RealBasic vs. Revolution

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by Les Kern, Sep 10, 2005.

  1. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    Alabama
    #1
    I've been writing in RealBasic for a while. I'm not a code-head, and it's not a bad dev platform at all. I even started a company and have another coder writing the db for one of our apps.
    At work I am going to Utah for advanced training for an SIS, and part of the training involves using Runtime Revolution . I bought it ($800.00 for the full package!!) and looked over the video tutorials. The books I got with them are perhaps the finest manuals I have ever seen for any application. It seems WAY easier than RealBasic.
    My question is: Does anyone here have any real insight on comparing these two dev apps?
     
  2. iindigo macrumors 6502a

    iindigo

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #2
    Well, being someone who's tried REALBasic, Revolution, and Cocoa, I'd say to drop both and try learning Obj-C/Cocoa. Cocoa has many, many more perks than the other two and once you grasp the basic concepts is pretty easy to learn. Also, I've found that Cocoa applications feel a lot more "native" and clean than REALBasic applications.

    I got tired of RB's major limitations for really basic things - for example, no support for getting a movie's position/running time in minutes (standard in Cocoa), no native WebKit support, no support for images in textfields, no fontpanel spellcheck dictionary or services support, etc. or half-baked support, as is shown in its lousy toolbar class. Ultimately I've found Cocoa to much more gratifying.

    As for Revolution, it may have changed, but last time I tried it, it didn't use Aqua but rather its own interface. This is a major putoff for me. I want my apps to look like OS X apps, not some lame Java concoction.
     
  3. Les Kern thread starter macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    Alabama
    #3
    I'm a "newbie" when it come to coding. I need cross-platform support too.
    RealBasic 2005, if you've used it, and RunRev (which seems easier) make pretty slick and "real" looking Mac and Windows apps.
    Is Obj-C/Cocoa easy enough to use for someone who knows little about actual coding? Are there "packages" that have tutorials? What of X-code?
    For me to drop either one, it will have to be a no-brainer.
    Thanks for all your input. I appreciate it.
     
  4. iindigo macrumors 6502a

    iindigo

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    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #4
    I agree that the apps look "real" enough, but they just don't look like a native app should. I'll demonstrate with a screenshot in a bit.

    I personally had a little trouble learning Cocoa, but it's really not all that hard. And while there's not premade tutorial packages for Cocoa, there's enough tutorials between Apple's dev site and the net to choke a horse.
     
  5. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    Jan 18, 2005
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    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #5
    sorry but from an idiots (me) point of view i thought this was going to be a comparison between that Real media player and the Nintendo Rev... dont hurt me!
     
  6. iindigo macrumors 6502a

    iindigo

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #6
    Here's the screenshot I promised. Not the best example, but it will do for this.

    [​IMG]

    The top one is designed in REALBasic, and the lower one is designed in Xcode Tools' (what you use to program Cocoa) Interface Builder. As you can see there are quite a few differences and that the lower one has a nicer, cleaner, more native feel to it.

    I'd also like to point out that Cocoa programmers get the toolbar customization sheet for free whenever they use NSToolbar, whereas RB users have to code in their own.

    But hey, whatever turns your crank. I'd just like to see more *truly* native-feeling Cocoa apps out there than there currently are.
     

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  7. caveman_uk Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #7
    In the past I bought the previous two major versions of RealBasic and I've written some stuff using it but I won't be paying any more money to Real Software. My recent work has been in Cocoa and I won't pretend it's as easy as real basic because it isn't. Cocoa does have some definite advantages.

    1) The latest mac developments are supported either in Cocoa (please?) or Carbon (if you must). Real basic is always playing catch up.
    2) RealBasic is a subscription model.
    3) Real Software don't fix the annoying bugs. They're only interested in new features and supporting other OS's
    4) Real Mac look and feel. RealBasic stuff looks like realbasic stuff.

    There is a learning curve for objective-C and Cocoa and when you look back at your code from even a few months back you go 'why on earth did I do it like that?' because you learn much better ways of doing things but I'd say it's isn't that hard for anyone that's had a half-decent background in programming.

    I have no experience of revolution so I can't comment on it. Is it cross-platform?

    If you MUST have cross platform code then it's either realbasic or one of the cross platform GUI toolkits (such as Qt) and C++. I guess Java's an option too. Cocoa/Objective-C is a Mac Only pursuit right now ;)
     
  8. iindigo macrumors 6502a

    iindigo

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    Jul 22, 2002
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    San Francisco, CA
    #8
    Well said. Another thing that I'd forgotten to mention is the fact that it's so very annoying to have to constantly keep buying extensions and classes to do various things in RB that Cocoa could have done for completely free.
     
  9. Les Kern thread starter macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    Alabama
    #9

    Money isn't much of an object to me. I need cross-platform, easy to use dev tools. I think that's what turned me on to RB. RB, for my uses is fine, as my SW isn't all that sophisticated... a nice GUI and use of a DB. As for the pics at the top of this thread, I see little difference between tham that would drive me to re-train my limited intelligence to learn Cocoa... and the cross-platform thingee.
    It's no secret what I'm making. If you feel like it, Go to my public folder HERE and DL the CS1.0.zip and see why RB and RR might be my best bet.
    It's a REAL early build, and a lot of the functionality isn't in this one... And due to that I still have time to move to Revolution.
     
  10. caveman_uk Guest

    caveman_uk

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    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #10
    Yeah, what with the Valentina SQL stuff, the Einhugur classes and Monkeywhatevers it can work out quite expensive to get what Apple gives away for nothing...
     
  11. caveman_uk Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #11
    Just had a look. That's a pretty nice GUI. I know nothing about baseball but it looks good... ;)

    I won't show what I'm working on right now. It probs won't be ready until Christmas.... :(
     
  12. Les Kern thread starter macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    Alabama
    #12
    Our is pretty much ready now, but we have to finish the schema and add some "secret" extras... which won't be seen till after it's released. This is my very first effort in writing an app, and maybe it was too big of a job. Most folks start off with making a button say "Click Me!" or something like that. And baseball is nothing but stats, stats stats. And their all inter-related. Like, "give me this hitter's batting average against a left handed pitcher with runners in scoring position during home games only. Nightmarish.
     
  13. jamdr macrumors 6502a

    jamdr

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #13
    Runtime Revolution is very much like a semi-modern version of HyperCard, which I've used extensively in the past. I have played around with Revolution, but I never bought it. I also have a lot of experience with Realbasic and "real" languages like C++ and Java. However, I've never bothered to learn Obj-C, mainly because it doesn't have much use outside of Mac development and I'm a strong supporter of cross-platform development. Here are my thoughts:

    I said Rev is like a semi-modern version of HyperCard because there is still a lot of things it doesn't support. Even if right now you are only creating very limited software, you don't know what you will need in the future and it would be nice to use a language that can grow with you. However, in general Rev is the easiest and quickest way to build cross-platform apps, especially for non-programmers like yourself. I personally love the stack model of development, but Rev is far too limited for what I need to do.

    Realbasic is definitely a step up from Rev, but there are still many, many things it can't do. And I'm not talking about obscure, low-level things that you would never care about, but basic things that all Mac developers are going to want to be able to do at some point. Like someone else already pointed out, toolbars are very poorly implemented and there are a lot of frustrating bugs that you have to work around, making your code unnecessarily bloated. However, the network support is very intuitive and easy to use, which could come in handy.

    For many years I found it difficult to learn real programming languages and never really got the hang of it until I got to college and took into cs classes. However, maybe I was just too young and could have learned on my own if I was older. Obj-C is useless for cross-platform develpoment so you probably shouldn't bother learning it. I know a lot of Mac developers will disagree with me, but I think Java is becomming an inceasingly viable language to build cross-platform apps. Swing doesn't look half bad on OS X if you know how to use it correctly and it works even better on Windows. You could also bother learning Cocoa-Java, which would let you build native Cocoa interfaces for your otherwise pure-Java apps. I also truly believe Java is much easier to learn than any C-variety language. It is, after all, what virtually all intoductory cs courses are taught in.

    Good luck and let us know if you have any specific questions about one of the languages.
     
  14. ArchiMark macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2003
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #14
    Any Updates on RB vs Revolution???

    Found this old thread which relates to my consideration of either RB or Revolution....

    So wondered if anyone has used current versions of RB or Rev and could comment on them (given the fact that both apps have been updated since the previous posts here)???

    I don't have lots of time for this, would like to get into something that is not too difficult to learn....have dabble here and there with Basic, C, C++ and read a few books over the past few years, but haven't gotten too far with any of them due to lack of time.

    However, from this effort I do have a pretty good overview of what this is all about, but now need to jump in to one environment and start using it regularly for awhile as I have some more time now than before....

    So, would you guys consider RB or Rev a reasonable approach for a guy like me??? Or should I consider _____ ????

    Thanks,

    Mark
     
  15. MerryOtter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2008
    #15
    Revolution 2.9 was just released. To get an idea of what it's like, there was a "first look" article posted over at MacNN.

    http://www.macnn.com/articles/08/04/07/first.look.revolution.29/

    The main thing to understand about Revolution is that it's a very straightforward language based on English (like HyperTalk and AppleScript), and fairly high-level in that you can accomplish a lot of tasks in just one statement that would require lots of code in other languages like C++.

    You are able to create true standlone applications for Mac OS X, but also Mac Classic, Windows Vista/XP/98, and now with 2.9, Linux. Anything you write will adopt the native look-and-feel of the host operating system automatically, without you having to do any extra work.

    The software has made a lot of strides since this thread first began. For example you can now embed web browsers in your stacks/applications (a complaint of a previous poster). Graphics and other aspects of the software are much improved.

    As for whether it's right for you... I think you're like a lot of people who are intelligent and inventive but don't have the time to ramp up to speed on all the minutia of a complex language and the innards of the operating system it's running on.

    If you want to create a video-editing application you need that kind of low-level control and you should probably learn XCode. If you want to get things done -- like crunching through server logs, putting together a database front-end, automating certain kinds of file processing, or writing a game -- then you should definitely look into Revolution.

    You can get a 30-day demo at http://www.runrev.com
     
  16. shaggy.mac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2008
    #16
    RealBasic is good for people who need something done fast with little or no time to learn a language.

    I was a consultant and the client needed something done within 24 hours. He has a very simple need and I was able to whip up a solution using Real Basic. He later wanted the same solution for a Windows machine and I was able to quickly compile and hand him a Windows binary.

    As his needs grew, REALBasic wasn't going to be a primary solution because the work was getting much more involved. So I re-did the entire Mac end using Cocoa / Obj-C and the Windows end was done using C# / .Net.

    REALBasic is a very good tool for people who are hobby programmers but it becomes difficult to do somethings that Cocoa API's can do for free.

    I recommend learning Cocoa / Obj-C and REALBasic and learn when one solution is better than the other.

    --
    REAL Software, if you're looking at this thread then where is the Cocoa support you guys promised more than 2 years ago?
    --
     
  17. lazydog macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Location:
    Cramlington, UK
    #17
    I can comment on RealBasic, I've been using it quite a bit recently. The criticisms made of RealBasic back in 2005 still apply now in my opinion. I would say RealBasic is a good but far from being excellent. So, I'm definitely going to take a look at Qt for my next cross platform project. What really spoils RealBasic for me is that they don't seem to either fix, expand or enhance the set of visual controls from release to release. Some of the ui controls are very basic in their capability. Also, the interface designer lacks in features and has annoying bugs. I hope i haven't put you off it though. For the right project and person it can be a good development environment.

    b e n
     
  18. ArchiMark macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2003
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #18
    THANKS, MerryOtter, shagg.mac, & lazydog for your thoughful comments!

    Don't know why I didn't seem them until today for some unknown reason....

    :rolleyes:
     

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