Joined: Jun 16, 2003 Posts: 10958 Location: California, USA
Posted: Fri May 10, 2013 12:42 pm Post subject: Development plans for the rest of 2013
Now that we have finished the App Sandbox implementation work described in last September's development plans, now is a good time to give an overview of what development projects we plan to work on through the end of this year.
In the past, Apple has made big changes in every new version of Mac OS X. Since keeping up with Apple's Mac OS X changes takes a lot of our time, Ed and I try to anticipate what changes Apple is likely to make in the near future so that we can start implementing those changes as early as possible. Our experience is that the legacy Mac OS X functions that Apple has marked for removal and Apple's Mac App Store submission requirements give us a pretty good idea of changes that Apple will make in future versions of Mac OS X that will affect NeoOffice.
From the above, Ed and I have identified the following changes that we think need to be made to ensure that NeoOffice will run on future versions Mac OS X. Given the complexity of some of these changes, we expect that implementing these changes will require all of our development time for the rest of 2013:
Native buttons, scrollbars, and other Mac OS X controls
Apple continually removes legacy technologies with each new version of Mac OS X and warns developers well in advance by marking functions to be removed as "deprecated". While we have already removed nearly all of functions that Apple has deprecated, NeoOffice still relies on Mac OS X's "HITheme" functions to draw native buttons, scrollbars, and other Mac OS X controls.
Apple recently marked the "HITheme" functions as deprecated so we will reimplement each of the native buttons, scrollbars, and other Mac OS X controls in NeoOffice one by one. Our plan is to replace the HITheme functions with real Cocoa buttons, scrollbars, and other Mac OS X controls. Implementing real Cocoa controls is not likely the simplest approach, but we think it will be the most stable solution as it does not require using deprecrated or undocumented Mac OS X functions.
Mac OS X 10.9
While we do not know when Apple will release the next version of Mac OS X, our past experience is that each new Mac OS X version brings a new set of bugs that we must fix. Additionally, Apple sometimes adds new features that Mac OS X applications are expected to implement such as Mac OS X 10.7's Versions and Full-screen features. Unfortunately, the amount of development work that we will need to do for Mac OS X 10.9 is unknown at this time. Once we have access to Mac OS X 10.9, we should be able to identify the development work that we will need to do.
Since adding lots of new code might cause new bugs, we plan on posting frequent test patches so that we can release a small part of the above changes in each of the official NeoOffice official patches that we release through the rest of this year.
Stability is still our primary goal so fixing any critical crashing, hanging, and data loss bugs reported in our Neooffice Support forum will continue to be our highest priority.
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