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Blackley1

NeHe Tutorials / outdated?

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i just last year took a course in c++ and learned tons... i believe that i am ready to start open GL programing and looked for some tutorials... i found these tutorials... http://nehe.gamedev.net/ upon more research i found that the libraries they were using were "out dated" and "Depreciated" both of these things are bad for programing... (or for all i know) now you know my story here is my question... should i find these outdated libraries and learn from the tutorials? or should i look for others (suggestions?) Thanks for the help ~Blackley1

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Blackley1,

I've not been an OpenGL programmer since roughly 2002, and this is largely just opinion - so take most of this with a grain of salt.

It's true the NeHe tutorials have been out of date for quite some time. In particular, the earliest tutorials were written around 2000, and were implemented with the OpenGL 1.1 or 1.2 specifications in mind.

With that being said, not a lot has changed in OpenGL in that time, save for slight modifications here and there and the addition of the OpenGL Shader Language. The addition of GLSL of course being a huge modification - not just in terms of functionality, but in how people program graphics in general.

At the time of NeHe's earlier writing it was still common for developers to use the fixed-function pipeline which was present on early graphics accelerators. But, beginning as early as 2002 programmable shaders became the preferred method for controlling the GPU. So with that in mind, there's no real harm in taking NeHe's tutorials and working your way through them, so long as you spend the time trying to understand what and why the programs are implemented the way they are. While doing so you'll want to keep in mind that some of the functionality has changed since then, and it might be good to brush up on the recent reference manuals. And finally, you'll want to spend some time learning GLSL in addition to going through the NeHe tutorials if you're serious about OpenGL programming.

Keep in mind too that even if you are willing to do all of the above, so much has changed since the early tutorials in terms of OpenGL compiler support, headers and libraries, etc...(I'm talking about Glaux in specific) that you may find it difficult to even compile/link some of the old tutorials. If that's the case, it would be necessary to make modifications to them in order to bring them in line with the current specifications and compiler support.

So I guess in conclusion, it's still possible to learn a great deal about OpenGL programming using the NeHe tutorials - if for no other reason than to understand how the API has evolved, but you may find that doing so becomes prohibitively complex, and in the end, you may just be better off with more recent tutorials.

Cheers and Good Luck!

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