OS4.3.1 Drag and drop fields

Kelly Burgess kellyb at montana.com
Wed Apr 22 20:58:08 EDT 2009

Hi Andrew,

>I have a field that accepts drag and drop text and works fine within 
>Omnis but I am trying to now drag text from an email (OSX Mail) and 
>drop it into that field without any luck.  Is there anything I am 
>missing here.

No, you're not missing anything.  Applications use 'drag flavors' and 
'promises' to describe data, and every one of them has slightly 
different behavior and data types.

I managed to get OS X Mail drag/drop working by using a custom event 
handler external that queried back to Mail and fleshed out some 
details about the dropped flavor, but was never able to follow it 
back to an exact message - so I kludged it by using an Applescript to 
ask Mail to describe the current selection, which is assumedly what 
was just dragged.  Using the combined info, I was able to come up 
with the full path of the message file, which I could then read and 

Then along came OS X 10.5 and a new version of Mail, and my solution 
broke.  Still haven't returned to it to figure out why.  And if I do, 
it might break again with 10.6 Mail.  But the other point is, none of 
what I did was of any use with mail dragged from Eudora, or a 
Netscape-based browser/mail reader.  None of them make it easy, and 
no two are the same.  Eudora stores messages inside larger mailbox 
files, not as individual files like Mail does - and it stores 
attachments separately, rather than as part of a multipart message 
like Mail.

I don't blame Omnis for this problem.  And it's probably hard to get 
the different mail client vendors to agree on some standards for 
drag/drop, since they'd prefer their competition to just go away or 
to adopt their standard... to which the competitor replies that their 
set of flavors doesn't map well to the others, they don't want to 
have their innovation stifled, etc...


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