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a question about basic libraries and "cosmestic" ones ... (OT ?)

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Kleopatra

Hi Bill,

>
> I would suggest that you don't try to mix two different interface
> paradigms, such as Windows and Character-based.
> You can add things to make input faster (masks, automatic focus change,
> sumbitting on Enter). But I'd avoid making just a character based form
> to on Windows.
>

Hmm ... just throwing in a comment (which might be off-target ;-)

A basic rule (often forgotten) of modern GUIs is to make it _accessible_
by a wide variety of means, all of which must be equally (as far as
possible) well suited to use the application. The barest minimun are
mouse and keyboard - so users can choose. Personnally, I simply don't
use applications I cannot work with keystrokes (nearly) exclusively. The
older we get the more important is the keyboard, my elbow and wrist are
bad enough as they are

Cheers
Jeanette

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osbald
Offline
Joined: 2003-06-13

> A basic rule (often forgotten) of modern GUIs is to make
> _accessible_ by a wide variety of means, all of which
> be equally (as far as possible) well suited to use the
> application. The barest minimun are mouse and keyboard -
> users can choose. Personnally, I simply don't use
> applications I cannot work with keystrokes (nearly)
> exclusively. The older we get the more important is the
> keyboard, my elbow and wrist are bad enough as they are
>
> Cheers Jeanette
>

I wonder what do you make to this then:
The keyboard shortcut goodness of Microsoft Office 2007
http://www.lifehacker.com/software/microsoft-office/screenshot-tour-the-...

Seems the Office 2007 interface is even bolder than the just the obvious menuless task ribbons.

- Richard

PS Why has this thread started to fragment into separate topics (via forum)?

dags
Offline
Joined: 2003-06-10

>
> PS Why has this thread started to fragment into
> separate topics (via forum)?

Answers from mailing list didn't go to the forum, so someone put in the forum as a new thread. A gateway problem.

Regards,
Diego.

diego@adminsa.com

> I've worked in a similar, tough situation.
>
> The users had a character based app that used simple keystrokes and a few
> function keys. No mouse.
> Then, as the company grew, and needed more functionality, an applet was
> created (before I came to the company) that kept the same weirdo keystroke
> combinations as the character based app. It ignored a lot of the menuing
> and
> mouse control you'd expect from a mouse controlled app.

That is the point. Sometimes there is no need to have a "mouse controlled"
app. Sometimes things are simple enough to need no mouse. It is already
there and enabled, just in case. But it is not needed. People usually
writes with one hand, and operates mouse with the same hand. It is faster
to switch that hand from writing a text to press ENTER (or other key) than
writing a text to move the mouse and click.

>
> Ugh. Don't do that if you can help it.
>
> I would suggest that you don't try to mix two different interface
> paradigms,
> such as Windows and Character-based.
> You can add things to make input faster (masks, automatic focus change,
> sumbitting on Enter). But I'd avoid making just a character based form to
> on
> Windows.
> The windows interface is a different workflow than the users are used to,
> and they WILL complain about it. They don't typically like change. But you
> can make it work.
>
> And, when you are asked to add new features, working from the Windows
> paradigm will be wayyyyy easier than working from the character-based one.
>

Thanks for your advice. I am not trying to do a characted based app on a
graphical environment. Users always complain, I have experienced that too.
I always have in mind who is my actual customer.

If things get more complicated or new requeriments are made, we can always
use menuing, mouse features and all benefits of a "true" graphical app. In
that case maybe speed or some delay using the mouse will not be an issue.

When you say "Windows paradigm" are you referring to "graphical
environment paradign" or you mean "Microsoft Windows paradigm" ?.

Regards,
Diego.

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Kleopatra

Diego,

>
>
> That is the point. Sometimes there is no need to have a "mouse controlled"
> app. Sometimes things are simple enough to need no mouse. It is already
> there and enabled, just in case. But it is not needed. People usually
> writes with one hand, and operates mouse with the same hand. It is faster
> to switch that hand from writing a text to press ENTER (or other key) than
> writing a text to move the mouse and click.
>

hmm .. what exactly is your question? (besides the need for a
databinding, application framework we all are craving for ). I mean,
you can wrap whatever is important to your application into a dedicated
action and bind that to keystroke and/or menu options and/or mouse
gestures. If you need to get fancy with keystrokes, you can implement
dynamic context-sensitive keybindings and/or actions. What am I missing?

Cheers
Jeanette

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dags
Offline
Joined: 2003-06-10

> hmm .. what exactly is your question? (besides the
> need for a
> databinding, application framework we all are craving
> for ). I mean,
> you can wrap whatever is important to your
> application into a dedicated
> action and bind that to keystroke and/or menu options
> and/or mouse
> gestures. If you need to get fancy with keystrokes,
> you can implement
> dynamic context-sensitive keybindings and/or actions.
> What am I missing?

Nothing, really. Initially I wanted to know the opinion of the experts about the lack, or poor, support for swing bussines applications. We see everyday news about interesting 2D, 3D, swingx and effects libraries but nothing about databinding or swing framework. Not even the specifications.

Later, this thread derived in a "fancy features are bad" vs "fancy features are good", what was never my intention. I really like all those laf and functionality improvements and I hope to use some very soon.

I know my java and swing knowledge is almost non existant compared with many members of this list. I have to learn a lot. But I would like to hear some design guidelines from someone who actually wrote a swing bussines application, says an accounting and invoicing application.

Regards,
Diego.