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Beginning Mac OS® X Programming by Drew McCormack, Michael Trent

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10.9. Summary

A script language is a high-level language that is interpreted, rather than being compiled, into object code by a compiler. Mac OS X ships with a many different scripting languages, each with its own application domain, strengths, and weaknesses. This chapter has introduced you to some of the more important of these languages.

In this chapter, you learned that

  • The Bash Shell can be used interactively, or to run shell scripts. It is a simple language, used extensively in the Mac OS X system, and is particularly good at gluing other commands and programs together.

  • AppleScript is the only scripting language that gives you access to applications with a GUI on Mac OS X. It has a verbose, English-like syntax and is targeted at non-programmers.

  • Python is a powerful object-oriented scripting language, with a simple syntax and extensive library. Like Perl, it is very capable when it comes to text manipulation.

  • Perl is a C-like scripting language that is particularly adept at text manipulation. It generally provides many different ways of achieving a single task. This is either a strength or weakness, depending on your perspective. Perl's syntax is quite compact, but can lead to indecipherable source code if care is not taken.

  • JavaScript is a Java-like scripting language that can be used to make dynamic web content, but it is of particular interest to Mac developers because it underpins Dashboard.

  • Dashboard widgets are basically web pages, composed from web technologies such as ...

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