Need Help Selecting a GUI

Discussion in 'Ruby' started by Bill Atkins, May 15, 2004.

  1. Bill Atkins

    Bill Atkins Guest

    As anyone can tell by looking at the topics of my recent posts, I'm
    having trouble picking a Ruby GUI to use for a project. Here are some
    of the toolkits I'm considering and the pros and cons of each. My
    project, by the way, is a simple open-source, instant messaging client
    that would have to work on Windows and NIX systems.

    1. Tk
    pros: comes with Ruby; pretty much everywhere; powerful TkText widget
    cons: messy, mostly undocumented API; unconventional appearance;
    requires tcl; no tree control; it's Tk :)

    2. FOX
    pros: consistent and attractive appearance; very OO
    cons: no substitute for TkText - FXScintilla might do the trick, but
    it's API is a lot more complicated than TkText; somewhat C++-ish API;
    FxTreeList doesn't allow setting styles for individual items

    3. Qt
    pros: supposed to be really nice
    cons: costs money on Win32 - out of the question

    4. Gtk
    pros: plenty of widgets; antialiasing
    cons: supposed to be unstable on Win32; requires large download on
    Win32 machines; X-ish interface

    5. Wx
    pros: well-designed Rubyish API; supports changing tree item styles;
    seems pretty stable for a young project; native widgets
    cons: brand new - could have problems; on Linux, requires a large
    download (wxGTK) in order to work (6MB)

    Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    downloads just to make it work.

    Also, antialiased fonts would be extremely nice, but no toolkit seems
    to support them, except Gtk (right?) which I can't use because of the
    large Win32 dependencies.

    Any thoughts on these?

    Bill
    Bill Atkins, May 15, 2004
    #1
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  2. Bill Atkins

    Rich Guest

    The FXScintilla Widget is a beast (like the docs say), but I'm as beginner
    of a prgrammer as you can get (I know that's not gramatically correct) - and
    I was able to figure it out.

    -Rich

    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Bill Atkins" <>
    Newsgroups: comp.lang.ruby
    To: "ruby-talk ML" <>
    Sent: Saturday, May 15, 2004 7:18 AM
    Subject: Need Help Selecting a GUI


    > As anyone can tell by looking at the topics of my recent posts, I'm
    > having trouble picking a Ruby GUI to use for a project. Here are some
    > of the toolkits I'm considering and the pros and cons of each. My
    > project, by the way, is a simple open-source, instant messaging client
    > that would have to work on Windows and NIX systems.
    >
    > 1. Tk
    > pros: comes with Ruby; pretty much everywhere; powerful TkText widget
    > cons: messy, mostly undocumented API; unconventional appearance;
    > requires tcl; no tree control; it's Tk :)
    >
    > 2. FOX
    > pros: consistent and attractive appearance; very OO
    > cons: no substitute for TkText - FXScintilla might do the trick, but
    > it's API is a lot more complicated than TkText; somewhat C++-ish API;
    > FxTreeList doesn't allow setting styles for individual items
    >
    > 3. Qt
    > pros: supposed to be really nice
    > cons: costs money on Win32 - out of the question
    >
    > 4. Gtk
    > pros: plenty of widgets; antialiasing
    > cons: supposed to be unstable on Win32; requires large download on
    > Win32 machines; X-ish interface
    >
    > 5. Wx
    > pros: well-designed Rubyish API; supports changing tree item styles;
    > seems pretty stable for a young project; native widgets
    > cons: brand new - could have problems; on Linux, requires a large
    > download (wxGTK) in order to work (6MB)
    >
    > Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    > Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    > possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    > source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    > downloads just to make it work.
    >
    > Also, antialiased fonts would be extremely nice, but no toolkit seems
    > to support them, except Gtk (right?) which I can't use because of the
    > large Win32 dependencies.
    >
    > Any thoughts on these?
    >
    > Bill
    >
    Rich, May 15, 2004
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. (Bill Atkins) wrote:
    [snip]
    > Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    > Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    > possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    > source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    > downloads just to make it work.
    >
    > Also, antialiased fonts would be extremely nice, but no toolkit seems
    > to support them, except Gtk (right?) which I can't use because of the
    > large Win32 dependencies.
    >
    > Any thoughts on these?


    I have comed to pretty much the same conclusions... I am seriously
    considering making multiple frontends for my aeditor project.

    So on unix it supports: gtk or qt.. (havn't decided 100% yet)
    on windows: windows native widget set
    on mac: cocoa?

    Lots of hard work, in order to get antialiasing and i18n. It seems
    as XUL+ruby is still too far away.

    --
    Simon Strandgaard
    Simon Strandgaard, May 15, 2004
    #3
  4. Bill Atkins

    Jamis Buck Guest

    Bill Atkins wrote:
    > Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    > Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    > possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    > source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    > downloads just to make it work.


    I once started a project that used nothing more than Ruby/DL, and drew
    its own widgets onto whatever windowing API was available (X, Gtk,
    Win32, etc.). Didn't get very far, but I'm beginning to realize that
    there may be a lot of value in a cross-platform "pure Ruby" windowing
    toolkit.

    Does anyone else see any value there? Has anyone else ever attempted this?

    - Jamis

    --
    Jamis Buck

    http://www.jamisbuck.org/jamis

    ruby -h | ruby -e
    'a=[];readlines.join.scan(/-(.)\[e|Kk(\S*)|le.l(..)e|#!(\S*)/) {|r| a <<
    r.compact.first };puts "\n>#{a.join(%q/ /)}<\n\n"'
    Jamis Buck, May 15, 2004
    #4
  5. Bill Atkins

    Phil Tomson Guest

    In article <>,
    Bill Atkins <> wrote:
    >As anyone can tell by looking at the topics of my recent posts, I'm
    >having trouble picking a Ruby GUI to use for a project. Here are some
    >of the toolkits I'm considering and the pros and cons of each. My
    >project, by the way, is a simple open-source, instant messaging client
    >that would have to work on Windows and NIX systems.
    >
    >1. Tk
    >pros: comes with Ruby; pretty much everywhere; powerful TkText widget
    >cons: messy, mostly undocumented API; unconventional appearance;
    >requires tcl; no tree control; it's Tk :)
    >
    >2. FOX
    >pros: consistent and attractive appearance; very OO
    >cons: no substitute for TkText - FXScintilla might do the trick, but
    >it's API is a lot more complicated than TkText; somewhat C++-ish API;
    >FxTreeList doesn't allow setting styles for individual items
    >
    >3. Qt
    >pros: supposed to be really nice
    >cons: costs money on Win32 - out of the question
    >
    >4. Gtk
    >pros: plenty of widgets; antialiasing
    >cons: supposed to be unstable on Win32; requires large download on
    >Win32 machines; X-ish interface
    >
    >5. Wx
    >pros: well-designed Rubyish API; supports changing tree item styles;
    >seems pretty stable for a young project; native widgets
    >cons: brand new - could have problems; on Linux, requires a large
    >download (wxGTK) in order to work (6MB)
    >
    >Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    >Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    >possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    >source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    >downloads just to make it work.
    >
    >Also, antialiased fonts would be extremely nice, but no toolkit seems
    >to support them, except Gtk (right?) which I can't use because of the
    >large Win32 dependencies.
    >
    >Any thoughts on these?


    FLTK? The FLTK shared lib and ruby bindings are smaller than 1MB.

    Problem is that it's still not released 'into the wild' (at least the
    source code for the bindings, that is). On Monday I'll try to remember to
    see if there has been any progress on that front.

    Phil
    Phil Tomson, May 15, 2004
    #5
  6. Bill Atkins

    Ara.T.Howard Guest

    On 15 May 2004, Bill Atkins wrote:

    > As anyone can tell by looking at the topics of my recent posts, I'm
    > having trouble picking a Ruby GUI to use for a project. Here are some
    > of the toolkits I'm considering and the pros and cons of each. My
    > project, by the way, is a simple open-source, instant messaging client
    > that would have to work on Windows and NIX systems.
    >
    > 1. Tk
    > pros: comes with Ruby; pretty much everywhere; powerful TkText widget
    > cons: messy, mostly undocumented API; unconventional appearance;
    > requires tcl; no tree control; it's Tk :)
    >
    > 2. FOX
    > pros: consistent and attractive appearance; very OO
    > cons: no substitute for TkText - FXScintilla might do the trick, but
    > it's API is a lot more complicated than TkText; somewhat C++-ish API;
    > FxTreeList doesn't allow setting styles for individual items
    >
    > 3. Qt
    > pros: supposed to be really nice
    > cons: costs money on Win32 - out of the question
    >
    > 4. Gtk
    > pros: plenty of widgets; antialiasing
    > cons: supposed to be unstable on Win32; requires large download on
    > Win32 machines; X-ish interface
    >
    > 5. Wx
    > pros: well-designed Rubyish API; supports changing tree item styles;
    > seems pretty stable for a young project; native widgets
    > cons: brand new - could have problems; on Linux, requires a large
    > download (wxGTK) in order to work (6MB)



    6. webrick + native browser
    you're program spawns a webserver (fork or popen) and then spanws a browser
    pointing at it. the webrick server IS the ui.

    pros: works on *nix, windoze, mac. familiar ui. extremely quick to code.
    cons: limiting ui (but what do you really need for an im client?)


    just something to consider - i had managed to make this work in 30 lines of
    code or so a while back - now i can't seem to find it, but it's pretty
    straightword:

    url = start_server

    require 'rbconfig'
    case platform
    when /*nix/
    start_nix_client url
    when /windoze/
    start_windoze_client url
    when /mac/
    start_mac_client url
    end

    -a
    --
    ===============================================================================
    | EMAIL :: Ara [dot] T [dot] Howard [at] noaa [dot] gov
    | PHONE :: 303.497.6469
    | ADDRESS :: E/GC2 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305-3328
    | URL :: http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/stp/
    | TRY :: for l in ruby perl;do $l -e "print \"\x3a\x2d\x29\x0a\"";done
    ===============================================================================
    Ara.T.Howard, May 15, 2004
    #6
  7. Bill Atkins

    Robert Feldt Guest

    Jamis Buck wrote:

    > Bill Atkins wrote:
    >
    >> Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    >> Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    >> possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    >> source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    >> downloads just to make it work.

    >
    >
    > I once started a project that used nothing more than Ruby/DL, and drew
    > its own widgets onto whatever windowing API was available (X, Gtk,
    > Win32, etc.). Didn't get very far, but I'm beginning to realize that
    > there may be a lot of value in a cross-platform "pure Ruby" windowing
    > toolkit.
    >
    > Does anyone else see any value there? Has anyone else ever attempted
    > this?
    >

    One of my students has done a prototype for a pure-Ruby GUI framework
    using OpenGL as the back-end. She is finishing up now and the report
    should be available in 2-3 weeks. Even though she hasn't focused on it
    being pretty I think it's a "doable" approach and gives lots of freedom.

    Based on her prototype I'd like to get a releasable version 0.1
    together, see if there is some interest in it and if it can evolve from
    there. I have early vacation this year but when I'm back (late June)
    I'll try to get a tarball together if there is any interest.

    Regards,

    Robert
    Robert Feldt, May 16, 2004
    #7
  8. Bill Atkins

    Phil Tomson Guest

    In article <>,
    Robert Feldt <> wrote:
    >Jamis Buck wrote:
    >
    >> Bill Atkins wrote:
    >>
    >>

    >One of my students has done a prototype for a pure-Ruby GUI framework
    >using OpenGL as the back-end. She is finishing up now and the report
    >should be available in 2-3 weeks. Even though she hasn't focused on it
    >being pretty I think it's a "doable" approach and gives lots of freedom.
    >
    >Based on her prototype I'd like to get a releasable version 0.1
    >together, see if there is some interest in it and if it can evolve from
    >there. I have early vacation this year but when I'm back (late June)
    >I'll try to get a tarball together if there is any interest.
    >


    I'd be interested in looking at it and I think I may actually have some
    time in late June...

    Phil
    Phil Tomson, May 17, 2004
    #8
  9. Bill Atkins

    Vlad Guest

    Vlad, May 17, 2004
    #9
  10. First, I was going to reply from the original message of this thread that
    was sent by 'Bill Atkins'. My Outlook Express was saying 'A program is
    trying to access e-mail addresses you have stored in Outlook' !!


    Couple of days back, I posted a similar message.
    I liked Fox a lot. Its very much Object Oriented.

    But I was surprised this morning when I went to the official website of Fox
    http://www.fox-toolkit.org and found 'Coming Soon' By godaddy !!!


    Mohammad
    "Good artist borrow idea from others and great artist steal it !"



    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Rich" <>
    To: "ruby-talk ML" <>
    Sent: Saturday, May 15, 2004 10:06 AM
    Subject: Re: Need Help Selecting a GUI


    > The FXScintilla Widget is a beast (like the docs say), but I'm as beginner
    > of a prgrammer as you can get (I know that's not gramatically correct) -

    and
    > I was able to figure it out.
    >
    > -Rich
    >
    > ----- Original Message -----
    > From: "Bill Atkins" <>
    > Newsgroups: comp.lang.ruby
    > To: "ruby-talk ML" <>
    > Sent: Saturday, May 15, 2004 7:18 AM
    > Subject: Need Help Selecting a GUI
    >
    >
    > > As anyone can tell by looking at the topics of my recent posts, I'm
    > > having trouble picking a Ruby GUI to use for a project. Here are some
    > > of the toolkits I'm considering and the pros and cons of each. My
    > > project, by the way, is a simple open-source, instant messaging client
    > > that would have to work on Windows and NIX systems.
    > >
    > > 1. Tk
    > > pros: comes with Ruby; pretty much everywhere; powerful TkText widget
    > > cons: messy, mostly undocumented API; unconventional appearance;
    > > requires tcl; no tree control; it's Tk :)
    > >
    > > 2. FOX
    > > pros: consistent and attractive appearance; very OO
    > > cons: no substitute for TkText - FXScintilla might do the trick, but
    > > it's API is a lot more complicated than TkText; somewhat C++-ish API;
    > > FxTreeList doesn't allow setting styles for individual items
    > >
    > > 3. Qt
    > > pros: supposed to be really nice
    > > cons: costs money on Win32 - out of the question
    > >
    > > 4. Gtk
    > > pros: plenty of widgets; antialiasing
    > > cons: supposed to be unstable on Win32; requires large download on
    > > Win32 machines; X-ish interface
    > >
    > > 5. Wx
    > > pros: well-designed Rubyish API; supports changing tree item styles;
    > > seems pretty stable for a young project; native widgets
    > > cons: brand new - could have problems; on Linux, requires a large
    > > download (wxGTK) in order to work (6MB)
    > >
    > > Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    > > Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    > > possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    > > source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    > > downloads just to make it work.
    > >
    > > Also, antialiased fonts would be extremely nice, but no toolkit seems
    > > to support them, except Gtk (right?) which I can't use because of the
    > > large Win32 dependencies.
    > >
    > > Any thoughts on these?
    > >
    > > Bill
    > >

    >
    >
    >
    Mohammad Khan, May 17, 2004
    #10
  11. Bill Atkins

    Jamey Cribbs Guest

    I think jeroen is in the process of changing providers or
    something...for now, try http://www.fox-toolkit.com.

    Jamey

    Mohammad Khan wrote:

    >First, I was going to reply from the original message of this thread that
    >was sent by 'Bill Atkins'. My Outlook Express was saying 'A program is
    >trying to access e-mail addresses you have stored in Outlook' !!
    >
    >
    >Couple of days back, I posted a similar message.
    >I liked Fox a lot. Its very much Object Oriented.
    >
    >But I was surprised this morning when I went to the official website of Fox
    >http://www.fox-toolkit.org and found 'Coming Soon' By godaddy !!!
    >
    >
    >Mohammad
    >"Good artist borrow idea from others and great artist steal it !"
    >
    >
    >
    >----- Original Message -----
    >From: "Rich" <>
    >To: "ruby-talk ML" <>
    >Sent: Saturday, May 15, 2004 10:06 AM
    >Subject: Re: Need Help Selecting a GUI
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >>The FXScintilla Widget is a beast (like the docs say), but I'm as beginner
    >>of a prgrammer as you can get (I know that's not gramatically correct) -
    >>
    >>

    >and
    >
    >
    >>I was able to figure it out.
    >>
    >>-Rich
    >>
    >>----- Original Message -----
    >>From: "Bill Atkins" <>
    >>Newsgroups: comp.lang.ruby
    >>To: "ruby-talk ML" <>
    >>Sent: Saturday, May 15, 2004 7:18 AM
    >>Subject: Need Help Selecting a GUI
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>>As anyone can tell by looking at the topics of my recent posts, I'm
    >>>having trouble picking a Ruby GUI to use for a project. Here are some
    >>>of the toolkits I'm considering and the pros and cons of each. My
    >>>project, by the way, is a simple open-source, instant messaging client
    >>>that would have to work on Windows and NIX systems.
    >>>
    >>>1. Tk
    >>>pros: comes with Ruby; pretty much everywhere; powerful TkText widget
    >>>cons: messy, mostly undocumented API; unconventional appearance;
    >>>requires tcl; no tree control; it's Tk :)
    >>>
    >>>2. FOX
    >>>pros: consistent and attractive appearance; very OO
    >>>cons: no substitute for TkText - FXScintilla might do the trick, but
    >>>it's API is a lot more complicated than TkText; somewhat C++-ish API;
    >>>FxTreeList doesn't allow setting styles for individual items
    >>>
    >>>3. Qt
    >>>pros: supposed to be really nice
    >>>cons: costs money on Win32 - out of the question
    >>>
    >>>4. Gtk
    >>>pros: plenty of widgets; antialiasing
    >>>cons: supposed to be unstable on Win32; requires large download on
    >>>Win32 machines; X-ish interface
    >>>
    >>>5. Wx
    >>>pros: well-designed Rubyish API; supports changing tree item styles;
    >>>seems pretty stable for a young project; native widgets
    >>>cons: brand new - could have problems; on Linux, requires a large
    >>>download (wxGTK) in order to work (6MB)
    >>>
    >>>Wx would be my choice except that it requires such a large download on
    >>>Linux. I would really prefer that the user download as little as
    >>>possible, aside from Ruby itself. Considering that my project's
    >>>source will be under 300K, it seems silly to require large GUI
    >>>downloads just to make it work.
    >>>
    >>>Also, antialiased fonts would be extremely nice, but no toolkit seems
    >>>to support them, except Gtk (right?) which I can't use because of the
    >>>large Win32 dependencies.
    >>>
    >>>Any thoughts on these?
    >>>
    >>>Bill
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>

    >>
    >>
    >>

    >
    >
    >



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    Jamey Cribbs, May 17, 2004
    #11
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