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Re: General question about GNUStep

From: Nicolas Roard
Subject: Re: General question about GNUStep
Date: Tue, 25 Aug 2009 17:17:50 +0100

On Tue, Aug 25, 2009 at 4:49 PM, David Chisnall<address@hidden> wrote:
> I'm not sure why this follows.  Just because you can't use DO doesn't mean
> you can't use GNUstep on the server.
> By the way, in theory it ought to be possible to port GNUstep's NSPortCoder
> to Cocoa and use this for serialising messages to be sent across sockets.
>  This would let Cocoa apps talk to GNUstep ones via DO.
> David

In my experience, the simplest (one-liner!) and robustest solution was
indeed to send plist-serialised data over the wire -- both platforms
(GNUstep and OSX) support fast serialization/deserialisation to plist,
and as an added benefit this is easier to debug as the data is sent in
clear, and in a notably more efficient way than XML do :)
you can find some infos on the architecture I used in

Note that writing a plist reader in java or C++ is quite simple.
Another possibility is to use XML-RPC, which has implementation
everywhere. But this is quite verbose (even if it's far from the
abomination that SOAP is).

> On 25 Aug 2009, at 15:31, Simeon Mitev wrote:
>> Hi David Chisnall,
>> Thank you very much for the hints.
>> It looks like that I do not have too much possibilities. The server will
>> be develop in C++ or Java. It would be not bad if the client is not only
>> iPhone but also Android compatible. Therefore I will use communication
>> protocol as Hessian in example. It is provided for all (C++, Java, Objective
>> C) programming languages. XML is not a good solution for game development,
>> that's true.
>> Once again, that you very much for the information.
>> Best regards,
>> Simeon
>>> Hi Simeon,
>>> You're going to have two problems, I believe:
>>> Firstly, the GNUstep and OS X wire protocols for distributed objects are
>>> different.  This means that you can recompile Cocoa code that uses DO with
>>> GNUstep, but the two versions of the problem will not work together.
>>> The other problem you will have is that there is no support for
>>> Distributed Objects on the iPhone (unless it was added with a recent SDK and
>>> I wasn't paying attention).
>>> This doesn't prevent you from using GNUstep for your server, but it does
>>> mean you can't use DO easily.  You can, for example, generate property lists
>>> from objects on the iPhone using standard Foundation methods and classes
>>> like NSPropertyListSerialization and then send them via a socket.  If you
>>> use the NeXT plist format (NSPropertyListOpenStepFormat) you get quite a
>>> dense representation; Nicolas Roard wrote a distributed visualisation
>>> application using this technique for control messages for his PhD.
>>> David
>>> On 24 Aug 2009, at 13:47, Simeon wrote:
>>>> Hi All,
>>>> I am pretty new to GNUStep but I think I will use it for my upcoming
>>>> project. It is a multilayer online game for iPhone. Initially I though to
>>>> program the server in C++. The client is clear - a native Objective C
>>>> application. Currently I am looking for a good solution for the
>>>> communication layer. There are very good C++ only and Java solution. What
>>>> about Objective C and distributed objects? This is how I heard about
>>>> GNUStep. Reading the articles in internet I started to think into direction
>>>> to write also the server in Objective C (I really like this language). The
>>>> first question I need answer for is "How good is the colaboration between
>>>> Apple (iPhone) Objectve C libraries and GNUStep runtime"? How difficult 
>>>> good
>>>> is the coupling between two runtimes when it is about object remote
>>>> invocations and remoting in general?
>>>> I am sorry for my English but it is not my native language :)
>>>> Thank you very much in advance.
>>>> Simeon
>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>> Discuss-gnustep mailing list
>>>> address@hidden
>>>> http://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss-gnustep
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Nicolas Roard
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