Easiest way to port Python program to PDA

Jeffrey Barish jeffbarish at starband.net
Wed Jun 16 21:40:38 CEST 2004


I have been developing a Python program with two intercommunicating
(using sockets) parts, one of which runs on a desktop and the other on
a PDA.  For ease of development, I developed them both on a desktop. 
Now that I have them working on the desktop, I need to move the part
destined for a PDA to a PDA.  I had originally planned to use a Sharp
Zaurus because it runs Linux (the OS of my desktop system) and I had
found a Python port that was supposed to be available for that platform
(Riverbank Computing).  Unfortunately, Riverbank Computing just
discontinued their port.  They refer interested parties to another port
(http://www.vanille.de/projects/python.spy), but that site has no code
to download and does not respond to queries.  Accordingly, I have to
conclude that there is no Python port available for the Zaurus so I am
back to square 1.

My question in short: does anyone have suggestions for the easiest way
to move the Python program to a PDA.  The program uses a few modules
from the standard distribution (2.3): socket, thread, time, os, and
Tkinter.  I expected to rewrite the GUI, but I am hoping to rewrite the
rest of the program as little as possible.

I have discovered a python for StrongARM Pocket PCs.  There is also a
python port for PalmOS, but that project appears to be dormant.  I have
also discovered handhelds.org, which explains how to run linux on iPAQ,
but it isn't clear to me that it is possible to run python on the
resulting linux installation.  Does anyone have comments on the Palm vs
Pocket PC choice?  How difficult will it be to program the GUI on the
PDA?  I presume that I am going to have to do that using a language
other than python, so I wonder about integrating it with the python
code.  If I have to program the GUI in another language, should I bite
the bullet and rewrite the entire program in that language?
-- 
Jeffrey Barish





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