Say it like you see it... only if it suits the other

Funny and that's how life is. Everyone wants a frank opinion but that's only an expression, no on really wants to hear the real truth. I wanted to stop writing and posting code for helping new developers because it was not worth the attitudes of some test drivers on the Ansca community or the mis-directed ire of those that had a bad experience with Ansca. At the time the Co-founder that is found busy self promoting himself went on to say that I should reconsider than stopping to help out on the Ansca forums. At the time a lot many developers had silently exited using the Corona platform as they found that it did not live up to helping them achieve the goals they wanted. The community was literally new and fresh.

Now, the same person is singing an entirely different tune and is taking up that offer and asking why have I not quit the Ansca forums.

I am flattered that my presence or absence has such an impact that the Co-Founder himself has to break from the mold of his fake persona to come to something like this. As long as there were no questions asked about Ansca and Corona and new developers were convinced that CoronaSDK was the platform that would help them achieve the Millions that lay on the iTunes market, everything was ok, the moment the developer community is presented with the truth about how other frameworks are better and how there are bugs or flaws that prevent developers from achieving their goals, it is met with extreme hostility.

In fact, I must actually thank Atilim from Gideros for this explanation that helped break the fake field around the Corona product.
In the month of February 2011, slightly more than a year ago, I was down at Microsoft's Sydney office. I was like a lot of other developers quite enthusiastic about the new Windows Phone 7 and wanted that creating an Application for the same would be possible with CoronSDK. To this effect, there were several emails that were exchanged and I was informed that Ansca was in conversation with Microsoft at a much higher level in Seattle. My contact at Microsoft said that he could help put it on the LightBox (that's what I think it was called) a forum internal to Microsoft where all good ideas are placed and then the appropriate teams pick them up from there. Even on the forums, at no point in time did Carlos or Ansca ever let the developers know the reality of the situation that no amount of communication with Microsoft would have changed anything. it is but a surprise that the current CEO/COO of Ansca, David Rangel is an ex-Microsoft employee and Seattle based and came as a part and parcel of the VC Package to Ansca, which only makes it more evident on who's calling the shots at Ansca (the VC's of course). Anyways back to the point, the way that CoronaSDK, Gideros, Moai or any other framework works is by interfacing Lua and the custom framework using C/C++. Much like how Wax, tolua, tolua++ swing, etc work. Microsoft on the other hand have no C/C++ access to the Windows Phone apps, the only way to create apps is C#. This is why Unity could work well in creating Windows Phone applications. So unless someone makes a C# wrapper between Lua and the code, then companies like Ansca, GiderosMobile port the C/C++ code over to C#, making apps for the Windows Phone will be limited to Visual Studio alone. The point or the issue is so simple and never has there ever been an explanation on this point, users keep placing the +1's to keep requesting this and other features. This is in a lot many ways misleading. Atilim from Gideros Mobile on the other had was quite upfront asn on the forums he had posted a frank reason on why Gideros Mobile could not support the windows phone 7 at this point and also mentioned that when Microsoft would open up C/C++ apps, there could be support in Gideros for WP7.

Now that Windows 8 is coming and touted as being more of a tablet OS, there are developers that are looking at that as a new market to explore. Even now, rather than tell the truth, the reason provided is totally confusing, the only part that is clear is that it will not be supported. There are a whole lot of false promises that have been made by this company, Ansca Mobile that has led to frustration and even migration from the platform. The worst part is that when they take the money from a new user in the form of an Indie or a Pro license, the user is actually stuck. If the user is a one off casual developer, they will never ever return to development, but if it is a company, then this is a $349/yr recurring cost even if the company makes just one app on this platform. If the subscription is not renewed, there is no way that the app on the market can be maintained as changes can only be compiled with an active subscription. There is the other side to this argument, that if the developer is a success story then they can afford to renew the license,and if not, then they should let the app die out anyways. In either case, developers must take that into consideration. You can buy Microsoft Office version X, and if you refuse to upgrade it even when the latest version Y is released, you are not held hostage to be unable to open or alter the document unless you pay an annual sum for the same. Unfortunately, Adobe is looking at following a similar track, they announced the 9% share on Flash apps (if using the Pro features) and a similar to Ansca subscription model with the Photoshop and other suite of apps. On the other hand, Gideros and Moai offer the Free version that has a splash screen on start up, so if you do not want that, you have to purchase the license. Ansca has managed to brain wash the users to not only pay them the money but also feel proud to place an Ansca Logo on their apps and about box.

I can understand what the new developer feels when they work with CoronaSDK, as I have been through that since November 2009, when my curiosity piqued about the new framework that would help create apps. In this journey, I have been privy to a lot many things, where I have seen fans become employees, change of positions, new hires, etc. Including a third wave/generation of developers on the forums. I am not sure that any new developer or a die hard Ansca Fanboy would really bother to read this post or be objective to understand the long term effects of this. This can be detrimental to your career as a developer.

So back to our title, I am being as frank as I can on the potential areas of concern and the false promises. Apparently it is not liked and it has prompted the Co-Founder of Ansca, (that has articles on how to be an Entrepreneur, 10 tips on success and keeps adding people to his book on CEO's that have made really big booboo's) to be absolutely rude for no apparent reason. Is Aggression his best Defense? The cracks are now getting evident as it seems that he is losing his position in the company and is being reduced to nothing by the VC or is his illness coming back? Whatever the case, I had developed a special working relationship with this individual and I am disappointed though this is not the first time. I guess I am going to develop a tougher hide on this matter and refuse to quit the forums while on the other hand I had a couple of talks lined up at several events, I chose to withdraw from those to avoid promoting CoronaSDK, I chose to stop writing code samples specifically for CoronaSDK. A couple of my articles on this site cover a wide variety of questions that users ask on the forums. I do use CoronaSDK as and when a client specifically wants the app to be made in CornaSDK.

I just hope that Carlos learns to deal with his issues better as he is the face of Ansca, tomorrow when other users will ask similar questions, I hope they will get answers not aggression.

UPDATE: If you own a car of a particular brand and you feel that the car is not to your liking and you call it a lemon or criticize it to your friends or family, the car dealer would take that away from you without any rhyme or reason as that is what would have been specified in the contract. That's what this particular Mexican beer car dealer does to you, if you do not believe it read the terms and conditions, which are subject to change without any warning. If you have paid for it, you shall be offered no refund and it is entirely upto the car dealer if they want you to drive their car or not. Hmm, I knew that you had to queue up for a Ferrari and/or a Harley.


  1. A couple of days ago a question was asked on the physics documentation page about collision capabilities of the engine ( I replied that it simply wasn't possible with the current builds...a workaround solution was kindly posted by another user, however come the morning the entire comments section was deleted including a years worth of conversation and helpful information. It is clear to me that Ansca is more concerned about hiding their problems and pretending they don't exist rather than acknowledging and fixing problems in the SDK that span years. That was the final nail in the coffin for me and I will be allowing my subscription to lapse with no regrets.


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