Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 10:22:55 -0500
Reply-To: Tim Dunsworth <Tim.Dunsworth@METROSTATE.EDU>
Sender: "SPSSX(r) Discussion" <SPSSX-L@UGA.CC.UGA.EDU>
From: Tim Dunsworth <Tim.Dunsworth@METROSTATE.EDU>
Subject: Re: From SPSS: Suggested solution for SPSS for Mac users
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
A few comments about your Mac respondent. First, several remarks smack of the sniping that is all too common between PC zealots and Mac zealots, which is not terribly productive. Second, s/he seems to think that all there is to a statistical analysis program is its computational guts. While it may be true that those guts could be ported and recompiled on a Mac C++ compiler with relatively (?) few bugs, that doesn't help with the extensive user interface code (where MFC comes into play), or with the inter-application communication code (where OLE comes into play) that permits moving tables and graphs into other apps for further use. One possibly useful point is his mention of five class libraries available for Mac programming, but can any of them actually translate Windows/MFC calls into functionally equivalent Mac OS calls? Offhand I doubt that any are even close to 100% effective at this, but it would have been informative if he had addressed this key point.
>>> "D.R. Wahlgren" <wahlgren@MAIL.SDSU.EDU> 05/17 8:14 PM >>>
In reply to my question (from early April, my apologies) about simply
porting the windows SPSS app to the Mac platform, Kyle Weeks had replied
with the message below. Just out of curiosity, I dangled his response in
front of some Mac software developers. An interesting reply follows. I'm
not intending this to be a flame, rather something possibly worth passing
on to the SPSS developers.
>In order to deliver the most feature-rich and best-performing
>software possible, we adopted the use of various Windows-based development
>tools such as MFC and OLE/ActiveX, as well as support for such
>Windows-specific features as ODBC. These technologies are not portable, and
>the means for moving such Windows-based software to Mac have, in truth, been
>slow to develop.
>Kyle Weeks, Ph.D.
>> Associate Market Manager
>> SPSS Inc.
> First of all, it is true that none of these tools except ODBC exist for
> the Mac except as internal M$ tools.
> Second of all, to say that MFC and OLE/ActiveX are necessary to port a
> statistical analysis package is ludicrous. MFC is generally known as
> one of the most poorly designed class libraries ever made, and its lack
> of availability for the Mac is not surprising given that it is
> basically a thin wrapper for the Windows API. There are several Mac
> equivalents (e.g. PowerPlant, MacApp, TCL, Whisper) not to mention
> several cross-platform frameworks (e.g. AppMaker) that are far superior
> to MFC.
> OLE/ActiveX is another horrid piece of technology that is no longer
> ported (except by the Office group - which is where you may have seen
> it) It is used for interapplication and cross-network communication and
> has nothing to do with statistical analysis.