The ZooLib cross-platform application framework (version 0.8) was
released tonight under the MIT license. It allows one to write a single
set of C++ sources and build native executables for Mac OS, Windows,
BeOS, and POSIX flavors with XWindows (such as Linux).
ZooLib's development project page is
and its web page is http://zoolib.sourceforge.net
ZooLib's license may be found at
One developer's opinion of why ZooLib is good for the community at large
is found at http://zoolib.sourceforge.net/doc/why.html - including
relevant quotes from Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson of the Microsoft
Antitrust Case on why Microsoft felt it was so important to put a stop
to the widespread use of
ZooLib application are multithreaded; it provides a GUI toolkit with a
uniquely flexible layout system. There is a single-file database format
(which may serve as end-user documents because they are single files),
TCP networking, and extensive debugging support.
Because ZooLib requires only minimal support from the underlying OS and
platform GUI layer, and because its platform-specific layer is
well-architected, it could be bound to a completely new platform in a
few weeks of work once an expert programmer was familiar with ZooLib
One doesn't need to use all of ZooLib to build a program from just part
of it. For example, one could use just the networking classes to build
a cross-platform network server with no UI, or one could combine that
with the database classes to build a database server. Only a few
classes such as the thread implementation are
required for all ZooLib programs.
While tonight marks ZooLib's transition into open source, it is _not_
new code. It has been in development by author Andy Green of The
Electric Magic Company (http://www.em.net) and his client, educational
software publisher Learning in Motion (http://www.learn.motion.com), for
about five years, and there are several shipping commercial products
built with it. Software consultant GoingWare Inc. has been developing
an unannounced product with it since December '99. "I think it's the
best thing since sliced time," says GoingWare President Michael D.
The version "0.8" is meant to indicate that ZooLib is fully production
quality on Windows and MacOS, completely implemented but untested on
BeOS, and mostly but not yet complete on Posix. Details of what is
needed to bring ZooLib to 1.0 released are at
Michael D. Crawford
GoingWare Inc. - Expert Software Development and Consulting
Tilting at Windmills for a Better Tomorrow.
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Before you buy.