Windows applications

This is a discussion on Windows applications within the C Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; I'm just getting back into programming, after a lull of about 10 years. Back then I was using Superbasic (on ...

  1. #1
    Jez
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    Windows applications

    I'm just getting back into programming, after a lull of about 10 years. Back then I was using Superbasic (on a Sinclair QL) and 68000 assembly language. I had only done a bit of C, a Mandelbrot Program in DOS.

    My best work was an implementation of Conway's game of life written in assembler. It was very fast.

    Now I've got some ideas to make it even better but am relearning C at the same time. I've got a lovely algorithm (on paper) which I'm slowly turning into C. So far so good.

    The daunting prospect I face is writing the rest of the application, windows, buttons, file handling and so on. I've got some books, including Petzold's Programming Windows which is helpful. But C doesn't seem to make the development of user interface very easy. It's a steep learning curve.

    I've done a bit of Delphi programming which was nice, so I'm thinking of using Delphi to code the front end, and just code the engine in C.

    Anyone got any suggestions or ideas?

    BTW, I'm using LCC-win32 which seems very nice.

  2. #2
    WDT
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    Just started learning windows programming myself along with winsock and C++. If you want to win GUI try this site as it's what I'm currently using. (Download the pdf) Hope that helps.
    A hundred Elephants can knock down the walls of a fortress... One diseased rat can kill everyone inside

  3. #3
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    WDT posted a very good windows API tutorial by theForger. Thats what I used when I first got into doing windows programming. Making a user-interface is actually quite simple when you use the windows API, however, I would suggest that if you are deciding to program games (as it sounds like you are), then I would start learning something more along the lines of DirectX programming to make the user-interface to how you see it should be, rather then comforming to the standards that windows places upon it's programs. You can create custom interfaces using the windows API but it's not a light task, and would probably take you a fair bit of learning and time before you could get into it.

    I personally found that DirectX programming was a lot easier when it came to this task. If you decide to go the DirectX method, you could check out this tutorial. It's Sunlight's, it's a great windows/directX tutorial. First it will teach you how to use the Windows API, then it goes straight into DirectX programming so you don't have to find other tutorials to continue your learning.

    Hope this helps,
    Tyouk

  4. #4
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    Re: Windows applications

    Originally posted by Jez
    I'm just getting back into programming, after a lull of about 10 years. Back then I was using Superbasic (on a Sinclair QL) and 68000 assembly language. I had only done a bit of C, a Mandelbrot Program in DOS.

    My best work was an implementation of Conway's game of life written in assembler. It was very fast.

    Now I've got some ideas to make it even better but am relearning C at the same time. I've got a lovely algorithm (on paper) which I'm slowly turning into C. So far so good.

    The daunting prospect I face is writing the rest of the application, windows, buttons, file handling and so on. I've got some books, including Petzold's Programming Windows which is helpful. But C doesn't seem to make the development of user interface very easy. It's a steep learning curve.

    I've done a bit of Delphi programming which was nice, so I'm thinking of using Delphi to code the front end, and just code the engine in C.
    I agree. Initially, write the engine in C and the screen driver in whatever you know.
    1) Start maybe with Delphi for the I/O.
    2) Learn a standard graphics package for C to make a console version of your program
    3) Then get into one of the various windows programming schemes, MFC, or whatever comes with your compiler.

    I'm interested in your algorithm. When you get it done, please let us know.
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  5. #5
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    You can create a fairly quick prototype with MFC(ie., all of the menu) by using the resource editor and other tools. You don't have to write code at this point. Once that is done you can beginning designing the program along with the classes that were generated MFC. Just keep the same algorithm that you've had along with some extra classes to do the GUI. Alternately, you could just use a large textbox and the output would be similar to the console.

  6. #6
    Jez
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    Thanks very much for all your help guys, I'll check out those links. Knowing where to start is half the battle I think.

    After discussion with a programming-guru friend of mine, we've decided to do a collaborative project, I'll do the engine, and he'll do the front end. I'll still need to learn API's but it'll take the pressure off and let me concentrate on the stuff I'm more interested in.

    WaltP - I've got a draft document describing the principles of the algorithm in full. When it's ready I'll let you have a copy. (I don't want to release it publicly until it's ready - it may give me an excuse to set up a website.) It's all my own work, although some elements have been arrived at independently by others. I'm pretty sure it'll be considerably faster than anything else available. (for instance Johan Bontes Life32).

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