Designer interfaces

Is there anything wrong with using these (VS designer, QT designer, etc.)? I've heard somewhere that at least for web development, using a WYSIWYG program to design a webpage is usually frowned upon. Does the same apply to desktop apps? What are your thoughts?
Dunno, but there are many "professional hackers" out there which are whining using a form designer is newbish. On the other side it is difficult to use GUI layout design methods with a visual designer, so it's better to code the layout by yourself. IMO form designers are great and I use it usually, but to get better features I often have to do many things during runtime by myself.

P.S.: eclipse fetishists are often the kind of "professional hackers" which I have mentioned.
I don't really like GUI designers, I much prefer to write the code myself. Then again, I've never written a non-trivial GUI, I almost exclusively deal in text programs.
I'm all for anything to makes GUI design more straight forward.
I might be wrong, but I always assumed that WYSIWYG editors are frowned upon in webdesign mostly because of the unreadable and messy HTML code some of them generate, which is nearly unmaintainable if you load it into a text editor.

I don't have experience with program GUI's so I can't comment on that, but when I get around to learning QT I was planning on writing the layout code myself, especially in the beginning, just to fully understand how everything works. Perhaps someone who knows QT or VS well could comment on the code they generate?

All the best,
I can't speak for VS Designer, but I've used Qt designer several times, and I find nothing wrong with it when the interfaces aren't trivial. Sometimes you need a massive form with dozens of widgets, in which case it's really helpful to lay things out visually, otherwise you risk getting lost in your code. If it's just one or two buttons there's less need for a form designer, though.

One thing I have noticed with Qt designer is that sometimes when you make a change in designer, it doesn't update the generated header right away, and you have to actually locate and delete the old one in order to make it do it's job. But that's not unreasonable considering the headache the designer's saving me from.

NwN wrote:
I was planning on writing the layout code myself, especially in the beginning
That's an excellent suggestion, and you should absolutely do that, otherwise you'll end up majorly confused in the future.
I think of it like this; consider mathematics, we know how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide, so it's no longer necessary for us to do it by hand, hence we get a calculator. So, it's really important that we get the hang of the underlying concepts first, else we risk being unable to create unique ideas in the future.

EDIT: For those who are interested, I found myself really comfortable with the concepts behind laying out Qt GUIs after following this tutorial:
Last edited on
Mixed opinions is kind of what I expected here. Designing GUI's isn't really anything that interests me (I prefer working with the back end side of things), but I do accept that most modern users like to have some sort of GUI to interface with. That's why I ask, because if there's nothing necessarily wrong with an interface created in a designer then I'll go that route. It seems magnitudes faster and less error prone than manually coding it in.
A GUI should not have a fixed layout in the first place, therefore GUI designers vs manually coding positions is completely irrelevant. MS's dialog boxes and such are a terrible mistake someone made years ago.

This is what I consider a good GUI:
It has no hard-coded or predefined positions, you do not have to learn the layout, it is modular and auto-generated, it is searchable automatically, it is consistent, and it is intuitive.

This is what I consider a bad GUI:
Positions are hard-coded or predefined, you have to learn the layout in order to use the interface, it is not modular, it cannot be searched automatically, it is inconsistent both with itself and with other dialogs and tabs, and it is not intuitive.

I'm still taking applications from various software and such as to what makes a better user interface, though I am pretty sure I've got settings dialogs figured out as above.

DISCLAIMER: These are my opinions and they are based solely on my experience and the software I use the most. I am not suggesting you use or copy the software portrayed here, nor the opposite.
Topic archived. No new replies allowed.