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Snowfly

What will I be missing?

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I'm a game artist working in mobile (yes - pixel art) and have just recently decided to study C++ to put together my own apps in Symbian, or if nothing else, gain an appreciation of what it is the programmers at work do. To start learning I've downloaded Code:Blocks and the free VC++ compiler (because I'm also learning C++ fundamentals(!!) alongside Symbian programming) from MSDN, and, I have a few, maybe dumb-sounding questions: -How does CodeBlocks compare to VC++? -What is an SDK? Do they work with all IDE's and will I be able to program for Symbian from CodeBlocks? -Will I run into any hitches learning to develop on Win32, and then switching over to Symbian OS? Is there a path I should take to target my learning towards Symbian development? Anyway, hope I don't get flamed. Oh and if you want to check out my art, it's at technicolor.deviantart.com I'm passionate about games and glad that I get to make them for a living.

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hey nice art :)
-I don't know
-An sdk will work with all compilers (basicly). And it is roughly a fancy name for a grouping of functions that you can use in your application, after apropriet linking accurs, a software development kit.
-it depends greatly on what kind of coding you do. if you use windows gdk none (almost none) of your code will transfer but you'll learn a lot. I use OpenGL which transfers directly (I think, if you code it right). So you could just recompile for Symbian.

Hope that helps, but take it with a grain of salt, I'm still learning to :)

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Quote:
Original post by Snowfly
-What is an SDK? Do they work with all IDE's and will I be able to program for Symbian from CodeBlocks?

The IDE is not important. The compiler is. Generally speaking, a C/C++ SDK consists of header files and library files. The header files should be pretty much compiler-agnostic. The library files are different, though. They are usually supplied for the Microsoft C++ compiler and compatibles.

Quote:
-Will I run into any hitches learning to develop on Win32, and then switching over to Symbian OS? Is there a path I should take to target my learning towards Symbian development?

Yes, many hitches. I've been programming in C++ for the better part of a decade, but switching to Symbian OS was like having to start all over again. The class hierarchy for the Symbian OS GUI frameworks (Eikon, UIQ) is very different from what you find on Win32. Much worse is the situation with memory management. Symbian generally runs on devices with significant memory constraints. This has resulted in a very specific way of dealing with memory. Although you could simply use C's malloc/free or C++'s new/delete and std::string, to be truly robust you would need to get into the nitty gritty of 8bit/16bit constant/mutable buffer/string descriptors. I found that to be an absolute nightmare.

Also, Microsoft has done an excellent job on making MSDN a good source of information on Win32 programming. Symbian's documentation can't hold a candle to it.

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I love yar art :)
You want to learn programming. I want to learn Pixel art :) If you can share some tips or resources for pixel art that would be awesome.
Anyway, your questions have been answered by Kippesoep. I just wanna give a suggestion.
You might want to try build your apps for J2ME platform. I think most of mobiles support J2ME.
Not only Java (the language you use to build apps for J2ME platform) is easier to learn because you don't have to worry much about memory management and other low-level stuff.
They also got great game libraries to ensure your game development is painless well almost :P
Now for the resources:
- Books
> For Java:
You need to know Java first.
"Thinking in Java" by Bruce Eckel
URL: http://mindview.net/Books
If you find it too hard, you might want to pick-up one of Java tutorial books
by Sams publishing. They tend to be more easy to read.
> For J2ME:
So far only 1 book that I found is quite good: "J2ME Games with MIDP2" by
Carol Hammer
- IDE
Free tool to test and develop your app:
http://java.sun.com/products/sjwtoolkit/download-2_2.html
- Milist group:
www.j2me.org

Have fun

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Yes, Zimbo speaks words of wisdom. When it comes to programming for mobile phones, J2ME is much more accessibly than Symbian OS. On top of that, it works across a larger range of phones. There are a few things that you can't do with J2ME, but those are either unimportant or vanishing rapidly (especially with MIDP 2.0).

If you're starting out, heed Zimbo's advice and use Java instead.

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Actually I've decided on Symbian (specifically the Series 60 flavor) because I'm familiar with developing art for that platform, I'm stubborn, and the Nokia guys are working on a sexy P2P-like distribution system for indie games and will accept nothing but Symbian. The J2ME market is way saturated..

Thanks for answering my questions! I found time to go through a C++ book today (3 chapters down so far) and could've answered them myself :) but I am really appreciative. Btw, my first "hello world" was strangely satisfying.

On a side note, I've been commissioned to write a game for mobile game art, which since it's being done for educational purposes, may be released for free in digital form. I'll try to release it online if I can. Gamedev rocks

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