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Old 15 October 2018, 07:21   #1
Warty
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Amiga 68k Apps: MUI or Bust?

Hi All,

I've been goofing around with my Amiga 1000 and UAE again the several months, getting into C development on the Amiga. (not getting started on C per se). I had one back in the day, but I don't seem to have actually written anything for it (not that I remember anyway). Too many games I guess.

Anyway, I've made a fun little Rogue port, and am working on a raycaster-based maybe-game-maybe-VR-demo thing, but I've always like doing productivity stuff too with my old computers. When people write nowadays for 68k Amiga, and it's UI intensive (word processor, business app, what have you), is it common to use MUI? Does everyone pretty much do that? I am really new to Amiga development, and I was completely gone from the platform for 25 years or something, so I'm doing a lot of reading and trying to catch up, but...

I found a couple good resources:
https://muidev.de
http://www.ezcyberspace.com/gcc/index.html

I used MagicWB back in the day, and have it set up on a UAE instance, so the look of MUI is familiar to me, but is this what people would want today, if they were looking at a new Amiga app? (ok, sure, there are probably like 4 people in the world who want a new 68k amiga app, but I'm one of them so pffft).

Is "feelin" something worth looking into for 68k? All the examples looked to be from AROS or maybe MorphOS. But examples have 68k compiling going on. (Haven't yet tried it).
http://www.feelin.fr/guide/first/

What would you recommend?
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Old 15 October 2018, 10:54   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warty View Post
Hi All,

I've been goofing around with my Amiga 1000 and UAE again the several months, getting into C development on the Amiga. (not getting started on C per se). I had one back in the day, but I don't seem to have actually written anything for it (not that I remember anyway). Too many games I guess.

Anyway, I've made a fun little Rogue port, and am working on a raycaster-based maybe-game-maybe-VR-demo thing, but I've always like doing productivity stuff too with my old computers. When people write nowadays for 68k Amiga, and it's UI intensive (word processor, business app, what have you), is it common to use MUI? Does everyone pretty much do that? I am really new to Amiga development, and I was completely gone from the platform for 25 years or something, so I'm doing a lot of reading and trying to catch up, but...

I found a couple good resources:
https://muidev.de
http://www.ezcyberspace.com/gcc/index.html

I used MagicWB back in the day, and have it set up on a UAE instance, so the look of MUI is familiar to me, but is this what people would want today, if they were looking at a new Amiga app? (ok, sure, there are probably like 4 people in the world who want a new 68k amiga app, but I'm one of them so pffft).

Is "feelin" something worth looking into for 68k? All the examples looked to be from AROS or maybe MorphOS. But examples have 68k compiling going on. (Haven't yet tried it).
http://www.feelin.fr/guide/first/

What would you recommend?
I prefer using a file (xml) containing the UI description plus a loader to create the windows, menus, dialogs...
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Old 15 October 2018, 11:41   #3
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Originally Posted by Warty View Post
Is "feelin" something worth looking into for 68k? All the examples looked to be from AROS or maybe MorphOS. But examples have 68k compiling going on. (Haven't yet tried it).
http://www.feelin.fr/guide/first/
as far as i remember to have been told feelin was once a contribution to aros but has been dropped as incomplete. there are no actual use cases. if you can get it compiled and working for aros, you should teoretically be able to get it run on m68k, as this is one of aros supported targets.
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Old 17 October 2018, 20:13   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warty View Post
I am really new to Amiga development...

What would you recommend?
Read the ROM Kernal manuals. Learn how to open windows, use menus and gadgets, process user input etc. Avoid GUI toolkits that make your apps dependent on 3rd party addons.

Quote:
the look of MUI is familiar to me, but is this what people would want today, if they were looking at a new Amiga app?
MUI sucks, but many popular apps use it so we tolerate it. If you are too lazy to write your own GUI code it's probably the best option.
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Old 17 October 2018, 21:22   #5
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Originally Posted by Warty View Post
I found a couple good resources:
https://muidev.de
MUI rules and is pretty sweet to program, is very versatile for users, and is available for about all flavours in the Amiga world. But I woudn't go to those newer MUI versions in your link, if you want to do programs for real 68k processors. Those new versions are pretty heavy.

Start with MUI 3.8:
http://aminet.net/search?query=MUI38

And whatever you do, please don't compile your (MUI) programs to use ixemul.library (I didn't read that page through, but saw it there somewhere).
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Old 18 October 2018, 01:57   #6
Minuous
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You should use ReAction, it is the official Amiga GUI. MUI sux, as already noted.
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Old 18 October 2018, 05:08   #7
Warty
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Originally Posted by bebbo View Post
I prefer using a file (xml) containing the UI description plus a loader to create the windows, menus, dialogs...
Would you mind sharing a code sample? I've done that kind of thing on other platforms in the past, but hadn't thought about an XML-based thing for Amiga 68k. Seems kind of "wrong" to use a modern thing like XML, hehe. You aren't reading those at run time though right? You've got some kind of compile-time script that is parsing them and turning them into code, which gets compiled into your app?
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Old 18 October 2018, 05:08   #8
Warty
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Originally Posted by wawa View Post
as far as i remember to have been told feelin was once a contribution to aros but has been dropped as incomplete. there are no actual use cases. if you can get it compiled and working for aros, you should teoretically be able to get it run on m68k, as this is one of aros supported targets.
Ah, ok. Thanks Wawa for letting me know.
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Old 18 October 2018, 05:12   #9
Warty
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Originally Posted by Bruce Abbott View Post
Read the ROM Kernal manuals. Learn how to open windows, use menus and gadgets, process user input etc. Avoid GUI toolkits that make your apps dependent on 3rd party addons.

MUI sucks, but many popular apps use it so we tolerate it. If you are too lazy to write your own GUI code it's probably the best option.
Well that pretty much describes me! I try to be lazy where I can be, especially low level stuff when I'm trying to build anything but a tiny app. I have kids and a full-time+ job making software, so I'm severely limited in how much free programming time I have. (Plus it's not me + a team, it's just me). If there's an easy/quick way to get a GUI up, that's enticing.

I did enjoy learning intuition. I built a couple KS 1.3 apps, very rewarding. but they were games, and I could keep the UI work to a minimum.
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Old 18 October 2018, 05:13   #10
Warty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jPV View Post
MUI rules and is pretty sweet to program, is very versatile for users, and is available for about all flavours in the Amiga world. But I woudn't go to those newer MUI versions in your link, if you want to do programs for real 68k processors. Those new versions are pretty heavy.

Start with MUI 3.8:
http://aminet.net/search?query=MUI38


And whatever you do, please don't compile your (MUI) programs to use ixemul.library (I didn't read that page through, but saw it there somewhere).
Thanks for the hints jPV!
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Old 18 October 2018, 05:16   #11
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You should use ReAction, it is the official Amiga GUI. MUI sux, as already noted.
I found a relatively informative thread about QT vs MUI vs Reaction here:
https://amigaworld.net//modules/newb...e=flat&order=0

The "don't depend on 3rd party frameworks" argument is a powerful one, no doubt about it. If I was doing 3.5+ development, I'd probably do ReAction because it is official. But it doesn't seem to have been back ported to 3.1, so it's not for me.

I'm just doing this for fun, in case that wasn't obvious.
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Old 18 October 2018, 05:17   #12
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The reason I stumbled on MUI actually was because I found a textfield library that seemed to be nicely full featured, but required MUI. Again, my inherent laziness as a programmer: if someone has a made a nice library that does what I need, and isn't entirely sucky, I'm totally ok with using that instead of rolling my own.
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Old 18 October 2018, 06:00   #13
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It's really difficult to not use MUI in case you want to do any kind of modern development.
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Old 18 October 2018, 07:56   #14
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@Warty:

You can use the slightly earlier incarnation known as ClassAct on OS3.1, there is also a texteditor.gadget.

Quote:
It's really difficult to not use MUI in case you want to do any kind of modern development.
I don't see why, there is no difficulty involved.
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Old 18 October 2018, 08:14   #15
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The "don't depend on 3rd party frameworks" argument is a powerful one, no doubt about it. If I was doing 3.5+ development, I'd probably do ReAction because it is official. But it doesn't seem to have been back ported to 3.1, so it's not for me.
MUI is a de-facto standard after all, pretty much everyone using their machines for other than gaming do have it installed already. Also "next generation" systems come with it by default (MorphOS is entirely based on MUI, OS4 comes with MUI, AROS has a MUI compatible framework called Zune), so as a bonus your MUI/68k program will work as it is directly under MorphOS, OS4, and AROS/68k without recompiling, and you can recompile it for AROS/x86 if wanted too.
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Old 18 October 2018, 08:33   #16
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@jPV:

That's true for ReAction too. MOS/AROS users would need to install ClassAct as those OSes are lacking, but that is trivial.
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Old 18 October 2018, 12:20   #17
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@jPV:
That's true for ReAction too. MOS/AROS users would need to install ClassAct as those OSes are lacking, but that is trivial.
Hmm.. IIRC I had to install ReAction classes from OS3.9, because ClassAct in Aminet wasn't enough for some programs. That makes it a bit less trivial. Also it still makes it more 3rd party, because you have to take the extra step to install these instead of just launching the program (on a fresh system).

And secondly, it still wouldn't be native. You'd have to run 68k GUI libraries on PPC.

And thridly, it doesn't improve anywhere, you'll be locked to old classes with their bugs and lack of features. MUI is in constant progress at least, sources/development is available for several platforms, and thus more future proof solution.

Last edited by jPV; 18 October 2018 at 12:37.
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Old 18 October 2018, 13:03   #18
Minuous
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Well, I can't say too much at the moment for contractual reasons, but I can assure you that ReAction is under continued development.
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Old 18 October 2018, 14:11   #19
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Well, I can't say too much at the moment for contractual reasons, but I can assure you that ReAction is under continued development.
For anything else than OS4? The point was that MUI is a common standard for all of our platforms, and still in development. I don't see much point of using a closed GUI toolkit which is only available for restricted platforms, and especially if/when it's not updated even for 68k. But if they'd release ReAction for all flavours, or let others compile it for other platforms, the situation would be completely different. Currently it's just dividing one camp even further from the others, and playing in a small sandbox thinking that world would follow when reinventing the wheel
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Old 18 October 2018, 15:10   #20
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It will not be just for OS4. http://www.amiga-news.de/en/news/AN-...-00014-EN.html
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