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Comments on: 2005 the Palm OS Year in Review

Palm PoweredIn our annual year in review article, PalmInfocenter takes a look at all of the major events that took place in the Palm OS world in 2005. It was certainly an exciting year full of surprise announcements and major transitions. Treo smartphones really began to take off, a lot of innovative devices were released and many surprises and new directions within the Palm economy took shape. Read on for the full recap.
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Ed

legodude522 @ 1/10/2006 10:21:30 PM # Q
You had to post the picture of Ed doing a spread?

Palm m125 December 25, 2002 to March 24 2004 > palmOne Zire 71 March 24, 2004 to March 31, 2005. Tapwave Zodiac 1 April 18, 2005 to November 2, 2005 > palmOne Zire 72 November 2, 2005 to present
Reply to this comment

But Wait, There's More!

PenguinPowered @ 1/11/2006 12:56:30 AM # Q
Er, but I'm not allowed to talk about it.

We'll just have to wait for Skippy to finally find out and blab.



May You Live in Interesting Times

Don't be a hater, Marty.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/11/2006 1:56:33 AM # Q
PalmSource helped put food on your table for a year. Enough with the backstabbing, already.

It's time for you to let go and "move on", Marty. And if you ever need to vent, or need a shounder to cry on, remember: nobody here cares about you.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: But Wait, There's More!
PenguinPowered @ 1/11/2006 2:51:48 AM # Q
skippy, skippy, skippy, just when i thought you were learning.

I never said that what i couldn't say was bad news.

only that you don't know it yet.



May You Live in Interesting Times

RE: But Wait, There's More!
LiveFaith @ 1/11/2006 11:05:06 AM # Q
It's not a secret anymore. Eleven devices running Cobalt will be released by the end of 2005. Most people know that already.

Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com
RE: But Wait, There's More!
Admin @ 1/11/2006 12:46:19 PM # Q
You guys know how to reach me privately if you want to share something!
RE: But Wait, There's More!
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/11/2006 2:50:20 PM # Q
I never said that what i couldn't say was bad news.

only that you don't know it yet.

Stay off the drugs, Marty.

It's not a secret anymore. Eleven devices running Cobalt will be released by the end of 2005. Most people know that already.

Actually, they were referring to the end of 2005 in the JULIAN CALENDAR. Technically speaking, this means they still have until January 13, 2006 (Gregorian calendar date) before you can call them a bunch of sleazy, lying dirtbags. I have faith that we'll see at least one Cobalt device released before this weekend.

Pat: Why have you forsaken Palm? Sinner!

TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: But Wait, There's More!
twrock @ 1/11/2006 6:11:53 PM # Q
Chinese New Year is January 29. The have lots of time still.

It might not be the "mythical color HandEra", but I'm liking my TX anyway.
RE: But Wait, There's More!
LiveFaith @ 1/12/2006 12:43:25 AM # Q
>Pat: Why have you forsaken Palm? Sinner!

I'm standing strong until the end. Just waiting to see if Spring will bring anything worthy to upgrade my Pilot 1000 to.

Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com

Et tu, Pat?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 12:55:15 AM # Q
Just waiting to see if Spring will bring anything worthy to upgrade my Pilot 1000 to.

I hear you can trade Palm your Pilot 1000 and they'll send you three LifeDrives in return. I'm waiting for them to sweeten the deal by only sending me two LifeDrives in return for my old Pilot 1000...


TVoR


------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: But Wait, There's More!
Timothy Rapson @ 1/12/2006 8:22:33 AM # Q
EPalm EPat, lama sabachthani?
Mt 27:46

Too late?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 11:37:06 PM # Q
It may be too late. Pat has now fallen under the spell of Beelzebub Gates.

Methinks it's time for an "intervention" on Pat's behalf. We CAN and MUST save this lost lamb.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Reply to this comment

Ryan, you left out the BIGGEST PalmSource story of all...

The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/11/2006 1:50:49 AM # Q
And no, I don't mean Marty Fouts getting "outed" here at Palminfocenter.

;-O

Do you really not know what's happened, or are you just trying to be nice? Nudge, nudge. Wink, wink.


TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Ryan, you left out the BIGGEST PalmSource story of all..
PenguinPowered @ 1/11/2006 2:56:54 AM # Q
I didn't think you'd want Ryan reminding everybody about how Lefty slapped you around, but hey, I guess for you, any attention is better than none?

Do you dream of electric sheep, Skippy?


May You Live in Interesting Times

RE: Ryan, you left out the BIGGEST PalmSource story of all...
hkklife @ 1/11/2006 10:00:31 AM # Q
Ryan;
Good summary outling '05. I had forgotten about the near-vapor releases of some of the Europe & Asia only smartphones.

Now I'd REALLY like to see the Voice's '06 predictions article and the long-awaited VZ90 review/overview. I myself am going to contribute some material to PIC (per the sentiment of the past few days to make our last stand here) with a couple of game reviews in the works at the moment. I also am working on a review of the Palm GPS Navigator kit and, eventualy, a T5/TX case review. Initial impressions are quite positive of the GPS kit even if it basiclaly is just a repackaging of other firms' components in a Palm-branded box.

Oh a "tell all" article from an ex-PalmSourcer would be lovely gossip but that's probably too volatile for "official" PIC content...not to mention a sure fire bet to get someone into legal hot water. I guess we'll just have to wait for the other shoe to drop through the grapevine, huh?

I have to say that the dialogue here on PIC over the past two weeks has been some of the most entertaining and informative/insightful speculation we've had in a long time. I'm actually enjoying the "stir" the 700w has created even if I have zero interest in the actual product itself.

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

RE: Ryan, you left out the BIGGEST PalmSource story of all...
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 12:29:45 AM # Q
Now I'd REALLY like to see the Voice's '06 predictions article

Sorry - no can do. That would be illegal! ;-O


and the long-awaited VZ90 review/overview.

VZ90. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. VZ90 + TCPMP + Wi-Fi connection = the ultimate combination media player/Internet tablet/PDA.

Review will come. Soon. I'm also planning to finish up the reviews of a few apps.

TVoR

;-O

TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Reply to this comment

something decent in news every month

ackmondual @ 1/11/2006 12:00:01 PM # Q
It could've been much worse for Palm all things considered

"Do you know the difference between an error and a mistake? Anyone can make an error, but that error doesn't become a mistake until you refuse to correct it."
-Grand Admiral Thrawn

the secret to enjoying your job is to have a hobby that's even worse

My PDAs: Visor --> Visor Neo (blue) --> Zire 71 --> Tungsten T3 (with 4 of 6 screws still remaining) ~?~> zodiac 2?

Reply to this comment

Cobalt is here at last!!

Foo Fighter @ 1/11/2006 1:15:58 PM # Q
We're saved! At last we can finally install Cobalt on our handhelds, and it's compabile with all Palm OS hardware...

http://palmaddict.typepad.com/palmaddicts/2006/01/cobalt_10.html



-------------------------------
Editor, http://Pocketfactory.com
Contributing Editor, http://digitalmediathoughts.com

AWESOME!!! I knew the Cobalt upgrade would be released!
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/11/2006 3:16:52 PM # Q
To all the doubters (I'm looking at YOU, Pat Horne) who never believed we would see Cobalt released, all I want to say is... IN YOUR FACE!!!

We now we have it available for FREE and running. Suckers!

TVoR



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
LiveFaith @ 1/12/2006 12:33:34 AM # Q
Ha! You're the sucka! That's not even the real Cobalt. It's a hoax!!!

The real Cobalt screensaver has never repeating pattern of vapor which begins at the bottom and randomly dissapates as it ascends toward the top. Fools!



Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com

"A Cobalt in every pot"
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 12:43:47 AM # Q
Lies! Cobat is REAL, I tell you! REAL!

And why are you using the words "Cobalt" and "Vapor" in the same sentence? I'm tempted to tell Dianne Hackborn on you and have her administer a biotchslapping like you'll NEVER believe!

Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
Cobalt is REAL.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.
There's no place like home.


------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
Gekko @ 1/12/2006 12:28:44 PM # Q
RE: Cobalt is face down in the grave
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 11:49:24 PM # Q
That's not REAL Cobalt. That's just a renamed Chevy Cavalier.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
hkklife @ 1/13/2006 12:12:32 AM # Q
http://tinyurl.com/8hj34

But Voice, how can an OS that never technically "lived" be face down in its grave? Not to be Dr. O style pedantic (HAH!) here but isn't it more....stillborn than "dead"?

I wonder when Access is going to remove EVERY trace/hint of Cobalt from their website...just kind of magically "wash" it out of existence. I figure it'll be kinda/sorta how Palm tries to pretend that Graffiti 1 never existed.



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
PenguinPowered @ 1/13/2006 3:23:46 AM # Q
Cobalt Lives!

Er, wait, no, that was Frodo.

Anyway, PalmOS on Linux is Cobalt, but running on a Linux kernel. Think of it as Robert De Niro with Peter Boyle's heart.

Where's Boris Karloff when you need him?


May You Live in Interesting Times

You guys are just being "pedantical"
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/13/2006 4:04:24 AM # Q
But Voice, how can an OS that never technically "lived" be face down in its grave? Not to be Dr. O style pedantic (HAH!) here but isn't it more....stillborn than "dead"?

Ummmmm... wrong. Cobalt lived in that slow, buggy piece of **** Oswin smartphone for two glorious days at PalmSource's DevCon last year before being (mercifully) put out of its misery and getting flushed down the toilet (along with any remaining shreds of PalmSource's credibility).

Anyway, PalmOS on Linux is Cobalt, but running on a Linux kernel. Think of it as Robert De Niro with Peter Boyle's heart.

Where's Boris Karloff when you need him?

PalmLinux = FrankenPalmOSô:
- Linux kernel
- PACE from PalmOS 5 for PalmOS 1 - 4 compatibility
- Chunky bits of Perfect Code from the Holy Be Engineers (HoBeEn)
- Sweet and sour Linux sauce from caged China MobileSoft codemonkeys
- Touched by the hands of Dianne Hackborn *GASP!*
- Vaporware delay development timeline from PalmOS 6 (Cobalt)
- Rootkit by (disgraced) Marty Fouts

I can't wait to hear the excuses start flying over why PalmLinux won't show up (groundhog-style) in 2006.

TVoR


------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
SeldomVisitor @ 1/13/2006 6:38:35 AM # Q
I don't know if it's been mentioned here yet (haven't read the thread!) but "Cobalt" has been a SUN Microsystems product for years, e.g.:

-- http://sunsolve.sun.com/handbook_pub/Systems/Cobalt/Cobalt.html

I once sent a note off to PalmSource asking about the conflict of THEIR "Cobalt" OS with Sun's...they never replied...giggle.

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
hkklife @ 1/13/2006 9:44:05 AM # Q
Voice/anyone else;

Thanks for the clarification. Did anyone here actually see/use in PERSON at DevCon that slow, buggy Oswin phone before PalmSource pedanticized it out of its misery?

I thought FrankenGarnet was bad enough...the smorgasbord of code bits outlined in the post above is enough to make my head hurt...and I'm not a developer//programmer/codemonkey!



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
cervezas @ 1/13/2006 11:05:50 AM # Q
hkklife wrote:
Did anyone here actually see/use in PERSON at DevCon that slow, buggy Oswin phone

I did, of course. I only fiddled with the built-in PIM apps for a few minutes so I can't say I did anything that really put it through its paces. But, FWIW, in the 15 minutes I used it I didn't find it slow or buggy. I have heard from other developers who bought them that performance wasn't great, but it was difficult to tell whether that was inherent to the OS or due to beta drivers or what have you. I never heard reports about it being "buggy" but I didn't exactly take a poll.

From what little I know about how Cobalt was written I would expect some performance penalty running existing Palm apps as compared to Garnet. Other things being equal (hopefully they won't be) I would expect the performance penalty when you put Linux under Cobalt's hood to be increased due to the less efficient context switching that's been discussed elsewhere. Of course, with Cobalt developers have a reasonable opportunity to write native ARM code that they haven't yet had--almost all Palm apps to date currently run as emulated 68k code. Taking advantage of that opportunity could resolve all those performance issues. In short, we really don't know right now what Cobalt or Cobalt-Linux would be like in a real production device.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
rsc1000 @ 1/13/2006 3:28:10 PM # Q
Hmmm.

Garnet = OS 4 + some new APIs BUT rewritten in ARM, with the interface exposed as 68K. Thus, API intensive code is fast. Non-API code is slower because all of the 68k code have to have instruction set translated to ARM.

So Garnet/PACE is the efficient way to be backwards compatible.

Cobolt = PACE + Cobolt OS framework & UI + purely native Cobolt API (exposed 'natively' this time) + Cobolt Kernal

PalmLinux = Cobolt - Cobolt Kernal + Linux Kernal WITH modifications to OS & APIs to accommadate the different threading /memory management model of the linux Kernal.

Palm Linux is not a 'messy hack' of Cobolt. The highest level functionality of the OS exists fairly discreet from the Kernal (with the exceptions mentioned for accomadating the different threading/multitasking model). It's not as if Cobolt devices are already out there to complicate the compatibility situation for PalmLinux by forcing them to pull off some sort of crap work around to deal with the new model(the way MS messed up with the no-close-button thing on early the PPC OS and then came up with the pathetic 'smart-minimize' solution so that people never knew if a given app was actually shutting down or just minimizing when you tap the stupid 'X'. God thats dumb).
So for this reason, PS should make sure that nobody uses Cobolt - THAT will actually mess up things more than it will hep at this point.

PalmLinux is no more of a mess than MacOS X is. The Mac has proprietarey Mac UI / Framework / APIs on top of a Unix kernal AND with a compatibilty layer for classic Mac stuff.

Same deal.

Oswin Cobalt FecesFone
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/13/2006 4:12:02 PM # Q
I have heard from other developers who bought them that performance wasn't great

Sounds like Beersy's Apologist Hat HAS CUT OFF CIRCULATION TO HIS BRAIN.

Don't get fooled by his B.S., hkklife. Cobalt ran like a drunken, crippled PIG on the Oswin smartphone. Of course Beersy will have you believe it was just a minor revision away from rivalling a Pentagon supercomputer...


TVoR


------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
Foo Fighter @ 1/13/2006 4:40:17 PM # Q
I don't think it really matters how poorly Cobalt performed on the Oswin phone, because neither went beyond the conceptual stage. Although, it does make you wonder; if Cobalt already performed like a pig stuck in mud, what's it going to perfom like sitting on Linux's shoulders? My encounters with Linux on mobile devices is mainly constrained to QT and Opie...and both are miserable software environements. Slow..buggy...bloated..with horribly designed GUIs that make old Windows CE (which they are modeled after) look like OSX.

-------------------------------
Editor, http://Pocketfactory.com
Contributing Editor, http://digitalmediathoughts.com
RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
PenguinPowered @ 1/13/2006 8:14:51 PM # Q
Palm Linux is not a 'messy hack' of Cobolt.

Thank you. I haven't laughed so hard in days.

PalmLinux is no more of a mess than MacOS X is.

Having seen the insides of both, I would have to describe the above sentence as "damning with faint praise."

Mach was a conceptual hack job on Accent before DARPA suggested to CMU that "Unix compatibility would be nice", after which it morphed into an actual hack job on BSD. Then it was whacked on my NeXT, and finally, Apple, until it became the gordian knot of spaghetti code that it is today.

Knowing that, I can safely say that you are correct, PalmLinux is no more of a mess than that.

(Never inquire too closely into the making of sausages or operatig systems.)


May You Live in Interesting Times

Some people need to buy a vowel
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 7:09:05 AM # Q
Hmmm.

Garnet = OS 4 + some new APIs BUT rewritten in ARM, with the interface exposed as 68K. Thus, API intensive code is fast. Non-API code is slower because all of the 68k code have to have instruction set translated to ARM.

So Garnet/PACE is the efficient way to be backwards compatible.

Cobolt = PACE + Cobolt OS framework & UI + purely native Cobolt API (exposed 'natively' this time) + Cobolt Kernal

PalmLinux = Cobolt - Cobolt Kernal + Linux Kernal WITH modifications to OS & APIs to accommadate the different threading /memory management model of the linux Kernal.

Palm Linux is not a 'messy hack' of Cobolt. The highest level functionality of the OS exists fairly discreet from the Kernal (with the exceptions mentioned for accomadating the different threading/multitasking model). It's not as if Cobolt devices are already out there to complicate the compatibility situation for PalmLinux by forcing them to pull off some sort of crap work around to deal with the new model(the way MS messed up with the no-close-button thing on early the PPC OS and then came up with the pathetic 'smart-minimize' solution so that people never knew if a given app was actually shutting down or just minimizing when you tap the stupid 'X'. God thats dumb).
So for this reason, PS should make sure that nobody uses Cobolt - THAT will actually mess up things more than it will hep at this point.

PalmLinux is no more of a mess than MacOS X is. The Mac has proprietarey Mac UI / Framework / APIs on top of a Unix kernal AND with a compatibilty layer for classic Mac stuff.

Same deal.

Bubba, you need to get a clue.

- Cobalt was already a "messy hack" that would have needed another two YEARS of development (and the accompanying increases in mobile processor speeds expected from the trickle down from Moore's Law) before it could be considered a viable OS for use by consumers.

- PalmLinux is by definition a "messy hack" of Cobalt, as PalmSource was attempting to salvage whatever code they could from Cobalt and cobble together a trendier OS ASAP before the roof came down on them. They simply didn't have time to do a clean sheet design of PalmLinux using some fresh (non-PalmSource) engineers experienced in mobile Linux. So what happens when you do a "messy hack" of a "messy hack"? In you world, the "messy hack[s]" cancel each other out, resulting in Perfect Code, right? Well in the Real World, you actually get Massive Problems that have people up late at night trying to come up with fixes before time runs out and nobody gives a damn anymore about the OS (BeOS-style). If PalmSource releases a STABLE, FUNCTIONAL PalmLinux by Summer 2006 like they claimed they would, I will be shocked but would be the first to say they are geniuses. Having seen the Keystone Kops running the show at PalmSource, this just ain't gonna happen. Sorry, Bubba. Maybe PalmLinux will ultimately be used to power eVilla 2 in 2008 instead?

- Mac OS X was a huge, brutal, "messy hack". The difference between PalmSource and Apple is that Apple managed to pull it off. But don't look too closely under the hood of Mac OS X - you might just throw up if you saw what a nasty, skanky OS your precious, virginal Mac OS really is.

- The word is Cobalt.

- You might want to S T F U before you make get sued for making some poor PalmSource codemonkey choke to death on bananas after reading your comments. Take off those rose colored glasses. Welcome to the Real World, Neo.


TVoR


------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Cobalt is here at last!!
rsc1000 @ 1/15/2006 12:48:28 PM # Q
>>Knowing that, I can safely say that you are correct, PalmLinux is no more of a mess than that.

I would never ever argue otherwise. I am cynical, I run windows on my desktop - so i expect a mess from any major OS these days (I gave up on perfection when AMiga dies years ago i was forced to get over it and 'settle' for Windows). BUT it is relative.
My point is this: PLinux can only be better than the w-a-y overdue for replacement Garnet OS - a trully hacked beast at this point. My other point is - with it being 'no more of a mess' than Mac and others and with it being a big improvement over Garnet - then why do we need to hear reflexive b!tching from the annoying, flog-a-dead-horse-beyond-belief, usual suspects like TVOR - who hasn't looked 'under the hood'?

>>But don't look too closely under the hood of Mac OS X - you might just throw up if you saw what a nasty, skanky OS your precious, virginal Mac OS really is.

Check your 'precious, virginal' ego. I don't use Mac, don't own one, and don't like the OS one bit (though i have coded for it). Oh know! - spaghetti code in an OS?????? Are you going to defend your 'precious, virginal' Windows OS? Point: Mac is clearly 'good enough' and - relative to where Palm OS 5 is right now - represents a *huge* leap forward. PalmSource would be doing pretty well right now in the eyes of developers if they had already transitioned to such a 'mess' of an OS - seeing as it is much better to write code for (i.e. actually has an API to to write code against the new OS features vs Palm OS 68k API only + ARM hacking).

Anyways - thanks for yr reflexive non-insightful criticism, TVOR. As usual, NOTHING is added to the discussion. You are not educating me on anything - I live in the real world where i recognize that such a new OS replacing Garnet with pLinux cannot help but be a big improvement over what we have. Don't know what your expectations are - but it sounds pretty naive.

RE: Cobalt is D.O.A. Will PalmLinux show up dead as well?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/15/2006 2:51:52 PM # Q
My point is this: PLinux can only be better than the w-a-y overdue for replacement Garnet OS - a trully hacked beast at this point.

Again you show how naÔve you truly are, Bubba. PalmOS 5 is HERE, has been HERE for 4 years, has proven, widely available development tools, has known bugs + known workarounds, has a decent knowledge base, and ARM apps can be used if developers want to make the effort to do so.

PalmLinux, on the other hand is just VAPORWARE at this point. Whether or not it can function in the REAL WORLD (as PalmOS 5 has bravely been doing for the past 4 years) remains to be seen. In 2004, when PalmSource started to realize that there was a big possibility that Cobalt was not worth trying to save, they should have had the foresight to devote some resources to cleaning up the PalmOS 5 code as much as was realistically possible, since it would be their only shippig OS for 2 or 3 years if Cobalt was shelved. At this point, the smart money would take a known entity like PalmOS 5 over PalmLinux. If you don't believe me, just ask my old buddy, Martha... I mean Marty Fouts.

I don't use Mac, don't own one, and don't like the OS one bit (though i have coded for it). Oh know! - spaghetti code in an OS?????? Are you going to defend your 'precious, virginal' Windows OS?

I never said you used MacOS. And it was Marty - not me - who told you that MacOS is a "gordian knot of spaghetti code... today". And no, I have no need to defend Windows, since I made no claims regarding its elegance or lack thereof. Personally, I feel The Commodore Vic 20 and Coleco Adam are the only systems that matter. Windows XP and MacOS X bow before the might of the Vic 20 and the Adam...

You are not educating me on anything - I live in the real world where i recognize that such a new OS replacing Garnet with pLinux cannot help but be a big improvement over what we have. Don't know what your expectations are - but it sounds pretty naive.

Since I've already edumacated you, I'll leave you to try and figure out the extreme irony of your previous paragraph. Hint: a couple of years ago people were saying "replacing Garnet with Cobalt cannot help but be a big improvement over what we have".

I'll ignore your puerile insults, as I truly hope you'll finally LEARN something for a change.

TVoR [a.k.a. Gandhi]
(Taking the high road, as usual)

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

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Developer rants at PalmOS

Surur @ 1/11/2006 3:53:09 PM # Q
Shadowplan developer Jeff Mitchel rants at POS.

Palm: Things That Annoy the Developers (Like Me)

Sun, 11 Dec 2005


Well, its that time of year again where things must be purged, the soul laid bare in preparation for a new year of technology silliness. (Okay,I had pleasant time at a Christmas party last night and a nice little lunch out today but I'm still in a mood to let fly the flames of war ;) While I really enjoy developing for mobile devices (and development in general) and have very much enjoyed being on the front edge of mobile technology
the last half decade or so, I've become a little weary of dealing with PalmOne's (now Palm again) and PalmSource's sillyness to tell you the truth - one can only have so much time wasted through their sheer stupidity before you start to wonder - when will it end? When will they stop being idiots? Their "historical issues" (mistakes, guffaws, unfortunate changes in the timeline) are forever in the developers faces. After writing this huge rant, I realize - it is a wonder people develop for this platform at all. I've been assisting other developers in forums for years, and I know how tough it is for them to get past all this stuff. This is why after a major
Shadow release theres usually a few weeks of quiet .. time to decompress and come to terms with the sheer amount of crap that had to be shovelled. This is why theres so much time between releases sometimes -- its getting harder to get the nerve up to "dive into the mountain of crap" :P

A comprehensive list of things that annoy me would be enormous as I routinely work around dozens of different Palm OS system bugs every day. But off the top of my head right now, heres what comes to mind .. call it the abridged and shortened summary of the greater litany :)

Ben, and my many friends at Palm and PalmSource -
this isn't personal or directed, instead just the frustration as I work arond more and more bugs that make me pull my hair out. Gotta vent and get it off my chest :) I enjoy the
platform, and I admire the work and dedication you guys have put in, but we still suffer :)

Edit, Jan 2006: Remember, I love this platform and work on it every day. I wrote this after working around some really aggravating OS bugs and answering hundreds of support emails about it. Don't be going and thinking I'm anti-Palm OS or anything ;)

Note: I could equally flame Microsft Pocket PC, WinCE, etc. I will,
but after Christmas :)


Backwards and Forwards Compatibility


Microsoft has been doing operating systems for awhile now so I don't
give them much slack when they've blown the game of increasing device
resolution (requiring new developer APIs to support higher resolution
units, instead of one neatly designed API - we all knew that devices
would get better over time, right?) but at least they followed
Palm's example of making low res apps just work on higher res devices.
Well and good. Now, with all Microsoft OS PDAs working the same,
compatibility is pretty high - but not so with Palm OS.
It literally drives me and most other developers absolutely batty dealing
with the volume of OS bugs that infect every Palm OS device - and
do so differently with each device incarnation.


  • Bugs - the
    developer doing something that works for years and then suddenly on new
    devices it makes the unit crash or not work as expected, due to bad
    ("hurried"?) coding in Palm. Example: On most halfway recent OS 5
    devices where you can copy a file out to SD card, and not back into
    RAM afterwards. Thast not a feature, folks .. and its been around a year
    or two at least now.. unfixed. In some cases it can be worked around but
    it often involves risking making problems for syncing later, and such.
    Not good. Please.. fix it?
  • Bad decisions due to 'history' - Great, the T|T1 introduced the
    5-way d-pad like controller for better one handed control and an API
    to support it more or less, and it could even be used in games. Alas,
    the developer API for the 5-way was due to change itself several times
    as new devices came out and with the usual lack of PalmSource controlling
    licensees developing on its OS, it was only a matter of time when Handspring
    came out with its entirely different API for a 5-way controller. Of course,
    sure enough when Palm bought Handspring and returned them to the fold, they
    adopted the Handspring model so new Tungsten units have the Handspring
    control methods.. a little weird. Still, its so typical of Palm's bad
    management as to allow dozens of incompatible control types - the jog
    dials of Sony versus Handspring etc etc. We developers just love having
    spaghetti code - dozens of exceptions in every piece of the code to handle
    each device type, or requiring us to make massive compatibility layers
    for our applications to operate halfway right. Naturally, Palm encourages
    the users to blame the developers for problems or when an application doesn't
    feel native to their device... when its Palm OS being changed on every once :/
    This is getting better, due to the attrition among OS licensees, but I
    know most of us still dont' well support some of the new APIs as we're
    too mired down the the dozens of older APIs. ie: I need to better support
    the Handspring-style 5-way with its floating blue box, but I still need
    to support the 5-way on the older devices.
  • Lack of standards - Even when you do manage to fully support an API,
    that API will itself change from device to device in how it is implemented
    within the OS, and more often than not it was never designed in such a way
    as to be flexible this way; consider the virtual grafitti, where there is such
    a mess of changes that not even Palm can keep its own applications working
    correctly with it. (The prefs panel system is notorious for having the
    virtual grafitti come up and cover half its options as they forget to resize
    properly.) - a "DIA" compliant application will work fine on one device,
    and then flicker on another device with too many redraws, or fail to rotate
    properly or receive system events in different orders or .. or .. thankfully
    it "more or less" works, but it is in fact impossible at this time to make
    a bug free virtual grafitti application. So many developers are overjoyed
    that the Treo square-screens are taking over so they needn't worry about
    virtual graffitti anymore.
  • Lack of forsight - The PIMs, the lack of more than a few categories.
    The PIM (todo, datebook, etc) databases were never really designed to be
    extensible. Sure, back in the OS 1 days they had no idea if they would
    be successful at all, had limited time and budget and constrained devices
    but I would argue this is no reason for shoddy development. For all the
    years we've all be saddled with this lack of forsight, so Palm could not
    extend their applications to suit users needs (grumbling users the
    result, as they watched Pocket PC applications get more funky), and
    developers having no way to extend those applications (leading to annoyed
    developers making hacks.) Consider - Agendus and DateBk5 (and dozens of
    other applications) adding garbled text to the Notes of todo and datebook
    items so that icons can be assigned, or other special features added.
    It works, but its not really pretty with that garbled text visible in other
    applications and the desktop applications. Worse still was when PalmOne
    decided they'd had enough and actually upgraded the PIMs - great, the users
    will be happy .... - but they again forgot to supply a useful API and
    instead just extended with databases without actually making them
    extensible per se. So still the garbled text sits in the notes, and
    now developers have to support two formats of data instead of one.. more
    code duplication.


I always championed PalmSource by
suggesting this is due to the difference in mindset and perhaps a lack
of developers - that Palm pushed for
diversity of devices and would happily try and warp their OS to fit a
new device, while Microsoft clamped down specifications very rigidly. Hence
to this day there are quite a variety of Palm OS units from watches to
game machines to phones all on "one OS" (riddled with bugs), while in
the Microsoft PDA world you'll find a fair variety of devices all
working more or less alike (not as many bugs, but surely some duzzies!)
Good and bad - Pocket PC is fairly easy to develop for, since all devices
have pretty much the same feature set, but Palm OS is fragmented to all
heck. Still, I like the variety of devices.... well, I did, until I had
to support them.

In the end, to summarize - it is a chore to develop for Palm OS
these days; most disregard all the older devices, but I try to maintain
compatibility with and not forgot those trusty old friends... but the time
is coming when I just start ripping out all that code -- it is difficult
enough keeping up with all the new bugs in the OS, let alone old ones.
Developers wish to be productive as time is expensive and tight, yet 90%
of time I find is being consumed finding OS bugs and investigating work
arounds. How much more intuitive would an interface be if we could
focus on improving it, rather than dealing with bugs? How many more
features would there be? How much lower would prices be? We have no
time for 'business logic' when we're wasting it on fluff. This my friends
is one of the biggest challenged in Palm OS development.. they're taking
the fun out of it, and making it hell.

Palm Competing with Developers

So great, we were all happy PalmOne decided to start growing their PIMs.
Typically, they just altered the database format without actually
improving it, but worse still - they didn't document their changes for
years - I can only assume they resisted this because they feared
competition from the very developers they depended upon. What other
explanation is there? Certainly there is no patenting or licensing
issue at large.. though it could just have been lack of manpower to
make it happen. Regardless, it made our lives _miserable_ and to this
day we're all still dealing with the fallout.

Remember, when a tire won't fit on your car, you don't blame GM.. you
blame the maker of the tire. When users found crashes, slowdowns or weird
data loss, they blame the developers. Not PalmOne for breaking their own
specs and then not informing anyone how it worked..

What they did was introduce new databases, undocumented; when developers
applications opened the old databases, the OS would kick in and ferret data
between the new and old. Sounds good on paper, but evidently PalmOne didn't
debug or test this process much, since it was flawed in the design and
buggy in its implementation - frequent device crashes would occur due
to bugs in their 'PIM sync' (my name) code. Things would slow down
enormously (especially with the later NVRAM devices) as data was
forever being copied back and forth, something that never occurred
before. Worse yet is data loss as the PIM sync layer tried to guess
the intent of things going on and often got it wrong. So the developers got
flack again, for PalmOne's mistakes.

They finally did release some documentation, years late. I don't
get it. Months of suffering for no good reasons.

The real tragedy is the lack of learning - this wasn't the first nor
last time the documentation didn't come until devices were on the market
(sometimes for years) and our apps late to be stable. I'm not even going
to talk about the dozens of serious NVRAM flaws - NVRAM being a great
little system that users need, but when a large %age of apps become
unstable it makes you wonder how much testing went on..

Development Tools - or Lack There-Of


Microsoft, aside from its immoral behaviour, knows
how to make some decent tools for developers to work with; their OSes tend
to be backwards compatible and they do a pretty good (if pricey) job of
ensuring developers can get things done. Their Visual Studio suite is
quite popular and its available for C/C++ and Visual Basic development for
Pocket PC - a big comfort to many. With their new .net platform you also
get C# tossed in, and halfway useful drag and drop GUI building tools.

With Palm OS 5 and earlier, the official development suite was always
Metrowerks Codewarrior - a pretty good product. For OS5 "ARM" code
development it was useless for awhile (seriously buggy), but they worked
hard to move CW 9.0 to become CW 9.3 - flaky, but overall pretty darned
decent for doing OS 5 68k+ARM development. A lot of us have been using
CW for years, since it was the best overall system - and it was
discontinued a year or so back or more. New developers have a hard
time locating a copy of the package to use, so they resort to the PRC-Tools
(freeware gcc, a thing close to my heart) which is much harder to get
into.. discouraging away new developers. CW went away likely because it
is hard to make money with development tools, but also because PalmSource
was building their own development environment - PODS - for their OS 6
product. So PODS is out and about, but as you all know OS 6 is not.
So PalmSource spent enormous resources and time working on OS 6 upgrades
and development tools for us, that we couldnt' really use.. as PODS isn't
so good for OS 5 and earlier. Great - Palm depending on out of print
tools, and PalmSource working away for years on things no one is using.
(gcc is great stuff that I use every day, but due to the 68k+ARM
system in OS 5 devices its never been all that convenient.)

So in the Palm OS world, developers have been cobbling things together ..
a sorry state of affairs .. something Palm should be ashamed of.

OKay, theres some other tools so lets flame them too - Java is a popular
thing these days, correct? Well, a shame that Palm only licensed Websphere
Micro for a few of their devices, and isn't really committed to it. Certainly
it is unusable since how can you afford to base an application (months or
years of work) on something which is only for a subset of devices and may
be dropped at any time? Certainly, Java isn't available on Pocket PC at
all since Microsoft isn't all that nice...

The reverse is also true; MS wants everyone to move to C#, but of course
they will never provide a C# environment for Palm OS, and Palm just can't
afford to kick off yet another development tool project.

If you want some cross platform code to work, your best bet is C/C++,
or maybe somethign like NSBasic or SuperWaba. Still, a painful situation.

One other sub-annoyance; people all want java and C# and python these days
as they're sick of building from the metal; sure, productivity is up with
these languages as they've all borrowed some of the best inventions of the
past and mixed in recent patterns and experience; further, they've got
enormous manpower poured ito making new libraries to save time. (C++ and
such never quite got so organized as to have these giant libraries bult
for them in standard ways.) Anyway, people are forever asking why all our
Palm OS apps aren't in java -- they seem to forget the fact that java
isn't really available or fast for mobiles (hell, most phones don't
even do JITting or garbage collecting these days) - that C and C++ are
the really truly only portable codebases out there, to this day. But
try explaining this to the newbies fresh from school, without sounding
like an old codger. They do likes their java ;) Sadly, me too -- but its
not an option so stop bugging me :)

The OS 6 Fiasco

This is much publicized so I needn't go into it much, but in summary -
PalmSource (the OS developer) spent years building and pushing Palm OS 6
as the follow-up to Palm OS 5. Numerous developers (including myself)
started working on OS 6 versions of our applications - either changes to
remain compatibile or re-developed to actually use some of OS 6 features.
Alas, OS 6 was not to come .. despite PalmSource pushing it and announcing
devices and partners, we all quickly realized it was doomed from the
get go, so all that time was pretty much shot. To this day, PalmOne
has been knocking out OS 5 devices with their modified (read, buggy) version
of OS 5 .. a great overall product, but with so many extensions and PalmOne
seemingly out of control with regards to quality and standards, its started
to be referred to as "Frankengarnet" by the developers and users.

Mac OS

Mobile developers aren't big companies with enormous budgets to burn, so
we like to be cross platform (using one codebase for multiple operating
systems) but its nutty over in OSX-land. We have a stable and dependable
conduit for Windows, so that Shadow Plan can sync with Shadow Desktop and
work very well. It would be nice if that same codebase could work under
OSX, but we quickly found out that not only would that not happen, but
that Hotsync Manager for Mac OS X is basicly a butchered up version of the
Mac OS 9 system - that modern OS X style code cannot work with it.
Wonderful how our Mac OS X application is OS X based and due to various
dependancies can't tie into this OS 9 Hotsync Manager system. What silliness!
Its possible to rebuild the needed dependancies, but I am rather sick of
returning to the dark ages, of building up from scratch for every
application somewhere along the line. At least Mark/Space is on top of
the ball and has built their own Hotsync Manager replacement that offers
modern OS X facilities.. but I do not feel it right to saddle our
customers with an extra product (and none to cheap!) just to cover up for
Palm's mistakes. So we .. as usual, work around the system limits and
bugs. Another shameful situation.

Globals, 68k/ARM, and Other 1970s Problems

Again, being spoiled by the wonderful development environments of the
1980s, am sick of painful development situations requiring great devious
minds to actually produce great things. Moving from 68k to ARM was a
difficult yet amazing thing for Palm - its incredible they pulled it off
as smoothly as they have; almost all Palm OS applications to this day are
68k processor applications, running inside of PACE - Palm OS 5's compatibility
system for its ARM processors. Amazing stuff, so that our old apps can run
on the new architecture without changes. Great!

The problem is when you wish to actually write ARM code, to get some
speed. PACE exacts a large performance hit - something you wouldn't notice
for GUI applications but when putting together a high performance
multimedia application such as a game or video player or the like, you need
the real hardware - the ARM system. Ben and the boys worked hard to make
Codewarrior 9.3 stable and its a great product overall.. but due to the
nastyness of the OS and interfaces, we're all forced to jump through hoops.
You see, the 68k suport is quite good of course, but for ARM code you have
almost no access to the rest of the application APIs unless you 'stub them'
over. So to begin with, we all have to make stubs like mad, so we can
make ARM code halfway as easily as 68k code. Ben really helped out here
and the community worked together to produce a lot of useful code, but
a shame PalmSource didn't provide it - they assumed we'd all be on
OS 6 by now, and it just didn't pan out. The whole ARM-68k division is
really quite painful - a lot of us have it pretty well mastered, but we're
sick of the pain; newbies - forget it. Theres just such a learning curve
and hump to get over that few ARM-based applications have come out.
Certainly, to this day its still difficult to port applications from
standard operating systems that use certain features, and you'd better
have CW 9.3 (costware and discontinued) if you want your life to be sane..
using the freeware tools should be enjoyable and powerful, but its taken
years for that community to get to this point. Terrible.

At least I did my part.. I got XCade out pretty fast (one of the first
all ARM applications).. but its not pretty :)

Another thing that annoys me is the whole launch code and globals
situation - its bizarre to be in the year 2005 here and have to deal with
things like an app being launched without globals being available, due
to how Palm OS works. It was innovative and a must-do-to-survive situation
back in OS 1 and 2 and whatnot, but for OS 5 .. we're just sick of having to
warp our code in these terrible fashions to make things run. Lets not even
talk about 64k segmenting and whatnot .. I hate nothing more than copying
functions around, into small little files, so I can re-order them so that
functions can reach each other. Good god, that was the 286 days :)

OS Behind the Times


We all like compatibility (see all that ranting above?), but we're also
cool with well controlled changes. If your OS is broken - fix it. We'll be there
if you manage that process, publishing specs and documentation so that we
can be ready when the newer versions roll out. Bring it on.

It seems alien again to be in 2005 with simple bleep-bleep alarms in
Palm OS; the user can't easily assign mp3s or wav files to alarms or
ringtones, without third party hacks. I've even written and given away
a simple hack for years, to let small wav files be used as alarm tones.
We need an OS change here, so that all applications can have a modern
alarm managing system. Theres some cool stuff in the OS now, so that
alarms can be made to vibrate or be silent from a user configuruation
level withotu changin the apps.. but wheres the modern stuff?

Missing APIs


This ties back to the question of whethor Palm treats developers as
competitors. Where are the APIs that the built in applications can use?
How can we, on a Treo, control the radio to the degree the built in
applications can? Perhaps its documented in some buried Handspring
reference, but when I take a quick look through the usual places (dozens
of out dated documents :) I find it hard to find some of these things.. if
they're to be found at all. Lets cut to the chase - we want a good solid
knowledge base and search, like Microsoft provides. (Well, better than
they provide would be nice ;)

Licensee Madness

This is mostly old news, but it drove us all mental over the years.
I still support many of these older devices so its still relevent to me
but not for much longer I tell you. Especially, Sony as they were King
of Bastards.

Sony pioneered high-resolution because PalmSource couldn't get something
together fast enough I suppose, but they failed to think ahead and made
a pretty dimwitted API. At least it worked more or less... but it was
prone to crash. If the user or developer did certain unknown things,
the device would just hang up - again, the developers took flack and
it took ages to work out the myriad causes. To this day I keep an old
device around for testing, since the problem randomly manifests. Sony
never fixed this bug.. years would pass and the issue only went away
when OS 5 came along and Sony pseudo-adopted the OS 5 high res
system.

Course, Sony was evil for refusing to document how their joystick
add-on operated. Their documentation to the developer consisted of saying
"it just works", but alas it did not - it depended on some undocumented
series of events occuring in order to work, so for all my gaming applications
it worked ramdomly. (That was fascinating.. it should work, or not work.
But working sometimes and not others.. bizarre.) It'd have been nice of
they'd taken 20 mins to document the requirements.

They also refused to document the sound system; as usual, developers
took flack for not supporting special audio on Sony devices, but such
is life. Years passed before Cliepet, a whiz in the community, reverse
engineered it all. Bastards.

I'll try not to go on, but the problem was PalmSource's lack in taking
control of the reigns - why did Sony and Palm and Dana Alphasmart and
Handera all work out different ways of doing things? Shadow Plan
supports some 4 or 5 different incompatible techniques for managing high
resolution. Again, think how much higher application quality, and how much
lower costs would be, if we didn't have to both develop dozens of duplicate
ways of doing things, and then support them over years!

Really, its amazing anyone developed for the platform at all when
you look at this mess :)

At least Tapwave got most of it right.. a shame they tanked :/

Installations

A standard installer process would have been nice; heck, thinking ahead
would've been nice, too, so that Sony and Palm installs could sit nicely
side by side without blowing each other up. We rely on Beik's Pilot
Catapult installer builder, since its always been simple and inexpensive
and fairly stable, but even they can't quite keep it solid due to all
the varieties of weird in the registry that the various licensees put
in. (Microsoft doesn't help with their eternal OS monkeying on the desktop,
making Hotsync Manager sometimes run in Administratior mode while other
apps do not, etc.) A shame when PalmSource laid off the fine fellow working
on a promising new standardized installer.

Quality Assurance

Last but not least is just the lack of QA here; how does it slip through
the testing cracks that sometimes a file can be copied out to SD from RAM
and then not back into RAM? Or that devices crash/reset more frequently
now than ever? Since the new PIM databases weren't documented we
were required ("supposed to") use the old PIM database interface (thus
being denied the new features, plus gaining all the slowdowns and bugs)
and yet the magic PIM sync would frequently crash. Crazy stuff, and
all the blame comes back to developers.. with nothing we can do.

Whew!

When I began this opus I had not intended to write all this out .. I
merely wanted to rant a bit, to get it off my chest how miserable the situation
has been for years.. but out it poured.

Now that I'm all healed, you're suffering. Merry Christmas! :)



They said I only argued for the sake of arguing, but after an hour I convinced them they were wrong...
Developer rants at PalmOS - where to go next?
Surur @ 1/11/2006 4:00:31 PM # Q
URL for the above. http://www.livejournal.com/users/skeezixcodejedi/

Also

Full article is here:
http://www.codejedi.com/cgi-bin/blog.cgi/technology/mobile/20060110directions.blog

A number of developers I know have been asking the same questions that weigh heavily on my mind - we all watch the tides a' turning and in our markets and domains we have to keep at the front or get left behind, flotsam of the mobile digital age. Of course, being in the front - cresting the wave as it were - is a great risk yet also provides many advantages. When it comes right down to it, being in front is where the fun is, is where the adventure of it all is.. until the dragon catches up.

This has been written up on my smartphone (Treo 650) while sitting over a warm drink. Amazing how long you can write on a thumbpad with enough caffeine!

The questions folks ask all boil down to - Where are things going? Alas, if only we knew we could all sit around in hot-tubs after beating the racetrack, right? PalmOne (er, Palm, again. They renamed their software store's internal name my error logs tell me. Amazing the variety of things we deal with every day, no? *g*) is selling a Pocket PC Treo now (the Treo 700w), which looks like a winner of a device (ignoring some first-device woes) especially in the corporate environment. (Remote Desktop from your phone - way cool.) PalmSource is going to be renamed, and developers can't find the official dev-kit for their preferred Palm OS platform. People are buying into the online web-applications craze (Google Maps blazing the way, but is the public ready for trusting a remote online organization with their private or corporate data in Online Office?) The Oqo and other tiny-notebooks are making inroads.. will dedicated handheld OSes still be around in a few years? With handheld sales shrinking (being replaced by smartphone sales, where smartphone customers are less aware they can purchase third party applications) sales for most developers tend to be down a bit. The US Dollar has tanked, meaning those of us outside the mainland US are losing on The Money Multiplier. The online EST stores (the guys selling our apps) are gouging more and more of the profits leaving smaller crumbs for us. Tough times ahead!

The Treo 700w being Pocket PC, all by its lonesome, scares the bejeezus out of a lot of people -- can cats and dogs co-exist under one roof? Certainly, I'm already getting support questions about Shadow Plan running on the new device as people assume they can upgrade from one Treo to another. (StyleTap to the rescue for now, though I really think they should extend Palm OS -- why not offer 240x240 native mode to the Palm OS application, so that we can better support Pocket PC from a Palm OS application in StyleTap? How about different icon-sets for Pocket PC? Supporting Pocket PC virtual grafitti more directly?)

Questions are many; I've long been looking into the Pocket PC and Windows Mobile markets, as they're making up more and more of the whole pie; the VGA devices such as the gorgeous Axim X50v are carving away with wonderful new hardware and solid development platforms (albeit a clunky OS at times.) There are some simple outliners, and some stronger list applications, but nothing like Shadow (and to possible competition.. don't take this as a hint. Let me have my pie, okay? ;) exists per se.

Make an online application, on the assumption more and more devices will have Wireless Everywhere from bluetooth to 802.11 to GPRS and EV-DO? I know here in Canada we pay big for data services, but unlimited plans at $25/mo abound in the US last I checked. Will people trust storing their data on my server and editting via a fancy web application (the so-called Web 2.0 or AJAX movement, which is just a fancy way of saying javascript), or even via a handheld PDA or phone or RIM client? Will they ?

Do we put forth the enormous cost of developing and support for Pocket PC, or go for better RIM and Nokia support as those platforms finally and ever so slowly realize they're actually useful for supporting applications beyond email? (Note that I do have some Pocket PC code out there, but so far I have not moved my primary application over to that platform. Its been tough enough keeping up with PalmOne.) Remember, for a lot of us we began in the dark ages of Palm OS and so our code had to run in very low spec environments, and so the 'cohesion' is high -- our code is tied closely to the platform, making porting difficult. Porting to a new platform more often than not (for older applications) means rewriting all or most of a system - very costly. Further, when building new apps for the Windows platforms, do you target portable C/C and the ancient win32 API, or go to C# and .NET - an all new API that essentially locks you into Microsoft platforms, or SuperWaba (a variant of Java, since MS won't support java on their platform) - again locking you into a specific API, that is at least cross platform itself. Tough questions indeed.

As always, I think 2006 will be an interesting year for sure -- things are a' changing, and the technology is getting better and better though surely not fast enough. A lot of developers will be making the hard decisions very soon - adopt a new platform - and which one.. or not. Move forward, take on large challenges and risks.. or be left behind. Swim, or see you later.

This will lead to some attrition; for the heartier folks who always move forward there are risks.. but being first mover, and early mover, there are great rewards. Your beloved Palm OS users who follow their favourite apps to Treo 700w's will loyally adopt your software. Moving to RIMs and Nokia's could well open up whole markets for you.. or bankrupt you.

Now we'll see who the men are ;)


They said I only argued for the sake of arguing, but after an hour I convinced them they were wrong...

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
Foo Fighter @ 1/11/2006 4:01:27 PM # Q
What makes this story even more interesting is that PalmSource features this guy in one of their "Developer Success Story" articles. Apparently this success story isn't having a happy ending.

-------------------------------
Editor, http://Pocketfactory.com
Contributing Editor, http://digitalmediathoughts.com
RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
hkklife @ 1/11/2006 4:16:12 PM # Q
Superb piece. Nice find, Surur!

As a mere user with NO aspirations or skillz to be a developer/coder, I can still sympathize with the guy as a LOT of the headaches he alludes to (the miserable transition from T|T style 1-handed navigation to Treo/Handspring style) are felt/burdeoned mere users such as myself.

It just sickens me to see the sorry state of the POS software market. You have a handful of legacy apps not updated since '02 or '03 (ie for the T|T) then others that run acceptably well on T5/TX but poorly on all older models. Right now the handheld industry suffers from the worst backwards compatability of any major platform that claims compatability. Ie: You can, with enough effort, get most older DOS or Win 3.1 titles to run reasonably well under XP if you REALLY need it. A GameBoy Advance can still run classic GameBoy titles from 1989. A new PS2 slimline can run PS1 titles from 1995. Only the Palm & Mac platforms seem so impossibly broken--and at least Apple had the good sense to throw out legacy compatability in the name of the future/speed/stability under OS X. Palm's just drifting in circles and losing pieces of the ship everytime a wave hits it.

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
budrowilson @ 1/11/2006 4:38:24 PM # Q
Amen, Surur.

I'm not a developer. I've been using one Palm or another ever since the Palm IIIxe. I've done my best to keep up with the advancements in the Palm community while squeezing out every ounce of functionality I could get out of the devices.

It was not until I read your post in its entirety that I realized how difficult it was to develop and support applications for the OS. With all the pompous and bone-headed things Palm has done in recent years, it's no wonder they've been losing so much ground to PocketPC devices.

I, for one, appreciate your input and reflection on the monumental obstacles that developers face. Speaking from a consumer's standpoint, we really appreciate the hard work you guys put into doing what you do. I now know it's no easy task.

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
Foo Fighter @ 1/11/2006 4:51:05 PM # Q
> "I, for one, appreciate your input and reflection on the monumental obstacles that developers face. Speaking from a consumer's standpoint, we really appreciate the hard work you guys put into doing what you do. I now know it's no easy task."

Surur didn't write the article...he simply posted it here. The article was written by Jeff Mitchel, developer of ShadowPlans.

-------------------------------
Editor, http://Pocketfactory.com
Contributing Editor, http://digitalmediathoughts.com

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
budrowilson @ 1/11/2006 5:38:10 PM # Q
Fine, then I appreciate *his* reflection. :-)

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
Surur @ 1/11/2006 6:11:29 PM # Q

Its an interesting article, and really should make one appreciate the quality of software available on the POS platform, many which (such as chatter) which are completely unavailable anywhere else. As he however mentions in the next article, developers are at a cross road, and have to decide whether to extend their reach or not. People like the chattermail developer Marc Blank has decided not to (http://www.chatteremail.com/index.php?option=com_forum&Itemid=71&page=viewtopic&t=2169&highlight=windows+mobile ), whereas Jeff Mitchel definitely appears to be wavering. The danger is that these developers may move, take their loyal users with them and reduce the barrier to moving to another platform. They may also find the environment easier and become more productive, and produce better products on WM than on POS. As Jeff says, he finds it a chore to develop on POS. He may be a lot happier on WM.

Surur

They said I only argued for the sake of arguing, but after an hour I convinced them they were wrong...

I told you so...
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/11/2006 10:12:05 PM # Q
Nice to see Jeff has the cojones (or was he drunk when he posted this? ;-O) to put in print some of the major PalmOS platform problems I've been talking about over the years. He actually left out a LOT of other details - probably in the interest of avoiding burning too many bridges and also more severely undermining the platform.

A few points:

The "DataMangler" bugs he mentioned are overwhelming evidence of Palm's arrogance and COMPLETE disregard for developers. To produce a near-useless extension of the PIM, offer an INCREDIBLY buggy patch (probably coded by a couple of summer interns!) to maintain compatibility with the third party apps that are essential to millions of users and not even document what is being done is astounding. As I've said before, I'm surprised that people like DateBk5's brilliant developer, CES Dewar didn't end up saying "FCUK THIS!" and defect to coding for Windows Mobile. Dewar codes what - in my opinion - is the single most useful, complex and thoughtfully-designed app there is for the PalmOS platform. Palm's incompetence broke his app, wasted hundreds of hours of Dewar's time (to deal with support issues, REVERSE ENGINEERING the DataMangler offal, and then trying to come up with workarounds), and Palm won't even accept responsibility for their mistakes. Of course, PalmSource is too feeble to enforce code compatibility/stability, so the platform lacks a standards-bearer.

Despite Beersy's lies to the contrary, PODS (Palm OS Developer Suite) is crap compared to CodeWarrior. How can a legitimate platform allow its primary development environment to be DISCONTINUED??? Here's a little twist that many here might not know: MetroWerks (the company producing CodeWarrior) was bought by Nokia in 2004! Yes, the same Nokia that is one of Palm's major competitors. HELLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO????????? W T F is going on? No conflict of interest there, right? Someone should get Ben Combee drunk and record what he has to say about how the whole MetroWerks deal went down... [By the way, anyone know what ever happened with MobileWizardry's SHARK? Did the Liberty virus destroy all the base code? ;-O]

I still don't understand the lack of Java support - new devices have the horsepower to make it work reasonably well. And I doubt SuperWaba will ever take off. Bottom line: if you want a slick, multifaceted PalmOS app, you're pretty much gonna have to code it from the ground up (unless you're a PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPER like me and know your way around PDAToolbox ;-O). Look at all the hacking and workarounds people like CES Dewar, David Kendall, Marc Blank, Jeff Mitchell, the late Bozidar Benc etc have been forced to perform over the years. Ridiculous.

Nice to see Jeff back me up on the Cobalt Catastrophe. I was the only one here that kept saying what a load of crap PalmSource was feeding the community about Cobalt, but instead of honesty, we got more lies, SPIN and B.S. from people like Michael Mace and Dianne Hackborn.

"In the core technology, there are many things in 6.1 that are on par with XP or Mac OS X or even what Microsoft plans for Avalon."

"While it is certainly true that what we could get in to 6.0 was greatly limited by the schedule, that in no way means that 6.0 (or really 6.0.1) was not a "usable" a release."

"I'm sorry for the confusion. I don't know how you got the message that Palm OS Garnet was for smartphones and Palm OS Cobalt was for other types of devices, but it means we did something wrong in our communication."

>>>"Mace added that if cellular carriers and manufacturers test
>>>the operating system and it proves to be compatible with
>>>their plans, phones using Cobalt will come out in the first
>>>half of next year [2005]. There are about 10 different phones
>>>in development using the new software."

PalmSource to unveil smart-phone software
Richard Shim, Staff Writer, CNET News.com
Published: September 27, 2004

"Michael Mace @ 9/28/2004 3:35:21 AM #

Actually, those Palm Powered phones in development use a mix of Palm OS Garnet and Palm OS Cobalt.

Mike
CCO, PalmSource Inc.
At the developer conference in Munich"


"I triple guarantee you, there are no American soldiers in Baghdad."

"There are no American infidels in Baghdad. Never!"

"My feelings - as usual - we will slaughter them all"

"God will roast their stomachs in hell at the hands of Iraqis."


Jeff asks "why did Sony and Palm and Dana Alphasmart and
Handera all work out different ways of doing things?" I think he knows the answer: Simple - because Palm/PalmSource have always been too lazy/incompetent to do the heavy work themselves. Name a single "innovation" in PalmOS originated by Palm/PalmSource while they were the company responsible for OS development. Easier task: name a PalmOS innovation first introduced by a PalmOS licensee...


Jeff: To answer your question, Palm treats developers both as competitors AND as scum. Haven't you figured that out yet? Wake up, Bubba!

TVoR


------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Death by 1000 papercuts. Cobalt Fung-Fu is WEAK.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 12:05:03 AM # Q
Its an interesting article, and really should make one appreciate the quality of software available on the POS platform, many which (such as chatter) which are completely unavailable anywhere else. As he however mentions in the next article, developers are at a cross road, and have to decide whether to extend their reach or not.

Were it not for the fact that I'm very satisfied with my CLIEs, the only thing preventing me from switching to the superior hardware of Windows Mobile would have been waiting for DateBk5 to be ported to Windows Mobile. At this stage, almost EVERY app category has Windows Mobile apps that are as good as - if not better than - the PalmOS equivalents. Even the "issues" I have with the Windows Mobile UI can be lessened with utilities like Wisbar. Opera or NetFront, Pocket Informant, Wisbar, TextMaker, The Core Pocket Media Player, ListPro, Pocket Artist, Skype, CalliGrapher or PenReader, CoPilot Live, Pocket Quicken, RepliGo, Resco Explorer 2003, Nyditot Virtual Display... the list of high quality Windows Mobile software grows longer every day. http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7990#110066 In the past two years the number of former PalmOS only developers now offering PPC/Windows Mobile versions of their software has skyrocketed. As development for PalmOS becomes more difficult and the numbers of PalmOS users declines, I expect to see many developers actually either scale back (less updates) or DUMP their PalmOS versions. Welcome to the real world, Neo.

Now that StyleTap Platform is out, I really wonder why people are still buying PalmOS devices (besides the Treo)...

TVoR



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
cervezas @ 1/12/2006 12:01:30 PM # Q
TVoR wrote:
Despite Beersy's lies to the contrary, PODS (Palm OS Developer Suite) is crap compared to CodeWarrior.

Not sure where you're getting that. I've always been pretty much onboard with the consensus among Palm developers that PODS, while greatly improved and fairly serviceable, still can't hold a candle to CodeWarrior. It's really more a weakness of the Eclipse C Development Toolkit than of any work or lack of work on the part of PalmSource, but the fact remains that Eclipse is a fabulous Java development environment and fair to poor as a C environment.

How can a legitimate platform allow its primary development environment to be DISCONTINUED???

Also wrong. You can still buy it from Metrowerks: http://tinyurl.com/e25cz

Here's a little twist that many here might not know: MetroWerks (the company producing CodeWarrior) was bought by Nokia in 2004!

Wrong yet again! (http://press.nokia.com/PR/200409/960082_5.html) Nokia bought some Symbian OS development tools from Metrowerks, but Metrowerks is owned by Freescale Semiconductor, as you can readily see when you buy a copy of CodeWarrior for Palm OS from the link above.

[By the way, anyone know what ever happened with MobileWizardry's SHARK? Did the Liberty virus destroy all the base code? ;-O]

Still available to those who want to license it. Last I checked it was mostly good for developing cross-platform games, but IIRC Aaron Ardiri told me his company uses it internally for some medical applications they've been developing.

I still don't understand the lack of Java support - new devices have the horsepower to make it work reasonably well. And I doubt SuperWaba will ever take off.

I understand it: PalmSource didn't have the resources to focus on Java when they were hurrying to get first Cobalt, then Palm OS for Linux out the door. But I agree that it's a terrible shame. Eclipse Foundation is doing some very interesting stuff with Java for mobile devices these days but because PalmSource has substantially backed away from their previous collaborations on Java with IBM Palm OS will not be supported: mainly Windows Mobile, Symbian, and (I think) Motorola's Linux phone platform.

As for SuperWaba, it's pretty darned good these days what with an ARM native VM for Palm OS. We use it for most of our clients now. I see some pretty big things for SuperWaba within the next year.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

Beersy: Do you ever get tired of spewing so much B.S.?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 9:20:54 PM # Q
TVoR wrote:
"Despite Beersy's lies to the contrary, PODS (Palm OS Developer Suite) is crap compared to CodeWarrior."

Beersy replied:
Not sure where you're getting that. I've always been pretty much onboard with the consensus among Palm developers that PODS, while greatly improved and fairly serviceable, still can't hold a candle to CodeWarrior. It's really more a weakness of the Eclipse C Development Toolkit than of any work or lack of work on the part of PalmSource, but the fact remains that Eclipse is a fabulous Java development environment and fair to poor as a C environment.

But Beersy seems to have amnesia regarding this thread from June, 2005:


Quote:
Originally Posted by Voice_of_Reason
What is going on with CodeWarrior? Did Nokia buy CodeWarrior and then immediately withdraw it from sale because it knew CodeWarrior is the major development platform for commercial Palm apps? Are Eclipse/ PODS really an adequate response?


Beersy's reply:
Ok, ok, maybe this was really the only one that I know more about than Mike probably does. (Sue me.) In my opinion, Eclipse is superior to CodeWarrior--and not just because you can develop Protein apps with it. It's a nicer, more modern environment, with a lot of great convenience features, and since it's open source it's easy for developers to make contributions that improve it. A lot of advances in PODS have come from the developer community itself, which is great. We love having control over our tools and I expect continued improvements in PODs since it's on such a solid and open framework.

Just one developer's opinion. Probably not one you were interested in hearing, either, alas!

http://www.allaboutpalm.com/forum/showpost.php?p=127&postcount=35

http://www.allaboutpalm.com/forum/showthread.php?t=44&page=4&pp=10

NICE TRY, Beersy!

>>>How can a legitimate platform allow its primary development environment to be DISCONTINUED???

Also wrong. You can still buy it from Metrowerks: http://tinyurl.com/e25cz

Interesting. When I looked into buying CodeWarrior last year it was unavailable and listed as discontinued by MetroWerks.

http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7875#108499

The new website list of "discontinued" products is quite a bit different:

http://www.metrowerks.com/Discontinued/default.htm

W T F???


>>>Here's a little twist that many here might not know: MetroWerks (the company producing CodeWarrior) was bought by Nokia in 2004!

Wrong yet again! (http://press.nokia.com/PR/200409/960082_5.html) Nokia bought some Symbian OS development tools from Metrowerks, but Metrowerks is owned by Freescale Semiconductor, as you can readily see when you buy a copy of CodeWarrior for Palm OS from the link above.

Looks like you might be right in this case, Beersy. (Of course, even a stopped clock tells the right time at least once a day...) According to the press release you liked to, "Metrowerks is an independent subsidiary of Freescale Semiconductor" and "Under the terms of the agreement, Metrowerks plans, upon closing of the agreement, to license its core technologies, including its debugger, compiler and award winning CodeWarrior(TM) Integrated Development Environment to Nokia, and certain extensions to that core technology related to the Symbian OS will be transferred to Nokia."

After hearing about the deal and seeing MetroWerks then quickly discontinue most of their CodeWarrior software, it seemed likely that Nokia had obtained the full rights to CodeWarrior - not just the Symbian environment. MetroWerks was less than clear about what was happening and most people I spoke to about this also felt CodeWarrior was going completely to Nokia. Very strange...

http://www.idevgames.com/forum/archive/index.php/t-9853.html

>>>I still don't understand the lack of Java support - new
>>>devices have the horsepower to make it work reasonably well.
>>> And I doubt SuperWaba will ever take off.

I understand it: PalmSource didn't have the resources to focus on Java when they were hurrying to get first Cobalt, then Palm OS for Linux out the door. But I agree that it's a terrible shame. Eclipse Foundation is doing some very interesting stuff with Java for mobile devices these days but because PalmSource has substantially backed away from their previous collaborations on Java with IBM Palm OS will not be supported: mainly Windows Mobile, Symbian, and (I think) Motorola's Linux phone platform.

As for SuperWaba, it's pretty darned good these days what with an ARM native VM for Palm OS. We use it for most of our clients now. I see some pretty big things for SuperWaba within the next year.

"didn't have the resources to focus on Java"??? Please. How much effort would it take to properly support Java in PalmOS? Most of the work has been/would have been done for PalmSource. PalmOS with a robust Java environment would be a he11 of a lot more appealing. Let's cut the B.S. and say it like it is, Beersy: PALM/PALMSOURCE NEVER HAD A COHERENT STRATEGY FOR PALMOS. PERIOD.



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Edit:
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/12/2006 11:33:04 PM # Q
PalmOS with a robust Java environment would be a he11 of a lot more appealing to business customers.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/13/2006 2:57:58 AM # Q
Java is, relative to the amount of storage on a typical PalmOS device, huge. Especially if you take one of the pc/workstation implementations and do a straightforward port of it.

Java is, relative to the amount of processing power on a typical PalmOS device, slow. Especially if you take one of the pc/workstation implemenations and do a straightfoward port of it.

ARM has more or less conceded that the existing ARM platforms suck for Java, with their introduction of Jazelle. Jazelle will, eventually, be great for embedded Java, but it is not in the processors currently being used by Access' customers.

Not having Jazelle on ARM means having to spend huge amounts of resources on optimizing technology for Java, and still getting slow performance.

Other companies have made Java work on ARM, in some cases very well. PalmSource opted to concentrate on other areas.

By the way, when I want to be reminded of the bad old days when computers weren't fast enough to run the software, i just fire up Eclipse on a 4 processor 3ghz pentium system with a couple of GB of memory and watch the system slam to its knees.


May You Live in Interesting Times

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
Scott R @ 1/13/2006 11:50:13 PM # Q
Coding for the Palm OS is a mess. And I'm not a low-level developer. I speak as a proponent of RAD tools. VS.NET 2005 is a very robust RAD tool. Handheld Basic ++ is the best RAD tool for the Palm OS that I've seen. But doing anything advanced requires delving into the APIs, and that's when you run into the various device incompatibilities. This is where the attrition of the Palm OS licensees could become a good thing, but only if Palm (previously palmOne) is interested in capitalizing on it. While the Treo 700w is selling for $400 right now, you can get a Treo 650 for as low as $100. Palm has the opportunity to make the Palm OS Treo a mass market item and own that market. They have the originators of the Palm OS on hand (Hawkins, et al), so they can re-create the Palm Economy back into its glory days. If they consolidate/standardize and add to the APIs, they could once again have a platform that would be extremely attractive to developers, both old and new.

http://Tapland.com
- Tapwave Zodiac News, Reviews, & Discussion -
RE: TVoR rants at PalmOS
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 8:07:17 AM # Q
Java is, relative to the amount of storage on a typical PalmOS device, huge. Especially if you take one of the pc/workstation implementations and do a straightforward port of it.

Java is, relative to the amount of processing power on a typical PalmOS device, slow. Especially if you take one of the pc/workstation implemenations and do a straightfoward port of it.

Weak excuses, Marty - even for you. Businesses typically need/want Java for using/recycling simple (often custom, in-house) applications. It's not like anyone's expecting to run Java versions of AutoCAD or Photoshop on a PalmOS PDA. A well-implemented Java framework in PalmOS could have been used as a selling point to businesses. But PalmSource blew this opportunity to make inroads with enterprise customers just like they blew the advantage they had as a wireless email solution 3 years ago. I wouldn't be surprised to find out that Palm/PalmSource has been infiltrated by Microsoft saboteurs all along... ;-O

Other companies have made Java work on ARM, in some cases very well. PalmSource opted to concentrate on other areas.

Looks like PalmSource made (yet another) massive miscalculation.

TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Palm is not PalmSource. At least not NOW
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 8:29:02 AM # Q
If they consolidate/standardize and add to the APIs, they could once again have a platform that would be extremely attractive to developers, both old and new.

Ummmmmm... how do you propose Palm (the HARDWARE company, a PalmSource licensee) consolidate/standardize and add to the APIs?

Things will be simplified soon enough as developers cut support for HandEra and TapWave. The large number of CLIEs still in use probably dictates that developers will still have to support CLIE features. But now that the numbers of older PalmOS devices in service is declining, developers will be increasingly able to "require" PalmOS 5 for their apps.

Of course you're ignoring the fact that PalmOS 5 is a DEAD END OS. It was a transitional OS supposed to have been EOL in 2003. Developers are supposed to soon have to be moving on to PalmLinux and a whole new set of headaches...

TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Beersy: Can't hear you, Bubba
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 11:15:09 AM # Q
You should at least have the decency to apologize publicly for trying to spread all your B.S.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Hah!
cervezas @ 1/14/2006 12:06:18 PM # Q
So you make up crap about how CodeWarrior is discontinued and that Nokia has bought out Metrowerks and I'm supposed to apologize? Do you really have no idea how stupid posts like this make you look? It's time to go crawl back in your hole with your pile of discontinued Clies since you seem unable to get anything right these days.

As for the development environment discussion, I do most of my Palm OS development with Eclipse these days--but not PODS. I use the Eclipse JDT and the SuperWaba SDK, which *is* vastly more productive than CodeWarrior for Palm OS. The latest release of SuperWaba enables my apps to run cross-platform on Palm OS, Windows Mobile, Symbian UIQ, Series 60, Linux, Win32 desktop, and now Sony PSP with a single code base. Unlike Java ME (formerly J2ME) I can distribute the VM with my app for free. It's written in 100% native ARM, it's open source, it has a much richer GUI than eith Java ME *or* the Palm OS Form Manager, and in my opinion it completely shatters the myth that Java is too big or too slow to run on a Palm OS device.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
Foo Fighter @ 1/14/2006 12:37:51 PM # Q
> "Of course you're ignoring the fact that PalmOS 5 is a DEAD END OS. It was a transitional OS supposed to have been EOL in 2003. "

Bingo.

But what I don't understand is why some people act as though PalmLinux is already here or coming very soon, with Garnet having passed into history. I just read Ed Hardy's piece on the bank website and was baffled why he believes "our problems will soon be over."

PalmLinux won't turn Gold code until late spring/summer at the earliest. Ed and Shawn Barnett both seem to believe we're going to see devices based on the new software in October? That is crazy! Given that completely irrational (and unprecedented) timeline, Palm would have to release (or should I say RUSH) new hardware just 2-3 months after PalmLinux release. Ridiculous.

New hardware won't arrive until well into 2007. To believe that we're going to see PalmLinux in shipping devices this year is simply irrational exuberance. Even Palm's Ken Wirt publicly stated it would be a year beyond PalmLinux's release before his company ships hardware based on the new platform. This is not the PC market, folks. The only new Operating System shipping this year will be Windows Vista, and that's not going to fit on your Palm.

As I see it we are very much stuck with Garnet for the next 12-18 months. And that is a rational projection.

-------------------------------
Editor, http://Pocketfactory.com
Contributing Editor, http://digitalmediathoughts.com

Enjoying eating your crow, Beersy?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 12:37:57 PM # Q
Don't choke on the bones, Bubba.

In case you can't read, CW was listed as discontinued by MetroWerks themselves last year. Don't let a little FACT like that get in the way of you spewing more B.S.


You were right on one thing though: I did mistakenly say Nokia had bought MetroWerks rather than CW.


And it's not a "hole". It's a Bluetoothed Bunker (Yankowski Edition). Don't be jealous that the CLIE TH55, UX50 and VZ90 STILL absolutely DESTROY anything ever released by Palm.

What limitations have you come across using SuperWaba? How much bigger are files compared to a native Palm app? Load times, etc, etc? So SuperWaba also runs on PSP? Impressive.

TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/14/2006 12:48:31 PM # Q
Businesses typically need/want Java for using/recycling simple (often custom, in-house) applications.

You seem, once again, to have forgotten that PalmSource is trying to be a player in the telephony space, where it is the carrier, and not some imaginary business desire, that decides content.

It's not like anyone's expecting to run Java versions of AutoCAD or Photoshop on a PalmOS PDA.

Java itself, in the form of the JVM, is memory intensive. Your "simple" application typically requires an extra couple of megabytes just for that. Typical performance slowdown of Java over C is 10 to 100 times.

2mb per application extra and a factor of 10x slow down is not something that users will tolerate for a tiny advantage that they don't directly experience anyway.

Throw in the fact that PalmOS has to restart an application from scratch every time you switch to it, which incurs the huge Java startup penalty in the startup path so application switching slows down.

Season with the fact that "simple" aps are the ones least likely to benefit from Java, because the structural overhead of OO languages don't produce benefits until programs become larger.

Recall that Java is the "write once, debug everywhere" language.

It's a no brainer that a company like PalmSource would be forced to concentrate on its legacy and not spend resources on Java.

Access may well have different priorities. We'll have to wait and see.

May You Live in Interesting Times

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
cervezas @ 1/14/2006 1:00:54 PM # Q
PenguinPowered wrote:
By the way, when I want to be reminded of the bad old days when computers weren't fast enough to run the software, i just fire up Eclipse on a 4 processor 3ghz pentium system with a couple of GB of memory and watch the system slam to its knees.

Huh? I run Eclipse on a 1GHz laptop with 512Mb RAM and it's very snappy. Code completion, continuous incremental compilation, refactoring tools, all instantaneous. On my desktop workstation it's indistinguishable from VS 2005 for performance. And I've experience only one crash of the IDE in two years of continuous use. Of course when I use Eclipse I use the JDT not the CDT. Perhaps you're referring to CDT?

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

NetFrontLinux + Java = coming "real soon now"?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 2:12:43 PM # Q
You seem, once again, to have forgotten that PalmSource is trying to be a player in the telephony space, where it is the carrier, and not some imaginary business desire, that decides content.

Even if PalmSource has completely thrown in the PDA OS towel, what would be the downside of being able to offer customers a better J2ME environment? Do carriers not want to sell downloads? Why minimize potential revenue streams? It's not exactly as if the OS is locked down right down now, is it? (I would have thought that the Treo OS hacking and custom ROMs being traded by the Treo Kiddies would give PalmSource and the carriers a lot more nightmares than Java would. Abandoning Java is a silly decision - even for a company that has wasted so much time and is now under as much pressure to finally improve their core product as PalmSource was/is.

Java itself, in the form of the JVM, is memory intensive. Your "simple" application typically requires an extra couple of megabytes just for that. Typical performance slowdown of Java over C is 10 to 100 times.

2mb per application extra and a factor of 10x slow down is not something that users will tolerate for a tiny advantage that they don't directly experience anyway.

Throw in the fact that PalmOS has to restart an application from scratch every time you switch to it, which incurs the huge Java startup penalty in the startup path so application switching slows down.

Season with the fact that "simple" aps are the ones least likely to benefit from Java, because the structural overhead of OO languages don't produce benefits until programs become larger.

Do you really believe all the things you just wrote, Marty? Wow. Where's your closest Detox Center?

Recall that Java is the "write once, debug everywhere" language.

Yada, yada, yada. Same old bromides from you all the time these days. What's happened to you, Marty? Again, we're not talking about needing to run a Java version of Photoshop.

Linux is now "in" and PalmSource is using it's cachet to try and make a sale. Java could and should have been another "catch phrase" for Palm to 3Xp10!7.

It's a no brainer that a company like PalmSource would be forced to concentrate on its legacy and not spend resources on Java.

Again, only if they truly had NO resources to spare to help integrate a decent Java environment into PalmOS. Maybe they should have been spending more time with Java and less with the pie-in-the-sky "Rome" B.S. they were prattling on about last year.

Access may well have different priorities. We'll have to wait and see.

NetFrontLinux + solid Java implementation + decent development tools = killer phone OS. It would have the potential to kick the crap out of Symbian at all price points. Access could keep the basics the same for feature phones, semi-smartphones and smartphones, differentiating lines with apps (like Desktop To Go) added to the ROM.

If it wasn't for the Cobalt Catastrophe, PalmOS could have been a major cellphone OS player by now.

TVoR



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
Scott R @ 1/14/2006 3:24:33 PM # Q
"Ummmmmm... how do you propose Palm (the HARDWARE company, a PalmSource licensee) consolidate/standardize and add to the APIs?"

Handspring/palmOne has added lots of custom APIs into the mix over the years. What I'm suggesting is that they clean up their code, document it better, and add some new useful APIs to make it easy to access all of the Treo 650's (for example) hardware features and do other useful things. Examples might include APIs for playing/controlling MP3s (Tapwave was doing this). Instead of just a couple of 3rd party MP3 players, that list would grow significantly.

They could work with (maybe even buy) the Handheld Basic ++ folks and offer some nice drag-and-drop widgets for web browsing, etc. They would work on optimizing the web browser back-end, and developers could come up with a multitude of web browsers with various UIs and other features which differentiate them. See VS.NET 2005 for examples.

Palm might need to offer some OS upgrades for any of their flash ROM devices to get them up to date and using the standardized APIs (e.g., there's no real reason why an old Tungsten T can't have Treo-style D-Pad navigation).

In short, Palm (yes, the hardware company) would reestablish itself as the captain of the ship, even if they don't own the Garnet OS, simply because the current captain appears to be passed out drunk and the ship is headed towards an iceberg.

http://Tapland.com
- Tapwave Zodiac News, Reviews, & Discussion -

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/14/2006 5:46:51 PM # Q
what would be the downside of being able to offer customers a better J2ME environment?

The size, the delay in getting product out, the fact that carriers wouldn't be interested.

Do carriers not want to sell downloads?

Yes. And they call them "ringtones".

Why minimize potential revenue streams?

Because the revenue isn't worth, to the carrier, the additional cost that supporting it introduces.

[my java comments] Do you really believe all the things you just wrote, Marty?

Why yes, Skippy, I do. And you demonstrated that you believe them also, which is why you insulted me rather than attempting to refute. You do know, don't you, that just about eveyrone who reads these threads recognizes that trait?

NetFrontLinux + solid Java implementation + decent development tools = killer phone OS.

I see you still haven't gotten what NetFront is about yet.


May You Live in Interesting Times

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
cervezas @ 1/14/2006 7:16:13 PM # Q
TVoR wrote:
In case you can't read, CW was listed as discontinued by MetroWerks themselves last year.

For a short time, but if you knew anything about Palm development you would have known it was brought back months ago. Why do you think you can speak for Palm developers, whose concerns you have absolutely no experience with, when you can't even speak coherently on behalf of Palm users?

To answer your questions about SuperWaba, the VM is about 750kb with a typical complement of libraries. Stripped down to the basic stuff you'd need just for running games it's about 450kb. For about 100kb you can add a simple but fast SQL database engine, which is something that we've never had for the Palm OS without spending $50-100 per device. Apps themselves are not much different in size from what a comparable app would be in the C API--some bigger, some smaller. The VM loads and launches most apps in about 1/2 second on a T3.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/14/2006 7:39:07 PM # Q
If it wasn't for the Cobalt Catastrophe, PalmOS could have been a major cellphone OS player by now.

Nah. Coboalt was symptomatic. If not cobalt, some other problem would have surfaced as a result of the structural problems at PalmSource.



May You Live in Interesting Times

Dream on
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 7:53:36 PM # Q
Palm might need to offer some OS upgrades for any of their flash ROM devices to get them up to date and using the standardized APIs...

There isn't a snowball's chance in He11 that Palm would do that. Palm can barely keep spewing out incremental upgrades without self destructing. Remember the Palm/PalmSource NVFS Fiasco? The DataMangler Disaster? The LifeDrive Catastrophe? That's Palm trying to be clever. Do you really think a company that can't even make a better Treo after wasting 2 years of "development" time could actually pull off what you're sugesting? Dream on.

In short, Palm (yes, the hardware company) would reestablish itself as the captain of the ship, even if they don't own the Garnet OS, simply because the current captain appears to be passed out drunk and the ship is headed towards an iceberg.

Great line, but wishful thinking, I'm afraid. Palm is not competent enough to fix PalmOS by themselves. Furthermore, developers no longer trust Palm (or PalmSource), so I doubt there would be much support for new APIs.

TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

The strange mind of ex-PalmSource codemonkey Marty Fouts:
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 8:23:05 PM # Q
>>>what would be the downside of being able to offer customers a better J2ME environment?

The size, the delay in getting product out, the fact that carriers wouldn't be interested.

- We disagree on the significance of the overhead of Java.
- Given PalmSource's self-inflicted crisis re: late delivery of a next-generation PalmOS and their acute lack of coding resources, worries about delays are a reasonable concern. I'll bring up the outsourcing argument which (as usual) you'll disagree with, citing Brooks's Law.
- Why do you think carriers wouldn't be interested in selling a slew of Java games to a captive audience?

>>>Do carriers not want to sell downloads?

Yes. And they call them "ringtones".

And what about Java games?

>>>Why minimize potential revenue streams?

Because the revenue isn't worth, to the carrier, the additional cost that supporting it introduces.

Suuuuure. Java on regular phones is just KILLING the carriers with support costs. Yeah. Riiiiiight.

>>>[my java comments] Do you really believe all the things you just wrote, Marty?

Why yes, Skippy, I do. And you demonstrated that you believe them also, which is why you insulted me rather than attempting to refute. You do know, don't you, that just about everyone who reads these threads recognizes that trait?

When did I insult you, Marty-dearest? We can keep going around in circles, but your outre comments speak for themselves. Every time you post here you refute yourself for me. Thanks.

>>>NetFrontLinux + solid Java implementation + decent development tools = killer phone OS.

I see you still haven't gotten what NetFront is about yet.

If it turned out that Access wasn't planning to create NetFrontLinux then yes, you'd be right - their business strategy would make no sense. We'll all know soon enough.

Thanks for sharing, Marty. Take care.


TVoR



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Beersy = TimexBoy (Hackborn-style)
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 9:18:37 PM # Q
For a short time, but if you knew anything about Palm development you would have known it was brought back months ago.

Metrowerks said it was discontinued and actually pulled CodeWarrior from the shelf. Why would I check back to see if they changed their minds several months later? And how the He11 could Palm/PalmSource have allowed the only serious commercial development platform for a 10 year old OS to disappear overnight? Ridiculous. I assume once they were caught with their pants down, they must have begged MetroWerks to re-release CodeWarrior in order to prevent hundreds of irate developers for storming their offices, pitchforks, tar and feathers in hand.

Why do you think you can speak for Palm developers, whose concerns you have absolutely no experience with, when you can't even speak coherently on behalf of Palm users?

You didn't get that memo? Pity. As the newly-elected developer representative I'll make sure to negotiate the worst contract possible for baby-faced, pudgy developers from Colorado. You're welcome.


To answer your questions about SuperWaba, the VM is about 750kb with a typical complement of libraries. Stripped down to the basic stuff you'd need just for running games it's about 450kb. For about 100kb you can add a simple but fast SQL database engine, which is something that we've never had for the Palm OS without spending $50-100 per device. Apps themselves are not much different in size from what a comparable app would be in the C API--some bigger, some smaller. The VM loads and launches most apps in about 1/2 second on a T3.

Those are pretty impressive specs - a lot better than what I'd heard last year. Was there a recent update that produced those improvements?

TVoR



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Marty "Backstabber" Fouts
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/14/2006 9:42:43 PM # Q
>>>If it wasn't for the Cobalt Catastrophe, PalmOS could have been a major cellphone OS player by now.

Nah. Coboalt was symptomatic. If not cobalt, some other problem would have surfaced as a result of the structural problems at PalmSource.


You ungrateful little biotch. How dare you publicly rip into your former employer like that? How crass.


TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/15/2006 1:21:17 AM # Q
I'll bring up the outsourcing argument which (as usual) you'll disagree with, citing Brooks's Law.

As long as you keep bringing up silly arguments, someone should cite the easy and obvious refutation.

- Why do you think carriers wouldn't be interested in selling a slew of Java games to a captive audience?

There isnt a slew of Java games worth selling, Java is slow and a resource hog, and they wouldn't make enough money selling those games to cover the cost of having done so.


May You Live in Interesting Times

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
cervezas @ 1/15/2006 12:40:07 PM # Q
Those are pretty impressive specs [for SuperWaba] - a lot better than what I'd heard last year. Was there a recent update that produced those improvements?

The big performance jump was the release of the native ARM version of the VM for Palm OS some months ago. If you figure that 99% of the Palm applications out there already run in PACE, itself basically a 68k virtual machine, and that WM likewise was designed with the hope that most applications would run in a VM called the .NET Compact Framework, you start to realize that running applications in virtual machines isn't necessarily a bad experience on a mobile device. Of course the nice thing about the SuperWaba VM is that it comes much much closer than any of the other options to being "write once run anywhere." You certainly can't say that of .NET or PACE, and you can't even say it of Java ME.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

SuperWaba now runs in ARM natively. WOW!
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/15/2006 1:26:39 PM # Q
The big performance jump was the release of the native ARM version of the VM for Palm OS some months ago.

I hadn't heard about this. Looks like those Brazilians might finally have created an ideal environment for enterprise customers. Are you having to recompile old apps to take advantage of the new VM? If so, how much extra work (stated in hours of coding) does this entail for an average app? What weaknesses have you found with using SuperWaba in the past year?


TVoR

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: SuperWaba now runs in ARM natively. WOW!
cervezas @ 1/15/2006 6:23:00 PM # Q
There were some minor changes made to a couple of APIs that required me to update my code to run in the new VM. That took less than 10 minutes using Eclipse. But aside from that the bytecodes are the same so it's a pretty seamless upgrade.

There are some weaknesses that might annoy Java purists. SuperWaba isn't just-in-time compiled: the VM executes the bytecodes directly. That's a plus in one way, since you have quicker launches if the device isn't trying to compile the bytecodes into native machine code before it runs them. But once the application is running you can experience trade-offs between good encapsulated object-oriented design and performance. For a lot of business applications these tradeffs are insignificant and its best to go ahead and go for the best design (which makes unit testing and debugging easier, and makes large code bases easier to maintain). But in some cases where performance is critical code optimization forces you to keep your methods calls down by accessing object fields directly. Honestly, the apps I have written haven't pushed the envelope enough for code optimization to be a major concern on Garnet devices. They're noticeably slow on Palm OS 4 with 33MHz processors, though. SuperWaba also doesn't support multithreading the way most Java environments do, but it's not too hard to roll your own multithreading if you need it.

For Palm developers considering a move to SuperWaba, you should know that it does not provide Java APIs to every Palm OS API. Since it's designed to be 100% cross-platform there are some things that are unique to Palm OS that you don't have access to in SuperWaba (at least not without writing your own native library to expose them). For example, databases don't have the Palm OS's built-in support for categories. If you want to have categories you have to implement them yourself. Similarly, Palm developers are used to being able to follow some basic guidelines that make their forms navigable from a D-pad in a one-handed manner. In SuperWaba there is work to be done to achieve this. I'm hoping to make some contributions over the next few months that will fix this limitation.

Of course, not being bound to the Palm OS API can be a plus as well. You get a richer GUI with Superwaba (including radio buttons, tabbed interfaces, powerful grid controls, and tree controls) and support for executing SQL queries on your databases, for example. It's easy to write GUIs that morph automatically to all different screen resolutions and that mimic the look and feel of the underlying operating system.

Overall, it's a productive and powerful environment for writing business applications (which is mainly what my company does) and judging by what some of my colleagues have done recently it's pretty good for graphics-intensive stuff, too, especially on Windows Mobile where it uses Simple Direct Media Layer (DirectX and OpenGL). Here's a good example: http://www.copilotsoft.com/pages/Overview.htm If you are part of a company that is a Java development shop and you want to mobilize your workers with Treos or the like, SuperWaba is a marked improvement in most respects over Sun's or IBM's Java ME environments.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
cervezas @ 1/16/2006 11:45:09 AM # Q
I wrote:
Since it's designed to be 100% cross-platform

Correction: while it's quite easy to write apps that are 100% cross-platform using the SuperWaba SDK (much more so than with JavaME) there are also classes in the SDK that expose many platform-specific APIs, especially on Palm OS. If you do use them and you still want your app to run on different platforms you of course need to write platform-specific code for each platform.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

SuperWaba 101 + Rant of the Week
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/16/2006 3:41:52 PM # Q
Thanks for the info, Beersy. SuperWaba has become a LOT more flexible than it was a year ago and - if they promote it better - should become very popular in the enterprise sphere.

CoPilot is supposed to be an excellent Windows Mobile app. If that's the kind of graphical app SuperWaba is capable of supporting, I'm even more impressed. (Of course they must be taking advantage of a lot ot Windows Mobile-specific APIs to get that level of performance.)

It sounds like you and your company have *wisely* diversified your coding environments and are maintaining skill sets that won't leave you with your pants around your ankles if users abandon PalmOS. That might just happen if Access/PalmSource were to (let's pretend) announce that PalmLinux will not be available until 2007 and will be primarily a phone OS.

With .Net tools and improving hardware brute forcing the inefficiencies of Windows Mobile away, I'd have to say that it's getting harder and harder to be confident that PalmOS has much of a chance these days. I haven't used a PPC device regularly for a while, but recently was asked to make a recommendation regarding platform choices. In the past year there's been an explosion in the number of Windows Mobile apps and there are finally enough high quality apps in almost all app categories that most PalmOS users would not miss a step if they switched platforms. Many PalmOS software companies now offer Windows Mobile versions of their apps (and often the Windows Mobile versions are actually BETTER than the PalmOS versions!). In my opinion, the ONLY place where Windows Mobile still comes up short is the UI, and even this can be ameliorated to some extent with add on utilities. If Microsoft had the guts to finally change the Windows Mobile UI (e.g. buy Wisbar and make it part of the ROM) there would be little left to recommend PalmOS for.

We've joked around here for a while about the "doom & gloom" predictions Vs. the "optimist" predictions. With the variety of development tools, high quality apps, variety of high quality hardware, the promised "push" email with MS Exchange, and PalmSource's repeated failures, this is the first time I've really begun to doubt that PalmOS can withstand the onslaught of Microsoft's marketing might.

[RANT] While I'll continue to personally use PalmOS devices for the next 5 years at least, with no one making high quality hardware now that Sony has left the scene, unless things change dramatically in the next year, I think PalmOS will be written off. Unfortunately, momentum, appearances and self-fulfilling prophecies are all working against PalmOS. I've said it before, but it bears repeating: Palm could reverse the decline by being flexible enough th jump on trends and "sneak" PalmOS onto other device categories that are selling well. How hard would it be to offer an iPod clone that just happens to run PalmOS? Traditional non-connected PDAs are dying (since analysts have told us this so many times + for so many years that we and the electronics chains eventually believed it). MP3 players are HOT sellers. PalmOS can handle MP3 playing. Is it not worth dumping the FAILED investment in a ridiculous design like the LifeDrive and putting the efforts into making a device people already have shown they want? A PalmOS MP3 player could get Palm tens of thousands of BRAND NEW PalmOS users in a great demograpic (tech-savvy teens + young adults) many of which would later upgrade to more expensive PalmOS devices. Apparently Palm feels they don't need to expand their (imploding) user base.

With the sole major PalmOS licensee being a company as unimaginative and slow witted as Palm and having the development of the OS entrusted to a company as incompetent and inherently flawed as PalmSource was, it's a testament to the OS's purity of design that people are still buying PalmOS devices. [Does anyone here REALLY still feel that PalmSource was spun off and set up to be a successful independent entity? Get serious.]

Palm and PalmSource have continued to alienate developers (who are finally starting to realize the contempt the Palm Companiesô have for developers). ShadowPlan's developer recently snapped [http://tinyurl.com/8hcrb]and posted an honest account of SOME of the frustrations of being a developer on a platform that treats its developers like vermin (yet hipocritically constantly touts the "200,000 developers" [actually more like 2,000 serious developers - anyone who ever registered with Palm to get the OS ROMs is called a "developer"; I've registered a few times, so I'm actually several developers according to Palm!]. Many other well-respected developers - like DateBk5's CES Dewar have also expressed extreme dissatisfaction with how developers are treated, but nothing seems to change - despite there supposedly being people in both Palm Companiesô hired specifically to improve developer relations. Palm's laughable quality control, glacial "incremental upgrade" strategy and lack of value (until the TX) have forced countless former PalmOS devotees to Windows Mobile and elsewhere in search of better hardware. We even lost my little old buddy, [sniff] Mike Cane. I was thinking of lending the Old Boy one of my Bluetoothed CLIE TH55 to lure him back to PalmOS, but then he dissed the TH55! That little *******!

Why is it that a two year old PDA (the TH55) still makes everything Palm sells look like crap? Why is it that Palm couldn't take advantage of the MP3 craze to increase its user base? Why is it that Palm still can't produce a Media Player even half as good as the CLIE VZ90? Were it not for the life raft (a.k.a. "Treo 600") that the (sinking) Handspring handed to Palm a couple years ago, would Palm even still exist in 2006 as an independent company? I doubt it. [/RANT]

I.M.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/16/2006 7:45:04 PM # Q
Skippy, here's an idea for you: Why don't you stop talking about what Palm could or couldn't do, go get yourself some VC money, and make all these things happen your self?

Shouldn't be that hard to get the capital needed for a PalmOS based media player, for instance.


May You Live in Interesting Times

Introducing the PalmPodô: Palm's iPod KILLER [or annoyer]
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/17/2006 10:15:16 PM # Q
Why don't you stop talking about what Palm could or couldn't do, go get yourself some VC money, and make all these things happen your self?

Shouldn't be that hard to get the capital needed for a PalmOS based media player, for instance.

Starting a NEW company at this point solely to make a PalmOS MP3 player makes about as much (little) sense as it did for Tapwave to blow all that ven cap bringing a product to market that would soon compete with PSP and Nintendo DS.

On the other hand, Palm leveraging its name recognition, existing Brick & Mortar presence, broad distribution channels and existing hardware suppliers to rework some cheap components and a little engineering ingenuity into a Christmas 2005 impulse purchase for all those kiddies who asked Santa for an "MP3 player" was an obvious project to green light. Palm could even have thrown in a student class scheduling app like Due Yesterday (freeware) to convince parents that the MP3 player might actually serve a function other than helping their kids "tune out" at school.

Load it up with other freeware apps like YAUC, a decent scientific calculator, HandyShopper, DiddleBug, etc. and have a little WORKING in-store display showing all the extra things the "Palm MP3 Player" or "PalmPod" could do. Maybe license TCPMP, improve the UI and tout the PalmPod as an MP3 player that can do video as well. If priced right - say, $199 - and properly advertised, a PalmPod could have been a huge hit last year. And most of the sales would have gone to people that otherwise would never have bought a traditional PDA.

Instead, we got the hideous, slow, buggy LifeDrive that managed to attract approximately ZERO new customers to the platform. Smart.



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
hkklife @ 1/18/2006 12:18:33 AM # Q
Bizarre but true, MANY of the PSPs I saw over the Nov/Dec timeframe being hauled out of BB, CUSA, EBGames etc were the "GigaPack" version.

Palm could do a tremendous $199 PalmPod "bare" bundle then offer another one for, say, $250 w/ 1gb SD card in the box & a case or something. The T|E2, Zire 72 and Zire 31 could all be replaced in one fell swoop with such a device.

Penguin, I hope that comment you made was in jest. Otherwise that about takes the cake for the stupidest Apologist comment thus far in '06. Tapwave was *insane* trying to make a go of it back in '03. Conditions have only worsened since then as the market contracts.

Palm could really aim either low OR high and have a reasonable chance for success with a "PalmPod" device. The blue plastic $200 device I mention above. OR, for the higher margin concept, they could replace the miserable LD with a $350-$400ish metal bodied unit. Give it basically the specs of the TX but add a charging LED, two SD slots, MUCH improved media software (cleaned up TCMP is as good of an idea as any), a decent d-pad (without trying to ape the Zod) and a camera or a voice recorder. What a concept!

After seeing some of the oversized, shoddily built monstrosities Archos & others have foisted on the market, Palm could actually stand to teach the others a thing or two...and, no, I do NOT consider the iPod video a clear competitor for such a device. This thing would be more along the lines of what the Zodiac should've been from day 1.

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
PenguinPowered @ 1/18/2006 1:14:12 AM # Q
Penguin, I hope that comment you made was in jest.

It was sarcasm.

On the other hand, Palm leveraging its name recognition,

Which, among consumers of MP3 players is approximately none.

existing Brick & Mortar presence,

Which is approximately none.

broad distribution channels

Which, by comparison to, say, Creative, are very narrow.

and existing hardware suppliers

which, for mp3-player quantity components, it doesn't have.

to rework some cheap components and a little engineering ingenuity into a Christmas 2005 impulse purchase for all those kiddies who asked Santa for an "MP3 player" was an obvious project to green light.

Right. Putting enough hardware in there so that it would also be a PDA would put the price far beyond that of the MP3 players it would have been competing against as an "impulse" purchase. Not putting the harware in there would have put it in a product category that Palm had no prior experience with, limited distribution channels for, and approximately a zillion competitors with.

And, by Christmas 2006, which is when an mp3 player by Palm targeted for 2005 would probably be available, it will be competing with approximately ever new cell phone on the market, if gizmodo's new product list is any indicator.


The consumer market for MP3 players bears approximately the same relationship to Palm's existing market (and all of the supply chain and distribution structure associated with it) that GM bears to Lamborghini.

Suggesting tht Palm slap together an MP3 player / PDA is akin to suggesting that Lamborghini try to compete head to head with Chevy in the SUV market.



May You Live in Interesting Times

Do you EVER get tired of being wrong, Marty? Seriously.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/18/2006 2:09:31 AM # Q
>>>On the other hand, Palm leveraging its name recognition,

Which, among consumers of MP3 players is approximately none.

Wrong. A large number of MP3 players are bought by adults - either for themselves or as gifts for their children. Palm has good name recognition among adults. Not as good as Apple/iPod, but probably a lot better than Creative, iRiver, iAudio, and the 10,000 faceless Korean and Chinese manufacturers of MP3 players currently being sold. When Joe Sixpack goes in to CompUSA or Best Buy to get his daughter a nice shiny new MP3 player, 8 times out of 10 he'll buy an iPod like what he hears about all the time. But those other 2 times out of 10 that iPods are ignored is where Palm's name and some easy-to-demo features could make the sale for a PalmPod.

>>>existing Brick & Mortar presence,

Which is approximately none.

Wrong again. Wal-Mart, CompUSA, Staples, Circuit City, Office Depot... a lot of major retailers are still carrying Palms. You can also still order Palms from Best Buy and pick them up in your local store. Yes the numbers are decreasing, but a lot of the blame for that falls on Palm for not promoting what their own devices can actually DO. Palm never seemed to figure out that this is no longer 2000 (with Palm Vx flying off the shelves at full price faster than they can make them). A broken down store display consisting of a crashed TX, a nonfunctional LifeDrive mock-up and a Z22 with a dead battery isn't gonna make a sale in 2006. And having dumba$$, clueless sales kiddies "advising" potential customers about how Windows Mobile devices are supposedly "better" than Palms because they work "better" with Windows and Office doesn't help either (Palm executives would probably be stunned to hear how often this happens). How hard would it be for Palm to keep 10 junior employees roving from store to store around the country, educating Brick and Mortar employees about what Palms can do, demonstrating software like Documents To Go, setting up Wi-Fi connections, ensuring displays are functional, etc. (Ever heard of keeping PDAs charged? What a concept.) One Palm rep could easily stop by 5 - 10 stores in a day. This would probably be money well spent on Palm's behalf.

>>>broad distribution channels

Which, by comparison to, say, Creative, are very narrow.

Sure - pick the company that's probably second only to Apple for sales of MP3 players. In any event...so? That wouldn't stop Palm from selling a ton of PalmPods if they caught on. The bottom line is you can purchase Palms from many places. Potential customers can see and play with them in a lot of Brick & Mortar stores and they can also be ordered from a ton of online retailers. Palm has more than enough distribution channels already. What they need now is a compelling (or faddish) product to move through those channels.

and existing hardware suppliers

which, for mp3-player quantity components, it doesn't have.

Nonsense. The Zire 31 lists for $129 and already makes a decent MP3 player if you put in the effort (and software). And that model is what - 2 years old?

http://www.palm.com/us/products/handhelds/zire31/

>>>to rework some cheap components and a little engineering ingenuity into a Christmas 2005 impulse purchase for all those kiddies who asked Santa for an "MP3 player" was an obvious project to green light.

Right. Putting enough hardware in there so that it would also be a PDA would put the price far beyond that of the MP3 players it would have been competing against as an "impulse" purchase. Not putting the harware in there would have put it in a product category that Palm had no prior experience with, limited distribution channels for, and approximately a zillion competitors with.

Wrong again. It would not take Palm's Asian design + manufacturing contract firms much effort to blend features of the Z22, Zire 31, iPod and Creative Zen Vision:M to create a decent MP3 player. The D-pad could be adapted to control the software or dedicated buttons could be added - like how we'll be seeing in all those MP3 cellphones due out this year. Palm's big advantages would be the PalmOS app library, PIM and having a slightly bigger screen than much of the competition. The PalmOS app library is the big differentiator that tips the balance towards Palm and away from the "approximately a zillion competitors".

>>>And, by Christmas 2006, which is when an mp3 player by Palm targeted for 2005 would probably be available, it will be competing with approximately ever new cell phone on the market, if gizmodo's new product list is any indicator.

On this one we agree. Brutally honest there, Marty. Palm's inability to shorten design cycles is going to kill them. They already threw out a 2 year head start with the Treo 600 and continue to fritter away any advantage they may still have. Inexcusable, especially considering Palm isn't doing any of the actual design work these days. The only reason we still see glacial incremental "upgrades" like TE -> T5 -> TE2 -> TX is because Palm's too cheap to pay for better designs from the likes of Flextronics, HTC, Solectron, etc.

I think by 2007 most cellphones will come standard with MP3 players just as most now have cameras. The market for standalone flash MP3 players will tank once it's commonplace to have 1 GB or more of storage in cellphones, leaving mainly Apple and Creative duking it out for the hard drive market and a bunch of anonymous ultra cheap Chinese + Korean players commoditizing the flash player market and looking for scraps. By then, Apple will have shifted focus to phones and the complete integration of media + wireless data.

>>>The consumer market for MP3 players bears approximately the same relationship to Palm's existing market (and all of the supply chain and distribution structure associated with it) that GM bears to Lamborghini.

Suggesting tht Palm slap together an MP3 player / PDA is akin to suggesting that Lamborghini try to compete head to head with Chevy in the SUV market.

Wrong again, Marty. It doesn't take a lot of electronics to make a decent MP3 player. Palm's PDAs already have the electronics needed to do the job. Now they just need the right DESIGN.

Palm already missed its window of opportunity to become the standard for wireless email for businesses. In 2005 they missed the window of opportunity to cash in on the MP3 craze. Video is passing Palm by in 2006. It's truly amazing to see how incompetent Palm's leadership and product planners have been over the years. Take the HANDSPRING Treo out of Palm's product mix and suddenly you see what a deck of cards Palm has become.


TVoR



------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
freakout @ 1/18/2006 3:04:30 AM # Q
PenguinPowered said:

"Which, among consumers of MP3 players is approximately none."

Amongst consumers, Palm's name recognition is very high, I've found. People ask me "What's that" on sighting the Treo. If I say "Treo", I get a "huh?" If I say "Palm" or "PalmPilot", I get an "Ohhh!" of recognition.

Marketing suggestion for Palm: bring back the "PalmPilot" name. Have a marketing campaign for "The New PalmPilot" or the "PalmPilot II" or something. Make it pretty. Advertise the crap out of the media functions. Watch it fly out the door.

Even if they only captured a fraction of those "zillion" mp3 player buyers, it'd still be extra money in Palm's pocket. After all, a media Palm wouldn't be very different from their traditional PDA's - just with a different software package (i.e. PocketTunes and TCPMP as standard).

"Right. Putting enough hardware in there so that it would also be a PDA would put the price far beyond that of the MP3 players it would have been competing against as an "impulse" purchase."

Oh, come off it! Take Z22. Add SD slot. Add headphone jack. BOOM! MP3 player. How much extra have you added to the cost of the device? I can't imagine it'd be all that much.

Tim Carroll
Your friendly customer service robot
(and big Treo fan)

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
ChiA @ 1/18/2006 9:18:26 AM # Q
freakout said:
Oh, come off it! Take Z22. Add SD slot. Add headphone jack. BOOM! MP3 player. How much extra have you added to the cost of the device? I can't imagine it'd be all that much.

That was the idea behind the Zire 31 and it couldn't have been a success for Palm as they have discontinued it and its successor, the Z22, lacks the headphone jack and SD slot.

Personally I can't see how a handheld with 32Mb of memory costing 100 British pounds can compete as an MP3 player with 256Mb MP3 players costing £20-30 with much longer battery life. It's also amusing how £30 MP3 players have built in microphones which the £250 Palm Tx handheld lacks!

"It is commonly said, and more particularly by Lord Shaftesbury, that ridicule is the best test of truth".
Lord Chesterfield

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
hkklife @ 1/18/2006 9:45:08 AM # Q
I wouldn't call the Zire 31 an outright failure.
I see the Z22 as more of a Zire/Zire 21 replacement (hence the nomenclature) than a cut-down replacement for the 31.
If anything, Palm's incessant greed made them realize that the Z31 was *too* good of a handheld for the $ and it needed to be eliminated quickly (much like the T3).

No, the Zire 31, Zire 71, Zire 72, and LifeDrive are all "media-focused" Palms at drastically varying price points. Palm could essentially replace at least the 3 Zires with a fine $200 model that emphasizes mp3 playback and has the added bonus of video functionality. True, the iPod beats it on storage capacity and size/UI. But Palm could do wonders to improve their OOBE for software and their audio quality. and an iPod, no matter how densely packed its pixels are, simply cannot hold a candle to a nice big Palm screen even if it is a smallish Treo-sized 320*320. And (wireless aside) the PalmPod could trounce the iPod for gaming & PIM capabilities.

Look, Creative, iRiver, Archos, and Apple are all scrambling to add rudimentary PDA features to their media playing devices. Why can't Palm be scrambling to add better media capabilities to its already stellar (for basic PIM needs) PDAs?


Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/18/2006 11:05:12 PM # Q
Why can't Palm be scrambling to add better media capabilities to its already stellar (for basic PIM needs) PDAs?

Because the compay is run by idiots?

At this point, with MP3 cellphones about to EXPLODE everywhere in 2006, Palm has probably missed the window of opportunity to sell a few hundred thousand PalmPods. 2005 was their year to cash in and they blew it.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

RE: Developer rants at PalmOS
freakout @ 1/19/2006 3:14:07 AM # Q
^^ Certainly, they blew their chance to cash in on the media market in 2005 though. I have high hopes for Hollywood this year though. With a code-name by that, it's got to have *some* kind of media focus, right?

Right? Are you listening, Palm?

[crickets chirping]

Tim Carroll
Your friendly customer service robot
(and big Treo fan)

Reply to this comment

Gonna Party Like it's 2002

Gekko @ 1/11/2006 11:49:46 PM # Q

Palm OS5 AKA "Stop Gap" AKA "FrankenGarnet" debuted in 2002.

Look how far it and we have come!



RE: Gonna Party Like it's 2002
KultiVator @ 1/12/2006 3:04:30 AM # Q
Good articles from Jeff Mitchell - it's always interesting to hear developer feedback and opinion.

Even though Palm OS has its share of problems (what platform doesn't) it doesn't neccessarily make the *user* experience on WinMob a better one, regardless of how much trickery is needed to write code for a variety of devices. However, I guess what we do need to be concerned about is the prospect of more developers abandoning the Platform in search of an easier life.

As for OS5 being around since 2002... just think how long Windows 3.1 lasted or NT4 (I still visit customers with large banks of NT4 Servers). Some folks aren't that bothered about progress in the OS as it's below their radar. They are more bothered about being able to run the apps they need in a reliable way - rather than always having to constantly tweak less dependable technology from the bleeding edge.

Hey... but don't flame me - I'm not making excuses for Palm's lack of standardisation.

Best Regards,


KultiVator

Looks like Beersy is out for the count
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 1/13/2006 4:18:18 PM # Q
How many biotchslappings did he receive in the past 6 months? Poor kid.

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

The Palm eCONomy = Communismô

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

NetFrontLinux - the next major cellphone OS?: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8060#111823

Reply to this comment

COBALT IS HERE!!!

Surur @ 1/15/2006 7:04:34 AM # Q
15 January 2006
[From elesner]Sammy, is this the first smartphone with Cobalt 8.1. ( http://www.mobilepipeline.com/164301361 )I believe I pronosticated this event on the forums earlier this month. Poor doom sayers. They were wrong again! Isn't that amazing?!?! "A Singapore company named Oswin Technology looks to be the first vendor to produce a smartphone -- Zircon Axia A108 -- based on the Palm OS Cobalt platform. This is interesting for two reasons. First, I got to take one for a spin at the recent PalmSource Mobile Summit and DevCon in San Jose. Second, it raises questions about why no other vendors have picked up PalmSource's advanced platform for their devices. "

http://palmaddict.typepad.com/palmaddicts/2006/01/the_first_cobal.html http://palmaddict.typepad.com/

From our friendly PalmAddict Idiots.
Some emphasis added for comedy value

Surur

They said I only argued for the sake of arguing, but after an hour I convinced them they were wrong...

COBALT IS (not) HERE!!!
cervezas @ 1/15/2006 12:29:28 PM # Q
Sigh...don't people look at dates when they find articles on the Internet? As it happens, Oswin was selling the Win CE.NET version of this phone on their site for quite a while but even that has been removed. Too bad. It was a pretty neat PDA phone.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog
RE: COBALT IS HERE!!!
hkklife @ 1/16/2006 12:19:32 PM # Q
Don't trust any bits of news from a site that features cats & travel photos more prominently than actual PDA information.



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

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