Another interesting article from Joel, this time about REALbasic.

Seems Joel really likes REALbasic b/c RB's syntax is very close to Visual Basic on Windows -- he can *almost* see a future where you code a GUI in Visual Basic and have it, with a few minor UI tweaks to make the app look like a Mac user expects, compile into native Mac code with REALbasic. I alluded to the similarity yesterday -- RB seems to differ from VB sometimes just for the sake of being different. If RB had a "strict VB compatibility mode", perhaps you'd be better off. Behind these GUIs would be crossplatform C++ doing the heavy lifting.

Fairly interesting article, but it left me with a few questions.

* Does C++ give that much of an advantge behind the scenes because it doesn't garbage collect? Why not use Java for your xplat heavy lifting code?
* What about COM makes it that much better than opening a pipe between the GUI and the engine?
* How tough would it be now to write an RB to VB.NET converter? I've been wondering about that for a while (what, two days? :^D).

Seems we're coming at a relatively similar question from not-so-similar directions. He's wanting to get VC++ & VB to run on Mac; I'm looking for a good xplat way to approach making good applications from any direction (ie, I'd be happy to use RB if it mean quicker apps). I think the reason there is simple -- he's probably got a few "man-years" in legacy code that uses VC++ and COM; I've got very few personal projects (I can count them on my left index finger) that I couldn't rewrite in a couple of days in whatever language.

I think we both agree that Win + Mac == 99.994% of the desktop market. I don't know that kicking Linux to the curb for the purposes of this discussion is a bad idea for the time being (but that's next).