Archive for July 8, 2022

Friday, July 8, 2022

Disable Live Text for Easier Selecting in Preview

Adam Engst:

Alas, cropping, which is one of the most common things I do in Preview, became harder in Monterey, thanks to the addition of Live Text. That’s because Preview sometimes thinks I want to select text in the image rather than drag selection handles. Annoyingly, this problem is not predictable—I can run into it with a particular screenshot but have trouble reproducing with the same screenshot later. Plus, the frequency with which I experience the problem has been falling, perhaps due to Apple improving the logic behind selecting.

If you’re suffering from a click-and-drag giving you a text selection when you want a rectangular selection, I’ve found a trick for increasing your chances of being able to use the selection handles. Resize the window so you can see the canvas on the edge where you need to grab the selection handle. Then, approach the handle from the canvas side so macOS sees your click and drag as happening just outside the area where there’s text.

Or you can turn off Live Text entirely from the Language & Region pane of System Preferences. It seems like this should just be handled with a modifier key, though, like you can hold Shift to select a square or hold Option to select from the center.

I still miss how the iCab browser would let you hold a key to select text within a clickable link…


Update (2022-07-08): Joe Groff:

In Preview specifically, you can also pick between text vs. rectangular vs. auto selection in the Tools menu.

Update (2022-07-12): Steve Troughton-Smith:

Having Live Text on by default is a mistake in both Safari and Photos. It breaks decades of expectations for drag and drop for a fairly niche purpose that should be modal. I’m consciously having to try to avoid it every time.

CompileIt for HyperCard

Tom Pittman in 2007 (via David Kopec):

When HyperCard came out, Bill Atkinson said there would never be a HyperCard compiler. Strictly, he was right, because you can write self-modifying scripts in HyperCard, and that just can’t be compiled in any reasonable way. But I figured that most of what people do can be compiled, and I could punt the rest. Besides, it would be fun to prove Atkinson wrong.

Pundits were also saying that HyperCard was too limited to do useful things. I decided to prove them wrong at the same time by writing my compiler entirely in HyperCard. I did that. I never used any other programming tool besides ResEdit (and a text editor) for any version of CompileIt, not even the first one, which I wrote completely in HyperTalk. It was incredibly slow, but it worked. Then I compiled it in itself, and it got much faster.

Tom Pittman:

The commercial version of CompileIt has full access to all (68K) ToolBox calls and can generate just about any (again 68K) code resource. I have done INITs and whole programs strictly in CompileIt. In fact, after CompileIt was working (1994) everything I ever did on the Mac (including CompileIt itself) was compiled in CompileIt -- until 2004, when I started migrating my tool base to the new language I call Turkish Demitasse (T2). Most of the tools I used in the transition to T2 were still running in HyperCard and/or CompileIt.


I see that both CompileIt and Double-XX are also available on the MacintoshGarden archive site.

When HyperCard was converted to PPC I tried converting CompileIt to generate PPC native code, but it got too messy and I gave up.

Amazon to Drop Prime Cancellation Dark Patterns in Europe

Natasha Lomas (via Slashdot):

The coordinated complaints about Amazon’s confusing and convoluted cancellation process for Prime were announced back in April 2021 — so it’s taken just over a year for the e-commerce giant to agree to change its ways.

Following the engagement with EU regulators, the Commission said today that Amazon started to make some revisions to the Prime web interface — such as labelling the cancel button more clearly and shortening the explanatory text — but today’s announcement is that it has agreed to further simplify the experience by further reducing the text so consumers do not get distracted by warnings and deterred from cancelling.

There’s a video showing the steps.


Xcode 14: Swift Package Plug-ins

Marco Eidinger:

WWDC 2022 video “Meet Swift Package plugins” explains how to perform actions on Swift packages and Xcode projects with Swift package plugins.


Both plugin types were introduced in Swift 5.6 and work in Xcode 13.3 when used on Swift packages. So what’s new in Xcode 14 (Swift 5.7)?


Command plugins can be triggered within Xcode


Command plugins can be executed on Xcode projects

Rather than just on Swift packages.