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Programming with QT: Writing Portable GUI Applicat: Writing Portable GUI applications on UNIX and Win32 [Paperback]

Matthias Kalle Dalheimer
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Programming with Qt: Writing Portable GUI applications on Unix and Win32 Programming with Qt: Writing Portable GUI applications on Unix and Win32 4.0 out of 5 stars (10)
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Book Description

April 11 1999 1565925882 978-1565925885 1

Qt is a C++ class library for writing GUI applications that run on UNIX, Windows 95/98, and Windows NT platforms. Qt is much easier to use than the standard Motif toolkit for UNIX systems, but at the same time Qt emulates the look-and-feel of Motif. Best of all, after you have written an application with Qt, all you have to do is recompile it to have a version that works on Windows systems. Qt also emulates the look-and-feel of Windows, so you can provide all of your users with native-looking interfaces.Platform independence is not the only benefit of Qt. Qt uses an ingenious signal/slot mechanism for connecting user interaction with program functionality, providing an excellent framework for component-based programming. Graphical rendering in Qt is highly optimized due to its use of effective caching mechanisms -- rendering in Qt is often faster than with the similar native API. In addition to user interface classes, Qt features portable support for file system access, working with date and time values, and network programming. With Qt, you'll find that you need to write very little, if any, platform-dependent code because Qt already has what you need.Qt is popular with open-source and Linux developers because it can be used for free on UNIX systems for this type of development. For commercial development, you need a license for Qt, which is available from Troll Tech, the developers of Qt. In addition to open-source development, Qt is being used by several major companies and government and international agencies.While programming with Qt is straightforward and feels natural once you get the hang of it, the learning curve can be steep. Qt comes with excellent reference documentation, but beginners often find the included tutorial is not enough to really get started with Qt. That is where this book steps in. Programming with Qt guides you through the steps of writing a Qt application by showing you how to write a simple paint application. It also helps deepen your understanding of the topics with exercises and fully worked out answers. The book presents all of the GUI elements in Qt, along with advice about when and how to use them, so that you can make full use of the toolkit. There's also lots of information for seasoned Qt programmers, including material on advanced 2D transformations, drag-and-drop, and writing custom image file filters.Programming with Qt helps you get the most out of Qt. With it, you'll learn to take full advantage of this powerful, easy-to-use, cross-platform toolkit.

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Programming with Qt offers an excellent introduction to the Qt toolkit, a powerful C++ graphical user interface (GUI) library that allows developers to create interfaces that run under both Unix and Windows. The book first looks at the strengths of the Qt library: it provides excellent cross-platform support, good performance, and ease of use for the C++ programmer.

After a basic application, the book moves onto the event model in Qt, which uses signals and slots to attach events to code. The author demonstrates that Qt is a remarkably sophisticated user interface library. Early sections examine programming menus, including pop-up menus, basic widgets, or controls (such as labels and listboxes), and more complex controls (such as sliders, progress bars, listviews, and tables).

Next the book presents material on Qt's built-in dialogs (for message boxes and opening and saving files) and layout managers. The author investigates Qt's container classes (such as arrays and dictionaries) and offers a lot of material on 2-D graphics, including printing, saving, and loading images.

Later chapters look at validating text and working with files and directories, with tips on important topics such as focus handling, internationalization, portability, and debugging. (The author even shows you how to work with Qt in Perl and reviews several Qt GUI builders that help automate design.)

Filled with expert advice and sample code, this guide makes a strong case that both Unix and Windows developers should try out Qt. --Richard Dragan


Read the full review for this book.

One area the author focuses on throughout the book, and to good effect, is Qt's use of signals and slots. (These are not traditional UNIX IPC signals, but a variation unique to Qt.) This is the technology that notifies specific parts of a program when UI events happen, such as users clicking on a button or an item in a listbox. Every application framework has its own way of performing this "plumbing," and understanding it well enough to get notifications in the right places, forward them effectively, and so on, is critical to using the framework. Dalheimer clearly appreciates this fact, and doesn't just talk about Qt's signals and slots once and then move on, but returns to the topic several times in different contexts. --Lou Grinzo, Dr. Dobb's Electronic Review of Computer Books -- Dr. Dobb's Electronic Review of Computer Books

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars It was the bible, at the time, Jan. 3 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
And still is.

It might be a bit dated now. As there are newer books for the same topic.
All in all, if you are looking for a triligy about QT, view this book and the other two that I found.
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Amazon.com: 3.2 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but obsolete already Nov. 4 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I don't think this book is so bad as some people said below. It does what it was writen for - teaches programming Qt.
I don't agree that this book doesn't contain good samle codes. While reading it I compiled and ran the most of examples.
The problem with the book is that it's based on the obsolete version of Qt (1.4x, current is 2.02), so some classes and functions have changed a bit.
Reading the Qt mailing list I noticed that many people who start reading fail to compile the very 1st example "Hello, World"at p.13, because now QLabel constructor has different arguments. But the book has errata page in the Internet, you may check it.
In any case right now it's the only Qt book. Troll Tech people are still preparing their own (Qt: The Officiak Documentation).
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good intro to Qt programming. Nov. 2 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I enjoyed this book thoroughly. I'm not sure what the other reviewers are talking about when they say that the book was riddled with errors; I didn't notice any (I suppose if there were any, they were easily fixed), and had absolutely no problems getting the code to compile. Qt is a great toolkit, and this is an excellent introduction. The only thing I would have changed about this book is to make every chapter have some exercises instead of only the first few chapters.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Out of date, LOTS OF ERRORS, not enough depth Aug. 22 2000
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
This book was useful to me as at the time there really were not other QT books except TrollTech's Website. However, beware of this book. It has MANY MANY typos and major mistakes, many of which are in the programming examples.
As a good typist, I generally like to type in programming examples as it makes me read and think about the code - rather than just blindingly copying it. Beware, there are MANY mistakes in the source code. Several do NOT compile! I spent a long time finding mistakes. I even sent the fixes to the author and the publisher. They thanked me the first few times, and then never replied to my later postings. You figure they would have appreciated all of them AND should have pointed out other mistakes before I ran into them (since others must have pointed out these mistakes as well).
Even though signals/slots are covered these are SUCH a LARGE component of Qt that the book does not even begin to really discuss the complexities of them enough. To be fair, the author points this out, but to not deal in detail with signals/slots when learning Qt is a big handicap. Not dealing with signals/slots in detail with LOTS of EXAMPLES is sort of a cop-out.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good tutorial and overview - a necessary and welcome book May 25 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
First, I'm not exactly a GUI hacker, so you'll have to bear with my relative lack of knowledge in this area.
I do believe that Qt is mostly that: 'Cute'. It also is an excellent candidate for 'easy' GUI programming. What I wanted to find out among other things was whether Qt is a potential industrial strength full replacement of either Motif or the Windows API or both.
Unfortunately, Matthias' book falls a little short of the answer, being too loyal to Qt to point out any shortcomings. It rightfully, if drily and repetitively, points out why Qt might be better or more suitable for easy-to-write (relatively speaking) and somewhat portable GUI-based applications.
The book faithfully takes you through all the details of the tutorials which are arranged in suitably increasing difficulty. In the last few chapters it also discusses version 2.0 of Qt (yet to be released), the Perl interface and the available GUI builders.
The book isn't designed as a reference manual, so you will have to stick with the Qt online reference. The tone of the book is rather dry and occasionally repetitive, which works somewhat like your favorite Latin teacher.
What's missing? A discussion of Qt's features compared to established GUIs (in particular customization and 'Desktop' issues), a stronger connection to the KDE project (after all, it _is_ possible to write a Window Manager using Qt, so what did that take?) and maybe a little more casual tone or even humor.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Needs more depth June 21 2000
By W. Taylor - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I found this book to be clearly written, and not difficult to follow and succinct, and not sufficient to answer enough of my programming questions to feel comfortable creating my own programs. You definitely need to study the Troll Tech-provided documentation to go very far beyond the book in programming, but the documentation reads like it was written as a reference, for people who understand but simply need a reminder. The book needs about two hundred more pages explaining examples and critical subjects like slot-signal interactions, layouts and many of the widgets more completely.
This book makes a good overview, but needs more depth. At the time, it was about the only book available, so I cannot say that it was a mistake to get the book when I did. I hope that other books coming out on Qt have more depth and more complete explanations.
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