TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Jun 96 Factory Floor
Volume Number:12
Issue Number:6
Column Tag:From The Factory Floor

The CodeWarrior IDE

By Dave Mark

This month, we’re going to talk to the folks responsible for the CodeWarrior IDE. By the time you read this, Metrowerks will have shipped their ninth release of CodeWarrior. In that time, the IDE has changed significantly. However, there is still a lot of growing room left. This interview focuses on some of the changes that have already taken place, and offers a glimpse into the future of the IDE.

Dave: Where do you see the IDE going from here? What kind of changes are coming?

Berardino: The IDE has come a long way in the past two years, but we feel that a lot remains to be done. The main goal for the near future is to improve the IDE’s ability to handle large projects involving multiple developers. Also, with the growth of object-oriented languages, we’ve added an object browser to the IDE which shipped with CW/8 and will go final with CW/9 - but that’s just the first release. Many more improvements are planned in that area.

Many complex projects involve the building of multiple final binaries, which is usually not easily supported in a project-based development environment. We plan to address this problem through support for intelligent nested projects, along with support for multiple output targets from the same project. The build system will also be improved in order to better support compiler chaining, where one compiler’s output is passed along to another compiler before generating a final object file (yacc is a good example of this). Source code control will be addressed by adding integrated support for our CodeManager system, which is the MacOS version of Microsoft’s SourceSafe.

Dan: We’re just finishing the first release of the source code browser. It’s really helpful for navigating and editing source code, classes in particular. You can browse the full class hierarchy, or open a separate browser on an individual class. Also, you can see all the types, globals, constants, enums, functions, structs and macros in your program, and jump instantly to their declarations.

By the way, the browser is driven by information generated by compilers. We’ve documented the format of this as part of our plug-in compiler API, so anyone who makes a drop-in compiler can support our browser.

Dave: How will nested projects work? Can you give us an example?

Berardino: Nested projects will allow users to encapsulate their files into distinct subprojects that are automatically tracked and updated, so that when the user issues a make from the topmost project, the build system will check to see if any of the subprojects need updating and will build those first, updating any new dependencies as they are created. This becomes more and more important in today’s world of component software, where an application is made up of many separate plug-ins. The CodeWarrior IDE is a good example of this. Right now we have over 50 projects that are used to generate just the Macintosh-specific tools. Currently, we use AppleScripts to automate this build. With nested projects, we could have one master project that had as its subprojects all the tool projects, which in turn could have subprojects which generate any libraries that the tools need. With a single make issued at the top level, we would build all 30 or so output files without any further user interaction.

Dave: Tell me about “multiple target” support. Will I be able to choose between 68K, PPC, or fat? Will I be able to selectively bind source files to specific targets?

Berardino: Multiple targets is a feature that many Macintosh users have been asking for. Today, building a MacOS application involves generating two distinct applications from the same source base, one for 68K users and one for PPC users, and then merging them together into a final binary. Currently the only way to support this is through the use of two distinct projects, or to switch the target from 68K to PPC, which will strip out the object code you just finished compiling. What we plan to do is to have multiple targets with persistence, where you can have many different targets, such as 68K debugging, 68K release, PPC optimized, etc. When you switch to a different target you don’t lose all your current compiled files. Switching back won’t force you to recompile all your sources again. We also plan to support binding of files to a specific target, which will allow users to have their 68K libraries ignored by the PPC target and vice versa, or have certain files only compiled for an x86 target and ignored by MacOS targets, which is useful for user interface-specific source code.

Dave: How will CodeManager be integrated into the IDE?

Berardino: We already support CKID resources in the editor. A future release will have the CKID state visible from the project window, and will provide all tools which are necessary for managing SourceSafe databases. These tools will allow users to track different versions of their source code without having to leave the IDE. We will also be providing a file/folder compare tool in the IDE, which will help users to determine what changed between releases.

Dave: Do you plan to support having multiple projects open at once? What about supporting threads in the IDE?

Berardino: Having multiple projects open at once is very useful with an IDE that supports subprojects, because it allows users to work in two projects at once. Full support for threads will allow users to be compiling in one project while simultaneously editing a file in another project. With the coming of Copland and its preemptive threads, users will see less of a performance impact from using threads than exists with today’s cooperative threads. We are very excited by the performance that Copland can bring to MacOS with its microkernel architecture and fully native file system. Development tools are typically I/O-bound. A typical compile/link cycle can spend 40-60% of its time doing file I/O, so any improvements to the file system will translate directly into increased compiler/linker speed. Having a fully preemptive microkernel will allow us to add features that are impossible with the current MacOS architecture.

Dave: How will the browser change? Will the level of integration between the browser and the rest of the environment change?

Dan: Over time, we’re planning to extend the browser in a number of ways. The goals are to simplify the task of programming and to create more powerful tools for analyzing large, complex programs.

One important area is to automate some of the routine aspects of object-oriented programming. So, you’ll be able to create new classes and members and be spared the hassle of creating new header and source files and filling in all the boilerplate code. And the browser will handle keeping member function declarations and bodies in sync.

Many users have asked for a graphical view of the class hierarchy, so that’s something we plan to address. Another area is to allow browsing of dynamic as well as static relationships in programs. We took a browser-oriented approach with the user interface of the Metrowerks debugger. For example, you can browse through lists of local variables, global variables, types and processes. We’ll extend this by adding support for browsing object instances and by supporting object-oriented breakpoints. The latter allows you to stop a program when any method of a particular object instance is entered, or when any method of a particular class is entered. When you are debugging an object-oriented program you’re often thinking in terms of classes and instances, so the environment should let you work that way.

Dave: What kind of plug-ins will be supported? Why would someone want to write their own plug-in?

Berardino: Almost any type of plug-in can be written, but the one major limitation in today’s CodeWarrior make system is that we can’t easily support one plug-in’s output being fed to another plug-in. The new build system we’re planning will allow arbitrary chaining of plug-ins, so users can more easily support compilers (such as yacc) which generate C source files from their input files, which could then be chained to the C/C++ compiler, which would generate the final output file. A post-link phase is also planned, which would allow users to write custom plug-ins that could take the final application and do post-link processing on this. Good examples of possible post-linkers are: a tool that would merge PEF containers; a tool which would create a fat application from two input applications; or perhaps a tool that performed optimizations on the final generated binary.

 
AAPL
$102.50
Apple Inc.
+0.25
MSFT
$45.43
Microsoft Corpora
+0.55
GOOG
$571.60
Google Inc.
+2.40

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Skype 6.19.0.450 - Voice-over-internet p...
Skype allows you to talk to friends, family and co-workers across the Internet without the inconvenience of long distance telephone charges. Using peer-to-peer data transmission technology, Skype... Read more
VueScan 9.4.41 - Scanner software with a...
VueScan is a scanning program that works with most high-quality flatbed and film scanners to produce scans that have excellent color fidelity and color balance. VueScan is easy to use, and has... Read more
Cloud 3.0.0 - File sharing from your men...
Cloud is simple file sharing for the Mac. Drag a file from your Mac to the CloudApp icon in the menubar and we take care of the rest. A link to the file will automatically be copied to your clipboard... Read more
LibreOffice 4.3.1.2 - Free Open Source o...
LibreOffice is an office suite (word processor, spreadsheet, presentations, drawing tool) compatible with other major office suites. The Document Foundation is coordinating development and... Read more
SlingPlayer Plugin 3.3.20.505 - Browser...
SlingPlayer is the screen interface software that works hand-in-hand with the hardware inside the Slingbox to make your TV viewing experience just like that at home. It features an array of... Read more
Get Lyrical 3.8 - Auto-magically adds ly...
Get Lyrical auto-magically add lyrics to songs in iTunes. You can choose either a selection of tracks, or the current track. Or turn on "Active Tagging" to get lyrics for songs as you play them.... Read more
Viber 4.2.2 - Send messages and make cal...
Viber lets you send free messages and make free calls to other Viber users, on any device and network, in any country! Viber syncs your contacts, messages and call history with your mobile device,... Read more
Cocktail 7.6 - General maintenance and o...
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets you clean, repair and optimize your Mac. It is a powerful digital toolset that helps hundreds of thousands of Mac users around the world get... Read more
LaunchBar 6.1 - Powerful file/URL/email...
LaunchBar is an award-winning productivity utility that offers an amazingly intuitive and efficient way to search and access any kind of information stored on your computer or on the Web. It provides... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Rhonna Designs Magic (Photography)
Rhonna Designs Magic 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Photography Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Want to sprinkle *magic* on your photos? With RD Magic, you can add colors, filters, light leaks, bokeh, edges,... | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: August 25-29, 2014
Shiny Happy App Reviews   | Read more »
Qube Kingdom – Tips, Tricks, Strategies,...
Qube Kingdom is a tower defense game from DeNA. You rally your troops – magicians, archers, knights, barbarians, and others – and fight against an evil menace looking to dominate your kingdom of tiny squares. Planning a war isn’t easy, so here are a... | Read more »
Qube Kingdom Review
Qube Kingdom Review By Nadia Oxford on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: KIND OF A SQUARE KINGDOMUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Qube Kingdom has cute visuals, but it’s a pretty basic tower defense game at heart.   | Read more »
Fire in the Hole Review
Fire in the Hole Review By Rob Thomas on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: WALK THE PLANKUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Seafoam’s Fire in the Hole looks like a bright, 8-bit throwback, but there’s not enough booty to... | Read more »
Alien Creeps TD is Now Available Worldwi...
Alien Creeps TD is Now Available Worldwide Posted by Ellis Spice on August 29th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Dodo Master Review
Dodo Master Review By Jordan Minor on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: NEST EGGiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Dodo Master is tough but fair, and that’s what makes it a joy to play.   | Read more »
Motorsport Manager Review
Motorsport Manager Review By Lee Hamlet on August 29th, 2014 Our Rating: :: MARVELOUS MANAGEMENTUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Despite its depth and sense of tactical freedom, Motorsport Manager is one of the most... | Read more »
Motorsport Manager – Beginner Tips, Tric...
The world of Motorsport management can be an unforgiving and merciless one, so to help with some of the stress that comes with running a successful race team, here are a few hints and tips to leave your opponents in the dust. | Read more »
CalPal Update Brings the App to 2.0, Add...
CalPal Update Brings the App to 2.0, Adds Lots of New Stuff Posted by Ellis Spice on August 29th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Save $50 on the 2.5GHz Mac mini, on sale for...
B&H Photo has the 2.5GHz Mac mini on sale for $549.99 including free shipping. That’s $50 off MSRP, and B&H will also include a free copy of Parallels Desktop software. NY sales tax only. Read more
Save up to $300 on an iMac with Apple refurbi...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished iMacs available for up to $300 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. These are the best prices on... Read more
The Rise of Phablets
Carlisle & Gallagher Consulting Group, a businesses and technology consulting firm focused solely on the financial services industry, has released an infographic depicting the convergence of... Read more
Bad Driver Database App Allows Good Drivers t...
Bad Driver Database 1.4 by Facile Group is a new iOS and Android app that lets users instantly input and see how many times a careless, reckless or just plain stupid driver has been added to the... Read more
Eddy – Cloud Music Player for iPhone/iPad Fre...
Ukraine based CapableBits announces the release of Eddy, its tiny, but smart and powerful cloud music player for iPhone and iPad that allows users to stream or download music directly from cloud... Read more
A&D Medical Launches Its WellnessConnecte...
For consumers and the healthcare providers and loved ones who care for them, A&D Medical, a leader in connected health and biometric measurement devices and services, has launched its... Read more
Anand Lal Shimpi Retires From AnandTech
Anand Lal Shimpi, whose AnandTech Website is famous for its meticulously detailed and thoroughgoing reviews and analysis, is packing it in. Lal Shimpi, who founded the tech site at age 14 in 1997,... Read more
2.5GHz Mac mini, Apple refurbished, in stock...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 2.5GHz Mac minis available for $509, $90 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is included, and shipping is free. Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999,...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Read more
Labor Day Weekend MacBook Pro sale; 15-inch m...
B&H Photo has the new 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $125 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. They’ll also include free copies of Parallels Desktop... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
Senior Event Manager, *Apple* Retail Market...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global event strategy. Delivering an overarching brand story; in-store, Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.