned before, I had a
> lot of trouble figuring out how to do anything with it. The issue wasn't
> with the number of buttons my mouse had. The concept looked great, but I
> never found any explicit instructions on how to create what I would call
> a program. I understand that is not what Oberon calls them. 

The unusual interface which is what's holding you back is NOT
oberon but something special about Sysytem3. IMO it's special
like riding a bicycle is far superior to the 'normal' walking.
But unless your going to 'use it', it may not be worth the learning

> Specifically I needed to know how to save a file that I had created. 

In N-O you can't create a file which is not saved ;-).
It's only a file once it's saved.
A TextFrame shows you what the file contents looks like.
Imagine a cat and possibly multiple mirrors, each of which
shows you a part of the cat.  The the cat is the file and the 
mirror[s] is/are TextFrame[s].
You can change the contents of the TextFrame[s] and when
you "Store" the TextFrame the corresponding file is updated.

Answer my questions, and I'll step you through to compiling and 
running your first program.  [We don't want another ghost in the box
aborting prematurely - to be understood by old-time readers ?]

Q - what version is indicated as running when you bootup ?

Q - can you see an effect by toggling the <F8> key ?
    One state is 'good' N-O mode, the other is 'bad' aping M$.
Q - do you see any TextFrame on your display [ which contains any text] ?

Q - can you enter text to any existing TextFrame by positioning the
 cursor [caret] and ML [click left button] followed by keying in at the
 caret ?

Q - what happens if you MM/RM [mid-mouse hold down while clicking
right-mouse] while caret-pointing at any word, any where on the 
screen - like the word " System.Log " which you should see somewhere ?

Q - what happens if you write the word " dog " and MM/RM on it ?

If you're using N-O it should open the TextFrame called 'dog'.
If you have already got a file called ' dog ' it will open that file
in a TextFrame. Else it will open an empty TextFrame called 'dog',
which you can edit, and save as a file if you want to.

Q - what happens if you MM/RM on the word " V24.Tool "  ?

Each TextFrame has a "Store" button in the top-bar.
This causes the TextFrame to be stored as a file.
When you see the 2 word phrase: " System.Directory dog " 
[either because it already exists, or because you wrote it]
and you MM [click mid-mouse] on the first word " System.Directory ",
ie. execute the 'System.Directory' command on the argument 'dog',
you see if a file named 'dog' already exists.

Do this before and after you have created the file: 'dog'
" System.DeleteFiles  dog ~ " will delete the file.
Be carefull to have the argument-list-terminator-sign "~"
after dog, else you might delete files named after the "dog".

Try executing [MM]: " System.Directory dog*\d "

Q - have you got a System.Log track on the left of the display
  which confirms as you execute each command ?

> I just never
> figured that out. There is a lot of documentation but it seems to me
> that it makes some assumptions about familiarity with the Oberon-2
> interface. I had no problem finding information on how to manipulate
> widgets, but I didn't ever really understand how to add one to a form.

Once you can use the interface to read & write files, especially
with the flash-fast intuitive cutNpaste, you can start flying.

== Chris Glur.

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