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Porting to Haxe, Part 1


Warning: Technical blog post this time!

Recently, Adobe made a couple of worrisome announcements like cancelling a VM overhaul and moving a crucial engineer to HTML5. Storyteller is being made in Actionscript targeted at AIR, struggling to get the most quality out of the runtime. I don't like the risk of Adobe slowing down on it, so I decided to try for an alternative: Haxe.

Haxe is a programming language that fixes some of the issues in Actionscript, has a better compiler and is multiplatform, allowing developers to target not just the flash VM, but also native Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and Linux.

So I decided to make the experiment of porting a subset of Storyteller to verify that it actually works. I certainly hope it does, since Storyteller would be benefited in several ways:

  • Full Linux support - Adobe decided to stop supporting Linux several AIR versions ago.
  • A slightly better platform - Haxe and Actionscript are very much like each other, but Haxe avoids local variable hoisting problems (with which I shot myself in the foot repeatedly), is more strongly typed and is generally more helpful when finding problems in the code. As a bonus, the speed of its compiler will drastically reduce my compile/run cycles.
  • Language and libraries evolve fast and frequently. They are also Open Source.
  • The rewrite of most the Storyteller code is already paying off as now I know how things should work. I expect massive positive side effects like a significant speedup of the story solving algorithm, which would feel great.

Soon: GDC postmortem and Haxe: Part 2!

6 comments:

  1. ¿Qué lenguaje me recomendarías para aprender a programar?

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  2. La verdad que nunca dejo de admirar el laburo de puta madre que haces. No conocia a Haxe, pero la verdad vos y la mainpage me lo supieron vender bastante bien y me dieron ganas de probarlo.

    Me muero de ganas de jugar ST de una vez!!!

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  3. Ya de por sí es llamativo que estés laburando en flash/air. Un desarrollo como Storyteller hecho en flash, suena como querer doblar el diploma de un doctorado para que entre en un marco mas chico.

    Si tu expriencia en programación es poca, es entendible. Sino, hace pensar que te dejaste estar.

    Me alegro lo de haxe, y espero que le des para adelante.

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