Phantom Documentation

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Phantom Language Overview

Phantom is an interpreted language created to automate tasks in Microsoft Windows 32 Bit Operating Systems. The Phantom system is broken into three primary parts:the interpreter, the script, and the window declarations. Under most circumstances, these three are required to perform actions on a window. The following topics discuss the features and capabilities of the Phantom system.

            What is Phantom?

            The Phantom Interpreter
            Creating a Script
            Console Mode

            Window Declarations
            Window Types
            Script Arguments

New in Phantom v2.0

Phantom version 2.0 contains many new features beyond Phantom version 1.1. The entire interpreter was redesigned from the ground up to provide a better script development environment. Many of the syntax limitations of v1.1 are completely gone in version 2.0. Scripts are more robust and can be much more flexible than scripts for version 1.1.

Below is a summary of new features for Phantom v2.0:

New Variable Types
Phantom v2.0 supports new variable types. Data types such as bitmaps, option sets, registration keys, and more can be accessed through new variable types. See variables for more information.

New Functions
A whole suite of new functions are available in version 2.0. New window functions as well as new general functions allow for more control and options for automation. Additionally, future extensions can be loaded using the function package system.

New Keywords
New keywords were added to Phantom version 2.0. The new keywords allow greater control of the state of a script, including the manual removal of previously declared variables and functions.

Exception Handling
Phantom errors, warnings, and failures can now be handled using the try-catch statements. Additionally, scripts can create and throw user-defined exceptions using the new exception data type.

Variable Arrays
Variables can now be in multi-dimensional arrays in Phantom.

Console Mode
Phantom now has a console mode. Phantom commands can by typed directly into a console to be executed real time. This is great for experimenting with new Phantom commands.

Phantom Target Application
Phantom Target, included with the Phantom Interpreter, is a an application containing many window types supported by Phantom. It is provided for use with the many samples included in this documentation, as well as for trying Phantom commands before integrating them with automation scripts.

Bitmap Capture
Using the new bitmap data type and the CaptureBitmap function, individual windows can have their bitmaps captured and saved to a file. Bitmaps can also be loaded from files and compared to other bitmaps.

Script Calling
Phantom scripts can be run directly from within another script by using the include keyword. The scripts are run as though they were a part of the calling script. Useful for creating script pre and post processors, declaring global variable sets, and including common user defined function sets.

Future function sets can be added directly and seamlessly to Phantom, without the need to re-install.

Variable Scope
The scope of variable declarations is different in Phantom version 2.0. Variables declared in functions and in flow control statements are not available outside those statements (or outside their 'scope'). This is more in line with C and other common programming languages. See General Language Syntax for mode information.

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