Thursday, January 26, 2006

Symbian vs. Java MIDP Development

Well, in the next day or two, we will finally be adding our first Java client that can access Jellingspot Data Server, in particular, it's a client app for the Nokia 6230i. Man, it's a real pain sometimes to code in Java. Frank, the main developer of Jellingspot, is a Java programming god ... he REALLY hates when he has to close his IntelliJ IDEA and open a C++ IDE like Visual Studio or C++ builder, etc. Not only are the IDEs straight suck'n for this langauge (I understand, it's just simply very difficult to have cool code-completion features, refactoring, etc... in C++), he just always forgets something since C++ is a lower-level language per say (he loves that trash collector in Java).

However, there is an "upside" to this pain. While he can crank out Java apps like some sweatshop worker, the limits on many Java enabled mobile devices really sucks. The Symbian/C++ Jellingspot client app is about 65kb ... and this includes all service support. Our Java client is now larger, and will only support the Adpusher and Textboradcast services on Jellingspot for the time being. Why? Because unlike Symbian where we can call native components for directories, folders, etc... we can't do that in Java. To make fServer work on the 6230 (which probably will not work on this phone), we'll have to write the entire GUI .. file icons, folder icons, and then store the downloaded files somewhere ... but since Java on this phone doesn't support storing data on the "native" disk ... we are going to have to store everything in memory or something (if we even decide to waste our time on it for this one phone). Should be fun.

I wish Sun would force, AT GUN POINT, phone makers to install EVERYTHING of the MIDP 2.0 spec -- not just the JNI layers they choose. That'd make life much nicer. Uff....

[ Technorati Tags: Java MIDP Jellingspot
Symbian Nokia ]


Anonymous said...

Sun can't force anyone in the phone industry especially not Nokia. The problem is with the phone itself and Nokia in recent years has been really stupid in the rate of Java progress it has taken. However, Vodafone the worlds largest cellular provider has come up with a very strong spec called VFX that includes most of the features you will need in Java (such as files, 3D, SVG etc...) so hopefully Nokia will be pressured enough to get their act together.

David Stennett said...

Yeah, good point ... it's good that Soney-Ericsson is starting to get with the program -- those client apps will be coming soon frm outside once we get ahold of one of those phones. Thanks for the info about VFX ... I'll look into it. It'd be nice to have support for all of the different JNI layers.

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