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Developing on the Palm

I'm asking this as a hobbyist, for what ever that's worth.

What's the best route, in various opinion, for developing software for a PalmPilot/PDA?  I've looked at the free tools, but (and maybe it's just me) they're rather unclear on how to install.  Does anyone recommend biting the bullet and buying CodeWarrior for Palm OS?  Are there any free tools I'm missing, tools that Palm doesn't mention?

I'm just fishing for opinions and sage advice, so any of those are welcome. :)

Andrew Burton
Tuesday, January 6, 2004

Codewarrior is crap.

Unfortunately, I have to use this software to do some development.  If there were free but hard to install alternatives for my platform, I'd use them.

Almost Anonymous
Tuesday, January 6, 2004

GCC really isn't that bad to set up. There's even some free GUI tools, although editing the resource files by hand is pretty easy. Here's a link that may help:

Rob Warner
Tuesday, January 6, 2004

For C/C++, GCC and CodeWarrier. For Java and VB, SuperWaba and AppForge plus some very careful programming will reduce UI response latency and bloatness. Many people in the waba/AppForge camp knows C++ programming extensively to ensure they can connect to the palm "dock" or any strange devices. Many libraries (encryption, math, 3rd party peripherals like scanners and printers) are packaged as C++ libraries although AppForge is pretty responsive about translating them for their AppForge product.

Li-fan Chen
Tuesday, January 6, 2004

Check out Pocket Studio

Looks like a Delphi-Like RAD tool for the PalmOS

Tuesday, January 6, 2004

Codewarrior's pretty good, IMHO.  Designed from the ground up for embedded development.

To make life easy on yourself, check out the developer forums:

Also, the Resource Pavilion @ palmsource is full of very handy and very necessary downloads & tools.

Lally Singh
Tuesday, January 6, 2004

I started out using the gcc toolset, and it works reasonably well, but it can be fiddly to setup.

I ended up buying Codewarrior and haven't really had any problems with it. The UI is a little bit quirky, but it compiles pretty quickly and generally works ok.

(My decision to buy Codewarrior, btw, was driven by the need to develop for the Symbol SPT series of Palm based scanners. At the time the gcc toolset didn't support that; Symbol only had libraries for use with Codewarrior, so I had no choice).

Andrew Lighten
Tuesday, January 6, 2004

You could also go way out on a limb and take a look at Pocket Smalltalk[1]. I've never used it, but I find the idea of Smalltalk on a PDA kinda cool. And people have written games in it, so it must perform decently.


Chris Tavares
Wednesday, January 7, 2004

You may want to try It's a Tcl/Tk interp for the Palm and will allow you to create apps quicly.

Philippe Back
Wednesday, January 7, 2004

I vote for CodeWarrior too.  It's much easier to use it than the GCC-based toolchain.  I used it for three years.

Although CodeWarrior is the best serious development tool for the Palm, it's not up to the standards of Windows tools by Borland and Microsoft.  The IDE is merely ok.  They have more bugs in both the IDE and the compiler than I've seen in Windows compilers.  For example, in CodeWarrior 7.0 I found a whopper of a bug: initializing an array of objects didn't call the default constructor of each object.  I showed it to Metrowerks, and they said they'll only fix it in the next version.  (They did, but that took several months).

Wednesday, January 7, 2004

I purchased a pretty cool and very reasonably priced product called PDAT PDA Toolbox just to experiment with PDA Development.  It doesn't require a runtime like some of the others and makes small executables, kind of reminds me of an Access like tool for PDA's.

Monday, January 12, 2004

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