PalmSource Announces New ARM Native Developer Suite

PalmSource has announced its new Palm OS Developer Suite to broaden the development and deployment of next generation enterprise, multimedia and wireless applications for Palm Powered smart mobile devices. The new open source based tool chain is designed to provide software developers with an easier and faster path toward creating Palm OS applications for all current releases of Palm OS and Palm OS 6.

The new Palm OS Developer Suite includes an open-source Integrated Development Environment (IDE) based on Eclipse, originally developed by IBM. Eclipse is a commercial-quality, best-in-class IDE with several hundred plug-in tools that support many major software development languages including C, C++, Java, and COBOL. The introduction of the Palm OS Developer Suite is critical to developers targeting support for both 68K and ARM-native Palm OS applications.

"As a leading mobile platform provider, PalmSource is committed to providing its 275,000 developers with high-quality tools to enable the creation of innovative software applications that extend the functionality of Palm Powered smart mobile devices into new markets," Larry Slotnick, chief products officer, PalmSource, Inc.

"Development environments like those supplied by PalmSource are popular now and growing more important to the future of computing technology and the Eclipse ecosystem," said Skip McGaughey, spokesperson for Eclipse. "As PalmSource developers gain experience with the Eclipse Platform and extend these tools, they'll be prepared to apply those skills to a broad range of computing solutions."

PalmSource has joined Eclipse as a founding Add-In Provider member, and is looking forward to collaborating with the organization, projects and other members during a two-year term. As an Add-in Provider member, PalmSource will participate in setting the direction and strategy of Eclipse components. PalmSource will also participate in Eclipse Open Source (pdf link) projects that are implementing various components, including the Eclipse Platform, C/C++ Development Tools (CDT), and the Java Development Tools (JDT). .

In-depth technical details, and a preview version of the product, will be provided at the PalmSource Developer Conference in San Jose, CA on Feb 10-12, 2004.

Article Comments


The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. PalmInfocenter is not responsible for them in any way.
Please Login or register here to add your comments.

Comments Closed Comments Closed
This article is no longer accepting new comments.


Sucks for Metrowerks

jishaq @ 2/3/2004 10:55:17 AM #
I've used Codewarrior since V4.0. They're going to have to work pretty hard to compete with a free (?) tool, but they will have a bit of time before OS 6.0 is adopted and commonplace.


RE: Sucks for Metrowerks
Dennizlerim @ 2/4/2004 11:39:52 AM #
as far as I know, it is not even clear yet, if they will to continue the codewarrior for palmos line....

so maybe this is why PalmSource brings out something new.


Sweet.. but..

skeezix @ 2/3/2004 10:55:04 AM #

Good to know PalmSource has some big plans for us, though naturally, veering away from all our traditional tools will cause no end of new rounds of bug finding up front I imagine... (ie: Bugs brought about by new tools which are less tested, or at least less "well known in their issues" than current tools).

Is this going to impact the bottom line of Metrowerks?

It will be nice to finally produce ARM native applications without having to make 68k loaders and go through hoops to make pnolets (though CW makes pno's infinitely easier for the average devver)...

I sincerely hope Palmsource will release all materials and details to those of us whose schedules just wouldnt' permit us to make the PDC conf :/ I would hate to be at a disadvantage .. and of course, need to know bleeding edge! :)


The Shadow knows!

RE: Sweet.. but..
rened @ 2/3/2004 12:41:42 PM #
Does this tool make pure ARM application possible for OS5 or was this meant for OS6 only?

RE: Sweet.. but..
skeezix @ 2/3/2004 2:18:23 PM #
Certainly no one knows.

We can assume that for OS5 and earlier, all apps need a 68k loader, but those who know for sure aren't allowed to talk :)


The Shadow knows!

RE: Sweet.. but..
abosco @ 2/3/2004 8:13:39 PM #
Nope, the current version of OS 5 can't do native ARM code, only a68k with ARMlets to speed up applications. Native code is one of the main advantages to OS 6.

NX80v + Wifi + BT + T616
RE: Sweet.. but..
helf @ 2/4/2004 12:44:52 PM #
actually os5 units can handle native arm. 99% of the program can be arm.. All you need is a 68k loader apparently.

RE: Sweet.. but..
ardiri @ 2/5/2004 12:38:24 AM #
> Nope, the current version of OS 5 can't do native ARM code, only a68k with ARMlets to speed up applications.

wrong. its totally possible to do 100% ARM native apps - just take a look at the hotsync application, it is 100% ARM. the update program from tapwave was also 100% ARM - its not officially documented; but, it is possible.

Aaron Ardiri
PalmOS Certified Developer


DevPOV @ 2/3/2004 11:02:53 AM #
Well, I'm glad to hear that the dev environments that PalmSource provides are already popular (which ones are those?) Far as I know, CW is the only one they seem to really endorse. And GCC only grudgenly.

And it's interesting that PalmSource is going to "apply those skills to a broad range of computing solutions". Is that "Broad Range" just meaning the OS and some PIMs? Or are they going into another business?

So... Are we actually talking about an ARM compiler?

WareW01f @ 2/3/2004 4:22:29 PM #
Everything on the Eclipse website points to Java dev, but nothing about 'ARM Native' code generation. I could see this acting as an IDE and GCC as the compiler, but that's nothing new. Anyone have any more info on this? (A Java based ARM compiler would be pretty kewl!) Guess we'll see at PalmSource.

RE: So... Are we actually talking about an ARM compiler?
suiciety @ 2/3/2004 8:55:01 PM #
That's not entirely true.

You need to add-on the CDT packages to eclipse which will integrate with PRC-Tools plus the free GCC tools which will allow you to do all your Palm development.

My guess is that PALM has just expanded this framework.

That's what you need to realise about eclipse. You can pretty much develop any language inside as long as there is an add-on for it.

It just happens to be bundled with java development.

hopefully a compiler implemented in a plugin
jnutting @ 2/4/2004 4:17:03 AM #
(these observations come after only a cursory glance over the Eclipse whitepaper, and may or may not be correct/valid/useful)

Actually, it looks like Eclipse can be extended in a couple of different ways... You can write a plugin as a kind of "wrapper" to gcc and the PRC tools as you suggest, or you can implement an ARM-targetted C++ compiler in Java. The advantages of the latter approach are better/easier integration with the rest of the IDE, and platform independence (otherwise PalmSource would need to somehow support gcc and PRC tools for a variety of platforms, and their "wrapper" tools would need to handle possibly divergent gcc output on different platforms, etc...).

Hopefully they've taken the latter approach. I like gcc and the PRC tools, but it's probably time for PalmSource (like both Apple and Microsoft) to provide their own compilers and dev tools, even in the form of plugins for Eclipse, instead of relying on Metroworks and John Marshall to do that work for them. Besides, Eclipse already seems to include a plugin for C++ compilation, so it's probably not too big of a job for PalmSource's own compiler gurus to extend that to target ARM devices.

RE: So... Are we actually talking about an ARM compiler?
MountainLogic @ 2/4/2004 11:42:32 AM #
Eclipse is really just an editor. A nice editor, but just an editor. It does have good hooks to support debugging, etc, but it lacks a compilier. I've used it on and off for non-Palm C/C++ editing and the optional support for C/C++ was good enough the last time I downloaded it.
The complier is not part of Eclipse, that is why they are using GCC. If Metrowerks can support full ARM code I'll probibly stay with them (Hey Ben, having more specific error codes when you forget to impliment a vertual function or screw-up a "." vs. a "->" would be nice). Compilier technology is rather mature and most of the advantages of one C compilier over another tend to be centered on "side" issues such as how good the error messages are or how well the debugger is supported. There is still some room for improvement, such as GCC still does not optimize across files. There may be more differances with C++ compiliers, I'm not sure of how they really stack-up there.

RE: So... Are we actually talking about an ARM compiler?
frauen1 @ 2/4/2004 7:30:58 PM #
Uh, Eclipse is not an editor. It is an IDE framework. It includes editors, and a Java development environment. The CDT adds some editors and interfaces to Makefiles and GDB. You can associate whatever compiler you want (GCC, MS Visual C++, etc.). I've tied Eclipse to PRC-Tools, it works fine. There is a plugin somewhere that lets you debug with GDB and the Palm OS Emulator to make it a richer experience.

I think that PalmSource is releasing their own compilers and/or resource editors and/or debugger hooks to leverage the Eclipse framework. It looks like one of the biggest wins is that they will have to do less work to support Linux- and Mac-based developers in addition to the Windows-based developers. I think it's a real smart move.

(In fact, there is a project in Eclipse called Equinox which is trying to turn Eclipse into a general-purpose framework to run applications. If Palm ported their desktop to this framework...)



Register Register | Login Log in