Xray Vision

By Daniel Drew Turner  |  Posted 2006-10-26 Print this article Print

"As a developer, whatever makes my programming life easier, Im for," said Rich Siegel, CEO and president of Bedford, Mass.-based Bare Bones Software. "Xray looks like its first-class," Siegel said. "Its ability to analyze runtime behavior of an application dynamically should lead to better software products," he added.
Siegel has used the performance tuning products currently provided by Apple, including Shark and other memory debuggers, but he said he could see an instant gain in using Xray.
He also pointed to code signing, a newly unveiled security feature, as being significant. Code signing, Siegel said, is a two-step measure: First, it can verify that a piece of software was produced by the purported source, and second, that the code has not been subsequently altered. "This means that when you run a piece of software with a digital signature," he said, "you can trust it." "At the user level, there are some really interesting APIs," Siegel said, pointing out Core Animation, a user interface animation feature that could enable developers to add advanced, real-time motion effects to their applications. Click here to read about how Apples Leopard server will support the Ruby on Rails application development environment. "These improvements to the operating system and developer tools affect everyone," Siegel said. "Leopard is, so far, a release for developers," said Wil Shipley, CEO of Seattle, Wash.-based Delicious Monster, the maker of the cataloging utility Delicious Library. "Apple has re-thought some of their core technologies, the ones that developers use every day, and made them simultaneously faster, easier to use, and more powerful," he said. "Specifically," Shipley said, "Objective-C 2.0, with garbage collection, built-in enumeration, and automatic class property generation, is the only major revision to Objective-C since NeXT started using it in 1989." Garbage collection is an automated method of managing memory requirements of applications. Without it, programmers have to manually allot system memory for their applications, then make sure manually that the application releases the memory once its no longer needed. Memory management errors can cause applications to crash. "Its huge to developers both for the new features it offers but also because it signals a sea change for Apple: Objective-C is their language, and they can do with it as they please," Shipley said. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis on Apple in the enterprise.


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