Skip to main content

Working with Netbeans 4.2 Dev - Part 2

I pulled down and installed the latest daily NetBeans 4.2 development build (6_Jul_2005_1800) and installed it. One nice feature I discovered by doing this: I could uninstall an older version and install the latest version and still have my projects and other settings come back up in the newest installed version. Excellent.

The reason for installing this version was to check out any updates/fixes to Matisse. I pulled up the original toy UI built with the June 28th release. This time I was able to drop sliders on the form and set them vertically, as well as change their size without generating exceptions. Again very good.

But this time I ran into a new problem. I attempted to move the top three labels over to the left and the accompanying text boxes. The next images shows what happened when I tried that action with the "Whatever" label and associated text box. Nearly all the other controls were re-located over to the far right and chopped off. I suppose I could have stretched the panel to re-expose everything and then attempt to relocate all the other controls, but the immediate question is why should I have to?

On my last post, Arseniy commented:
Generated layout is not based on a grid concept nor on absolute XY coordinates (it uses parallel / [sequential] groups of components instead), and the guidelines seem to be good enough to visualize the constraints between components...
I'm concerned about the complexity of trying to manage N constraints between M components where both N and M grow large over time. Watching all the other controls shoot around the form when I moved just one control showed me that Matisse's developers have got a way to go with properly managing constraints as controls are moved and resized. In spite of what Arseniy says I firmly believe the layout tool that will be the most successful is going to be the layout tool that does use a grid to help lay down controls. And before anybody jumps to the conclusion that I'm in love with the Eclipse Visual Editor, let me assure you I'm not. Both show promise but both need a lot more work. If you want a professional Java UI layout tool at this point in time then your best bet is to buy one.


  1. Tomas PavekJuly 11, 2005

    Just 2 quick comments:
    1) The layout model behind Matisse is not a generic M:N constraints system (like e.g. SpringLayout support would be). It is rather a tree hierarchy - like nested containers and components, but managed within the layout manager using "layout groups".

    2) As for the grid - depends on what you mean by grid. The coordinate grid as used in VB, Delphi, Apple Interface Builder etc is not usable for java GUIs as it positions each component absolutely. Another type of grid is the component grid like in a spread sheet. It is known e.g. from TableLayout or FormLayout (JGoodies). This is a powerful system, but we've found it not suitable for the design experience we wanted in Matisse. (The exact reasons would be on longer write-up.)


Post a Comment

All comments are checked. Comment SPAM will be blocked and deleted.

Popular posts from this blog

cat-in-a-box channels greta garbo

So I'm sitting at my computer, when I start to notice a racket in back. I ignore it for a while until I hear a load "thump!", as if something had been dropped on the floor, followed by a lot of loud rattling. I turn around and see Lucy in the box just having a grand old time, rolling around and rattling that box a good one. I grab the GX1 and snap a few shots before she notices me and the camera, then leaps out and back into her chair (which used to be my chair before she decided it was her chair).

Just like caring for Katie my black Lab taught me about dogs, caring for Lucy is teaching me about cats. She finds me fascinating, as I do her. And she expresses great affection and love toward me without coaxing. I try to return the affection and love, but she is a cat, and she takes a bat at me on occasion, although I think that's just her being playful. She always has her claws in when she does that.

She sits next to me during the evening in her chair while I sit in mi…

vm networking problem fixed

Over the weekend I upgraded to Windows 8.1, then discovered that networking for the virtual machines wouldn't work. Then I tried something incredibly simple and fixed the problem.

Checking the system I noticed that three VMware Windows services weren't running; VMnetDHCP, VMUSBArbService, and VMwareNatService. VMware Player allows you to install, remove, or fix an existing installation. I chose to try fixing the installation, and that fixed the problem. The services were re-installed/restarted, and the virtual machines had networking again.

Once network connectivity was established there was exactly one updated file for Ubuntu 13.10, a data file. This underscores how solid and finished the release was this time. Every other version of every other Linux installation I've ever dealt with has always been succeeded by boatloads of updates after the initial installation. But not this time.

Everything is working properly on my notebook. All's right with the world.

sony's pivotal mirrorless move

I'm a died-in-the-wool technologist, even when it comes to photography. I have always been fascinated with the technology that goes into manufacturing any camera, from the lenses (optics) through the mechanical construction, the electronics involved, and especially the chemistry of the film and the sophistication of the digital sensor. It's amazing that the camera can do all it's asked of it, regardless of manufacturer.

Of all the types of cameras that I've really taken an interest in, contemporary mirrorless (again, regardless of manufacturer) are the most interesting because of the challenging problems the scientists and engineers have had to solve in order to build a compact but highly functional camera. In particular I've followed the sensor advances over the years and watched image quality climb (especially with μ4:3rds) to exceed film and rival one another such that there's very little difference any more as you move from the smaller sensors such as 4:3r…