If you’ve used OS X for more than a few minutes, you’ve probably interacted with the pasteboard system many times. This system dates back to the early NeXTSTEP days and is the primary means of moving data between running applications.
They are used to implement copy-and-paste, drag-and-drop, system services, and a few other systems. On OpenStep, it was also used by
NSDataLink, which allowed an application to embed a selection that was automatically updated by another app. This is not supported on OS X, although there are third-party extensions that provide similar functionality.
A pasteboard is basically a dictionary containing a mapping from types to data. You can store data of any arbitrary type ...