MAR
25
2004

Rik Hemsley: XAML versus Qt

An article on MSDN previewing XAML, a not-so-new idea by Microsoft, prompted me to try implementing the given example using Qt instead. It also prompted me to be a little scornful -- but don't let that fool you -- I'm rather pleased to see the company continuing to make life easier for us developers. Check out my article on how to implement Microsoft's example, using existing technology.

Comments

You're spot on about the vector representation of Avalon. It will be hardware accelerated, and will take advantage of the 3D chips that will be standard issue in most machines three years from now. HOWEVER, I see this as being a good thing for an analogous system in Linux.

Currently, most 3D cards are optimized for handling 3D calculations, and their 2D libraries are small and somewhat anemic in comparison. However, chip makers are not idiots -- they're talking with Microsoft, are putting their 2D libraries on steroids, and are at the same time going to be optimizing for all of the requirements that the next generation of vector languages will require. When it gets down to the level of the chip, you can actually do things like using 3d apps to render text buffers more efficiently than you could with the 2d equivalents, you can get transparencies (alpha channel masks), composited layers, filters and even buffered library references all handled via hardware.

The benefit that Avalon offers is that Microsoft can establish that these improvements need to be in place to make this feasible, but the chips will be on the market well before Longhorn ships. There is not THAT much difference between the graphical layers of Avalon and of SVG, and the latest SVG 1.2 proposals are all indications that the W3C seems to recognize the inherent danger in trying to turn a graphics spec into an interface language by itself. This means that Linux should have access to the same level of hardware that Avalon will, and vector thinking there is already in full swing.

LibSVG is not at this point even at the level of ASV3, but it will be, soon enough. KSVG is taking its first tentative steps now with KDE 3.2, and we have two years of evolution to come on it. The central question comes down to being able to determine the point where you leave the abstraction of graphics and enter the abstraction of UI. I suspect that when Longhorn ships with Avalon, Linux will have planted its flag there first.

Kurt Cagle


By Kurt Cagle at Wed, 2004/03/31 - 6:00am

MFC now compile using Wine/gcc. Is it possible to recompile MFC programs with qt.

Qts strength is documentation. However i learned that KDe is not Qt, you can easily watch this by having a look at qt programs such as Hbasic or sketch, they look outdated and different.


By Bert at Fri, 2004/03/26 - 6:00am

Isn't XAML the result of using the power of XML? qamix uses XML similarly but it is not as polished as XAML. Basically, an XML file is used to describe what widgets appear on screen, minimum amount of spacing, etc. The event handling code gets left in the application and the muddiest part of the qamix code seems to be tieing everything together. I don't see
XAML being a problem because XML was designed for that sort of thing.


By David at Sat, 2004/07/10 - 5:00am

flash has been around for years - sadly everyone learnt to use it through an IDE, it really didn't take on the application style interaction untill more and more flash addicts started using it. -today you can build fully fledged applications (as long as the computer on the otherside can handle it) - so really, Microsoft is thinking about cornering and pushing adobe into doing different type of work, and to forget about it's Macromedia purchase, forget about PDF's and restricitng people from being able to work with them unless paying for thier products, I mean out of all the software vendors that make a profit according to volume of sales - adobe has to be up there in the 'rip off' category, eg. Corel Suite vs Adobe CS. -Adobe need to start thinking about merging thier software categories (I mean Ilustrator still can't do muti page layout - it's not like it's more than a couple of lines of code to give it the ability too)
-anyway I'm off topic
.net 3.0 is just a fancy Flash player, and Xaml is the new SWF (albeit an open version) and as the older browsers slowly become reduntant, the new era of networked interactivity will slowly warp the average joes abilty to understand -whether or not their modem is even connected to the net. - using your personal computer will seem more like a kiosk experience instead of the strict OS vendor -> connect to the net and view experience.
I really think it will be great... I just wonder where adobe and the linux community are going to go with it.
Hopefully PC's and other devices will consist of nothing more than framework, eg. Mono or .Net with xml files controlling whatever the framework has to offer (of course with permissions in mind) - I think it will be great - imagine building and stringing together whatever you want without having to compile or buy software, all you'll need is your text editor.


By Charles at Sat, 2007/01/13 - 6:00am

--Let's do this (if we had the time!)

set up a linux box that starts up with a MONO version of MSoft's Powershell...
-we'll call this the new DOS... this is the native state of the computer - no gui (or at least no content on the screen) - we do have a gui though just nothing rendered cause we haven't HKStartUI.software.mono.run. Anyway we do that... and the XML parser tells the WPF to load the Contents of HKstartUI - whalla , we have our Kiosk computer up and running , with everything from speech rec to touchscreen control. so as you can tell the future will be interesting when it comes to computing - security permissions will not need be set on things like file structures but instead on XML.net elements ,eg. don't want anyone to be able to draw new Forms on the screen - set the permission on System.Forms to no-more instances than now. -and whalla you can browse the internet and all the XAML elements it has to offer withou worrying about it starting up a million pop-up windows. better yet, you won't need special pop-up blocker software in the first place, you could just set the Sytem.Forms permission to - allow Form eleements from XAML downloads - 1 thread at a time.

anyway - I would really love to see a linux distro called 'The MonoBox' - forget kde and gnome - just throw them out the door. Get an interface started up that is totally dependent on the mono framework, with some sort of super C# compiler and a really open programmong network - one where each personal computer would show off to the world what kind of Framwork components it has to offer (new ones to be downloadable in binary or source code from the users own CVS - better yet make the whole .net framework binary totaly open to the world for downloading from each others computer ie .net framework would be open to p2p modifications - of course totally upto the users discretion depending on his permissions)

anyway - I beleive this is the dream of Microsoft - they are just taking it slowly - maybe the linux community could stop wasting time on drawing penguins and skip all the bull with gnome/kde and just make something that would really bring all programming/programmers ability together in a neat configurable format.
-the .net framework.
-no I'm not a MSOFT fanatic - but I have envisaged this day since the first day I saw Flash - it's taken a while, and I am surprised no-other giants have done it already. it would be an OP that would kick arse to Linux or anything else around.
imagine software consisting of nothing more than XML repositories - and you the programmer being able to mix and match XML declaratives between applications with nothing more than your already mixed and mathced amalgamted custom ide you made just for doing that.

-anyone want to start a PROJECT!


By Charles at Sat, 2007/01/13 - 6:00am

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