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Java Look and Feel Design Guidelines, from Sun Microsystems, provides programmers with the requirements for creating user interfaces using the Java Foundation Classes (JFC). This handsomely printed book uses rich color on every page while demonstrating how you can create Java programs that will look great on any computer.

The book focuses on the built-in Java look-and-feel (called Metal). Early sections discuss the philosophy of Java user interfaces, which include excellent support for different languages and accessibility, keeping disabled users in mind.

Much of this text covers Java UI elements offering advice on creating more intuitive interfaces. Sections of the book look at the rudimentary, visual sensibilities needed for using colors and text appropriately, including how to design artwork (like icons and graphics) that fits in with the rest of the JFC interface. One example shows the step-by-step creation of a proper Java icon. Other sections propose standards for the number of pixels that should be used to separate onscreen elements. Sections on mouse, keyboard, and drag-and-drop user operations make clear how your Java programs should handle user actions.

Later this text surveys JFC components beginning with basic windows, dialog boxes, menus, and toolbars. Next it's on to individual components from basic controls (like buttons, checkboxes, and text controls) to more advanced components (like tables and tree controls). (This section, which lists the extensive options for selecting data and resizing table columns, shows the real sophistication of today's JFC package.)

Though it contains no actual Java code, Java Look and Feel Guidelines defines the visual design standard for the next generation of Java programs. It will useful for anyone who builds user interfaces during the software design process. --Richard Dragan --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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ISBN-10:  0201775824
ISBN-13:  978-0201775822
Author:  Sun Microsystems Inc.
Publisher:  Addison-Wesley Professional
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review by . March 11, 2002
Creating clean, intuitive interfaces is a complex task using any set of tools. It is further complicated by the significant differences between the tools, both in appearance and performance, where a significant difference can be a rather small thing. The Java Swing toolkit and supporting classes differs from others and if it is your platform, then you should take a look at this book. Written by the interface experts at Sun Microsystems, this is as good as it gets.   At the meta-level, …
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