PythonCard or Dabo?

Ed Leafe ed at leafe.com
Sun Jun 3 00:10:33 CEST 2007


On Jun 2, 2007, at 7:22 AM, SPE - Stani's Python Editor wrote:

> Another alternative are GUI designers such as wxGlade or XRCed, both
> of which ship with SPE (http://pythonide.stani.be). Dabo is especially
> usefull (but not limited to) developping database applications as it
> is an open source alternative to Visual Fox pro.

	Sorry for coming into this discussion late; I was away celebrating  
our 21st anniversary with my wife!

	I think that the most important thing to consider in deciding  
between one or the other is what it is you want to do. PythonCard is  
much easier if you want to create a simple GUI app. In fact, when I  
first started working with Python, I used PythonCard to develop my  
first GUI apps, and we've paid homage to PythonCard in Dabo by  
incorporating some of their better ideas. :-). The problem I found  
was that I quickly ran into a wall where I needed to do something  
that PythonCard didn't do, and the workaround was more complex than  
if I had started with plain wxPython in the first place. Since at  
that time PythonCard didn't support sizers, and I needed cross- 
platform apps, it really didn't handle the hard stuff like sizers  
very well.

	When I started with the Dabo Class Designer, I made it sizer-centric  
from the start, since I felt then that sizers are a necessity in UI  
design. Yes, we also support fixed-position/size controls, but I  
think that the investment in grokking sizers pays off many times  
over, especially when you can see exactly how something will look up  
front, rather than guessing in code and then modifying your code when  
the result isn't what you wanted.

	The other thing I would point out is that the Dabo Class Designer is  
written in 100% Dabo code: no raw wxPython or external libraries are  
used. The Class Designer is probably one of the most complex  
applications I have ever written in my 20+ years as a developer, and  
Dabo can handle it just fine. To me, that demonstrates that not only  
is the UI class library rich and robust, but the event model that we  
wrote is also very powerful. If you have an app that requires a more  
complex UI than the Dabo Class Designer, I'd sure like to see it!

	So if you ask me which product to use, I would naturally be inclined  
to say Dabo, but really, the main question is just how complex is  
your app. If you need to work with a backend database, well, then  
it's a no-brainer - Dabo is designed to handle data as well as any  
free or commercial tool on the market. But for a simple UI app, such  
as many of the PythonCard demos, I'd have to say that you should look  
at both and see which one feels more comfortable to you, and go with  
that.

-- Ed Leafe
-- http://leafe.com
-- http://dabodev.com





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