objcX - Objective-C for the X Window System

Paul Kunz <paul_kunz@slac.stanford.edu> has implemented a useful library that lets you run, on the X Window System, code you may have developed on a Nextstep machine using NeXT's InterfaceBuilder. In other words, his library can understand NeXT .nib files. It also knows how to write another kind of interface file that is text-based.

The objcX library and its possible evolution to GNUStep--comments written by Paul Kunz.

If you want to learn more about NEXTSTEP(tm), the technology that launched a revolution in rapid, flexible and robust object-oriented systems development, you really should take a look at NeXT's website.

Paul started this project so that he could port HippoDraw to X. When I visited him at SLAC on 29 July 1995, I saw HippoDraw running essentially the same under Nextstep and X. Because of the uncomplicated nature of the graphing involved, sometimes the X drawing was faster.

Because objcX has a dependency on Motif, which is not free software, objcX is not yet a part of Project GNU. But there are efforts to create a free implementation of Motif (see LessTif below), and people are doing work to make objcX calls to Xlib/Xt directly instead of using Motif. On 24 May 1995, Paul Kunz wrote the following about the LessTif effort:

The last report we got from the LessTif folk is that their library isn't complete enough yet to run all the objcX/examples. However, they are still working on it and will probably need the missing things for their own ViewKit emulator.

Martin Michlmayr <tbm@tci002.uibk.ac.at> provided this pointer to screen shots of an Xlib version of ObjcX. This is an exciting new development, because it would give us objcX-without-Motif. If you're interested in this, check out Yuri Pudgorodsky's LibNeXT project.

Pointers to objcX and lesstif.
  • ftp objcX-0.86.tar.gz
  • info on lesstif (free Motif)
  • ftp lesstif