ABox 1.8

Date: Wed, 5 Jul 1995 09:37:01 -0600

Hi all...

The 'collective' of TopSoft Inc., a not-for-profit software programming
group, is proud to announce the first public release of the ABox, also
known as TSAbout, available for use within your non-commercial applications
(be sure to read the license that comes with the ABox software, and all
other TopSoft software packages).

We wanted to come up with something that no-one had ever really seen or
done before, much like our guiding principle for the FilterTop software,
and release it as part of the FilterTop package as well as its own package.
The ABox supports nearly all of the way-cool-nifty-gee-i-gotta-have
features that Apple has been cranking out for System 7 and beyond. It
supports QuickTime, the Text-to-Speech Manager, Drag-and-Drop, the
Asynchronous Sound Manager, the old Threads Package, the new Threads
Manager, is PowerPC capable via UPP's instead of ProcPtr's...you get the

The ABox is really just a set of C++ classes that have a rather API for
client software, based mainly upon the early documentation regarding
Apple's Speech Recognition Manager; the ABox has an object-oriented
"properties" driven API, where instead of providing lots of methods to do
lots of things, there are a handful of methods to do lots of things. Most
importantly, all client-adjustable features of the ABox are driven through
a pair of easy to use methods that are documented in the ABox demo
application and the web pages.

Most importantly, the ABox can be used to display a set of Topics and
Slides, which makes it useful for tasks such as enhanced about boxes,
online reference, help, etc. Topics are really just files within a
folder-tree, where each file is either a QuickTime movie, a text file
(normal TEXT and SimpleText 'ttro'), a PICT file, or a file that contains a
'TSAb' resource which instructs the ABox which resources should be grouped
together as Slides within the Topic (much like icon families...a group of
resources that share the same ID). By pointing the ABox at the root of some
folder tree containing files with 'TSAb' resources, you can make the ABox
display a hierarchical list of topics that the user can then browse

Oh, by the way...adding the ABox to your projects will add about 49K (even
less when compiled and built with the latest Metrowerks CodeWarrior

And now, some current news about the ABox...

Web Stuff:

The _new_ ABox web pages are installed and available on the TS-Mac, so
point your web surfers at:


to see the TopSoft Home Page, which has a link to the ABox pages, or you
can go directly to the ABox pages via


Current Versions:

The current verion of the ABox software is v1.8, and is available as part
of the FilterTop software release or as the ABox source & demo release,
available via anonymous ftp to the TS-Mac (ftp.topsoft.org) or atlas


Please, take some time out during your web surfing and check out TopSoft's
home page, and while you're at it grab a copy of the ABox for a test drive.

thanks in advance
george (ty) tempel

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