Monthly Archives: September 2011

New: LiveCode GUI Elements for iOS

This is a collection of GUI elements for iOS that we are going to use in a LiveCode project.

These GUI elements are really cool because

  • objects scale appropriately if you drag their handles
  • scroll views are created automatically for scrolling fields
  • lists can be easily adjusted using a property
  • all buttons hilite nicely
  • all elements can easily be mixed with LiveCode’s objects and your own or third-party custom objects
  • this collection of GUI elements costs nothing if you have already made your contribution


The stack is completely editable and you can copy all items to your own project.

This collection of GUI elements is available to anyone who has registered as a contributor here. Once you have registered, you can obtain the GUI elements for iOS from our website.

Import a Text File into HyperStudio with AppleScript

This video shows that it is actually possible to import a text file into a HyperStudio text box.

This example imports a proper text file (MacRoman encoding) only. It is possible to adjust this example to allow for importing unicode text files.
You can also watch this video in HD-format on the Vimeo website

You can download the stack shown in the video here.

Download this file

A Review of CleverFile’s DiskDrill Data Recovery Software

This review is about DiskDrill 1.4.137. Today, DiskDrill 1.4.149 is available and provides is a new feature called Guaranteed Recovery. I don’t discuss this feature, because I don’t know what it is exactly, although it seems to be some backup system for deleted files, and because the new version became available after I wrote the original version of this review.

First Impression

When I started DiskDrill, a dialog asked me if I want to protect my data from accidental loss. The dialog doesn’t give any information about why I might or might not want to do this. I decided not to do this at first, because it is not clear whether a disk image (file vault; recovery vault called by DiskDrill) is written to my hard disk if I confirm. Doing so would overwrite all my previously deleted files, rendering DiskDrill useless. Unfortunately, there is no way to turn on Recovery Vault later on, unless you restart DiskDrill. File vault needs 6KB for each file. This means if I wanted to protect my system folder with 120,000 files, I’d need 720MB.

After dismissing the previous dialog, DiskDrill still asks me for my admin password. This bothers me, because I don’t know what DiskDrill needs it for. Again, I fear the loss of precious data. It would be easy to add a few notes to the starting dialog: “if you confirm, DiskDrill will write a large file to your hard disk, for which it will need your admin password” or thereabout.

CleverFiles told me later that the password is needed to get access to scan the drive. It would be useful to see a message “Do you want to give DiskDrill permission to scan your drive (This is necessary to perform correctly)?” with options to allow or deny, after which the password dialog may appear. This would give the user a better, more secure feeling while using DiskDrill.

The DiskDrill interface is quite neat and once you get to know the software, it is easy to use. It takes a while to get familiar with DiskDrill, because it looks different from any other programme I use. The software doesn’t follow Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines.

Within a minute, I had figured out how to start recovering accidentally deleted files (probably the main reason why people might want to use this software regularly). Disk drill calls this feature Deep Scan. It took DiskDrill approximately 20 minutes to find all deleted files in a disk space of 25GB. I believe this is a good score —in the days of Norton, I’d need hours to find all files in a few gigabytes disk space.


DiskDrill found thousands of files and file fragments. It also recognised the file extensions, but it didn’t give me one single clue as to the contents of the file. Norton Recovery Utility would show me some of the data and would try to assign the right file name to each data fragment. DiskDrill doesn’t.

I was also quite surprised that DiskDrill’s Deep Scan only finds files with recognised, predetermined file extensions. It is impossible to add my own file extensions. For example, I deleted a file with the .livecode file extension and expected to find this file in the list of recoverable files. Because .livecode is not known to DiskDrill, it won’t find these files. Nor will Deep Scan find simple text files, Max OS X installer packages, and many, many more. For me, this renders DiskDrill pretty much useless, except in very specific cases when I know exactly what I’m looking for and if the file extension is supported.

Besides Deep Scan, there’s Quick Scan. Quick Scan displays a hierarchical list of all files that have been recently deleted and haven’t been overwritten yet.  Although I have been deleting many files during the past two days, DiskDrill only found a few copies of the text document containing this review and a few preferences files and other system files. It didn’t find one single file that was deleted after I moved it to the trash. When I moved some files to the trash, emptied the trash and did a quick scan immediately thereafter, Disk Drill did find my deleted files, including files with extensions such as .livecode, .a and .mm.

Disk Drill recovered the deleted files correctly. It did so by re-building the file hierarchy starting from the destination folder. I designated my desktop folder as destination folder, which caused me to have a file in ~/desktop/ folders/test.livecode. When DiskDrill recovers a single file, it might be unnecessary to rebuild this hierarchy, but there is no option to turn off this feature.


There are a number of small issues. The S.M.A.R.T. panel in the preferences window contains a “Hide Menu Bar Icon”, which doesn’t do anything. Monitor my disks (via S.M.A.R.T.) is turned on by default and can’t be turned off, but doesn’t seem to work and doesn’t show any feedback. There are several places where the interface needs improvements. I very much don’t like the black lines around the main section of the preferences window. This is probably an issue with the development tools used by Clever Files.

Another important issue is DiskDrill’s built-in master password protection. Apple has a very good protection mechanism and advices all developers to use the built-in protection (optionally using Keychain) to keep unauthorised people from messing with your Mac. Clever Files apparently decided that Apple’s advice is not for them and created their own master-password feature, causing a security threat and even potentially locking the administrator out of his own system.

The “funny” thing is that the master password feature has a “Forgot Password” button, which sends the password to your e-mail address. If someone already got hold of your Mac, he will also have access to on your Mac. This gives him access to your e-mail and hence to your Disk Drill password. Therefore the master password feature is useless. (I believe one should not be required to use web mail next to only because of one particular software product).

The Master-Password dialog has an option “Request password only on first launch”, which doesn’t work. DiskDrill seems ot ask for the master password on every launch.

Whenever you click on the Quick Scan icon while having done so before, you will get a dialog window saying “Previous scanning session available” with “No” or “Yes”. This made me think that I’m asked if I want to use the previously found data. Clicking on No just dismissed the dialog and nothing happened. Apparently, the question is whether I want to scan for deleted files again. This is only clear from the fine-print in the same dialog, but people who are panicking because they have lost important files tend to not read those fine-prints.


Disk Drill is easy to use, contains quite a few useless features, and does what it was made for but only to a limited extent. If you are a regular user of common software such as Pages, MS Office, iTunes and Safari, Disk Drill will do what you expect. Software developers and other frequent users of task-specific software will want to spend their money on heavier tools.

You can find DiskDrill in Economy-x-Talk’s web store.

The Disk Drill homepage can be found at

Copyright © 2011 Economy-x-Talk
and Mark Schonewille,
Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
All rights reserved, world-wide.

LiveCode or RealStudio Drawer Windows – Which Bug Do You Pick?

Here are two sample projects, which I just made to test LiveCode and RealBasic drawer windows.

LiveCode works fine, until you change the drawer window size by script.


RealStudio works fine until you start moving the window around.


I think I’d choose LiveCode in this case, but perhaps it is better to avoid using drawer windows completely.

My presentation about Project Wonderful

Some time ago, I gave a presentation about Project Wonderful. I use Project Wonderful as a way to advertise the products of my software development company. I’m in no way involved in PW. Use this as an introduction to PW or if you are already a PW member, just look at how I use it. (PW know I made this video; they neither endore nor approve of it but seem to like it).

Register here and start selling your software now!

Help Gulpen hun Handbalveld Behouden!

Heb je een eigen website of een blog? Dan kun je ons nu direct helpen door deze badge op jouw website of blog te plaatsen! Klik hier om de HTML-code te kopiëren!

De gemeente Gulpen-Wittem is voornemens een handbal- annex speelveld te laten verdwijnen ten behoeve van parkeerplaatsen. Daar zijn wij het niet mee eens! Help ons en bezoek onze website, wordt fan van onze Facebookpagina en plaats deze afbeelding op je eigen website. Alle hulp van binnen en buiten Gulpen is van harte welkom!

New: make a contribution and get access to our LiveCode-related downloads

This is a message to all LiveCode users/developers. We’ve made a small change to the Economy-x-Talk website. To obtain access to LiveCode-related downloads, one now needs to make a small financial contribution. An explanation follows below.

Some time ago, I decided that I had to find a way to determine which software is valued and appreciated by the LiveCode community. The solution I have come up with is paid access to sheltered downloads. This system allows me to provide better free software and helps me to have more fun creating software for the LiveCode community. The fun part is hugely important to me.

Most LiveCode software available from Economy-x-Talk, such as libraries and plugins, is still free. However, to obtain access to the free downloads, you are required to make a small financial contribution. You can decide by yourself how much you would like to contribute. I’d be happy to consider your contribution a token of mere appreciation. It is not meant as a fee for license or support. Once you have made your contribution, an account is created for you and you get access to the downloads.

An overview of all currently available downloads is available at with the latest addition being the extSetBadgeNumber external for iOS. This external allows you to add a red circle with a white number (also called a badge) to the icon of your application in the iPhone home screen. The external is currently being tested but seems to work fine so far. Go to to create an account and download the external.

I look forward to sharing more of my creations with you and thank you for your understanding.