WTK For Mac OS X???


I got this love hate relationship with my Mac. (Similar to the relationship I have with Maven.) It’s the most beautiful computing device on the planet but to do simple things sometimes trips me up. For instance, why can’t I append files from one folder to another of the same name when I copy/overwrite? What’s the deal with the replace action!!! Why do I have to download extra software just to walk into a zip archive??? Any Java developer would feel insulted, especially after Windows gets this from the OS install disc (albeit a crappy dog-slow implementation but at least it’s there). Well now I’m getting fed up because I wanna do mobile development. It makes sense right? A Macbook is a great mobile platform. OS X is supposed to be prime for Java development. Why not do mobile development on the greatest mobile platform primed for Java? Go ahead and try it. Go on! I’ll wait here patiently. No, really… I’m serious. Go buy a Macbook (keep the receipt if necessary as this is only a temporary assignment) connect to the net and download your mobile development tools of choice. When you’re done pick up reading beneath the horizontal rule.


How far did you get? Really??? Nah… you’re B.S.ing! I’ll tell you what. Thank God for Michael Powers. If it weren’t for him you wouldn’t be able to go as far as “Hello World”. Well I almost gave up last night during an intense debugging session when my debugger wouldn’t step properly through a unit test in this MIDlet thing I’m working on. All of the step commands were acting like resume forcing me to set break points on every line of code. I killed most of the day before I realized that it was a side effect of the JDK I had plugged into my Idea project. (Before you go berating me about why I didn’t use EclipseME and save a boat load of trouble let me say this. I tried starting an Eclipse project and even then I was getting a “model proxy installed notification job” error in my debugger that made absolutely no sense! Have you ever seen that one before? If so please explain it to this naive soul because after 20 minutes of Googling it had me ready to completely write off Eclipse. That word will forever be considered profanity. I will not acknowledge the presence of either the moon or the Earth blocking the sun. If such an occurrence were pointed out to me I would laugh haughtily and refer to the phenomenon as a “shadow” and politely send nay-sayer on their way.) I had a Linux version of the WTK version 2.0 unwrapped on my hard drive and had pointed Idea in its direction to load a MIDP-CLDC compatible Java development environment. What does that last sentence mean? Well that’s Trinidadian (I think… maybe a more southern Trinidad accent than what you’re used to) for, “I told my Java editor to load the JDK from the Linux Wireless ToolKit download.” Anywayz, once I suspected the WTK as the source of my debugging problem I quickly changed the setting to point to a pre-installed version of JDK-1.3.1 since I believe you need to be at that level or below for JavaME. I resumed debugging and still had the step resume issue. After a couple more hours of wasted time looking in irrelevant areas and fumbling with Eclipse (see the above inlined-parenthesized comment.) I finally succumbed to setting the JDK to my installed 1.5 version and the problem went away.

So why all of the heartache? Why couldn’t I just focus on getting my bar colored green? I’ll tell you why! It’s because of George Cluney! George Clooney(When in doubt I find it helps to push blame on some completely unrelated and sometimes fictional character who has no knowledge of you or your issue because the least likely is often the most probable. Look I don’t make these rules, I just play by them!) His multi-$million movie career highlighted by the absence of any significant female presence has led some Apple and Sun engineers to wonder of his sexual preference for a long time which lead to a secret plot to uncover a potential bombshell closet-skeleton when instead they should have been jointly collaborating to release the OS X version of the WTK. While his recent announcement on Access Hollywood of a man crush he has on Brad Pitt may squelch the dubious efforts of the disbanded IT staff members it may be far too late to mend the wounds left by their departure.

Gimme WTK or Gimme DEATH!!!
I’m not actually that devoted to mobile development on the Mac, but I’m saying… There are a few things I would die for: my children, my faith, my ability to purchase a whopper with extra cheese hold the onions and a lemonade with NO ICE (don’t be filling my cup with those 423,653 ice crystals in a evil attempt to swindle me out of the extra 24oz that actually fit in the 32oz container!), and finally my IDE. WTK on Mac ranks pretty high but I’m not quiet willing to trade my right to consciousness for it. Are there any alternatives? Who else out there uses a Mac? What do you do when you wanna customize your blackberry 8830 or your Motorola Razr phones? Does anyone know the status of any eventual Linux WTK updates or upcoming OS X releases? Will the Linux version be made OS X compatible? is there any hack to get it to work? I found someone saying it could possibly work a while ago but I lost the link. Wassup people? Talk to me!

6 thoughts on “WTK For Mac OS X???

  1. i hear you.

    there are two main problems.
    one: apple is always busy with other stuff and tends to push “less important things” like the java support behind. that’s why there’s still no _working_ java6 for osx. right, there was this beta release, but it’s severely broken, doesn’t work on leopard and isn’t even available for download any more.
    two: sun doesn’t like apple very much and has decided not to invest much time into any porting of their software to osx (unless apple pays i guess). the wtk is mainly maintained by sun though – no wonder they do not focus on the osx platform.

    as for mike powers, he did an awesome job on mppsdk, and with a little bit of work, it’s possible to integrate it into eclipse. there are some hacks neccessary though: his preverify is a ppc binary – not nice on intel macs (even if it works). i got the source from sun and recompiled it as universal.

    there has been some effort on the EclipseMe plugin for eclipse (http://eclipseme.org/) to make it mpp compatible, but i could never get it to work, so i’m still sticking with my selfmade ant extension.
    bad luck if you don’t want to use eclipse. i didn’t like it either in the beginning, but the developers fixed many things, so i’m now more or less happy with it.

    btw: since apple and sun are so busy with other stuff, landon fuller decided to port java6 for bsd to mac os x: http://landonf.bikemonkey.org/static/soylatte/
    the swing implementation is still x11 based and i don’t know about the status of swt, but i think some people are working hard on this.

  2. Yeah Mike Powers is duh man! I saw the MPP support on Eclipse but never tried it on my Mac. Right now I use a mix of WTK/MPP/Custom Ant and IntelliJ Idea for development on Mac. It’s as hard to explain as it was to assemble. It works for me and I know my boundaries (things that work and things that always give me trouble.) The problem is many of the JME tools are WTK based (Idea’s plugin EclipseME, Antenna, and the pyx4me Maven plugin.) It seems like getting a working WTK would make life much easier. I’m not even going to start on the Blackberry JDE… why must all mobile development be centered on Windows? Isn’t J2ME the bulk of the mobile programming eco-system? Isn’t J2ME owned by Sun? Doesn’t Sun market *Nix hardware? Why wouldn’t the bulk of JavaME support be designed around *Nix architecture??? To many questions.. too much work to do early in the morning…

  3. I’m on IntelliJ and wanting OS X WTK but no dice. I provided my feedback to Sun just a sec ago requesting this.

    Java is supposed to be write-once run-anywhere but Sun seems committed to violating their own vision. I guess they don’t care about mobile. JavaFX is as good as vaporware. Sigh.

  4. Yeah the WTK on OS X IntelliJ pained me a while back too. I spoke to Jetbrains about it and was supposed to write a plug-in with the Idea WTK developer. She told me she wold help which she did but I got so busy on other things that it fell by the way side.

  5. I was also looking for a way to develop mobile java applications using OS X. I looked for a solution for quite a while and now I found one.

    Motorola finally also released its SDK for Mac OS X! For now it’s just a preview. I don’t know how stable it is, but it is a step in the right direction to say the least. As I have a Motorola phone that’s great news for me.
    It might also help you all, even if you have a phone from a different manufacturer. I guess it might work for those, too.

    http://developer.motorola.com/docstools/motodevstudio/javame/downloads/

  6. Thanx Torben! That’s good info and I gotta check it out. The one thing that bothers me is TMTOWTDI (There’s More Than One-million Wayz To Do It). I’m looking for a non-vendor optimized solutionthat will run cross platform… the way Java was originally intended! Boy, James Gosling knew what became of JavaME he would be rolling over in his… what’s that? He’s not dead??? Well, you get the point.

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