Archive for September, 2008

Netbeaning it again

Friday, September 19th, 2008

I ran across this comment today:

[…] on more complex forms, [the Matisse GUI editor] becomes unbelievably frustrating and time-consuming. It tries to be too intelligent about what it thinks you want to do and often just moves things around wildly when trying to do simple adjustments or additions of components.

and another comment further down:

I’ve spent hours trying to get the layouts I want with it and it seems to be more trouble than it’s worth sometimes. Sometimes it insists on stretching and stretching my forms.

By this time, I’m banging on the desk shouting “Yes! That’s exactly what I’m seeing!”. Further down still:

About the Matisse problems; they rely on the layout. try changing the layout to NullLayout

Oooh, of course. That makes perfect sense.

One downside is that you need to do this before you start. I tried changing it on a complex window layout I’d manage to coax together, and it promptly collapsed all the controls into a heap. But I tried playing around with it in a test window and sure enough, I was able to drag around and place controls wherever I wanted without the annoying repositioning and resizing of other controls.

Apparently, I also lose some other features in this mode. Exactly what, I’m not sure, as I’ve only had a few minutes to play around with it. Maybe some of the fancy alignment tools have gone. I can probably live without that.

Look ‘n’ feel

I finally got my app running far enough to show me my window layout in all its glory. I was startled to see that the Windows XP appearance of the controls that I see in the GUI editor have been replaced with java-rendered equivalents. This is exactly what didn’t happen with the test application I made to make sure that this sort of thing wouldn’t happen. I’ve been hunting around in case there’s an option hidden somewhere that causes it to render controls in the native-OS form. No luck yet. I’m not sure what the difference is between my test app and the main app. Maybe it’s because I started the test app as a Java Desktop Application, whereas the main app started life as a JOGL app, and got additional windows added in.

I daren’t go any further with this until I see how it looks on a Mac. If I need to rebuild the app as a desktop app with JOGL window added in, I want to make sure that looks right on a Mac before I get too far down the path.