MADDE – first impressions

January 21, 2010

There is a pretty slick new development tool for the Maemo platform out now called MADDE. It is aimed at the Maemo sweetspot: Qt development. It works on the big three platforms, though I have only installed it on Linux.

MADDE is designed to make cross compiling and generally building applications easier, and it appears to be doing just that. Installation went smoothly and the documentation is concise and clear. MADDE even provides a debian directory, which is my particular interest at the moment, so let’s take a closer look there to see how MADDE can help you build debs.

The first thing you notice when using MADDE is that when you create a project with it, it creates not just project files, but debian files for you as well. In that debian directory you’ll see a bunch of example files – things you can use if you are going to create a debian README file, man pages and the like. For Maemo, we don’t use man pages, so you can simply remove any file that ends in .ex that you don’t want or need.

There are of course a variety of details of packaging you can go into, but what is very interesting with MADDE is that the package building is included. This means that you can call ‘mad dpkg-buildpackage’ and MADDE knows what to do and goes ahead and does it. You don’t need to fiddle with your environment, unless of course you want to, MADDE saves you a great deal of time by including all the needed tools for packaging.

I will discuss the implications of MADDE and packaging further, and I also hope to dive into some of the source code. (Dear Nokia, please consider releasing your perl modules to CPAN.) But my first impression of MADDE is that it is a huge time saver, and a great maemo development environment – try it out!

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