REBOL Technologies

REBOL OS X Status

Carl Sassenrath, CTO
REBOL Technologies
3-Feb-2005 21:44 GMT

Article #0121
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OK, due to popular request, here is a brief update on the status of OSX:

As I mentioned earlier, we no longer have the resources to deal with the nitty-gritty details of every operating system that is out there. To solve the problem of porting REBOL to new and different platforms, including OS X, we are splitting out the operating system specific parts of REBOL into a separate statically-linked library. This library is then used to build REBOL for each specific platform. In this way, we can focus our resources on improving the main functions of REBOL, and it allows developers who are experts in operating systems like OSX to make sure that the interfaces to OS functions are correct and optimal.

The REBOL OS library for each platform will be released as C source code. In order to prevent total chaos and anarchy, this source code will be managed through a REBOL/Services interface. The service will allow source code modules to be accessed and updated by developers who have a strong interest in the proper support of specific OS platforms.

We are using REBOL/Services to do this rather than something like CVS so that we have better control over the operation of the system, including security, and we can even add features such as on-demand rebuilding of REBOL executables. And, admittedly, we prefer to drink our own wine. It's usually a lot better than eating someone else's dog food.

There are two primary milestones that must be reached before this project can begin: First, REBOL/Services must be released and must be reasonably reliable. We are getting close to that point. Second, the REBOL source code must be extensively modified to use the new REBOL OS library. This change involves a lot more cut-and-paste type editing than code design and development. It is not a "difficult task" as much as it is just "tedious". However, once that's been done, it will become much easier to port REBOL to a greater range of additional platforms such as OSX, BeOS, WinCE, and others.

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