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UI prorgamming, design.....

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uavfun    744
1) Pretty much any language will do. You shouldn't need more than basic algebra.

2) Basically any graphics API. Systems that are generally used for 3D stuff, like OpenGL or Direct3D, can still be used to draw 2D objects (you can even stick some 3D objects in your UI if you want).

3) You will need some knowledge of how to gather input from the mouse and/or keyboard on your operating system.

Keep in mind that you can make a user interface based on text alone; it only has to be as complicated as you want it to be. Also, make sure to spend some time planning everything before you start coding - it's easy to make a nice big unmaintainable mess.

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coldacid    755
More important than anything else in UI design is the psychology of the user. Second, is how the user intends and expects to interact with the program. After those major details, you get into less important issues dealing with the actual programming.

Google for "ui design", and pay attention to books such as UI Design for Programmers (also available online on Joel Spolsky's site). Microsoft and Apple have their own books also on UI design and construction, the Microsoft book being included as part of the MSDN collection coming with Visual Studio.

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Zahlman    1682
... but be aware that neither Apple nor Microsoft always gets it right, and that one often copies the other's mistakes. Sigh.

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Toolmaker    967
If you use Direct3D9, get the summer update and use the D3DXUI interfaces. Since the summer update, Microsoft added in a bunch of UI components.

For more information, check the DirectX forum FAQ.

Toolmaker

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