Disclaimer: this is an open-ended and kinda "far out" question

Over the last few years I've made a few iPhone games. I use very common programs like Xcode and Illustrator to make the games.

Lately I've become tired of repeating certain tasks over and over again. Here are some examples:

  • in Xcode: "clean target, build, run" over and over again
  • in Xcode: delete image resources and then import updated image resources (identical names)

I'd like to automate these tasks in Xcode. Any ideas? I've done some automation in Photoshop using the "button mode" thing where you record a macro... that's been very useful.

Here's the kinda wacky or "far out" part of the question: how can this automation be done via voice commands? (perhaps using a Nuance product or something)

Here's an example of what I'd love to do via a few voice commands:

  1. Save artwork from illustrator at a user-specified size (@2x versions as well)
  2. Delete "someArt.png" and "[email protected]" from Xcode
  3. Add the updated versions of someArt.png to Xcode
  4. In Xcode: clean target, build, and run

I know this question probably seems bizarre... but something like this could make certain things substantially easier for game developers.

Edit: wonder if a combination of AppleScript and Nuance might work?

  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ This is an interesting question (though I personally wouldn't ever use the voice stuff), but I'm not sure the actual question is particularly germane to game development specifically. You might get better answers on StackOverflow. \$\endgroup\$
    – user1430
    Jan 29, 2011 at 5:17
  • 6
    \$\begingroup\$ This is the exact thing that shell scripting (and bindable hotkeys) was made for. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tetrad
    Jan 29, 2011 at 5:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Tetrad you should make an answer out of your comment :) Here's a good resource regarding XCode and scripting: developer.apple.com/library/mac/#documentation/DeveloperTools/… \$\endgroup\$
    – bummzack
    Jan 29, 2011 at 9:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ A batch script? Or some kind of build tool? \$\endgroup\$
    – Stephen
    Jan 29, 2011 at 15:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would personally use Perl for this, but I'm on windows. I don't think the voice recognition is really needed. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 30, 2011 at 2:46

1 Answer 1


These are the kind of tasks you can usually script from a shell, assuming the programs in question are sufficiently scriptable. Mostly Xcode is simply going to do its work by calling out to GCC or LLVM or whatnot, so if nothing else you can write scripts for your shell of choice or in a language like Python to drive those tools.

You can also use higher level tools like AppleScript or Automator, and tie that to voice recognition commands via Apple's built-in voice recognition system (which can be enabled and configured via the System Preferences application). You can even incorporate voice commands into your scripts, as described here. Although I still think voice commands are a bit unusual.


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