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2.9. Final Thoughts

This chapter introduced the application bundle and let you explore many of the items that hide beneath the surface of packages. Here are a few key thoughts to keep in mind:

Peek under the hood and get some oil under your fingernails.

Even though application packages hide their contents from the casual observer, there's no reason to settle for being a casual observer. Macintoshes were built to enable the power user as well as to comfort the technophobe.

Think of application bundles as one big container.

Apple is deeply committed to the notion of a fully bundled application. In their vision, applications should be installed and removed simply by dragging. Applications that leave bits and pieces around in registries, libraries, and so forth fail to meet the ideal of a simple, powerful, yet "indivisible" tool.

Don't forget to use Get Info (-I) on an application.

Apple's bundled application architecture lends itself beautifully to customization, even after deployment. As the Get Info window trick shows, it's amazingly simple to add or replace plug-ins and localizations on the fly.

Keep diving.

Just as there are wheels within wheels within wheels, prepare to discover packages within packages within packages. iDVD's .pox bundles are just one example of rich and exciting items hiding within application packages.

Think of Unix as the seer of all things.

When in doubt, look at things via the command line using the Terminal application. The command line reveals far more detail than you can discover in the Finder.

Old habits die hard.

Macintosh development, which has been ongoing for decades, brings with it a certain amount of intellectual and procedural baggage. Many oddities of resource files exist to make it easier for developers to bring classic Macintosh applications into the new Mac OS X world.



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