XEvents brings IAC to heterogeneous networks

by Lee Sherman

Albert Park, Australia Interapplication communication (IAC) may one day span operating systems, if the dream of a developer here becomes reality.

Codex Software Development has developed XEvents, a tool kit designed to create IAC-aware applications that work across networks.

XEvents is modeled on Apple Computer's interapplication messaging language, called Apple Events. But instead of being limited to a single platform, it supports processes running on Macs, Suns, and NeXTs. Microsoft Windows support will be added in a future release.

Unlike Apple, Codex has kept its system open, waiting for developers to define their events. It plans to publish an event registry based on whatever consensus emerges.

"Because it's portable code and because it runs on many platforms, we couldn't assume the existence of features such as the classic Macintosh event loop or the sophisticated object-oriented dispatch under NeXTSTEP," said J. Matthew Pryor of Codex.

XEvents was developed for customers who were trying to bridge PCs and workstations."Our agenda has always been to develop software that encompassed multiple computer platforms," said Pryor. "There's been a lot of talk about open systems, but that talk has only been among UNIX vendors."

If Codex is successful in licensing XEvents to developers, the functionality in applications once exclusive to the Mac could become available to applications on DOS-based computers and UNIX machines such as the NeXT. For example, Apple's AppleScript or UserLand's Frontier scripting languages could find themselves used in these environments.

"You could use Frontier to script a Windows program an ideal use of XEvents," said Pryor.

Codex has already developed a UNIX program that fires events at Apple's Finder.

Codex can be reached at 61/3/696-2490.