looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUI abovethe text based application

Discussion in 'Python' started by petr.jakes.tpc@gmail.com, Jan 25, 2008.

  1. Guest

    Hi,
    I am working with the Python 2.5 running on the command line version
    of Linux Ubuntu 7.04. This means NO X-windows, NO GTK/Gnome, NO
    computer mouse, on my machine (AMD Geode 500MHz CPU, VGA output).

    I would like to write some really light weighted GU interface. My
    concept is to have just few user screens (about 10) controlled via 4
    or 5 HW buttons connected to the GPIO pins they are available on the
    motherboard (the HW design and the SW concept of reading this buttons
    is already solved).

    After some googling, I have found below mentioned can be usable, but
    first, I would like to ask here for your opinions/experiences/advices.

    Best regards

    Petr Jakes

    http://www.libsdl.org/
    http://pyfltk.sourceforge.net/
    http://www.pygame.org/news.html
    http://pyui.sourceforge.net/
    http://pyglet.org/
     
    , Jan 25, 2008
    #1
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  2. rndblnch Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    On Jan 25, 8:43 pm, wrote:
    > This means NO X-windows, NO GTK/Gnome, NO
    > computer mouse, on my machine (AMD Geode 500MHz CPU, VGA output).
    >
    > I would like to write some really light weighted GU interface. My
    > concept is to have just few user screens (about 10) controlled via 4
    > or 5 HW buttons connected to the GPIO pins they are available on the
    > motherboard (the HW design and the SW concept of reading this buttons
    > is already solved).


    what you are looking for is curse :)
    http://docs.python.org/lib/module-curses.html
    http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/linux/library/l-python6.html

    renaud
     
    rndblnch, Jan 25, 2008
    #2
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  3. Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    > > is already solved).
    >
    > what you are looking for is curse :)
    > http://docs.python.org/lib/module-curses.html
    > http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/linux/library/l-python6.html
    >
    > renaud


    Renaud, thanks for your reply.

    I think I was not specific/clear enough in my first posting. I know
    the curses library ( http://pyncurses.sourceforge.net ). It AFIK
    provides TUI (short for: Text User Interface or Textual User
    Interface). My needs are GUI, I mean "a nice VGA pictures" on the VGA
    LCD 10" display.

    Petr
     
    , Jan 25, 2008
    #3
  4. Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    wrote:
    >>> is already solved).

    >> what you are looking for is curse :)
    >> http://docs.python.org/lib/module-curses.html
    >> http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/linux/library/l-python6.html
    >>
    >> renaud

    >
    > Renaud, thanks for your reply.
    >
    > I think I was not specific/clear enough in my first posting. I know
    > the curses library ( http://pyncurses.sourceforge.net ). It AFIK
    > provides TUI (short for: Text User Interface or Textual User
    > Interface). My needs are GUI, I mean "a nice VGA pictures" on the VGA
    > LCD 10" display.
    >
    > Petr


    What you need then is something like SVGAlib (http;//svgalib.org). Only
    really old people like myself know that it exists. I've never heard of
    any Python bindings for it, but that might be where you come in. I
    haven't looked at SVGAlib for years, and I'm not sure about the state of
    the video drivers. I suggest you look at that first.

    You could also look at GGI (http://ggi-project.org). GGI has different
    output targets. IIRC, one of them is directfb. To tell you the truth
    I've never really used GGI. There seems to be a python wrapper for GGI,
    although it is fairly old. Maybe you could look at the code for some ideas.

    You should also be able to compile SDL to be able to use directfb as a
    target. If your libSDL handles it, then that should apply to wrapper
    libraries as well, including pygame. I've never tried running SDL apps
    this way, but if it works well, that would probably be your 'best' option.

    Lorenzo
     
    Lorenzo E. Danielsson, Jan 25, 2008
    #4
  5. Hexamorph Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    Lorenzo E. Danielsson wrote:
    > wrote:


    >> I think I was not specific/clear enough in my first posting. I know
    >> the curses library ( http://pyncurses.sourceforge.net ). It AFIK
    >> provides TUI (short for: Text User Interface or Textual User
    >> Interface). My needs are GUI, I mean "a nice VGA pictures" on the VGA
    >> LCD 10" display.
    >>
    >> Petr

    >
    > What you need then is something like SVGAlib (http;//svgalib.org). Only
    > really old people like myself know that it exists. I've never heard of
    > any Python bindings for it, but that might be where you come in. I
    > haven't looked at SVGAlib for years, and I'm not sure about the state of
    > the video drivers.


    I don't think that there's a Python binding for it. Svgalib never
    has gained enough popularity for anybody to write such bindings.
    However, as long as the video card supports VGA or VESA it should work.

    Another possibility might be using Xvesa (KDrive) which is a really
    tiny self-containing X server for VGA/SVGA/FBdev. With this you can
    atleast use simple GUI toolkits like Athena or TK or even use Xlib
    directly (if you don't fear that adventure)

    See:
    http://www.xfree86.org/current/Xvesa.1.html
    http://www.pps.jussieu.fr/~jch/software/kdrive.html


    HTH
     
    Hexamorph, Jan 25, 2008
    #5
  6. Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    schrieb:
    > Hi,
    > I am working with the Python 2.5 running on the command line version
    > of Linux Ubuntu 7.04. This means NO X-windows, NO GTK/Gnome, NO
    > computer mouse, on my machine (AMD Geode 500MHz CPU, VGA output).
    >
    > I would like to write some really light weighted GU interface. My
    > concept is to have just few user screens (about 10) controlled via 4
    > or 5 HW buttons connected to the GPIO pins they are available on the
    > motherboard (the HW design and the SW concept of reading this buttons
    > is already solved).
    >
    > After some googling, I have found below mentioned can be usable, but
    > first, I would like to ask here for your opinions/experiences/advices.
    >
    > Best regards
    >
    > Petr Jakes
    >
    > http://www.libsdl.org/
    > http://pyfltk.sourceforge.net/
    > http://www.pygame.org/news.html
    > http://pyui.sourceforge.net/
    > http://pyglet.org/



    pygame is based on sdl, pyui can render to pygame. So if you use that
    stack, it's a question of SDL being capable of directly rendering to
    something like SVGALib.

    Pyglet is OpenGL, and fltk seems to need X.

    But WHY aren't you just installing X? You don't need to run a
    full-fledged Desktop like gnome or kde on top of it - just use ratpoison
    or anything else as desktop manager & be happy.

    After all, my first PC had 16MB of RAM and 133MHz - and ran X w/o any
    problems.

    Diez
     
    Diez B. Roggisch, Jan 25, 2008
    #6
  7. Paul Boddie Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    On 25 Jan, 22:06, "Lorenzo E. Danielsson"
    <> wrote:
    >
    > What you need then is something like SVGAlib (http;//svgalib.org). Only
    > really old people like myself know that it exists. I've never heard of
    > any Python bindings for it, but that might be where you come in. I
    > haven't looked at SVGAlib for years, and I'm not sure about the state of
    > the video drivers. I suggest you look at that first.


    I believe that SVGAlib was superseded by GGI and other projects, and I
    recall that SVGAlib was considered to be something of a nightware with
    respect to how it handles various resources. Certainly, I haven't been
    very impressed by the behaviour of software using it.

    > You could also look at GGI (http://ggi-project.org). GGI has different
    > output targets. IIRC, one of them is directfb. To tell you the truth
    > I've never really used GGI. There seems to be a python wrapper for GGI,
    > although it is fairly old. Maybe you could look at the code for some ideas.


    I've had to build software using GGI, and the biggest problem has been
    getting packages for it. That said, it seemed to work fairly
    acceptably once built and installed. Meanwhile, some people favour
    Allegro [1] for this kind of work, and I've been confronted with newly
    developed software which uses Allegro, so it's arguably in a different
    maintenance state than something like SVGAlib or GGI.

    > You should also be able to compile SDL to be able to use directfb as a
    > target. If your libSDL handles it, then that should apply to wrapper
    > libraries as well, including pygame. I've never tried running SDL apps
    > this way, but if it works well, that would probably be your 'best' option.


    I'd agree with these sentiments; SDL seems to be the best supported
    technology of this kind in the Python universe, and one of the most
    widely deployed in general; I've felt quite comfortable building
    software against it. It would be very interesting to see whether a
    framebuffer-based SDL could support Pygame, and I imagine that the
    Pygame mailing list might already have some answers in its archives on
    this topic.

    Paul

    [1] http://www.talula.demon.co.uk/allegro/
     
    Paul Boddie, Jan 25, 2008
    #7
  8. Chris Mellon Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    On Jan 25, 2008 5:17 PM, Paul Boddie <> wrote:
    > On 25 Jan, 22:06, "Lorenzo E. Danielsson"
    > <> wrote:
    > >
    > > What you need then is something like SVGAlib (http;//svgalib.org). Only
    > > really old people like myself know that it exists. I've never heard of
    > > any Python bindings for it, but that might be where you come in. I
    > > haven't looked at SVGAlib for years, and I'm not sure about the state of
    > > the video drivers. I suggest you look at that first.

    >
    > I believe that SVGAlib was superseded by GGI and other projects, and I
    > recall that SVGAlib was considered to be something of a nightware with
    > respect to how it handles various resources. Certainly, I haven't been
    > very impressed by the behaviour of software using it.
    >
    > > You could also look at GGI (http://ggi-project.org). GGI has different
    > > output targets. IIRC, one of them is directfb. To tell you the truth
    > > I've never really used GGI. There seems to be a python wrapper for GGI,
    > > although it is fairly old. Maybe you could look at the code for some ideas.

    >
    > I've had to build software using GGI, and the biggest problem has been
    > getting packages for it. That said, it seemed to work fairly
    > acceptably once built and installed. Meanwhile, some people favour
    > Allegro [1] for this kind of work, and I've been confronted with newly
    > developed software which uses Allegro, so it's arguably in a different
    > maintenance state than something like SVGAlib or GGI.
    >
    > > You should also be able to compile SDL to be able to use directfb as a
    > > target. If your libSDL handles it, then that should apply to wrapper
    > > libraries as well, including pygame. I've never tried running SDL apps
    > > this way, but if it works well, that would probably be your 'best' option.

    >
    > I'd agree with these sentiments; SDL seems to be the best supported
    > technology of this kind in the Python universe, and one of the most
    > widely deployed in general; I've felt quite comfortable building
    > software against it. It would be very interesting to see whether a
    > framebuffer-based SDL could support Pygame, and I imagine that the
    > Pygame mailing list might already have some answers in its archives on
    > this topic.
    >



    I agree that SDL is probably the best choice but for the sake of
    completeness, Gtk can (at least in theory - I've never tried it) be
    built against directfb and run without X.
     
    Chris Mellon, Jan 26, 2008
    #8
  9. Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application


    > I agree that SDL is probably the best choice but for the sake of
    > completeness, Gtk can (at least in theory - I've never tried it) be
    > built against directfb and run without X.


    from the Pygame Introduction: Pygame is a Python extension library
    that wraps the SDL library and it's helpers. So you mean, Pygame can
    run without X?

    BTW I have nothing against X, I just have not experiences on the GUI
    field, so my feeling was it can run faster without X on the 500MHz AMD
    Geode CPU.

    Petr
     
    , Jan 26, 2008
    #9
  10. Tim Rau Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    On Jan 25, 10:25 pm, wrote:
    > > I agree that SDL is probably the best choice but for the sake of
    > > completeness, Gtk can (at least in theory - I've never tried it) be
    > > built against directfb and run without X.

    >
    > from the Pygame Introduction: Pygame is a Python extension library
    > that wraps the SDL library and it's helpers. So you mean, Pygame can
    > run without X?
    >
    > BTW I have nothing against X, I just have not experiences on the GUI
    > field, so my feeling was it can run faster without X on the 500MHz AMD
    > Geode CPU.
    >
    > Petr


    The problem is not with x: you should be able to run x just fine with
    only 133MHZ and a few megs of ram. The performance issues on such a
    machine come from things like kde and gnome. use one of the simpler
    window managers.
     
    Tim Rau, Jan 26, 2008
    #10
  11. Guest

    Re: looking for a light weighted library/tool to write simple GUIabove the text based application

    Finaly, after few experiments, I am using pygame.
    It comunicates directly with the framebuffer and the performance is
    excellent.

    Thanks for your help.

    Petr Jakes
     
    , Mar 7, 2008
    #11
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