Absoft announced the immediate availability of its Xcode 3.1 plug-in for the Absoft Pro Fortran v10.2 product on Wednesday. The Intel Mac only plug-in allows Xcode development of 32- and 64-bit Fortran applications. It is included free of charge with the Fortran distribution.
The plug-in is being released as an alternative to Absoftis own multi-platform IDE."Appleis Xcode is excellent for C/C++, but was not designed as Fortran aware, and therefore limited as a Fortran development environment. Absoftis Fortran Xcode plug-in adds Fortran functionality, which allows Absoftis 32-bit and 64-bit Fortran compilers to be used within Xcode. Access to Absoftis Fx3 debugger, MRWE application framework and third party libraries is also supported. Using Absoftis Xcode plug-in, customers can easily build mixed Fortran or Fortran/C++ programs as MRWE applications, terminal applications or libraries," Absoftis president Wood Lotz said.
Mr. Lotz noted that there are differences in the capabilities of its own IDE vs. the plug-in and explained: "... Because Fortran imposes special requirements and because we have 100 percent control over the Absoft IDE, and because it is an integrated environment, it can include additional functionality, which cannot be provided via an Xcode plug-in.
"One example is our new Fortran module aware, parallel make utility. It is the only parallel make for Mac OS which automatically handles Fortran 90 module dependencies created by module use, thereby eliminating the need to continually hand order and track compilation sequences, as is required when using alternative products. While this make facility cannot be supported in Xcode, we will make tools from our IDE accessible from Xcode where possible."
So while some users may prefer to use the plug-in within Xcode, Absoft expects that their own IDE will continue to be used by those developers with specific, advanced technical requirements.
The plug-in is free and is included with Absoftis Pro Fortran for Intel Macs.