According to Howard Oakley's xattred, a .textclipping file resource fork appears to be stored as an extended attribute, at least in Mojave. The ls command in Terminal corroborates this:Very interesting. I wonder what is going to happen in macOS 10.15, when the 32-bit APIs (including all of Carbon, where the Resource Manager lives) get deleted. They're going to need to do something about text clippings.
I can imagine a few possibilities:
I wonder if there will be a third-party (open source?) project to create a resource manager for 64-bit code. I assume the resource fork organization is well documented and it's not likely to change, so there's no technical reason why it couldn't be done. If the developers consist entirely of people who have never seen Apple's source code, working only from public information, there shouldn't be a copyright problem.
- Make a Cocoa port of the Resource Manager (or at least a basic subset of it), so the necessary APIs will remain available in the 64-bit world. This would be my preference, but it also seems unlikely. I can only see them doing this if there are a lot of different standard file types that all depend on resources.
- Migrate the parts of the resource manager needed for text clippings into the text clipping code itself, so the text clipping library will open the resource fork as an opaque block of data and manually read/write the resources contained within - a hack, but an acceptable one if there aren't any other standard file types that require resources.
- Change the format of text clipping files to something that doesn't use resources, converting all existing clippings as a part of the OS upgrade - probably the best for most users but will really tick off people who run multiple macOS versions and share clipping files among the systems. (Side question: does anyone actually do this?)
- Change the format of text clipping files and don't auto-convert existing clippings, but keep an importer module that can read the old format for the next few OS releases, dropping support in the future. Maybe offer to upgrade clippings as they are used as well.
- Change the format of text clipping files, don't convert anything, and let old clipping files break (the fastest, easiest and cheapest option, even though it is the most user-unfriendly).
ls -al@ Desktop/28*
-rw-r--r--@ 1 xz4gb8 staff 1081 May 1 10:47 Desktop/28 https-::eclecticlight.co.textClipping
It is also fascinating the BBEdit displays only the clipped text while Text Edit displays complex text content and Hex Fiend shows yet another view of the complex content.