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GUI Design Considerations

Alan Mc Kernan
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Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 59

Although GUI receives only 40 points, I beleive effort made here will shape the overall opinion of the examiner.

I originally thought of (and curently have implemented) a simple ToolBar with functions Show All/Search/Book/Help/Exit above a JTable with the search results. The toolbar functions display a modal popup dialog box where you enter search critera/customer ID.. and click "Okay". This seemed like a reasonable approach to me - and its very easily extensible - to add a create function, simply add the toolbar item, create an action, and a dialog box.

But now after speaking to a UI designer, I'm having second thoughts. He expressed that all the user workflow should be accessible from one screen. For example, have the search criteria in a panel on the left-hand side. I could put a Filter Results panel below this, and then a book panel below that. A logical flow. And maybe a status bar down the bottom.

Fair enough I can do this easily enough. But now its not easily extensible, how can I easily add create/record functionality etc.

He also mentioned that its desireable from a user perspective to be able to view multiple search results at a time (understandable.. when i am booking a hotel i goto expedia/hotel finders/trail finders/ etc) and then choose my hotel. This would require using tabbed panes. And I would like to be able to close the tabbed panes easily right, thus I'd have to extend JTabbedPane to allow closing tabbed panes. This is WAY out of scope of the assignment, I know, and I doubt I'll implement this.

His motto is "User First, Implementation Second".

Any thoughts? It seems like an area that is very underrated in this forum.
Jason Moors
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Joined: Dec 04, 2001
Posts: 188
As a user I prefer everything on one page, as it saves the toing and froing between MainWindow and Dialog box. Plus I think most users are familar with the left search bar, right content pane approach from websites and also Mircosoft applications like, Word etc

I think you can still create a framework that is easily extensible. If you create different panels for the logical sections and use a flexible layout manager without absolute positioning, you could easily add new panels at a later date.

His motto is "User First, Implementation Second".

Whilst I may agree with the sentiment in the real world, for this assignment the most important thing is to implement the requirements!

I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
subject: GUI Design Considerations
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