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Thread: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

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    Default JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    I have been studying java swing for about a month now and making simple programs. About a hour ago I decided there was a add-on that made this easier, something like Visual Basic or Xcode 5 has for Objective-C. Bam I found JFormDesigner and downloaded it however now I see it costs money. I am basically asking for a opinion on if I should use it. What do professional use? Do they hard code the whole interface or use something like JFormDesigner?


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    Default Re: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    Please don't post multiple copies of the same question in multiple subforums. I've deleted your duplicate thread.

    Professional developers code their interfaces. You shouldn't use a gui builder until you understand what it's doing under the hood. And by that point, you won't really need a gui builder. There are a few exceptions, like if a non-Java developer needs to make a quick little dialog they might use a gui builder, but no serious gui developers use gui builders.

    There are free alternatives though. Netbeans comes with a gui builder, and I'm sure there are eclipse plugins that do the same. But like I said, I highly recommend against using a gui builder.
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    Default Re: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    Thanks for the reply. I figured I would get a response like this but I just wanted to make sure. Assuming an answer sometimes is not always a good idea. I just found myself out with a piece of paper designing an interface and thought of other applications I have used that had drag and drop options.

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    Default Re: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    Well, using a programming language isn't really the same as using an application. An application gives you just enough freedom to do a few things, whereas programming in a language like Java leaves everything completely up to you.

    You can try to use a gui builder, and it might work for the basics, but you're going to be screwed as soon as you need the freedom that actually writing code gives you. Even small tweaks that would be trivial with code can be all but impossible with a gui builder, since it creates code that isn't really meant to be read by a human being. Then you're on your own, whereas if you wrote the code yourself you could post it to a forum like this and ask for help.
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    Default Re: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    A GUI builder, like the build-in tools of the popular IDE's are very useful to quickly click some components together, but you always need to go over it by hand.
    For a beginner these can be useful because they list all common JComponents that you might want to use. If you dont know about all of them yet it is a great way to learn what they are doing and immediately see them in action.

    But at some point you will be experienced enough that these tools will actually slow you down instead of helping you. Until then, it might be worth to at least check them out.

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    Default Re: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    Thank you everyone, I am making my first real useful program right now and the design part is what is slowing me down at the moment. I thought perhaps a designing program could help me play with a few opinions so I can have the feel I am looking for. However I do have adobe Indesign but I have limited experience with it. I might just create the interface on that so i can see and then start coding. Do you know of any other programs that are open source that help you design a interface?

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    Default Re: JFormDesign or Hard code Swing?

    Honestly, your best bet is probably a piece of paper and a pencil. Draw out what you want, then figure out how to go about it through code.
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