REALbasic and Cocoa Ruminations

There are hints from posters in the RB forums that they think that when Real Software releases REALbasic with Cocoa support that everything will be awesome and that it will be the second coming of sliced bread.  I hate to burst their bubble.

In their June newsletter, Real Software said that Cocoa was taking longer than they anticipated and would happen sometime this summer.  I read this as “not happening in R3.”

Before you get your panties in wad, the switchover from Carbon to Cocoa is ugly.  It’s not simple nor straightforward.  I predict that it will take at minimum two releases before it’s really usable and perhaps three before you can really release apps with it.  I say this not as someone who’s trying to bag on the engineers doing the work, I say this because it’s that big of a deal.

If RS only had to deal with Macintosh OS X it would be easier.  In fact, it would probably already be done.  However, since REALbasic is all about cross-platform, anything that’s changing for Cocoa will also affect Windows and Linux applications because all controls for Cocoa need to be updated so it’s a seamless as possible for those platforms.

Real Software is correctly taking their time with Cocoa support because it needs to be done correctly.  If not, we might as well start looking for another development platform.  It’s worth it for them to not rush Cocoa support and to get it done properly so that when we finally start using it it ‘just works’.  That still means that we (the developers using it) will find many, many issues that they’ll have to fix, tweak, and modify.

So be patient and be understanding.  RS has been planning for this transition for years now.  Will it be painful?  Probably.  Will there be outrage and indignation from certain segments of the community?  Count on it.  Will 3rd party controls, plugins and classes break?  Absolutely.  Will Cocoa be worth the wait?  I have no doubt because Apple has said that Carbon will go away.  And that you can take to the bank.

1 thought on “REALbasic and Cocoa Ruminations

Comments are closed.