[Mono-list] Are we in need for a Cross platform library similar to DirectX?

Chris Howie cdhowie at gmail.com
Thu Sep 17 13:26:21 EDT 2009

On Thu, Sep 17, 2009 at 12:01 PM, docesam <doctoresam at gmail.com> wrote:
> OK,let me explain my point: programmers (Game Programmers) use DirectX
> because openGL "sucks" and because it does not include sound and input
> functions ,right ?

I've personally used both DirectX and OpenGL.  I can say that OpenGL
is fun to use, and using DirectX vaguely reminds me of when I had my
tonsils removed.

SDL, which plays nice with OpenGL, is also cross-platform and includes
audio functions, keyboard/mouse/joystick input, etc.

So you're right only if the public perception is as you say, which
seems a bit fishy to me.

> i mean without comprehensive and solid library that is similar or even
> better than DirecX the mono project will have less value !

Less value, perhaps, to DirectX developers.  Keep in mind that pretty
much any DirectX implementation that uses OpenGL as a backend is going
to introduce some translation overhead.  Look at wine -- it can run a
lot of DirectX games, but not quite as well as OpenGL games.  Try
playing WoW using both the DirectX and OpenGL backends.  The OpenGL
backend running under Wine on Linux runs *very* smoothly (better than
the DirectX backend *on Windows* in my tests).

Ok, and let's assume that a managed DirectX wrapper *does* exist for
Mono.  Games that use managed DirectX on Windows are still not going
to run on Linux, because developers are going to assume that "\" is
the path separator, or because they P/Invoke win32 libraries, or any
number of the other portability problems people routinely encounter
trying to run Windows-developed .NET apps on Linux.  If developers are
not targeting Linux specifically, they're going to do something
non-portable.  And if they *do* care about targeting Linux, they'll
use OpenGL anyway.

And of course this all assumes that the DirectX wrapper is 100%
compatible.  Look at wine -- they have a fairly decent DirectX
implementation, and it *still* has compatibility problems, after
*years* of development.

(As a side note, complaining about something "missing" from a
framework doesn't just make it magically appear.  As is the mantra
with open projects, patches are welcome.  But my guess is that the
primary reason for the lack of a managed DirectX wrapper in Mono is
that people are too busy having fun with Tao, enjoying the fact that
their apps run on Windows and Linux perfectly, and could care less
about DirectX on Windows or a slow and incompatible DirectX-to-OpenGL
wrapper on Linux.  Or maybe it's just me...)

> people love games and they are welling to see games ported into linux before
> they can move there. right ?

Is this your opinion or have you actually asked people's opinions?
Because no, you're not right about me.  I moved to Linux in 2001 and
haven't regretted it, even considering that I have to reboot to
Windows to play some games.

Chris Howie

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