[PythonCE] graphical libs for pocket pc

Voidspace mike at pcblokes.com
Wed Sep 8 11:20:07 CEST 2004

Scott Jaderholm wrote:

>I have been looking through a bit of the archive, but I haven't seen
>mention of any graphical libs. Is tkInter the only option, or are
>there others? I want to write a very big graphical application for
>Pocket PC, 
On most PocketPCs I've seen - a 'big' anything is pretty out of the 
question ;-)

>but I don't know if PythonCE is a viable option at this
>point since there is almost no documentation on the project website.
The documentation for PythonCE is basically the standard python 
documentation. The people who port python over to the pocketPC attempt 
to port as much of the CPython core and the standard libraries to 
compile and run on the PocketPC as possible. The bits that work will 
work exactly as documented in the python documentation. There are a 
*few* differences due to differences in the underlying C libraries that 
are specific to the PocketPC, e.g. raw_input doesn't work which makes 
interaction with the user virtually impossible unless you use Tkinter or 
something 'similar'.

PyhtonCE is a project done entirely by volunteers who don't owe us 
'users' anything. AFAIK the entire core python language works fine - 
including a large proportion of the standard libraries (many of which 
are in python anyway). However exactly *which* standard libraries work 
and which don't can only be determiend by testing... and as you can 
imagine those who port python don't have time to extensively test and 
fix every library........ They've done a very good job on the core 
language however..... (and I use it regularly)

Which brings us to Tk/Tkinter.
In actual fact Tk is not a python graphics library - it's a Tcl library. 
The python library is called Tkinter. This is relevant (rather than a 
pernickity detail) because it tells you where you need to go for 

There is a PythonCE port of Tkinter (the python library). This allows 
python to use the PocketPC version of Tk/Tcl... which is incomplete so 
far (no menus on the last version I used but lots of other bits working 
fine). All Tkinter is, is an interface layer between python and the Tk 
stuff. To know which bits of Tk work on the PocketPC version you'll need 
to find the Pocket Tk/Tcl project (on sourceforge I think) and see how 
far they've got.

As for other alternatives...... wxWidgets had people working on a 
pocketPC port - I don't know how far that's got. Even if a decent 
amount  of that is completed... I don't know how complicated the python 
wrapper library (wxPython) is - there would probably be quite a lot of 
work in getting it working, but it would be well worthwhile.

AFAIK the other alternative is creating wrappers to the microsoft GUI... 
it means compiling a python extension that communicates with the 
necessary libraries.
There has been intersting talk in this group recently on compiling for 
the PocketPC.... something  I'd like to learn - but don't yet know 
anything about !!!

This is all certified to be as accurate as my memory and 




>Has anyone written PocketPC apps w/ python? Any screenshots?
>PythonCE mailing list
>PythonCE at python.org


The Place where headspace meets cyberspace. Online resource site - covering science, technology, computing, cyberpunk, psychology, spirituality, fiction and more. 

Python utilities, modules and apps.
Including Nanagram, Dirwatcher and more.

Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow talent
 to the dark place where it leads. -Erica Jong
Ambition is a poor excuse for not having sense enough to be lazy.
         -Milan Kundera

More information about the PythonCE mailing list