What's the status of Python and Java on the Mac platform?

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by Monkaaay, Dec 27, 2008.

  1. Monkaaay macrumors 6502

    Monkaaay

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    #1
    Has there been any official word on the future of non-Objective-C languages on the Mac platform? I feel like Apple has really shifted away from Java support and I'm wondering how they'll handle Python, Ruby, and others.
     
  2. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #2
    Well I don't know how recently you mean, but with Leopard, Ruby and Python both have officially supported Cocoa bridges. So there's more support than ever for them. Java support is definitely out though, and I don't see it ever coming back.

     
  3. Monkaaay thread starter macrumors 6502

    Monkaaay

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    #3
    Right, and that's my concern with Python and Ruby. Apple seems to "pull the plug" quickly on these things without a lot of notice. Java support and Carbon come to mind. I'd hate to work on something only to have support for it pulled from under my feet without warning.
     
  4. HiRez macrumors 603

    HiRez

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Western US
    #4
    Yeah, I know what you mean. Python and Ruby are currently on a "more supported" trend, but you're right, that does not guarantee future support at all, especially from the mercurial Apple. Java was on the same track for a while too and became abandoned quickly. Objective-C (and C) and Cocoa are the only truly safe bets, those are not going anywhere anytime soon, as long as OS X is around, and it looks like it will be for along time. I love Python, but for that very reason I'll be sticking with Objective-C for my Mac development. Another reason is that AFAIK, the Python and Ruby bridges are not supported for iPhone development (I'm not even sure the runtimes are available on the iPhone).
     
  5. AlmostThere macrumors 6502a

    #5
    That's always a risk but the good news is that both Python and Ruby come from open source backgrounds - these efforts existed before Apple took official interest and when the fall from favour they will very likely still remain under development. From a business perspective, these also require less work for Apple and fill a gap (a RAD environment) for them.

    Apple haven't really met expectations in terms of keeping OS X a top level Java development platform but I guess they do have to make sacrifices to pursue other areas. Java has a strong corporate and embedded presence, where Apple is not really interested or has their own plans. Java support requires developer time but Apple will only really be playing catch up while they continue to build their own VM and cannot really lead; all the best tools are cross-platform anyway. Maybe with the open-sourcing of Java (and that one bloke managed to get that running on OS X on his own) will convince Apple to join the effort. On the other hand ... work had to get me a new MPB so I could work on Java 6 compatibility :)
     

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