Packr – pack your libGDX app for Windows, Linux, Mac OS X

When you package your libGDX app for the desktop via Gradle r by exporting form your IDE, you usually end up with a JAR file which you can hand to your users. However, your users need to have a JVM installed.

Packr makes your libGDX app look more native. Packr does the following for you:

  • Bundle your JAR with a JRE, so your end users don’t need to install Java
  • Create a platform specific directory structure, e.g. App Bundle for Mac OS X etc.
  • Add a native executable that starts the embedded JRE, making your app look more native
  • Minimize the bundled JRE

You can pack for any platform on any platform, e.g. you can pack for Windows on a Mac and vice versa. You can configure packr in various ways, via CLI arguments, a json file per platform or directly from within your own code.

Check out packr on Github

Istanbul Tech Talks 2014

Stef and I have been invited by PeakGames and Istanbul Tech Talks to come to Istanbul, give a talk on libGDX, get to know the mighty awesome folks of Peak Games and enjoy the sights and food in Istanbul. We had an absolute blast and made many new friends. Here’s a funky picture of Niklas and David from SpamDrain and RoboVM and myself close to Hagia Sophia (Stef took the picture). We also tried getting to the grand bazar, but that was closed as it was sunday. A real bummer.


We also got invited to Peak Games’ offices, which was rather impressive in terms of office culture and development practices. I had the chance to hang out with the Android team for a few hours. They showed me around their code base, infrastructure and games. I wished more software companies would have such a professional and skilled team. Everyone was super nice even though they use libGDX for their day job! Maybe we did some things right.

And of course there was Istanbul Tech talks with a total of 8 speakers. I couldn’t see all the talks, but the ones i saw were all extremely good. I got to know Eric Lafortune, the sole developer behind ProGuard and it’s commercial Android sibling DexGuard. He’s started Saikoa together with his lovely wife Heidi (who’s also an olympic medalist in Judo!). We went out with Eric, Heidi, Niklas, David, Erik Hellmann and Matt Brenner & son that night for sea food (actually just a massive plate of starters) and beers. We exchanged some nostalgia, talked about AI, path tracing (Eric invented bi-directional path tracing in his former life!) and life in general. It was one of those evenings you don’t want to end, and reason alone to come to Istanbul.

The conference itself was extremely well organized, thanks to the conference team. Special thanks to Ant and Bilgen, who treated us all like royalty. We’ve never been cared for so well at any conference, and i’ve been to a lot.

Sadly, my talk didn’t go to well. The auditorium was only half full (it was the last talk of the day) and not everybody seemed interested. I also did a live-coding thing of sorts, which may have been to much for a 45-minutes talk. The first and last time i’ll do that. It’s also the first time i rehearsed a talk. I guess i won’t do that again either, going with the flow and slides worked beautifully all other times i gave a talk.

Thanks to PeakGames and Istanbul Tech Talks, to all the people who made sure we didn’t have to care for a thing those 4 days, and the other speakers for an excellent time!