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Book for X Programming

Posted on 1998-02-16
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Last Modified: 2010-04-10
I am interested in learning X Programming and I have background in C++ and assembly. Can someone recommend me a good book that is suitable for beginner?

Thanks.
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Question by:bubblebobble
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Expert Comment

by:andla
ID: 1182388
What is X-programming?
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jhance earned 0 total points
ID: 1182389
I'd suggest "Xlib Programming Manual" (the "1" book in the series) from O'Reilley & Assoc.  It's a good starting point.  If you're making a trip to the bookstore, you might as well get the "2" boot as well, "Xlib Reference Manual".  You'll need it soon enough.
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Author Comment

by:bubblebobble
ID: 1182390
andla, the simplest answer is that it may look like microsoft with their MFC. However, this is for X window application in UNIX environment. I am not sure if my answer is correct, I am only a beginner. Maybe jhance can give us a better explanation. Will you, jhance?




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Expert Comment

by:jhance
ID: 1182391
X is a windowing system developed at MIT to address the problem of differing graphics programming libraries on different unix workstations.  It's not really akin to either the Win32 API or MFC as both of these include a great amount of operating stuff as well as graphics.  X addresses only the graphics and windowing and leaves the operating system stuff to unix, which was fairly portable in that area already.  Theoretically, you should be able to take well written X-Window programs and port them to any computer that support the X library.  In practice it's harder than that but it's been done for a number of years now.

The other nice thing about X is that it's network based.  This is a concept that is just now coming to Windows with the "new" Microsoft Hydra (now called WTS) technology or the Citrix WinFrame product.  X allows you to run you application on one computer (often remote) and display it at your desk.  This is very powerful when the remote system is a high-end server.  You get an interactive window into the server but don't have to be physically present.

All in all, it's pretty slick.  There are a couple of drawbacks.  First, it's bulky.  It takes significant CPU and memory resources just to start up.  These days it's not so bad with even the low-end unix workstations coming setup with 128MB RAM and 200MHz processors.  Second, it's a bear to program in X.  It's just plain complicated.  You might want to consider using one of the higher level application layers like MOTIF after you become familiar with the basics.
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Author Comment

by:bubblebobble
ID: 1182392
You are great!
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Expert Comment

by:andla
ID: 1182393
Thank you jhance and bubblebobble. : )
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