Apr 15, 2009

Development under Mac OS X

Since long time already I have been not posting here... :( So, let's try to reload this blog...

With this post I am going to start a series of posts about development under Mac OS X. I will post about something I find interesting, difficult to implement, and some tricks I developed or just googled. :) Hope it helps to someone or at least it will help me to order my experience on that field.

Well, let's start from the environment.
I consider myself to be an experienced Windows and Linux developer. This stuff I do for many years already.
With Mac I met about five(!) moths ago. I mean, I knew it exists and I even worked briefly on it some years ago, but the truth is that, most of my projects were related to Windows or Linux.

I met Mac and that was love at first sight ;) As soon as I started to work on it I immediately suffered from the filling that I want to start an application development project under Mac and use it in my daily work... really!

As the hardware I use a new MacBook Pro, 15''

The only thing I can say is - WOW! It is a fucking amazing piece of hardware! Apple did a terrific job on this one.
I am just in love with the new trackpad device and the new keyboard of MacBook. No more words... Just get this laptop and enjoy!

BTW, I still do a lot of Linux development. In order to continue to do that on my Mac I use VMware Fusion. It works like a charm. One screen is a full screened Fedora 10 guest, another is a MS Windows XP guest and all under control of Mac OS X. ;)

The OS I am using is Mac OS X Leopard.
As the development environment I decided to use XCode (v. 3.1.2). Well, I am a bit disappointed with XCode and I tell you why. Mainly because of two thinks I see missing.
  1. A terrible SVN support. For example, I didn't find a way to set SVN properties on files. Also SVN plug-in sometimes living its own live and could be doing something, which blocks all version control operations on files in XCode. I didn't find a better way to just stop that plug-in by restarting XCode.
  2. No way to define custom formating rules. Formating preferences are very weak: a couple of checkboxes and that's it... If you do Objective-C development, then in a couple of weeks you will used to default formating and syntax coloring XCode does. But anyway, I would prefer to have a bit more flexible formating settings.
I think XCode is a very new and fresh product and Apple is developing it very fast (you can tell that from new thinks you get every new release). So I believe we will see soon a strong competitor to MS Visual Studio and to Eclipse. So far I would say MS VS is the best, at least for C++ development.

Anyway I would give a big plus to XCode and the best mark just for its very good integration with Objective-C and Cocoa. In combination with Interface Builder, which is by the way just the best GUI builder I have ever seen, XCode does all you need for application development.

James Bond will return... I mean, I will continue posting on that subject ;)