STTextView: A TextKit 2 Text Editor without NSTextView

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In my recent post about the TextKit 2 sample app, commenter Frizlab pointed out that Marcin Krzyzanowski (@krzyzanowskim on Twitter) is doing TextKit 2 stuff. I didn’t notice that in my Twitter timeline even though I follow him for years now, so I was confused, nay, angry about the state of my Twitter timeline since Musk’s takeover /s.

And yes, Marcin does have a very extensive open source sample project that explores TextKit 2! He’s working on Swift Studio, a pure Swift IDE and his STTextView is a part of that.

So meet STTextView, a “TextKit2 text view without NSTextView baggage”.

Check out the video demo!

One thing I love about the code comments for the UI compoents is the ASCII diagrams of layer contents, e.g. in STTextView.swift:

//  STTextView
//      |---selectionLayer (CALayer)
//      |---contentLayer (CALAyer)
//              |---(STInsertionPointLayer | TextLayoutFragmentLayer)

Am totally going to adopt this :)

What Do You Get When You Drag and Drop a PNG File From Finder Into an NSTextView?

In short: Image file drag and drop does only produce file URLs, either with security scope-able bookmarks or plain file paths. Dragging an image file from Finder onto an NSTextView will trigger performDragOperation(_:). You get access to NSDraggingInfo there and can inspect available content. Its draggingPasteboard (shortened to pb here) contains the following data when executed on macOS 12 Monterey:

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Retry Imperative Conditions with RxSwift Using a Delay

In The Archive, people relying on character composition to enter their text noticed that the auto-saving routing got in the way and aborted the composable editing mode. This affects e.g. Chinese or Japanese character input on macOS, but also when you hit a composable accent like ´ after which the text editor waits for another character to put underneath the accent.

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Decorate NSGlyphStorage to Replace Glyphs On-the-Fly

There are many ways to affect the glyphs that are used to show text on screen. Since macOS 10.11 El Capitan (released in 2015), possibly the simplest override points are in NSLayoutManagerDelegate. Another, arguably more ancient way to replace glyphs on-the-fly is to override and customize NSGlyphGenerator. This predates the existence of NSLayoutManagerDelegate, and it’s not even available on iOS, so that’s how arcane the approach outlines here will be.

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Why the Selection Changes When You Do Syntax Highlighting in a NSTextView and What You Can Do About It

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On iOS, this does maybe not happen at all, but when you want to write syntax highlighting code for macOS apps, copying together stuff from around the web, you’ll end up with broken application behavior. In short: when you type and the attributes of the line change, the insertion point is moved to the end of the line. That sucks.

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