Whither DWT?

Anders F Björklund afb at algonet.se
Wed Apr 19 08:40:14 PDT 2006

DBloke wrote:

> Yes D could have both but assuming that one half work on X Platform
> and one half on Native then you only have half as much effort for each
> rather than 100% on one.

I think that both of these approaches have their uses, actually...

If there was a finite number of people working on it totally,
it would make sense to pick one. But I don't think there are ?
It's more like some people are interested in one and others
are interested in the other, and you can't make them "switch"

And even if I think the native toolkit should be the primary one,
I can't deny that for instance Harmonia or XUL gives good results ?

>> If you mean for the "official" Digital Mars GUI for D, then Walter has
>> already chosen DWT which is a native interface ("heavyweight" widgets)
> Yes I read the post, but is DWT not a Windows only implementation, and
> is it still actively updated and maintained?
> AFAICS there is only Shawn working on this if DWT is the chosen one
> would it not be better to concentrate all efforts on this adding and
> removing ideas from other GUI Framworks to DWT in a multi man effort?

I think there was Shawn working on DWT/Windows, JJR working on DWT/GTK
(Linux) and Carlos working on DWT/Carbon (Mac OS X) in the beginning...

But I think the start of this thread was because the DWT/Win development
is not making progress and I think the other platforms are stopped too ?

At least that's how the DWT forum posting sounds:

>> And I prefer native D widgets, just as I prefer native D executables...
> Are you referring to DWT?

I meant in general, as in heavyweight/widgets over lightweight/gadgets.
(I think you used the terms "native" and "crossplatform" for the two ?)

I just like using the frameworks using native widgets better myself;
even if it would be very cool to have something like Swing, in OpenGL ?

Have been writing Java apps with Swing earlier, that has worked well.
But there both the code and gui is portable, which it isn't in D exes.
So currently I'm doing either wxWidgets with C++, or Swing with Java.
(for the cross-platform projects, the rest use some old native stuff)

i.e. either both program/framework is native, or they're both virtual
SWT just isn't my "personal favorite", so I haven't been using it...

>> Then again we don't have any "official" bindings for either of them ?
> What would make a binding official? [...]

Supported by Digital Mars ? Or available as a standard D download ?

But I know that there are two approaches here, "headers" (bindings)
and "Derelict" (loading shared library function pointers at runtime)
So maybe it's not doable to have just one official SDL/GL binding...
The SDL/GL bindings are both working well, that is not the problem.

> Why not have a community effort finishing one or using all the best
> ideas from each project and building a new one from ground up?

A new library on the same scope of SWT or wxWidgets takes years to do,
which is why it was much easier to port or wrap the original versions ?

If doing a brand new GUI library, then MinWin (heavyweight) or Harmonia
(lightweight) seems to be the two D libraries that are furthest along ?
Or perhaps the DUI library, if wrapping GTK+ is cross-platform enough ?
(it looks a bit weird on Windows, and is not finished yet for Mac OS X)


I will await what the community comes up with for a new official project
and/or restart of the DWT project, and just continue with wxD meanwhile.

GDC and wxD are the ones closest matching to what *I* want out of D, but
for others then the official two: DMD and DWT, might be a better match ?


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