Michael Swaine, editor at large for Dr. Dobb’s Journal, says in a
MacDev opinion piece
that in choosing between Carbon and Cocoa for developer’s products for Mac OS X, developers would be wise to pick Cocoa.
Cocoa is an advanced object-oriented programming environment. According to Apple, Cocoa gives developers a whole new toolbox for building the best next-generation applications. It’s a collection of advanced, object-oriented APIs for developing applications written in Java and Objective-C.
Apple says that Cocoa is the most advanced object-oriented technology on the market today. It’s like WebObjects. You can write apps 10 times faster in Cocoa so if you’re writing a new app, Apple recommends you go this route.
Carbon’s big advantage is that you only have to change 20 percent of your code while you have to learn Objective-C to develop with Cocoa. However, that’s the only plus for Carbon, Swaine feels. When it comes to the “Tevanian factor” (Avie Tevanian is Apple’s software chief) he says that “Avie no like” Carbon, but “Avie like” Cocoa. Swaine also says that Carbon has planned obsolescence (“the clock is ticking), but that there’s no successor in the works for Cocoa.
“Given Steve Jobs’ propensity for rapidly discarding ‘old’ technologies, I might take that last choice somewhat seriously,” Swaine writes.
By the way, Dr. Dobb’s is a Web site that offers software tools for the professional programmer.