iOS Apps Show Up On RIM's PlayBook
June 14, 2012

iOS Apps Show Up On RIM’s PlayBook

Michael Harper for

Traveling Mystic Wows The CrackBerry Village With Impossible Feats Of Magic

Come, hear tale of the Mystical Developing Sorcerer and his tablets of Wonder!

Shrouded ever he was in anonymity as a weary traveler of the Internet´s channels and tubes, the one known as Businesscat2000 has brought shock and great excitement to the village of CrackBerry, the last remaining holdout from the fallen RIM kingdom. Yes, this Saturday past, one businesscat2000 took his new trick to the huddled, unwashed masses of CrackBerry´s forums and began to show off his geeks-of-strength and sorcery. With his Wand of Internet Cunning, he called up a YouTube video from the dirt, which portrayed familiar iOS apps being displayed on RIM´s very own PlayBook.

The people of CrackBerry have heard tale of these apps, though many had ever seen them with their own eyes.

Forum Members were aghast as these flickering ones and zeroes zipped across their screen. What manner of man is Mr. Cat2000 that he can summon these iOS apps without flint or tender?

In his mercy, Mr. Cat stepped down from his perch and explained to the crowds how he was able to conjure up that which remains in its walled garden.

“The CPU isn't emulated on Playbook (though it is on Windows). It works very similarly to how WINE works to run Windows applications on Linux. The app binary is mapped into memory and imports are resolved to point to my own implementation of the various APIs needed. iOS actually uses a few open APIs already, which Playbook supports just as well (GL ES, and OpenAL). The bulk of the work has been in implementing all of the objective C classes that are required. The ARM code of the applications run as-is - the armv6/v7 support on PB/iDevices are pretty much identical, and the code is designed to run in USR mode. No SWIs, GPIO accesses or any of that kind of shenanigans.

And lo, as the peasants and common-folk gathered around this strange wizard, presumably ready to cast stones and aspersions, good King Michaluk (Lord of all he surveys, King of the CrackBerry House) rose mightily from his castle in the Great White North to put Mr. Cat to a test of wills and strength.

For his first test, Good King Michaluk asked the foreigner to call up the SketchMobile app on the PlayBook and draft a greeting to the people of CrackBerry Land. In a flash, Cat2000 was able to get the pieces working together and draw the words “Hi Crackberry” with his fingers. And Lo, this salutation was displayed on the tablet once thought to bring peace and light to the CrackBerry Kingdom once more.

Pleased as he was, King Michaluk remained dubious and reserved his excitement as he prepared one more test. Cat2000 was then asked to load an app from his own land, iMore, as proof that this was not some road-side slight-of-hand, but in fact a work of a magical force. With a yawn, Cat2000 was able to present the app of his people on the tablet of The Last Hope.

Good King Michaluk declared his satisfaction in this work of magic and with a kick of his heels, thundered away on his mighty steed back to his QWERTY-style Chiclet castle, appeased as ever he was.

Those in the BlackBerry Kingdom who have seen this spectacle and heard this tale shall forever clutch their chests in sorrow when they think back on this day. For while they have seen with their eyes and, in faith, believe, they know such a feat will not bring them once again into the light of Enterprise and Understanding. After all, Magic is magic, but there has never been peace and ease between the houses of Apple and RIM. Nevertheless, those who have seen and heard from Mr. Cat2000 will likely remember this day for years to come and look at their PlayBook tablets with a tear in their eye and a twinge of disappointment.