TDE programming language bindings
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Slávek Banko 8301a3c8e5
Add check whether Ruby requires explicit specification of C++ standard.
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* (C) 2003 Richard Dale All rights reserved. *
* *
* This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify *
* it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as *
* published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the *
* License, or (at your option) any later version. *
* *

Here is a Ruby SMOKE adaptor for Qt

Why ruby? From the rubytalk list

On 8/28/03 8:56 PM, "Scott Thompson" wrote:

>> : Can anyone give me a good reason why I would want to use Ruby over
>> Python?
>> Ruby smells better than Python. Also, it has cuter girls.
>> Python sometimes tastes better if you prepare it right.
> I hadn't noticed the odor thing. It does have a faintly floral aroma
> doesn't it.
> Of course it is no surprise that you can get more and cuter girls with
> Rubies than you can with Pythons.
> Scott

So there you have it! :)

Here is 'Hello World' in QtRuby:

#!/usr/bin/ruby -w

require 'Qt'

a =
hello ="Hello World!", nil)
hello.resize(100, 30)

Ruby 1.8 is unfortunately implicitly required as with 1.6.x it is not possible to:

Make dynamic constants available (thus forcing syntax such as Qt.RichText rather than TQt::RichText)<br>
Call super in the initialize method thus making subclassing of non trivial classes impossible

QtRuby features a very complete coverage of the Qt api:

- You can call all Qt public and protected methods, and all friend methods
such as bitBlt() etc

- Virtual methods
All virtual methods can be overriden, not just event handlers

- Properties
'fooBar = 5' is a synonym for 'setFooBar(5)'

- Predicates
'if foo?' is a synonym for 'if isFoo()' or 'if hasFoo()'

- Use underscore naming for method names instead of camel case if you
prefer. Any underscores in method names are removed, and the following
character is capitalised. For example, you can use either of these two
forms to call the same method:



- Operator overloading
The full range of Qt operator methods is available, for example:

p1 =,5) => (5, 5)
p2 =,20) => (20, 20)
p1 + p2 => (25, 25)

- Declare signals and slots
Signals and slots are declared as list of strings like this:

slots 'setColor(TQColor)', 'slotLoad(const TQString&)'..
signals 'clicked()'..

Currently C++ type signatures must be used, a future version of QtRuby
will allow ruby type signatures instead.

Connect slots and signals like this:

TQt::Object.connect( @_colormenu, SIGNAL( "activated( int )" ),
self, SLOT( "slotColorMenu( int )" ) )

And emit signals like this:

emit colorChanged( black )

- Constructors
You can call constructors in the conventional style:

quit ="Quit", self, "quit")

Or you can pass a block if you prefer:

w = { setCaption("foobar") }

The block will be called in the context of the newly created instance.

Ordinary arguments can be provided as well as a block at the end:

w = { setCaption("foobar") }

They are run in the context of the new instance.

And there's more! You can also pass an arg to the block, and it will
be run in the context of the arg:

w = { |theWidget| theWidget.setCaption "foobar" }

- Garbage Collection
When a ruby instance is garbage collected, the underlying C++ instance will only be
deleted if it isn't 'owned' by a parent object. Normally this will 'just work', but
there are occasions when you need to delete the C++ ahead of garbage collection, and
whether or not it has a parent. Use the dispose() and isDisposed() methods like this:

if item2.isDisposed
puts "item2 is disposed"

- C++ 'int*' and 'int&' argument types
Ruby passes numeric values by value, and so they can't be changed when passed to a
method. The TQt::Integer class provides a mutable numeric type which does get updated
when passed as an argument. For example, this C++ method 'findByFileContent()':

# static Ptr findByFileContent( const TQString &fileName, int *accuracy=0 );

acc =
fc = KDE::MimeType.findByFileContent("mimetype.rb", acc)

It supports the arithmetic operators, and so expressions such as 'acc + 3' will work.

- C++ 'bool*' and 'bool&' argument types
There is a similar problem for bool arg types, and the mutable TQt::Boolean class can be
used like this:

# TQFont getFont(bool * ok, const TQFont&initial, TQWidget* parent = 0, const char *name = 0);

ok =
font = TQt::FontDialog.getFont(ok,"Helvetica [Cronyx]", 10), self)
if !ok.nil?
# font is set to the font the user selected
# the user canceled the dialog

Use 'nil?' to test the value returned in the Boolean

- Debugging
If a method call can't be matched in the Smoke library giving a 'method_missing'
error, you can turn on debugging to trace the matching process:

a =
Qt.debug_level = TQt::DebugLevel::High
a.loadLibrary("foo") # Non existent method

Will give the following output:

classname == TQApplication
:: method == loadLibrary$
-> methodIds == []
candidate list:
Possible prototypes:
static TQWidget* TQApplication::widgetAt(int, int, bool)

Here, the list of candidate methods 'methodIds' is empty

Another debugging mechanism allows various trace 'channels' to be switched on.

You can trace virtual method callbacks:

Or trace QtRuby garbage collection:

- String i18n

QtRuby supports $KCODE values of 'u', 'e' and
's' or the corresponding '-K' options from the command line. Qt Designer
.ui files have UTF-8 strings so if you use any 8 bit UTF-8 characters, you
will need to set $KCODE='u' or use the -Ku command line option.

- Qt Designer
A 'rbuic' tool is included in qtruby/rubylib/designer/rbuic to compile
.ui files into ruby code. As described above, Qt Designer uses UTF-8.
In addition to the options in the original uic C++ utility an '-x' flag
has been added. This will generate a top level stub in the code:

$ rbuic mainform.ui -x -o mainform.rb

Will add this to the end of the generated code:

if $0 == __FILE__
a =
w =

Then you can test the example code straight away:

$ ruby mainform.rb

- Loading .ui files at runtime with TQWidgetFactory
You can load a Qt Designer .ui file at runtime with the tqui extension,
for example:

require 'Qt'
require 'tqui'

a =
if ARGV.length == 0

if ARGV.length == 2
QUI::WidgetFactory.loadImages( ARGV[ 0 ] )
w = QUI::WidgetFactory.create( ARGV[ 1 ] )
if w.nil?
a.connect( a, SIGNAL('lastWindowClosed()'), a, SLOT('quit()') )

- QtRuby shell
You can use the QtRuby shell in bin/rbqtsh to create widgets
interactively from the command line.

- API reference
Use the bin/rbqtapi tool to discover which methods are available in
the QtRuby api.

- Example programs
The best way to start programming QtRuby is to look at some existing
code and start messing with it..
The are various samples under qtruby/rubylib/examples.

- Optional TQScintilla text editing widget support
Great for building your own ruby IDE..

Have Fun!

-- Richard