First blood with MonoTouch

mtI’m slowly getting settled into our new home and the number of construction tasks still to be handled slowly is decreasing. So I finally found an evening to do something I have been longing to do for quite a while: Toying around with MonoTouch in order to do some iPhone programming.

Why MonoTouch you might ask? I just despise Objective-C and feel like I’m getting too old to learn any more stupid languages. Objective-C just feels too “before yesterday” for me and the way Apple decided to handle memory management with this extremely weird reference counting stuff totally annoys me… I never seem to remember if any references are left or not and my time is too limited to waste hours and hours searching memory problems. Give me C any time over Objective-C – at least I’m in complete control with C πŸ˜‰

Or give me something better… and since Java is not available for iPhones (yet?) I decided to wet my hands on C# and learn a bit about “the other folks not doing Java” are programming.

Actually I find C# a decent language although I have to wonder about a few of the naming conventions used in the language design (more on that maybe in another post if I feel like it). But it’s nice and it feels much better than Objective-C. MonoTouch and MonoDevelop also seem to be quite decent although I miss quite a number of the advanced Eclipse features from my Java real life (especially the refactoring support and the more advanced syntax checks) but it’s okay and much better (for me) than Objective-C.

After some bungling around and getting lost a few times I finally managed to get my game setup working and graphics now appear on the screen. Compared to my attempts with Objective-C I also understand how things click together (and completely ignore the Interface Builder so far since I never seem to get the hang of what is happening in the background). I love MonoTouch for its conciseness and brevity.

And I chuckle about the fact that my first generic library for my planned game is a Curses emulation πŸ™‚ Weird for such a modern system and I wonder what Apple is going to say about it… but since my first game idea is related to ADOM (very closely) I just need that Curses thingy πŸ™‚

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