iPhone development alternatives

I wanted to quickly post about two things:

  1. Zii: the iPhone-esque, jargon-laden, portable media device/platform
  2. Open Source languages/IDEs that can target the iPhone

The Zii Plaszma is the “Stemcell Computing Platform to Innovate and Profit”. Aside from stupid naming all around, it looks like a neat device simliar to the iPod Touch… but with hardware GPS, a HD camera, SDHC slot, 10 point multi-touch, and FullHD HDMI output. It runs a proprietary Linux-based OS called Plaszma OS, or alternatively Google’s Android.

You can pick one up for US$399 with the SDK, which runs under Ubuntu 8.04 and includes: Eclipse IDE, gcc, gdb, cmake, and the OpenGL ES API.

Here’s a video full of crazy jargon:

Now onto Open Source languages/IDEs that can target the iPhone – for people who are keen on FOSS or maybe simply aren’t down with Objective-C or Xcode (as a development environment).

Hugh over at Game Haxe has managed to get a basic haXe program running on iPhone using the C++ build target, statically-linked SDL, and a bunch of other stuff. This means that developers familiar with AS3 could use a very similar language (and libraries) to target the iPhone. Definitely something to keep an eye on.

In related news (but on a potentially bigger scale), Miguel de Icaza (of GNOME and Mono fame) recently blogged that the MonoTouch team has reached feature complete status and are looking for iPhone developers to try out Mono, and their MonoTouch C# APIs, for the iPhone.