Ch1. An Introduction to Future Library
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What is future library?
Future Library(popularly known as Future.Lib or FL) is a SVGA library. It was developed by Michael Rye Sorenson and Jorden Chamid and many people.
Michael Rye Sorenson and Jorden Chamid
testers and bug reporters:
Main beta tester the Master-Creating Team
All bug reporters at the FS message board
and all those we forgot....
It is the most popular, simplest and most versatile SVGA library that was ever developed. It not only allows you to use SVGA modes but also provides easy to use routines which help you to survive in SVGA modes. For example you can store sprites in the EMS or XMS memory etc.
Although FL has aged. It still remains my favourite and the only really stable, compatible library known to QB programmers. Some newer and faster libraries have appeared like DQB, CosmosX, UGL etc.
So you ask - Then why the HELL should I use FL???
answer is pretty simple. Future
libraries is the most extensively used libraries since:
1. It is super stable!
2. It will run on any VESA compatible cards!
3. You can custom compile it so that you can use a version of FL that
has only sound routines or SVGA routines etc.
4. It is feature rich.
5. Though it is not the fastest but since it is coded in ASM it is quite fast.
6. The commands are very similar to that of QB so it is simple to use!
According to me, FL is different from other libraries in terms of ease of transition from the world of 16 colors to 16million. FL's commands are very similar to QB's so the transition becomes simple.
Also, FL is compatible with almost all video cards and it uses VESA modes so you can rest assure that any program that you code using FL will run on 99.99% machines.
It should be noted that FL is no longer under development and frankly the documentation on it *sucks!*. This is not only my opinion but many others too think similarly. Such a handicap always exists with all the libraries.
Coming back to our original topic - SVGA is basically high resolution modes for example you can use 800x600 to 2048x1536 in upto 32 bit modes!
Future library supports 8, 15, 16, 24, 32bit modes.
1. 8bit = 256 colors
2. 15bit = 32767 colors
3. 16bit = 65536 colors!
4. 24bit = 16777216 colors!!
5. 32bit = 16777216 colors!!! So whats the difference between the 24bit and 32bit mode? Well the 32bit mode has better memory alignment which allows faster graphics and color processing =P
This briefly covers our introduction to FL.
Lets move to our next chapter.
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