Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Over a year ago (actually directly after the Machinima Film Festival 2003), I started working on the OpenDemo Cutter tool. First I created a Perl version of DEMcut but for OpenDemo files.
Later I found, that a much bigger audience could be reached by adding a GUI on top. There are many GUIs for Perl available and after some looking around and checking I decided to give wxPerl a try. This is a Perl binding for the wxWidgets library. This library does not draw its own widgets but uses on all supported platforms the apropriate native widgets. In the end you end up with a cross-platform GUI in a simple script.
I started implementing this GUI in wxPerl but it was really an uphill battle. To place all the GUI elements by hand is difficult and time consuming. And this prevents the program to evolve fast. It simply takes too much time to change the already existing GUI. And so the OpenDemo cutter tool slowly faded away.
Last weekend I finally looked at GUI designers for wxWidgets and found wxGlade, which could create Perl code for wxPerl (besides C++ and Python). After a small learning phase I could recreate all the already existing GUI code and even more. For the first time I accept, that a graphical oriented tool is useful for something (even if it is only creating Perl code).

The OpenDemo Cutter tool will become strong again and I hope to include it officially in the next OpenDemo release.

Here you see again my main driving force: learn something new and use it for a real (hopefully demo related) project.