A widget and grid based framework for building command line user interfaces in python.
A python library for creating command line user interfaces.
What is py_cui?
py_cui is a python library meant to simplify writing command line user interfaces in python. It relies on the
curses module, which is traditionally a unix-specific python module, however, you may use the windows-curses module to run
py_cui on windows.
The main advantage
py_cui has over traditional command line user interfaces is that it relies on widgets and a grid layout manager like most traditional Graphical User Interfaces. You may define a grid size, and then drop predefined widgets onto it into specific grid locations. Widgets can also be stretched accross multiple grid rows and columns. If you've ever made a Tkinter GUI, you will feel right at home.
If you would like to contribute, feel free to make an issue or pull request after reading through the
You may install
py_cui via pip:
pip install py-cui
Make sure to run as root/sudo as required. Note that the library is titled
py_cui, but the name of the pypi package is
py-cui, though in most cases, installing with
pip install py_cui
should work OK.
If you would like to use
py_cui directly from source, clone this repository with:
git clone https://github.com/jwlodek/py_cui
Then build/install with
cd py_cui pip install .
If you would like to try it out without installing, first make sure that
curses is installed (
windows-curses if on windows), and then copy one of the example files into the top directory. You may then simply run it with
Below are some screenshots/gifs of programs written with py_cui. Additional (simpler) examples are available in the
examples/ directory of this repository.
py_cui_2048 - A command line version of the classic 2048 game
py_cui_2048 is a demo of using
py_cui to build simple CUI games and applications. The entire game was made in under 400 lines of code.
unipkg - A command line utility that will allow for managing all installed package managers on your system through one cli interface
unipkg is currently an in-progress project, check back in the future to see a screenshot, and more information.
pyautogit - A command line interface for managing git repositories
pyautogit is the first larger scale project written in
py_cui. Feel free to use it as a guide to programming with
Writing a PyCUI
Basic usage of
py_cui starts with creating a PyCUI object, and specifiying it's grid size. Keep in mind that grid cell height and width will be measured in terminal characters, not pixels, so there is a lower limit on legal grid size, and heights will be smaller values than widths. Create this object with:
root = py_cui.PyCUI(7, 9)
The above line will create a UI with 7 rows and 9 columns. Then, add widgets with the different add commands:
label = root.add_label('Label Text', 0, 0) button = root.add_button('Button Text', 1, 2, column_span=2, command=my_function) ...
Finally, start the CUI with
py_cui has support for custom key bindings for both the overview mode and focused mode, popup windows and prompts, color rendering rules, and several useful widgets. For more details on writing
py_cui based interfaces, be sure to check on the examples and the documentation here.
Using a PyCUI
There are some basic rules that apply to all
py_cui based interfaces. There are three key operating modes - overview mode, focus mode, and popup mode.
Overview mode is the main control view of the interface. In this mode you use the arrow keys to move between widgets, and you may select widgets with the
Enter key. By default, you may also press buttons in this mode, unless
auto_focus_buttons is set to false when the CUI was created.
When in focus mode, you enter into a particular widget (For example a text box.). Each widget has some predefined basic controls, such as arrow keys to scroll in a
ScrollMenu. You may also add keybindings to functions for each particular widget. These keybindings will only apply to a widget if it is in focus mode. Enter focus mode by navigating to a widget in overview mode and hitting the
Enter key. Return to overview mode from focus mode by pressing
Popup mode simply displays a popup over the rest of the UI. Each popup type behaves slightly differently. For example, you may exit an info popup mode by pressing
Escape, while a loading popup will remain onscreen until whatever operation is being run is terminated.
py_cui unit tests are written for
pytest. Make sure
pytest is installed, and simply run
in the root directory to run all unit tests.
Powered by py_cui
Below is a table of python projects developed with the help of
py_cui. If you've made something, feel free to make a pull request to add it!
|pyautogit||A command line UI for interfacing with git features for multiple repositories.|
|py_cui_2048||A CUI version of the classic 2048 game.|
|unipkg||A CUI interface for managing all installed package managers on your system. (In-Progress)|
BSD 3-Clause License
Copyright (c) 2019, Jakub Wlodek
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