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Apple Training Series: AppleScript 1-2-3 (Anglais) Broché – 19 décembre 2008

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Descriptions du produit

Quatrième de couverture

We know what you’re thinking. You’ve heard about AppleScript. You’ve heard that it can do amazing things. You’ve heard that it can automate away the tiring, redundant, repetitive tasks you do with the computer.

All true. But you’re not sure about what’s involved with using it. Is it difficult? Is it programming? After all, you’re just a better-than average computer user. You know what you know, and your expertise serves you pretty well. But recently you’ve reached the point of asking yourself “Is there a better way?” The answer is “Yes.”

And relax, you just got lucky. This book is for you.

If you’ve never written a single line of computer code—this book is for you. If the most technical thing you do on the computer is calculate a column in Excel—this book is for you. If you’re tired of doing the same thing over and over—this book is for you.

It’s about being motivated to explore, understand, and take advantage of the tools you already own. AppleScript is free—the only price for its use is your desire to finally sit down and take a few moments to absorb and activate its magic.

This book starts at square one and walks you through the process of understanding and writing AppleScript—step by step, one concept at a time—until you find yourself suddenly creating powerful and useful automated solutions. And the lessons in this book are based on a decade of experience teaching hands-on classes to folks just like you. You can do this. You can become Master of your Computer Universe!

Still don’t believe us? Open the first chapter and start reading. You’ll see.

Biographie de l'auteur

Sal Soghoian discovered AppleScript in 1992 while looking for ways to automate publishing-related tasks at his service bureau. Since that time, he has remained a tireless evangelist for AppleScript and has served as the product manager for automation technologies at Apple for more than eleven years. His yearly all-day AppleScript training sessions at Macworld Expo are legendary and their common-sense hands-on approach is captured in this book.

Bill Cheeseman
lives in Quechee, Vermont. He is well known in the AppleScript community as originator and long-time Webmaster of The AppleScript Sourcebook Web site and as the developer of two popular AppleScript utilities, PreFab UI Browser and PreFab UI Actions. He is also the author of Cocoa Recipes for Mac OS X: The Vermont Recipes, one of the first books about creating Cocoa applications for Mac OS X. When he isn’t writing software for Macintosh computers, Bill practices law as a civil litigator and trial lawyer.

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 33 commentaires
69 internautes sur 71 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Gil Poulsen's Review 19 janvier 2009
Par Tim Robertson - Publié sur
Format: Broché
"Can you build us an AppleScript to do that?"

That question has been put to me dozens of times over my ten-plus years doing Macintosh support, and in almost every instance, the answer has been "yes." AppleScript has literally helped me to earn my living, in the sense that I've been hired to build customized applications that--to name just a few--scan the entire content of a weekly newspaper and flag any prohibited words for later exclusion, pull records from a database and turn them into a fully-formatted 32-page pamphlet of health-specific Web sites, and convert the SGML-tagged text from a medical journal into XPress Tags coding for import into QuarkXPress.

I first got turned on to AppleScript at a Macworld Expo back in the 1990s, when I attended a presentation given by a very enthusiastic service bureau employee by the name of Sal Soghoian. Not a programmer by trade, Sal had discovered the joys of AppleScripting while trying to free himself from some of the redundant tasks he was faced with while outputting his client's documents. I was so excited about what I saw him do with his QuarkXPress scripts that I ran up to him after his talk and starting peppering him with questions. Evidently recognizing my enthusiasm, he offered me a free copy of his "Sal's AppleScript Snippets," a 3.5" floppy disk containing a few dozen simple QuarkXPress AppleScript routines and some brief but helpful documentation. From that point forward, I was hooked on AppleScript.

So who better to author an AppleScript training guide for beginning scripters? For the past eleven years, Sal has been the product manager for automation technologies at Apple, and his own enthusiasm for scripting has helped to create a community of AppleScripters who, like me, were exposed to his Macworld sessions and got turned on to all the possibilities AppleScript offers. Sal's co-author, Bill Cheeseman, is no slouch either when it comes to scripting; a civil litigator and trial lawyer by day, he founded the AppleScript Sourcebook Web site (now, an invaluable reference for scripters, way back in 1996.

Given this book's pedigree, I was expecting it to be the best AppleScript book I've seen to date (at least six AppleScript reference manuals currently reside in my programming library) in terms of introducing the non-programmer to scripting. After reviewing the initial chapters and working through some of the hands-on exercises, I was not in the least bit disappointed. The book truly does begin at "square one" by walking the reader step-by-step through the creation of a Finder toolbar script that is actually useful for restoring your Desktop to a preferred (uncluttered) state, and moves on from there to essential concepts like object references, conditionals, loops, and error handlers. While these concepts might sound intimidating to the newly-initiated scripter, Sal and Bill do an excellent job of making them both understandable and accessible.

As an AppleScripter, I can confirm that documenting the many aspects of this scripting language presents a challenge to any author--note that this book weighs in just shy of 900 pages. Recognizing this, the authors have taken what I consider to be a unique approach to the overall structure of the book. The first twelve chapters, which they call "Instant AppleScript," cover the fundamentals of scripting in a linear fashion, providing enough of a foundation for the reader to get started with basic scripting. Chapters 13-30 serve as more of a reference guide, and are organized in a way that even intermediate and experienced scripters will find useful, with individual chapters on folder actions, scripting connections to network servers, unit coercions (converting distance/weight/temperature, etc.), date scripting, and using the Script Editor, the built-in application used to construct and compile AppleScripts. The third section (that's the "3" in "AppleScript 1-2-3") refers to the downloadable content provided, which includes example scripts, updates, errata, and additional training materials.

Throughout the book, the writing is clear and concise, and each and every script is referenced with an ID, such as "SCRIPT 9.46," so that when multiple scripts appear on a single page or spread, there's no doubt as to which script the text refers. Screen shots are used extensively where appropriate, and the 31-page index is not merely exhaustive, but contains individual entries for each of the symbols employed in AppleScript, not just the terms and concepts. Perhaps equally as helpful, however, was the publisher's choice to use "lay-flat" binding for this book so that you can place it on your desk, open it to page 146, and actually have it remain open to that very page without flopping closed within a few seconds. This might seem like a small thing, but anyone who's ever tried to complete a "hands-on" tutorial from a book that refuses to stay open knows precisely where I'm coming from.

I've found some room for improvement in pretty much every product or book I've reviewed to date, but try as I may I can't really conjure up any creative criticism to offer the authors of "Apple Script 1-2-3." The best I can come up with is that I wish the included screen captures were a bit larger and in color, but that's really a piddling complaint. The bottom line is, if you're a beginner and you're serious about learning how to write AppleScripts, you won't find a better book out there.

Or, to sum up my review in a pseudo-AppleScript context:

set this_Book to "AppleScript 1-2-3"
tell individual "reader"
if (wants to get started with scripting) then
buy this_Book
end if
end tell Rating: 5 out of 5
Original Review: [...]
29 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Excellent AppleScript Book 1 janvier 2009
Par Keith - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I bought the book and received it from Amazon. I personally have been waiting a long time and am glad to see it is finally released. Overall the best and largest book available on the topic. If you have ever attended one of Sal's standing room only AppleScript classes (I have) the book is structured as he describes in the forward. He took his classes and put them in print. He starts off with the basics and quickly moves into more complex examples. If you know AppleScript the first chapter may move slow for you, but you can easily jump ahead. Best $31 you can spend if you are interested in learning AppleScript and don't have lots of time. Disregard the one star review. Don't pan the book because Amazon has a weak "Look Inside" you don't like. You can give Amazon one star in other places.
29 internautes sur 32 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Good book for intermediate users 29 janvier 2009
Par Bakari Chavanu - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I'm a little over three quarters of a way through the book, and I'm finding it very useful. However, I would not recommend this book for beginners. A better option for those completely new to AppleScript is AppleScript: The Missing Manual

This book (AppleScript: 123) is useful for when you're ready to take Apple scripting to the next level. While there are practical scripts that you can copy and apply, the authors focus more on trying to get you to understand the various logic, tools, and language for scripting automations and commands. Depending on your level of expertise with AppleScript, you may have to work through this book cover to cover in order to get a full understanding of scripting language.

What I find a little annoying about the book though is its weight and size. Parts of the 900 page book are needlessly repetitive (especially the first chapter in which the chapter summary is 12 pages long!) Also, some of the scripts presented in the book are not that practical. They are presented just to demonstrate and an example.

Despite this shortcoming, if you're serious about learning AppleScript, this is one book you'll want to read and work through.
22 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Not very good for me 15 février 2011
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This book was not worth the money, for me. When I purchased the book (recently) I was new to Applescript, but had experience programming in Visual Basic on the PC. This book did not help me very much at all. I can't see in it what other reviewers have reported. It was not organized very well. It was well written and you can see the author(s) knows the subject well, but just didn't present it in a simple, organized way suitable for a beginner. Moreover, I can't see how this book would be much help for experts either. The book is over 800 pages long, and you have to read over half of it before you even get to the basics. It's sort of like a massive tutorial, focused mainly on programming Finder.

I thought two other books are much, much better - Beginning AppleScript (Programmer to Programmer) (WROX) which was I thought an almost perfect book for beginners, and AppleScript: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition (O'REILLY), which seemed excellent for beginner and expert alike. Both of those books are a little out of date (e.g., they refer to Script Editor which has been renamed AppleScript Editor, and to AppleScript Utility, which has been discarded and incorporated into AppleScript Editor). But they are still worth a lot more that this book, despite a few minor things like that. I understand there's a new book out that might be good, but I haven't read it - AppleScript (Developer Reference). Even so, I don't see how anyone could go wrong with the two older books I just mentioned; they are both well worth the money, but experts might want to pass on the Beginning Applescript one.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Best of the bunch for beginners 22 janvier 2013
Par Phil - Publié sur
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Before buying, I read all the reviews for this book and all of the reviews for many of the other competing books (Neuburg's O'Reilly book, Goldstein's 'Missing Manual', Sanderson's A-Press 'Learn Applescript' and a few others I've forgotten along the way). I was a bit put off by some of the 5-star reviews for this one, particularly the one by the guy that knows the author, and others that clearly indicated they were all familiar with AS already. However, what convinced me to buy this was reading the sample chapter (use the 'Look Inside' feature or download a sample to your computer/Kindle device).

What the sample chapter exemplifies is the teaching approach used throughout the book. Unlike one of the other reviewers of this title who complains 'its repetitive,' I welcome that as a learner. As a teacher (in a completely different sphere than computer programming), I can also attest that there are two general principles in learning any skill that all educators know: you learn by doing, and you learn by doing something repetitively. Think playing the piano, or guitar, or driving a car. No one gets good at these things by reading about them (they need to learn by doing) and no one gets good at these things without doing them repetitively (the old cliche 'practice makes perfect' is about as true as it gets in education). That is the first principle behind this book from the first chapter onwards. You are writing and running scripts on almost every page, not wading through reams of boring theory. Whatismore, unlike a lot of other books on programming languages I've looked at (and given up on) this book doesn't sucker you with a few easy chapters at the beginning and then ramp up the difficulty level once you've bought (into) it. The style and approach is consistent throughout.

The second principle behind this book is to teach concepts by way of an extended example - again, a fundamental pedagogic method. So yes - as someone complained - most of the example scripts, at least in the first half of the book, concern Finder, which you probably aren't interested in programming, but that is irrelevant. The author uses the Finder to teach the standard suite and main libraries such as system events and image events, most of which you're likely to use in any kind of complex applescript programming. More importantly, he uses it to teach the syntax of the language and the underlying concepts that all scriptable apps must conform to.

He doesn't gloss over the difficulties of Applescript or its inconsistencies, but nor does he dwell on them (which was my impression of the Neuburg book based on the sample chapter). He teaches you about many of the pitfalls, and occasionally he'll throw in a script and point out why it doesn't work. Some of the main inconsistencies are pointed out and ways to get round them. But again, the examples are illustrating principles and concepts that will often apply elsewhere.

Is this book really for beginners (another complaint I saw in the reviews)? Absolutely. It's hard to imagine how anyone could think this requires any prior knowledge of programming, but this is a claim you can verify for yourself by looking at the sample chapter.

Finally, this book is extremely comprehensive and very good value. You get something like an 800 page book for $20, and it pretty much covers about everything you can script that comes with a standard mac install. I'm using this book on Mountain Lion, and even though the book was written for Leopard, it is still entirely relevant and accurate to what I see on my machine.

The only caveat I'm going to offer on this book is this: if you like to learn stuff by reading abstract theoretical explanations, if you don't actually want to role up your sleeves and get typing scripts from the get-go and in between almost every 2 to three minutes of reading, then this 'hands on' approach is not for you. But if you actually want to learn Applescript by using Applescript, I doubt there's a better book out there.
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