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Porting Lemmings In 36 Hours 154

Posted by Soulskill
from the first-in-line dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Aaron Ardiri challenged himself to port his classic PalmOS version of Lemmings to the iPhone, Palm Pre, Mac, and Windows. The porting was done using his own dev environment, which creates native C versions of the game. He liveblogged the whole thing, and finished after only 36 hours with an iPhone version and a Palm Pre version awaiting submission, and free versions for Windows and Mac available on his site."
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Porting Lemmings In 36 Hours

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  • by Junior J. Junior III (192702) on Sunday June 27, 2010 @10:31PM (#32713100) Homepage

    See, this is what you can do with low level languages... IF you know your shit.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 27, 2010 @10:37PM (#32713140)

    You would be amazed what anyone can produce with any language *IF* they know their shit

  • by phantomfive (622387) on Sunday June 27, 2010 @10:46PM (#32713192) Journal
    Exactly.....I used to spend a lot of time learning different languages, comparing them, trying to figure out what was best, using all the features.......then one day I realized it isn't the languages so much that make the difference, it's how you use it. I don't regret learning a ton of languages because you learn new techniques and ideas from each one, but as long as you can encapsulate stuff and be flexible, the language is ok. With macros and functions and libraries, I can write code just as flexibly and nearly as quickly in assembly as I can in a language like Perl or Ruby.

    When the vast majority of your time writing code is taken up by debugging or refactoring, the language it's written in doesn't matter so much as the quality of the code that's written.
  • by wampus (1932) on Sunday June 27, 2010 @11:20PM (#32713320)

    Only if you are Adobe or someone else on Steve-O's shit list. They relaxed the rules to be even less consistent and harder to predict.

  • by osu-neko (2604) on Sunday June 27, 2010 @11:43PM (#32713464)

    I don't regret learning a ton of languages because you learn new techniques and ideas from each one...

    Eventually you reach the point where that's not really true anymore because you're pretty much seen it all. At that point, it doesn't matter which languages you "know" or don't, and have used in the past or not, you can sit down and write code in anything, even stuff you've never seen before, as long as you have a minimal syntax reference or some sample code handy.

  • Re: Copyright? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by danielsfca2 (696792) on Monday June 28, 2010 @12:42AM (#32713720) Journal

    I doubt Apple look too closely for prior art and are more interested in counting the filthy

    Oh, so today we're mad at Apple for dastardly approving apps that they should have rejected on the grounds of software look-and-feel... because that totally holds up in court [lmgtfy.com], not to mention it's totally Apple's job to ensure that every app has no resemblance to any other software ever published. Got it!

    I'm glad you posted, because I think I missed that memo and was still cursing those Apple jerks for rejecting too many apps, because "All Apps Deserve To Be Approved" and "Apple Is Oppressing People With Their Walled Garden."

  • Re:Android please? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 28, 2010 @01:17AM (#32713806)

    This might shock you, but Android kind of sucks.

    Nah, there's nothing shocking about trollish displays of FUD.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 28, 2010 @01:20AM (#32713816)

    When the vast majority of your time writing code is taken up by debugging or refactoring, the language it's written in doesn't matter so much as the quality of the code that's written.

    I feel like a troll writing this, hence the AC, but this statement makes me think of the following quotations from Dijkstra:

    "If debugging is the process of removing bugs, then programming must be the process of putting them in," and

    "If you want more effective programmers, you will discover that they should not waste their time debugging, they should not introduce the bugs to start with."

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 28, 2010 @01:36AM (#32713890)

    Eventually you reach the point where ... [you've] pretty much seen it all

    That is so wrong on so many levels. The beginner thinks he knows everything. The well learned thinks he knows a lot. The expert knows that he knows nothing. This is true in programming as well. There are infinitely possible ways to design a language, and some are yet to come (though derived from current languages of course). There never EVER comes a point where one has seen it all.

  • Re:Copyright? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DreadPirateShawn (1246208) on Monday June 28, 2010 @02:13AM (#32714036)

    IIRC Psygnosis owns the rights to Lemmings. Also IIRC, Psygnosis is now owned by Sony. Unless Psygnosis was only the publisher for a third party I'm not aware of.

    Good luck with that.

    Not a bad résumé tactic though, however you look at it. If I had an interviewee who ported a game for kicks in 36 hours, I'd certainly file that in the "pros" column..

  • Re: Copyright? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by blincoln (592401) on Monday June 28, 2010 @03:55AM (#32714396) Homepage Journal

    Oh, so today we're mad at Apple for dastardly approving apps that they should have rejected on the grounds of software look-and-feel... because that totally holds up in court, not to mention it's totally Apple's job to ensure that every app has no resemblance to any other software ever published. Got it!

    This isn't a game that looks vaguely like the original Lemmings and has somewhat similar gameplay mechanics. It's an exact copy that uses the "Lemmings" name and logo.

  • by jellomizer (103300) on Monday June 28, 2010 @07:49AM (#32715326)

    C was never a High Level Language. It was a more portable Lower Level Language. Sure it was above assembly (As Assembly isn't much of a program language, but but just a 1 to 1 translation to machine code) it was lower then COBOL, Fortran, Basic, Lisp, and many of the other popular languages at the time.

    The difference between higher languages and lower languages. isn't as much portability, while higher languages tend to be more portable, however a high level languge such as VB is less portable then a Low Language such as C. But more to the fact how much of the execution of the code is based on the compiler vs. the programmers understanding of the computer.

    Eg. in high level languges. you have string classes that do a bunch of cool things...
    in C. you have a pointer to a block of characters and any effects you need to do you need to code it yourself.

    Old Languages such as LISP where higher level and isolated the programmer from managing memory and handled it all itself.

  • yawn (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 28, 2010 @08:59AM (#32715968)

    There seems to be a fashion amongst game porters to pretend that it only took them 10 minutes to port to some new platform. I remember this as far back as the early '90s, where Krisalis would state that they'd produced ports of entire native games from Amiga to Archimedes in 3 or 4 days.

    Let me tell you what actually happens:
    1. Over a number of weeks, they create a port (or other development effort), deciding on design and implementation strategies, then actually coding, debugging, refactoring, etc.;
    2. They produce a storyline which omits all the difficulties they had, giving a false illustration of a perfect journey from A to B in a few days;
    3. They hype up that they're "about to" challenge themselves to an awesome timed exercise;
    4. Once there's enough interest, they post the fiction produced in (2);
    5. What could have been honestly advertised as an impressive (but not superhuman) effort becomes something heroic, and interest is increased n-fold.

    This is just the grown-up version of the '90s hax0r culture I wasted too much time in, where everyone with a talent had to exaggerate it to near comical levels.

  • by Lunix Nutcase (1092239) on Monday June 28, 2010 @10:52AM (#32717306)

    I can actually predict what the machine is going to do when I write a line of code!

    Doubtful. With all sorts of branch prediction and pipelining going on in a modern CPU it is extremely hard to know what the cpu is really going to do at any moment. This is why when Intel, for example, publishes latency and throughput of assembly instructions that the numbers they provide actually just rough approximations.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @02:01PM (#32748706)

    Anyhow, if an instruction executes, it executes in 'n' cycles, with a latency of 'p' and a throughput of 't'. Those are known values for all CPU's. If the CPU has been throttled back via speedstep, then it still takes 'n' cycles, with a latency of 'p' and the throughput remains the same.

    Well this statement is an utter bunch of crap given cache effects, memory bus issues, TLB misses (another type of cache), SMT (depending on the underlying archs implementation this can affect your simple formula more than you realize)... and then if you want to bitch that these are noneffects in non-multitasking scenarios (but when does that occur in real life except in a microcontroller... there's branch prediction and branch target buffering which depend other code then the instruction block you just happen to be looking at...

    Nevermind that OOO execution really makes a pat statement like yours at the very least...somewhat debateable.

    I know that the specs for instruction timings make certain assumptions, and sometimes these are reasonable assumptions... but in certain cases they are not, and it blows the implication of your statement completely out of the water and pretty much supports the original point.

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