The Minimum You Need to Know
Overview Table of Contents Excerpt

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Pages: 424pp
ISBN-13: 978-0934272391 paperback
ISBN: 0934272395
Format: 7 in. x 9 in.

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About the Book

This book is not part of "The Minimum You Need to Know" book series. I wrote it a long time ago for John Gordon Burke Publisher, Inc. It is the first book I ever had published. Recently I've had cause to dig some copies out of storage because the OpenZinc project has sparked renewed interest in Zinc.

Zinc Application Framework was the first serious attempt at a cross platform application framework. Granted it focused mostly on the GUI leaving database, networks and devices to the imagination of the developer, but this was the first toolkit which actually worked. Unlike Qt and most of today's frameworks, Zinc was unique in its approach. It provided the mouse and graphics for DOS, but, on every other platform it was a wrapper class, bundling up the infrastructure each OS provided. This meant your Windows app looked like a Windows app and when it compiled for OS/2 it looked like an OS/2 app and same for Mac.

While there was lots of documentation for Zinc itself, there was next to nothing about creating a real application with it. In particular, you needed some kind of database or at least an indexed file system to store data. I also played with serial communications which provided the architectural framework for everything else you needed to do when a real or semi-real-time device needed to be service from within the Zinc event loop. Doesn't matter what kind of device you are trying to use, you needed to make that event loop service your device in an efficient manner.

Few of these books have the CD-ROM in the back. The few boxes I have are the overruns which never went through that part of the assembly process. You can download the source from the link on this page. I just don't want someone complaining that the cover says a CD-ROM is included.