OnBoard-NG will be a complete rewrite of the OnBoardC IDE designed specifically to run on PalmOS5 ARM devices with larger available memory -- both storage and dynamic -- and faster processors. Certain components will be ported from more robust desktop development tools. For example the C compiler, both m68k-palmos and arm-palmos will be based on the prc-tools toolchain hosted here at sourceforge farther down the road.
OnBoard-NG will consist of a strong core including a redesigned, more robust user interface and various extensible interfaces including:
- Languages (C and Pascal are currently planned, with resource 'languages' of BiRd *.Rsrc and PilRC *.rcp files)
- Architectures (Both m68k and ARM native will be implemented.
- Pre build commands
- Post build commands
- Code templates and project types
- Code locations (palmdoc, vfs and eventually rcs svn, and other version control systems)
- Code modules (packaged headers from ACCESS and Palm, Inc. removing the need for users to SYS_TRAP undefined functions.
- Support for GCC static libraries.
The basic goal of OnBoard-NG, both short and long term is to take every shortcoming of OnBoardC and improve and improve upon it as much as possible: poor assembly generation in comparison to prc-tools/codewarrior, small (64k) sourcecode file size limit, subpar multiseg support, limited resource support. This will all be nullified in time, mostly in part of the planned port of the prc-tools toolchain into an OnBoard-NG plugin.
These changes will take a very long time to incorporate into OnBoard-NG; it will be a work in progress for quite some time and few of the above features will likely make it into a 1.0 release. Develoepr status on the project with full commit access will be granted with no questions asked except "what is your first planned commit?" Furthermore, anyone who has made at least one useful commit as a project developer can be granted release rights on the project to keep it from falling into stagnation as OnBoardC has sadly done. (See this TamsPalm post for a prime example. I wrote this a year and a half ago and only recently was this patch accepted, in 30 lines of code.)
The first beta version will hopefully be available by August 2009 and will consist of:
- The OnBoard-NG core application
- Full 68k support in C and Pascal using the OnBoardC and PPCompile codebases.
- VFS support in SrcEdit (already mostly implemented)
- Language plugin support
- Palmdoc and VFS code location plugins.
1.0 release is planned when OnBoard-NG will compile itself and all of the C tools so that development can take place for nearly anyone, right on the handheld, without having to install a huge desktop SDK and limit development time.
Should anyone be interested in helping this project before the beta is released, email me (phrkonaleash at gmail dot com) explaining what you know and what you can and are willing to do, along with your sourceforge id. Be sure to put [OnBoard-NG] in your subject line so that you don't escape me GMail filter :-)