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DirectX 9 User Interfaces: Design and Implementation (Wordware Game Developer's Library) Paperback – 28 Feb 2004

2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 354 pages
  • Publisher: Wordware Publishing Inc.; Pap/Cdr edition (28 Feb. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1556222491
  • ISBN-13: 978-1556222498
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 15.2 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,097,642 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


This title available in a book and CD format. It presents a user interface's influence over how an application or game is received by an audience, no matter what other features it might boast, cannot be understated. This unique book offers a comprehensive solution to successfully building a DirectX user interface library from the ground up for games and other multimedia software. This detailed account zealously narrates and implements an entire interface project, unveiling important techniques and professional solutions along the way, while nurturing the whole workflow from concept to completion.

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Format: Paperback
I was looking forwards to a book that dealt with the interesting problems of user interface design and dealt well with the DirectX code needed to implement it. This book is not that. What you have here is how to recreate the bare bones of MFC using DirectX. No programmer of even moderate skill is likely to find anything new or interesting here. In essence it simply presents code to implement controls such as a text box or button in DirectX - it's not rocket science, and certainly not something I'd expect anything more than a rank beginners text to feel the need to walk through.
Having said that, it is clear and well written. It's just that it's subject matter is trite and it does not deal with any of the broader issues of user interface design or the issues I'd expect to occur in a DirectX application - where is the information on 3d interface design, for example?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.1 out of 5 stars 12 reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good job at teaching GUI, but code is bad 9 July 2005
By Jason Wood - Published on
Format: Paperback
First off, the book is good at learning how to design a GUI. It goes over all of the necessary information that will let you create a functional GUI.

However, there are problems with this book that others have stated. The code in the book and the code on the CD are VERY different. What you see in the book (screen shots of the examples) is not what you see on your screen when you run the code (the graphics used are very different too). This makes trying to learn some things very hard as you can't look at the code in the book and compare to it the code on the CD. If you have a question about how or why the code is doing something, a lot of the times, the answer is not in the book because the code is different.

There is also errors with the code on the CD. It compiles and runs, but the textures do not display correctly (they seem to have some wierd scaling going on). A 100x50 texture will not display as 100x50 on your screen using the code in the book, and there is no explaination in the book on how to draw the textures to their scale.

The best way to use this book is to use it as a guide to design your own GUI in your own graphics engine. Just using the UI code provided by the book is not something I would recommend.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I really wanted this book 14 Jun. 2005
By Wolfgang Kurz Jun - Published on
Format: Paperback
I read it once and i liked it a lot but then the second time i started Coding along the lines. And i am sorry that i have to say this but the code just doenst work the way its in the book.

The Code on the CD is a bit better but still there are things in that code that just wont let me compile it. I checked the Msdn and everything and its just not right.

I wish this book had a website with corrections because the book itself is good and thats what leads me to write this. I liked reading the book and wanted to program the stuff so bad and so i expected more from the code in it.

I hope this helps
4.0 out of 5 stars RE: Good job at teaching GUI, but code is bad 4 Feb. 2011
By sKOtoMAs - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
is it that the code is bad or that the author/publisher is exceptional?
with the realization that the code in this title is not production ready
came the idea that maybe the _correct_ way to teach a technology is
to use just enough 'information hiding' to motivate the reader to have
a deeper understanding of what is being said (instead of forwarding
a prepared solution)
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Originally very excited about the book 31 May 2006
By Steve Jones - Published on
Format: Paperback
Many other reviews covered this but I will briefly restate what others have said.

PROS (not many)

- Easy reading book.

- Doesn't assume too much on the part of the reader. DirectX basics that are used was covered, etc.

- I don't agree with all of the control messaging system but the author's coverage/design is not too bad.


- As stated before, code in book does not match code on CD. Code on CD has some compilation issues that upon investigation are fairly straight forward to fix. Fixing requires knowledge beyond the basics of programming.

- The compiled executable examples, with very little happening on the screen, run very very poorly. I believe one of the basic issues with performance is with the overall design. That's a problem because then the book is pretty much useless. I suppose to be fair the writer might have been targeting a larger audience and not just gamers. WM_PAINT posted messages are done. That's slow. No respecting game engine will post paint messages, they will gain full control over rendering the window or full screen and "talk" directly to the Direct 3D device interface.

- (This one is personal) I do not like the coding style. Also, anytime a C++ programmer use "this->" the "this" pointer within the object itself doesn't fully understand that you don't need to fully qualify the pointer. <sigh>

If you're looking for decent code with somewhat decent comments then save yourself some money and just download the DirectX SDK. In it, you will get many examples of UI things. Microsoft created a CustomUI application which runs very, very fast and handles GUI things very similarly to this book. But Microsoft's runs much faster. The problem with that is you won't find a very detailed writeup on "why" things are done the way they are. At least I haven't found it.
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice Class Designs 14 Dec. 2004
By David G. De Rosa - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book provided me with some great ideas for writing classes.

The authors approach to designing the interface code is easy to understand and read. I will now apply these concepts to my new 3D engine.

"DirectX 9: User Interfaces" provides a solid code base in which one can learn. Note, I said learn-not just copy the code. I've been programming in C/C++ for about three years and have read many books. The books alright and worth your time. However, its not for beginners. Many techniques are skimmed over quickly because the author assumes a moderate knowledge base.

In closing I'd like to address the issue of running the programs.

Some reviewers stated that the code does not work. THIS IS NOT TRUE. However, if you attempt to compile the code with Visual C++ 6.0 it will fail. The solution to this problem is to go to the DirectX 9 web site at Microsoft. Next, proceed to the Direct X 9 SDk downloads area. Look for the DirectX 9 SDK Extras download. Inside this download is a set of libraries for the utility features of DirectX 9 that are designed specificly

for Visual C++ 6.0. Set your compiler to these utilities libaries

and everything should work-did for me. If it doesn't make sure the compiler points to the new lib files before it checks the older ones during linking.
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