As a part of our project's analytical phase, I am doing a research on the methods of putting some software pieces together in a unified user interface. We are a software company having some standalone software selling to the customers. But we decided to rewrite them using Qt and provide customers a all-in-one application suite (like Folder Lock product) and offer them their requested software and features.
There are a variety of methods to do the UI integration such as using COM technology, using plugin frameworks, using simple multi-exe launcher and using component/library compositors.
Does anybody know a guide or survey (not a university-like paper or article) around the currently available software integration techniques with the focus on 'user interface'? The thing I really seek for in this guide is an introduction about each method and then an overall comparison for those methods, their pros and cons. The information would then be used to decide about the technique we adopt in our company.