June 7, 2002
New Book Helps VB Programmers Port Their Skills to Palm OS: O'Reilly Releases "Programming Visual Basic for Palm OS"
Sebastopol, CA--The Palm is a sleek, streamlined platform. It doesn't
come with a lot of frills. Palm programs typically do what they are
supposed to do, and little more, which is what their users seem to
like. Windows applications, on the other hand, are not streamlined. In
fact, they tend to be feature-heavy and often contain more useful
commands and options than the average user can ever discover exist.
Given this, one might think that using Visual Basic for Palm
applications is an unlikely choice, but it hasn't stopped the
increasing number of VB programmers who are turning out well designed,
powerful Palm applications written in their native VB. In Programming
Visual Basic for Palm OS (O'Reilly, US $39.95), authors Matthew Holms,
Patrick Burton and Roger Knoell introduce the AppForge add-in for
Visual Basic, and explain how VB skills can be put to work in the
flourishing handheld market.
As Holmes, Burton, and Knoell explain, "Over the past five years, the
Palm PDA has zoomed to prominence as the handheld device of choice. In
that time, the Visual Basic developer has been relegated to the
sidelines--the Palm doesn't run the Microsoft Windows OS and its
processor isn't based on a design from Intel." The AppForge Booster
Runtime Software, an add-in for Visual Basic, has made it possible for
VB programmers with little or no knowledge of the Palm platform to
develop powerful programs within the VB development framework.
Says Burton, "It truly opens the door to the VB programmers who want to
do Palm development. Until now, there's been a large learning curve
involved in developing for the Palm, especially since historically it
has had to be done in C/C++, and typically requires a pretty good
understanding of C/C++ at that."
"VB on the Palm will take the Palm platform to the next level of
development," Burton adds. "I think you'll start to see more and more
applications appear as VB on the Palm takes off."
"Programming Visual Basic for Palm OS" provides complete coverage of
the AppForge add-in. The book first explains user interface techniques
for the Palm and how to program the Palm database model. It also covers
the Palm programming environment, including how to download and use the
necessary software development tools.
The second part of the book explores how to use VB programs to
interface the Palm handheld with a variety of data systems. The chapter
on conduits includes complete conduits built using Palm's COM-based VB
development kit. Another chapter explains how to design and code SQL
applications that interact with corporate database, yet also run
effectively on the Palm. The Palm wireless network is discussed in
The final third of the book covers interprocess communication and how
to build shared libraries and portable components to extend the power
of VB. There are examples showing how to access other applications, and
a chapter on useful debugging tools and tips.
"Programming Visual Basic for Palm OS" focuses on the everyday needs of
the VB enterprise developer and is filled with substantial examples.
Written for Visual Basic programmers who have little or no knowledge of
the Palm OS, this book provides a sound framework for application
design, development and installation for the Palm handheld.
Programming Visual Basic for Palm OS
By Matthew Holmes, Patrick Burton & Roger Knoell
ISBN 0-596-00200-9, 406 pages, $39.95 (US), $61.95 (CAN)
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