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[SlimDX] Framework & Interface - any roadmap ?

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Hi, I've been studying SlimDX for a couples weeks now and I noticed frequent additions to the SVN in "Interface" and "Framework" (under 'prototype' directory). I'm currently porting some of my old MDX projects to SlimDX and these projects were build with the original MS MDX DXUT (from the DXSDK) which provide a simple framework and some GUI elements. I never trusted nor liked DXUT, even the C++ version which is still included in the DirectX SDK because I found many bugs in it. But back then it was a fast way to start things and learn MDX so I used it. Now I want get ride of it but I don't want to "reinvent the wheel", even more if someone else is, apparently, already working on such things. Hence this post. Is there any roadmap/plan for the "Interface" & "Framework" components that are currently pushed to the SlimDX SVN ? Any ETA and are all features already planned? Thx, Kirth

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MikePopoloski is spearheading the development of those components, so you'll have to wait for him to get a definitive answer, but here's what I know. There's no specific written roadmap or plans. It is a prototype after all. Neither of these are considered stable enough for the imminent June release. The current sample framework is little more than a toy skeleton to handle the absolute basics, and the Interface and Framework bits are intended to serve the same role that DXUT does.

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Yes, interface and framework prototypes are under heavy development right now, and are not recommended for use until they are moved from the prototype folder. Basically, once finished they will fill the role of device and window management, and allow you to jump right in with your application code instead of writing and rewriting the same boilerplate stuff to initialize Direct3D and manage your window.

In some ways you can think of the framework portion as a SlimDX version of the XNA framework. In fact, I found my recent designs turning out so similar to the XNA Game system (not through conscious choice, but rather by how intelligent and intuitive the design is) that I ended up borrowing heavily from XNA. This does not mean, however, that we will be providing a wrapper around all of DirectX. The framework is merely a base that you can build your game on top of, with device and window management for both Direct3D9 and Direct3D10 thrown in to make things easy.

The interface stuff is on hold right now until the framework portion is finished. Once that's done, the interface stuff will be refactored, cleaned up, and moved into the framework. The goal is to have an all-in-one solution for both game prototypes as well as full fledge, yet simple, casual games. In fact, once this is all done there are plans to start developing some simple full fledged games on top.

This portion of SlimDX is not our main focus (obvious wrapping the core DirectX API is), so it gets much less attention than everything else. Therefore, the ETA is unknown (although I hope to have it done by our next release, probably sometime in September). Our planned feature set will not extend much past the few things outlined above. We may occasionally throw a helper class or whatnot in there, but by and large that will be the extent of the framework.

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The framework looks pretty awesome, XNA users would be quite at home here, tho i find it (as also stated by you all) misses some things like (for my part) selecting rendertarget (for dev tools creation) and some other stuff.

One i will surely keep a eye out for, it seems like a pretty awesome "addon" to a already awesome library :)

Keep up the good work.

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