Recently I have been using a relatively new cross platform programming tool called Monkey (from Blitz Research, developers of popular programming environments Blitz Basic, Blitz Max, and Blitz 3D), and have been asked by a few people what I felt about the programming tool. In particular I have been asked how it compares to other cross-platform programming SDKs supporting iOS — namely the Corona SDK.
First off, Monkey really is not so much a programming SDK like the Corona SDK as much as it is a code translator. It does have it’s own programming language which is very similar to Blitz Max. When you code with Monkey you have access to the iOS SDK directly and can exploit every feature, and library created for that SDK easily.
This probably sounds a little too good to be true as Monkey also supports Flash, HTML5, Xna, Windows, Windows Phone 7, Android and Mac programming. In some ways it is — as Monkey is somewhat rough around the edges at this stage. I’m not sure if I would recommend anyone developing for iOS to use Monkey if they don’t already have an understanding of how to program with Xcode and the iOS SDK — at least at this stage — as you will have to create your own “glue code” to use features such as Game Center. Monkey will likely never have official libraries for these “single platform” features which is why I recommend an understanding of using the official SDK.
If you want an in-depth comparison of Monkey vs. the Corona SDK you can check out this message board thread here. In my opinion they are really different beasts.. Corona is more mature at this stage (making it easier to use, and as far as programming languages go I much prefer Lua to the BlitzMax type syntax used by Monkey), but Monkey has the ability to use anything within the iOS and Android SDKs along with more programming targets and the ability to export Xcode projects directly can be very useful.
You can check out Monkey on the official website here (you can try it out with the HTML5 target here — the total price including all other targets is currently $120 USD).
Read More: iPhone Dev News
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