The Power of Multithreaded
Applications, Handheld-style"> eWEEK.com: So why are you continuing to develop and support Palm OS 5 [now called Garnet]? Slotnick: We have a big installed base of Palm OS 5 users now, and they love the platform. Theyve taken it in many different directions, everything from wearable devices to factory floor automation to telephones. The licensees have been very creative with what they can do with the foundation of OS 5.OS 6 is designed to make much more sophisticated and diverse devices of the future. OS 5 is preferred for devices for today. We expect the transition to take a few years. Cook: And look at all the award winning products on OS 5! eWEEK.com: What about application compatibility from OS 5 to OS 6? Slotnick: We provide forward compatibility with OS 5 applications; we continue to support older programs. We developed a thing called PACE, Palm Application Compatibility Environment, when we moved from OS 4 to OS 5. The move from 4 to 5 was from [Motorola] 64K to ARM. Pace was an emulator, and it enabled 64K applications to run on ARM. As part of Sahara, we brought forward PACE, and we continue to support 64K apps [on OS 6, a k a Cobalt]. On top of that we have a multiprocessing, multithreaded operating system with true ARM-based memory protection and hardware assist. We have frameworks for security and multimedia. It has a stream-based, socket API so developers can use standard APIs. Because its multiprocessing and multithreaded you can run multiple network applications simultaneously. [Slotnick then began to describe what he demonstrated in the morning keynote session.] We have a new media player thats part of the product. We had a DAT-based movie running, it was hooked to the device, and a simulator running on a PC, using a standard reference platform with radio hardware and software. I called up the simulator, started the movie, and called a guy in front of the PC. He picked up the phone, while the movie ran in the background. While we were talking, we popped up a stock ticker in front of the application. So we had three things running in parallel. Next Page: New Devices, New Applications
With Palm OS 5, everyone knows how to work with it. There is a little bit of a learning curve to take advantage of the ARM-native development on OS 6. But now you can write an entire application native in OS 6.