The JFC/Swing classes offer a powerful way to build user interfaces in Java, and this richness comes with a lot more complexity. Java Foundation Classes in a Nutshell provides the documentation needed for understanding the most important features of Swing and serves as a handy reference to every package, class, and method.
The book is especially good at introducing the essential elements of Swing compared to the older AWT standard. Early chapters compare the fundamentals of AWT and Swing, including the architecture of each, plus the new possibilities for user interfaces offered by today's Swing. Standout sections on Java2D graphics (which is a lot more complicated than AWT graphics), printing, and Swing's advanced UI capabilities round out the tour here. Short examples and clear explanations, somewhat dryly written, provide a starting point for learning Swing.
The heart of this book is its 500 pages of reference material for every Java Swing (and AWT) package, class, and method. Some readers may quibble with the ordering here. (For instance, the model classes for advanced UI components like JTables are separated from the components themselves). But this reference has a good sense of visual clarity (with alternate lines of text highlighted with gray so that you can find what you need quickly). There are also some nice graphics, showing the relationship of Swing classes to one another.
In all, Java Foundation Classes in a Nutshell provides a very worthwhile reference to today's Swing classes. This text is as good as any available in getting to essential information on the powers of Swing for practical Java development. --Richard Dragan
Topics covered: JFC/Swing 1.1 and AWT basics, components, layout managers, events, Swing advanced user interface features, serialization, AWT and Java2D graphics, shapes, buffered images, affine transforms, printing, data transfer (cut-and-paste and drag-and-drop, applet basics, JDK 1.1 and Java 2 API package and class reference), UI classes, pluggable-look-and-feel, image APIs, tables and trees, text, and HTML viewer classes.
Java Foundation Classes in a Nutshell is an indispensable quick reference for Java programmers who are writing applications that use graphics or graphical user interfaces. The author of the bestselling Java in a Nutshell has written fast-paced introductions to the Java APIs that comprise the Java Foundation Classes (JFC), such as the Swing GUI components and Java 2D, so that you can start using these exciting new technologies right away. This book also includes O'Reilly's classic-style, quick-reference material for all of the classes in the javax.swing and java.awt packages and their numerous subpackages. This reference material covers all of the new JFC classes in the Java 2 platform, as well as the existing Java 1.1 AWT classes. Once you've learned about the JFC, you'll keep this book next to your keyboard for handy reference while you program.
Java Foundation Classes in a Nutshell contains the following: An overview of the architecture of graphical user interfaces built with both the new Swing API and the older AWT An introduction to the important components and application services provided by the Swing API An comprehensive explanation of the features of the new Java 2D graphics API A complete quick reference for the graphics- and GUI-related classes in the Java 2 platform This book is part of the two-volume set of quick references that every Java programmer needs. It is an essential companion to Java in a Nutshell, 3rd Edition, which covers the key nongraphical APIs in Java 1.2. A third volume, Java Enterprise in a Nutshell, focuses on the Java Enterprise APIs and is of interest to programmers working on server-side or enterprise Java applications.