Originally developed by Joe Taylor, AppBasic is a tool for writing Toolbox-based BASIC applications, and an update – version 3.03 – has now been released by Fred Graute.
The Toolbox is a set of modules designed to make it easier to develop a desktop application on RISC OS, by reducing the need for programmers to deal with the mechanics of handling the windows, menus, icons, etc., and allowing them to focus more on the core purpose of the software they are writing.
AppBasic was developed by Joe as a user-friendly programming environment, so that anyone who wanted to use the Toolbox from BASIC could do so more easily than it would otherwise be. It allows the initial framework for an application to be set up, and the developer can then use the Toolbox resource editor to design their windows, etc. With that done, AppBasic can be used to insert procedures and functions to handle events related to those resources, such as opening windows, clicking on menu entries, and so on, and the developer can then add the code to those procedures and functions that allow their software to do what they want it to do.
The changes in Fred’s 3.03 release are detailed in a Changes directory found in the zip file. These are mainly code changes to deal with bugs he’s encountered when using AppBasic himself, but he’s also added a couple of new veneers for features not supported in the old Toolbox library. He has kept changes to the application programmer interface (API) to a minimum, so that older software written with AppBasic should mostly remain compatible and continue to work with it – but there is one veneer that has changed, detailed in the TboxLib text file in that Changes directory.
Originally intended as an update to be applied to the previous version, because the AppBasic website is no longer available Fred has (with Joe’s permission, and with thanks offered to Gavin Wraith for assisting in securing this) made it a full release.
If you are a user of AppBasic, or thinking of trying it out, don’t forget that there is a (currently very quiet) RISCOSitory mailing list for people to discuss the software, and provide mutual help.