When to WIN

This is a discussion on When to WIN within the C++ Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; I am now comfortable with classes, pointers, functions, scope, overloading, etc... Now my question is, how much is enough for ...

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    Cool When to WIN

    I am now comfortable with classes, pointers, functions, scope, overloading, etc... Now my question is, how much is enough for someone to go ahead and go Win32? To be honest, I really don't want to sit there and slog through absolutely ALL of C++ before doing Win32, nor does it *appear* to be necessary. For a newbie, how much C++ is enough to begin tackling Win32?

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    Pursuing knowledge confuted's Avatar
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    Re: When to WIN

    Originally posted by Grins2Pain
    I am now comfortable with classes, pointers, functions, scope, overloading, etc... Now my question is, how much is enough for someone to go ahead and go Win32? To be honest, I really don't want to sit there and slog through absolutely ALL of C++ before doing Win32, nor does it *appear* to be necessary. For a newbie, how much C++ is enough to begin tackling Win32?
    Win32 is ugly. It isn't too hard, but it's ugly. If you really want to do it, then do it, but it's ugly. Unless you really want to make a boring windows app, I'd suggest either something easy like Allegro and SDL, or OpenGL/DirectX.
    Away.

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    Wwwwait

    I can use DirectX without Win32 ?! Tell me more!

    (I have almost no interest in apps programming, no offense to all the fine applications programmers of the world)

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    mustang benny bennyandthejets's Avatar
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    Confuted, why do you hate windows apps so much? IMO they are very useful for many purposes, such as word processors, computer utilities, web browsers and interfacers, etc. You can't use graphics libraries for EVERYTHING.

    Win32 is ugly. It isn't too hard, but it's ugly.
    I don't understand. Why is it ugly?
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    the hat of redundancy hat nvoigt's Avatar
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    It is ugly, but it is the base of everything in windows. You simply cannot create a stable and standard abiding program whatever graphics library you use, without a proper knowledge of Win32.
    hth
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    Grammar Police HybridM's Avatar
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    To try out some Win32, really all you need is a fair knowledge of the C features, because Win32 doesn't use C++.

    As for DX without win32, supposedly you shouldn't use too much Win32 in a dx program as it slows it down (heard this somewhere), but a dx program still needs a message procedure, window class (different to a C++ class), and things of that nature.

    And you'll still want to do things like load DLLs and use the registry.
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    lyx
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    Yes, DirectX needs Win32 stuffs to work properly. But, well, DirectX is somehow melted with Win32 as it uses itself some of the API features. (for instance, it has a hook on the message procedure)
    Yet, you should learn Win32 before you try out DirectX. Besides, to understand well Dx, you shall need some knowledge of the COM.

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    Pursuing knowledge confuted's Avatar
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    Ah, by "it's ugly" I mean that the function names are long and convoluted, and all the Hungarian notation is enough to make your head spin. I understand the necessity of the WinAPI, but it isn't "pretty" and "easy" like some of the other APIs, which might be better for a newbie to learn first... just because they aren't confusing and you get results faster and can master the basics like that.
    Away.

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    unleashed alphaoide's Avatar
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    I agree with confuted's definition of "it's ugly". It's like suggesting someone to learn VB first before C++ because with VB you could develop program with pretty GUI in no time. It's my second semester taking C++ and all I see so far is boring text.

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    lyx
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    You only use GUI in rare events. Really, GUI under win32 is not pleasant to write, the style is ugly, that's all. But it's not difficult to understand.

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    Thumbs up Grins2Pain, YOU ARE READY!

    really all you need is a fair knowledge of the C features
    Right! I think if you understand variables, pointers, structures, loops, if-statements, switch-statements, and functions, you can start working through Programming Windows, by Charles Petzold. His book focuses on the GUI... how to make your program look and work like a normal Windows program.

    You only need the more advanced C++ stuff to make your program do something useful. And, so you can do things efficiently.

    The only danger in starting Windows programming too soon, is that there is a lot of Windows-related stuff to learn and you can easily get bogged-down learning Windows, distracting you from the "less-sexy" standard C++ stuff.

    Although Petzold uses C, you can just as easily use the WinAPI functions in a C++ program.

  12. #12
    Board Conservative UnregdRegd's Avatar
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    The Windows API is undefined for the limit of ugliness. I hate it more than I hate Java, actually. If you can, maybe, you could try using Borland's VCL (Visual Class Library) or Microsoft's MFC (Microsoft Foundation Classes). Better yet, maybe you could try learning GTK+ or some other windowing toolkit that's been ported from X to Windows. That way, your windowed programs can easily go from Windows to Linux and many other operating systems.
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