Cool new stuff

Sun compiled two very interesting articles about New and updated desktop features in JDK6 (part1 and part2). Very interesting reading and quite exciting that Swing and Java2D finally receive more polish with respect to better desktop integration. I’m quite a fan of Swing (naturally), but in the past it has been annoying that Swing applications never seemed to really fit into the desktop. This is greatly improved in JDK6.

The GTK L&F needs more love though. It looks much better than in JDK5, but there are still many remaining issues. It still looks like a mix of GTK and Metal. For example the toolbars are clearly metal-ish, as is the file chooser. Tabs are something completely different, but definitely not GTK. Then there are lots of 1 pixel errors and a general feeling of slowness. I do however understand the difficulty in implementing such a L&F. GTK still does not provide any kind of API, at least not documented, to access the theme engine ‘from the outside’, e.g. from Swing. That is one of the biggest obstacles why I never got around to start such a L&F for GNU Classpath (besides the general lack of time).

On a different note, today I finished off (well sortof), the WindML BufferedImage/VolatileImage overhaul in the JamaicaVM. It now supports RGB565 and ARGB1555 images accelerated (for VolatileImage possibly even in the Video RAM when the driver supports this, grmbl) and ARGB8888 at least natively buffered, thus minimizing the overhead of getting the image on the screen. That’s pretty much as good as it can get on that platform. That makes up for a pretty nice performance improvement, as well as a much better memory handling (not speaking of the cleanup effect…). Many thanks go to Dmitri Trembovetski for patiently answering questions and cleaning up some misconceptions of mine!

On an even different note, my cat is going crazy for some days now. I wonder if she has hormone problems with the spring coming up here. šŸ˜‰ Strange to see all those spring flowers bloom already in the mid of february though.


2 Responses to Cool new stuff

  1. Which GTK engine/theme do you use? We’ve made a ton of fixes to the GTK L&F so far in JDK 7, and are backporting the most important ones to the JDK 6uX train. In fact, NetBeans 6.0 will be using the GTK L&F by default. Please give one of the JDK 7 early builds a try and see if things are improved. I’ll have a blog entry about these improvements soon. Once Sun’s JDK goes OS, we’d love to get your help in fixing the remaining issues. Thanks.

  2. roman says:

    I was trying the GTK engine from the original jdk1.6.0. I’ll give JDK7 a spin real soon. And yes, I can’t wait to get my hands on JDK’s Swing and Java2D šŸ™‚

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