CodeWarrior Gold: $350
CodeWarrior Academic Pro: $99
I recently made the decision to teach myself programming. I looked around, read reviews, and asked online pals. I had to decide what programming environment would give me the tools I needed as a beginner and keep me happy when I reached the “pro” status.
I decided to go with Metrowerks CodeWarrior. I think I made a good choice…
The version of CodeWarrior I bought (“Academic Pro”) is only made available to students, teachers, and educational institutions. The “Academic Pro” version is the same as the “Gold” version (with the exception of rights to make commercial software), but is specially priced for students.
You find out soon enough that the trip to learning CodeWarrior and the programming language is not going to be short. At first, you are blown away by looking at all you must learn. The great thing is, Metrowerks makes the trip easy. They set aside an entire CD just for reference. This CD is packed with hundreds of megabytes of books, manuals, freeware, shareware, and other great items. Metrowerks is not conservative when it comes to information. Books like “Learn C for the Macintosh” by Dave Mark are presented in their entirety. Other books are also at your disposal. You may print them out for personal use, read them at your leisure (many are in two separate formats to give you a better choice), or save them to your hard drive for reference. After you learn to program, you will move on to learning more about the CodeWarrior environment. There are plenty of manuals and books designed to help you learn the CodeWarrior and PowerPlant applications from the ground up. Everything you need is packed onto one CD. Metrowerks even provides an installer in case you want to install your favorite books.
The program itself is wonderful. The main programming environment (CodeWarrior IDE) is very easy to learn. If you get stuck, there are Apple Guides to help you out. The program carries you along. You sit down to work, and CodeWarrior works along with you. No problems. No entanglements. When you are ready, you move on to the “PowerPlant” working environment to give your projects more life. This program is also very easy to use.
The Mac OS programming is not the end of it. If you want to, you can move on to other systems. CodeWarrior lets you develop programs for Windows, BeOS, and others. The compiler is first class.
One of the great parts of CodeWarrior is the debugging and error catching feature. When CodeWarrior finds a problem in your code, it tells you what it is in plain English. There is hardly any guesswork. Plus, Metrowerks gives you plenty of extra utilities that help you hunt down problems.
The service you get with Metrowerks is one of the other great points. They offer phone support, as well as e-mail support. Their representatives are helpful, and can usually get you out of a problem in a few minutes. Metrowerks, like Connectix, is one of the great companies that is on the ball when it comes to updates. They release regular updates, and fix bugs quickly when they are found. When you register, you get the next two upgrades for free.
Basically, CodeWarrior is the perfect base to build your programs on. The software is outstanding, the service is terrific, and the programming is fun. I recommend it to anyone who wants to start their programming career or step up their development to bigger, better software.
Shay Fulton (firstname.lastname@example.org)