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libcaca-tutorial(3caca) libcaca libcaca-tutorial(3caca)


libcaca-tutorial - A libcaca tutorial First, a very simple working program, to check for basic libcaca functionalities.

#include <caca.h>
int main(void)

caca_canvas_t *cv; caca_display_t *dp; caca_event_t ev;
dp = caca_create_display(NULL);
if(!dp) return 1;
cv = caca_get_canvas(dp);
caca_set_display_title(dp, "Hello!");
caca_set_color_ansi(cv, CACA_BLACK, CACA_WHITE);
caca_put_str(cv, 0, 0, "This is a message");
caca_get_event(dp, CACA_EVENT_KEY_PRESS, &ev, -1);
return 0; }

What does it do?

  • Create a display. Physically, the display is either a window or a context in a terminal (ncurses, slang) or even the whole screen (VGA).
  • Get the display's associated canvas. A canvas is the surface where everything happens: writing characters, sprites, strings, images... It is unavoidable. Here the size of the canvas is set by the display.
  • Set the display's window name (only available in windowed displays, does nothing otherwise).
  • Set the current canvas colours to black background and white foreground.
  • Write the string 'This is a message' onto the canvas, using the current colour pair.
  • Refresh the display, causing the text to be effectively displayed.
  • Wait for an event of type CACA_EVENT_KEY_PRESS.
  • Free the display (release memory). Since it was created together with the display, the canvas will be automatically freed as well.

You can then compile this code on an UNIX-like system using the following commans (requiring pkg-config and gcc):

gcc `pkg-config --libs --cflags caca` example.c -o example
Wed Mar 10 2021 Version 0.99.beta19