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Video: Part 3 of an Introduction to the NetBeans APIs

11.03.2008
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This one's veeery long. Pour yourself a coffee that will last you 47 minutes or so. NetBeans.tv rejected it because it was too large, so I had to resort to blip.tv (with a registration process that lasted all of 1 minute, literally) and the Sun http://mediacast.sun.com/ site instead (the quality of the latter seems to be many times better, so that's the one I'm using below).

So, here it is, part 3. After a brief recap of the previous parts, you learn all about the Window System API, as well as some digressions into Spring RCP and Groovy:

Site for downloading for off-line viewing: window-system-api.flv

Please give feedback! How can this series be improved? (Apart from my proximity to the mic changing randomly.) Technically, I've worked through most problems and at least my voice is clear (thanks "Remove Noise" button in Camtasia). The next one, planned for some time this week, will be about the NetBeans File System API.

Published at DZone with permission of its author, Geertjan Wielenga.
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Adrian A. replied on Thu, 2008/11/06 - 6:57am

Nice, but IMO you could make it much shorter and easier to understand, by:

- removing things about SpringRCP (this is NB RCP right), and the other docking frameoworks too.

- record the video, and  the sound separately. Thus you can cut boring things from the video - like waiting for things to compile, or to render (or restart for the right size, etc.).

- Please, do not repeat so much the things - developers are not idiots. This approach of over repeating makes the users to go away. There's also no need to repeat what was in the previous video - just point to the transcript summary.

- please offer a transcript (or maybe this is the first thing that it should be made before recording the sound and the video). Also the transcript should have a summary. People look once at the video, but when they want to use it in practice they won't have time to re-watch the video, so the transcript will serve them.

 Can't wait for the next episodes,

Thank you,

Adrian.

Harris Goldstone replied on Thu, 2008/11/06 - 7:19am

I liked hearing about Spring RCP in this context. And the more repetition, and the slower, the better -- new concepts bear repeating ad nauseum. I'd rather have something said too often than not often enough.

Adrian A. replied on Thu, 2008/11/06 - 7:35am in response to: Harris Goldstone

> I liked hearing about Spring RCP in this context.

Me not. It has *nothing* to do with NB RCP (I think for Spring hype there are other better places). If I'll need something about Spring RCP than I'll look at topics that have something to do with it.

 > And the more repetition, and the slower, the better

Really? Are you sure, you're in the right job :) ?

There's also a very good book about these themes from Geertjan, so IMO the video should not be boring, but attract new users: to use NB Platform (and buy the book too).

just my 2 cents,

 Adrian.

Geertjan Wielenga replied on Fri, 2008/11/07 - 1:30am in response to: Adrian A.

[quote=a_adrian]

> I liked hearing about Spring RCP in this context.

Me not. It has *nothing* to do with NB RCP (I think for Spring hype there are other better places). If I'll need something about Spring RCP than I'll look at topics that have something to do with it.

[/quote]

"Nothing"? Really? Hmmm. Both of them are frameworks for Swing applications, aren't they?

Thanks a lot for the comments by the way, Harris Goldstone too. Am working on the next one right now, which will include a transcript (more or less accurate). However, I can't promise not to be repetitive and slow -- that's the pace this series will continue going at, apologies if that means boredom for some, future series will build on top of this one, which must be slow in order to lay the groundwork somewhat thoroughly.

 

Adrian A. replied on Fri, 2008/11/07 - 5:42am in response to: Geertjan Wielenga

> "Nothing"? Really? Hmmm. Both of them are frameworks for Swing applications, aren't they?

 Sorry, but what logic is this :) ?

This series was about NB Platform, not Swing Frameworks in general. There are thousands of other Swing Framework, and for sure Spring RCP is not the most used nor interesting one (despite the millions of ventrue capital pumped in it by I21 or how they're called now :) ).

I'm reacting to this as a developer, because after years of Rails hype on Dzone, now it seems to be full of Spring (and Groovy) hype too :). 

Nevertheless, I like NB as a platform allot, and I would like to learn more about it (btw, your book is of great help for this purpose - maybe you could post a link to it in each episode - it looks like many haven't even heard about it :) ).

Thank you (for the book too :) ),

 Adrian.

Geertjan Wielenga replied on Fri, 2008/11/07 - 9:49am in response to: Adrian A.

[quote=a_adrian]

This series was about NB Platform, not Swing Frameworks in general. There are thousands of other Swing Framework, and for sure Spring RCP is not the most used nor interesting one (despite the millions of ventrue capital pumped in it by I21 or how they're called now :) ).

[/quote]

 

Thousands? I doubt it. There's about 5 basically: JSR 296, Spring RCP, and NetBeans Platform, as well as some docking frameworks (MyDoggy, etc). But that's about all. Maybe Griffon too. But are there more than that? I don't think so. That's why it's interesting to compare the NetBeans Platform a bit with its alternatives. In my very h. opinion. :-)

Adrian A. replied on Fri, 2008/11/07 - 10:21am

Thousands? I doubt it. There's about 5 basically: JSR 296, Spring RCP, and NetBeans Platform, as well as some docking frameworks (MyDoggy, etc). But that's about all. Maybe Griffon too. But are there more than that? I don't think so.

Search after "Swing" on sourceforge.net and you will get many many Swing libraries of various types.

Also browse the dev.java.net projects, and see how many of them have something to do with Swing.

(about commercial projects not to mention).

 

> That's why it's interesting to compare the NetBeans Platform a bit with its alternatives.

That's a different thing. A "platform" is not just a framework. Indeed, platforms are not that many, but even if we compare those that might be considered "patforms", Spring RCP does not much (the jgoodies and the others frameworks in use do the work, so the merit is their's).  Also comparing it's features, does not even come close to NB, so I wouldn't really call it a "platform" :) . Even OSwing is much better :) .

Geertjan Wielenga replied on Fri, 2008/11/07 - 11:13am in response to: Adrian A.

[quote=a_adrian]

Thousands? I doubt it. There's about 5 basically: JSR 296, Spring RCP, and NetBeans Platform, as well as some docking frameworks (MyDoggy, etc). But that's about all. Maybe Griffon too. But are there more than that? I don't think so.

Search after "Swing" on sourceforge.net and you will get many many Swing libraries of various types.

Also browse the dev.java.net projects, and see how many of them have something to do with Swing.

(about commercial projects not to mention).

[/quote] 

 

Yes. There are thousands of Swing libraries. That is one of the reasons to use Swing instead of SWT.

 

[quote=a_adrian]

> That's why it's interesting to compare the NetBeans Platform a bit with its alternatives.

That's a different thing. A "platform" is not just a framework. Indeed, platforms are not that many, but even if we compare those that might be considered "patforms", Spring RCP does not much (the jgoodies and the others frameworks in use do the work, so the merit is their's).  Also comparing it's features, does not even come close to NB, so I wouldn't really call it a "platform" :) . Even OSwing is much better :) .

[/quote]

 

When I say "application framework", I mean the same as "platform". So, yes, we agree [now that the terminology issue is cleared up] that there are few of these. And, well, personally, I believe Spring RCP has a lot of promise. It's the closest thing to the NetBeans Platform in the Swing world in terms of functionality. [I've written amulti-part tutorial about Spring RCP on Javalobby, you should have a look. It's pretty cool.]

The main thing it's 'missing' (i.e., it was never intended to have this, but compared to the NetBeans Platform it is 'missing' this), is modularity. I.e., Spring RCP applications cannot be built via modules (except if you want to use the ServiceLoader, which is quite poor compared to the Lookup, as shown in the second of my screencast series). I'd miss that a lot if I were using Spring RCP. But, apart from that, I think it's a great area to explore (though its future always seems a bit dodgy).

Adrian A. replied on Fri, 2008/11/07 - 11:37am

I believe Spring RCP has a lot of promise. It's the closest thing to the NetBeans Platform in the Swing world in terms of functionality. [I've written amulti-part tutorial about Spring RCP on Javalobby, you should have a look. It's pretty cool.]

I already worked with Spring RCP on a commercial project, but in practice it was not that cool :).

The things that look "cool" in it are from JGoodies (not the merit of I21), and everybody can use jgoodies with conventions that make sense and without Spring. For commercial projects, SwingSuite is much better (but it's not free).

There are other free frameworks that get closer (even if they don't have a default docking framework - everybody can use the http://flexdock.dev.java.net/ - there's no need for Spring to "inject" it), or support for modularity (this can be achieved with e.g. JPF or Platonos too) 

Just a few of other free "platform" framewokrs here:

http://delicious.com/adrian_a/swing_platform

Adrian.

Michael Bedward replied on Sun, 2008/11/16 - 10:32pm

Hi Geertjan,

Many thanks for this episode. Regarding the pace and amount of repetition, like harris I am comfortable with this, although perhaps for my own purposes I would have preferred to see a little more about component groups in place of the comparison with other windowing frameworks. But you can't please all of the people all of the time :)

I agree very much with Adrian that you should mention the RCP book with each episode. I tend to watch a section of the screencast, pause and try what I've just seen in NB (rewinding and reviewing the screencast if I need to), and then look at the relevant section in the book, noting minor differences and extra material. This seems to lodge the new info into my overloaded frontal cortex pretty well.

 cheers

Michael

Chris Mylonas replied on Tue, 2008/11/25 - 10:13pm

Having just watched the LookupAPI, there was too much heavy explanation on 1st application calls the 2nd application, which doesn't have a need to know about the 1st application's cousins, meanwhile the 3rd application would load the 2nd application which would then have the 1st application's interface called from the program loading the 3rd application service provider, without loading any code from the 2nd application.

 

Watching the code after vaguely  following the wordy explanation was much easier.  Whilst this exhausting explanation was going on, there was no movement on the screen - maybe UML would have been handy, just to explain it - picture, thousand words...

 Perhaps, even an analogy - e.g.

Webjet offers a service to fly from Auckland to Sydney.  They load a bunch of different airlines, and depending on which airline is currently being "called", the respective rules and regulations would be displayed.  For instance, all airlines have an interface ReservationService and a getReservationNumber().

 

I'm looking forward to watching the Windowing System API.  It has been 4 or 5 years since I moved away from Netbeans, but already, less than a week of tutorials and demos, the productivity is up hundreds of percent.  Thanks a lot for all the new material and use of video.

 

Martin Lazar replied on Thu, 2008/12/04 - 7:29pm

Hi Geertjan,

Great lesson :)

I'm comfortable with the repetition as well as mxb and harris :) These are very fundamental things, thus in my opinion it is better to say it several times using different words. I also liked the summary on the beginning , because it ensured me that I understood the first two lessons well.

I would appreciate the transcript as well.. but well I managed to do some notes by myself as anyone can do ;)

Thanks a lot for these videos.

Martin

Mateo Gomez replied on Thu, 2012/04/26 - 1:04am in response to: Adrian A.

 very cool indeed..i agree with you Adrian mexican bread

Matt Coleman replied on Fri, 2012/04/27 - 1:30am in response to: Martin Lazar

yes, transcrips would be very helpful graphic artist buffalo

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