Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Carmen Gonzalez, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Java IoT

Java IoT: Article

FrameResizer

Resizing windows

This article presents a Java/Swing component implementation of a feature that is ubiquitous in nearly all desktop applications, particularly Windows applications - an area in the lower right portion of a window (Frame) that can be used to resize the window.

Of course, a window can be re-sized with most desktop managers by dragging the lower-right edge - the additional component simply serves as a visual indicator of the resize capability, and also increases the margin of error for the mouse drag.

Typically this component is placed in a status or message area at the bottom of a window. I demonstrate my solution in the context of a very simple (and barely func-tional) Web browser. I also introduce a technique in which a Frame/JFrame/JInternalFrame can exhibit "continuous layout" behavior as it is resized.

Details
The component is called Frame-Resizer. It subclasses JComponent and has two main jobs that it performs. First, it draws itself and, second, it handles mouse events so that it can both change the mouse cursor (on mouse enter/leave) and resize the window (on mouse press/drag/release). FrameResizer can be used to resize a Frame, JFrame, or JInternalFrame, each of which has a common ancestor of java.awt.Container in the component class hierarchy. So constructors for FrameResizer take a Container argument as follows:

public FrameResizer(Container parent);
public FrameResizer(Container parent, boolean useContinuousLayout);

Rendering
Figure 1 shows the FrameResizer in its typical context, at the lower right edge of a window, as part of a status/message area.

FrameResizer draws itself in the paintComponent() method as shown in Listing 1. There are seven "ribs" that make up the component.

A rib is one of the raised "bumps" in the component visual; it's actually just two 2x2 pixel rectangles drawn in different colors offset slightly from each other. You can see this in the exploded view of the FrameResizer in Figure 2.

Resizing
Much of the interesting FrameResizer code is in the MouseInputListener inner class that the component adds to itself. In the mouseEntered() and mouseExited() methods, the cursor is changed to Cursor.NW_RESIZE_CURSOR and the default Cursor, respectively. In the mousePressed() method (see Listing 2), the mouse location is converted to actual screen coordinates, and the relative location from edge of the window (the Point mouseAdjust) is calculated.

In the mouseDragged() method (see Listing 3), the current mouse position is again converted to absolute screen position, and the new bounds of the parent Container (Frame/InternalFrame) are recalculated based on the original mouse location.

The mouseReleased() method calls mouseDragged() for a final calculation, and then "validates" the parent container. Since FrameResizer supports either an external Frame or a JInternalFrame, the validate() method does the appropriate validation and invokes the repaint() method (see Listing 4). This needs to be done at the end of the AWT EventDispatchThread (thus the use of SwingUtilities.invokeLater()). This method is declared static so it can be re-used for the "continuous layout" functionality (see below).

Continuous Layout
This concept is familiar to Swing developers who use JSplitPane - it's the ability to have internal components validate and repaint as the container is resized (in real time). Unfortunately, when a top-level Java desktop window is resized, this doesn't happen, as the validate/repaint messages are not sent to the underlying Container until resizing (via mouse dragging) is complete. Figure 3 is a capture of our browser window during the mouse drag. You can see how the contents of the window are not "stretched' to fit the bounds of the Frame - this is done when the mouse is released.

Ideally you want the contents of the window to stretch to the frame bounds during resizing. This capability is evident in most non-Java top-level desktop windows.

The trick to doing this in Java is to use a Timer to periodically check the current bounds of the window (Frame), and if it has changed since the last interval, send the validate/repaint messages to the Frame. You can see how this is done in Listing 5. I coded it as a static method in FrameResizer so this functionality can be used independently of the component.

The code uses a static HashMap (continuousLayoutWindows) so it can be used for multiple windows in a multi-frame application. It lazily initializes this HashMap. In the map it stores the current Container bounds keyed by the Container. If the current bounds are different than what is in the map, the current bounds are saved and the validate and repaint messages are sent to the Container (our static validate() method from before). That's all there is to it. I use 100 milliseconds (hard-coded) as my timer interval - feel free to experiment with this number (or parameterize it).

You can specify whether or not "continuous layout" is used by the FrameResizer in its constructor (the default is true). Note that one drawback to "continuous layout" in this context is the flicker that occurs during the repaint. This is unfortunately unavoidable. Also note that the continuous layout behavior is not required if you are using the FrameResizer in the context of a JInternalFrame.

Summary
In this article I presented a custom Swing component that can be used to help provide a customary look and feel to a Frame or JInternalFrame. I've also introduced the concept of "continuous layout" to top-level Java desktop windows and shown how this can be implemented. The source code for this article can be downloaded from http://jdj.sys-con.com.

More Stories By Phil Herold

Phil Herold is VP and CTO of PocketScience LLC in Research Triangle Park, NC. He has over 24 years of experience in software engineering, and has been working with Java client technologies since 1996.

Comments (4) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
Phil Herold 09/28/05 10:43:13 AM EDT

The link for the code to this article has been fixed. Here's the direct link:

http://res.sys-con.com/story/aug05/117759/FrameResizer.zip

This contains a jar file with both source and class files. If your run the jar with javaw, it will run the "Lame Browser" window that is shown in the article.

Phil Herold 09/26/05 09:59:47 AM EDT

Michael,

Someone in a private e-mail pointed out that Toolkit.setDynamicLayout() will accomplish the same thing as the timer/validate-paint technique used in my article. I haven't tried it, but you might look at that as well.

Michael Bushe 08/12/05 08:05:03 PM EDT

Brilliant!!! I've been writing fancy Swing apps for a long time and never even considered that there was a way around the gray-screen-as-you-resize problem. Very slick, very thorough. An icon for this was meticulously created by Jonathan Simon here:
http://today.java.net/pub/a/today/2005/06/07/pixelpushing.html

Bill Winspur 08/12/05 06:10:43 PM EDT

Very interesting article - unfortunately I cant find a link to the source code in the article, or on http://jdj.sys-con.com . Can somebody provide it?

@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale, a global pure play Infrastructure as a Service provider and strategic partner of Dassault Systèmes, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2010, Outscale simplifies infrastructure complexities and boosts the business agility of its customers. Outscale delivers a secure, reliable and industrial strength solution for its customers, which in...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudistics, an on-premises cloud computing company, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudistics delivers a complete public cloud experience with composable on-premises infrastructures to medium and large enterprises. Its software-defined technology natively converges network, storage, compute, virtualization, and management into a ...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists will examine how DevOps helps to meet th...
SYS-CON Events announced today that A&I Solutions has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 1999, A&I Solutions is a leading information technology (IT) software and services provider focusing on best-in-class enterprise solutions. By partnering with industry leaders in technology, A&I assures customers high performance levels across all IT environments including: mai...
Every successful software product evolves from an idea to an enterprise system. Notably, the same way is passed by the product owner's company. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Oleg Lola, CEO of MobiDev, will provide a generalized overview of the evolution of a software product, the product owner, the needs that arise at various stages of this process, and the value brought by a software development partner to the product owner as a response to these needs.
Most technology leaders, contemporary and from the hardware era, are reshaping their businesses to do software in the hope of capturing value in IoT. Although IoT is relatively new in the market, it has already gone through many promotional terms such as IoE, IoX, SDX, Edge/Fog, Mist Compute, etc. Ultimately, irrespective of the name, it is about deriving value from independent software assets participating in an ecosystem as one comprehensive solution.
SYS-CON Events announced today that EARP will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "We are a software house, so we perfectly understand challenges that other software houses face in their projects. We can augment a team, that will work with the same standards and processes as our partners' internal teams. Our teams will deliver the same quality within the required time and budget just as our partn...
SYS-CON Events announced today that delaPlex will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. delaPlex pioneered Software Development as a Service (SDaaS), which provides scalable resources to build, test, and deploy software. It’s a fast and more reliable way to develop a new product or expand your in-house team.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tappest will exhibit MooseFS at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MooseFS is a breakthrough concept in the storage industry. It allows you to secure stored data with either duplication or erasure coding using any server. The newest – 4.0 version of the software enables users to maintain the redundancy level with even 50% less hard drive space required. The software func...
In his keynote at @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Director of IoT Engineering at Citrix and co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, focused on building an IoT platform and company. He provided a behind-the-scenes look at Octoblu’s platform, business, and pivots along the way (including the Citrix acquisition of Octoblu).
SYS-CON Events announced today that Systena America will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Systena Group has been in business for various software development and verification in Japan, US, ASEAN, and China by utilizing the knowledge we gained from all types of device development for various industries including smartphones (Android/iOS), wireless communication, security technology and IoT serv...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Outscale's technology makes an automated and adaptable Cloud available to businesses, supporting them in the most complex IT projects while controlling their operational aspects. You boost your IT infrastructure's reactivity, with request responses that only take a few seconds.
DevOps at Cloud Expo – being held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – announces that its Call for Papers is open. Born out of proven success in agile development, cloud computing, and process automation, DevOps is a macro trend you cannot afford to miss. From showcase success stories from early adopters and web-scale businesses, DevOps is expanding to organizations of all sizes, including the world's largest enterprises – and delivering real r...
SYS-CON Events announced today that delaPlex will exhibit at SYS-CON's @CloudExpo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. delaPlex pioneered Software Development as a Service (SDaaS), which provides scalable resources to build, test, and deploy software. It’s a fast and more reliable way to develop a new product or expand your in-house team.
Five years ago development was seen as a dead-end career, now it’s anything but – with an explosion in mobile and IoT initiatives increasing the demand for skilled engineers. But apart from having a ready supply of great coders, what constitutes true ‘DevOps Royalty’? It’ll be the ability to craft resilient architectures, supportability, security everywhere across the software lifecycle. In his keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Jeffrey Scheaffer, GM and SVP, Continuous Delivery Busine...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CollabNet, a global leader in enterprise software development, release automation and DevOps solutions, will be a Bronze Sponsor of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, taking place from June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CollabNet offers a broad range of solutions with the mission of helping modern organizations deliver quality software at speed. The company’s latest innovation, the DevOps Lifecycle Manager (DLM), supports Value S...
In order to meet the rapidly changing demands of today’s customers, companies are continually forced to redefine their business strategies in order to meet these needs, stay relevant and continue to see profitable growth. IoT deployment and development is integral in this transformation, and today businesses are increasingly seeing the value of investing their resources into IoT deployments. These technologies are able increase ROI through projects such as connecting supply chains or enabling sm...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Peak 10, Inc., a national IT infrastructure and cloud services provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Peak 10 provides reliable, tailored data center and network services, cloud and managed services. Its solutions are designed to scale and adapt to customers’ changing business needs, enabling them to lower costs, improve performance and focus intern...
Everywhere we turn in our industry we can find strong opinions about the direction, type and nature of cloud’s impact on computing and business. Another word that is used in every context in our industry is “hybrid.” In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Alvaro Gonzalez, Director of Technical, Partner and Field Marketing at Peak 10, will use a combination of a few conceptual props and some research recently commissioned by Peak 10 to offer a real-world consideration of how the various categories of...