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At Work Then (Applets)

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At Work Then

Straight dope on The Abstract Windows Toolkit

If your most fiendish nightmare is drowning in a bowl of alphabet soup, maybe you'd better re-think your Java-oriented strategies; because you are about to leap into a scaffold of functions that come wrapped up, ribbon and all, to help you give that graphical look! And yep, from a fairly prudent perspective, The Abstract Windows Toolkit as it is called, with its horde of teeny-weeny functions, does indeed provide the underpinnings for the user-friendly Graphic interface. In this section, we will tinker with these little widgets that come bunched up as the AWT. Before embarking on any sort of coding, let us look at the following diagram...


import java.applet.*;
import java.awt.*;
public class zzz extends Applet
{	public void init()
        {	add(new Button ("hell"));

In the init(), we add a button called "hell". When you run this program, you will see a button with the name (or the label ) "hell" on the screen. That's not great shakes afterall, but you just wrote your first AWT program!


import java.applet.*;
import java.awt.*;
public class zzz extends Applet
{	public void init()
        {	add(new TextField());

Like running the earlier program presented you with a button, this one will give you a text field. That is nothing but a single line edit box on the screen. Well, I don't mind going on like that for each and every wee feature, showing you one new thing at a time, but its the space that counts (not to mention your patience). Hence, I guess it should suffice to say that like the above objects,i.e, Button and Textfield, the following can also be created.


add(new TextArea());

This is similar to a huge text field, that is, it covers a larger area than the Textfield. While trying the text area, I'd rather you maximise the applet window because it comes like a multiple line edit box on the screen.


add(new Choice());

Choice is a word straight out from the Jargon Dump (which, incidentally, is the favourite hang-out of the techno-nerds!). A Choice() adds a drop down list box.


add(new List());

This will display a dry list box displayed on the screen. Dry because there will be no options given. (Well you wouldn't want to use their options anyway).


add(new Checkbox()); 

Unless you bought your computer to serve as the world's most expensive doorstop, you are well-versed with the check-boxes. In Java, this is the way you create your own checkboxes.


The Windows aficionados know it as the radio-buttons.


add(new Scrollbar()); 

Remember how you scroll through your love letters? Well, ulterior motives aside, you are well-versed with the scrollbars (unless ofcourse, your fiancee is a DOS-diehard).


add(new Label("Good")); 

Here, let us meet the most drab member of the AWT family. Just plain text that drawls on the screen whatever you pass it as a parameter. 

Actually Getting down to work

Now that we are a little better than AWT-bumpkins, let us unwrap it all one by one and pick up the pieces from the toolkit cornucopia...


If you feel the party is over, scamper to the next topic "Caught in the Net" or just hurl your comments, feedback, suggestions et al to us right offhand...

Back to our Java page



Vijay Mukhi's Computer Institute
B-13, Everest Building, Tardeo, Bombay 400 034, India.
e-mail :vmukhi@giasbm01.vsnl.net.in

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