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AppleScript Support

Introduction

AppleScript is a widely used scripting language on Mac OS X, used for inter-process communication (IPC). It enables end-users who have no programming skills to easily create workflows and perform repetitive tasks. Supporting AppleScript also provides a consistent interface for communication with other applications.

If you are unfamiliar with AppleScript, you can read more about it at AppleScript Language Guide.

For implementation of AppleScript in your application, you might want to look at Cocoa Scripting Guide.

Terminology

  • SDEF - scripting definition file, contains all the classes, properties, commands that scripters can use.
  • Automator - an application bundled with Mac OS X allowing the user to graphically build workflows on top of AppleScript.

Details

AppleScript support involves five classes, each representing the classes defined in the sdef file:

ApplicationApplescript
  • Not a separate class but a set of methods added in a category of BrowserCrApplication
  • The name, frontmost, and version properties are all obtained by work done in NSApplication
  • An application has windows as its elements
    • The windows are obtained by traversing through BrowserList, wrapping each Browser in a WindowApplescript class and returning it as an NSArray
    • A new window is created by creating a new Browser with a single blank tab
    • A window is closed by calling browser->window()->Close()
  • Bookmarks are represented as two folders elements, corresponding to the bookmarks bar and the "Other Bookmarks" folder

WindowApplescript

  • Encapsulates a Browser object
  • ID of a browser is obtained via browser->session_id().id()
  • mode indicates whether a browser window is a normal or an incognito window. The mode is set only during creation and cannot be changed at a later time. The default is a normal window.
  • The NSWindow associated with a browser can be used to get and set certain properties such as bounds, closeable, miniaturizable, miniaturizedresizable, visible, zoomable, and zoomed.
  • A browser window has tabs as its elements
    • The tabs comprising a browser window are obtained by getting each tab using browser->GetTabContentsAt()wrapping it inside a TabApplescript class, and returning them as an NSArray
    • New tabs are made by using browser->AddTabWithURL()
    • Tabs are deleted using browser->tabstrip_model()->DetachTabContentsAt()

TabApplescript

  • Encapsulates a TabContents object
  • ID of a tab is obtained via tab_contents->controller().session_id().id()
  • The url and title associated with a tab can be mutated and accessed through the TabContents' controller.
  • Standard text-manipulation commands such as cut, copy, and paste are achieved by calling methods on the RenderViewHost associated with a particular tab
  • Standard navigation commands such as go back, go forward, and reload are achieved by calling methods on the controller associated with a particular tab
  • Printing a tab is done by calling tabContents->PrintNow()
  • Saving a tab is done by calling tabContents->SavePage(). The caller has to provide parameters such as file name and directory path, otherwise the user is prompted for these values

BookmarkFolderApplescript

  • Encapsulates a BookmarkNode object which represents a folder
  • ID is obtained via bookmarkNode->id()
  • The title can be mutated and accessed by calling methods on the BookmarkModel, which takes care of obtaining the correct locks and other housekeeping details.
  • A bookmark folder has other bookmark folders and bookmark items as its elements
    • Any child bookmark folders are obtained by getting all the child nodes of type folder, wrapping each up inside a BookmarkFolderApplescript class, and returning them as an NSArray
    • Adding and deleting bookmark folders and items is done by calling appropriate methods on the BookmarkModel which takes care of all internal details like obtaining locks etc
    • The bookmark items are obtained by getting all child nodes with type as url, wrapping each up in a BookmarkItemApplescript class, and returning them as an NSArray

BookmarkItemApplescript

  • Encapsulates a BookmarkNode object which represents a single url
  • ID is obtained via bookmarkNode->id()
  • Each bookmark item consists of a title and url and can be manipulated by calling methods on BookmarkModel
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