I have an applescript that gets a list of items and then iterates over them:

tell application "GeekTool Helper"
    set names to name of geeklets

    repeat with currentName in names
        if (currentName is equal to "Top_CPU_Processes") then
            display dialog "found it"
        end if
        return currentName
    end repeat
end tell

The names variable gets set to an array of strings properly. When I repeat over the list I'm able to get each of the currentName variables returned separately without an issue.

The problem that I'm running into is the if statement. I'm never getting the dialog box that display's "found it".

I've tried the comparison as if (currentName = "Top_CPU_Processes") then as well and it still never evaluates as true.

Is there something that I need to do to have the contents of the variable evaluate against the string?

1 Answer 1


When you have a list/array of variables and you iterate(repeat) over them, you are getting references to each item - such as "item 1 of names". In other words, you don't directly get the value, you get a pointer to the item in the array. You have to convert the item reference to its actual value to compare it.


if ((currentName as string) is equal to "Top_CPU_Processes") then

Also, if you are using Script Debugger, it's a lot easier to see what goes on with the script, it has much much better debug capability than the Applescript Editor.

  • Awesome, thanks for pointing that out. Also, good point re: using the return panel vs the display dialog. I was mostly doing that because I thought I was printing to the result panel incorrectly with return "found it" because it never printed. I'll return to return. Feb 28, 2014 at 15:03
  • Also, instead of coercing the reference, you can just dereference it (ask for its contents property): contents of currentName is equal to … See ASLG on reference or a reference to. Mar 1, 2014 at 10:27
  • Using the as string operator fixed the issue I was having
    – redolent
    Aug 10, 2018 at 5:05

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