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Teaching tags for Applets

James Chegwidden
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Joined: Oct 06, 2002
Posts: 201
I start teaching another Java course in few weeks, I have two questions about Applets and tags:
1. Does your Java class spend alot of time teaching HTML when studying applets?
2. Do you learn how to use the <OBJECT> tag over the <APPLET> tag since the applet tag is now depricated?
Just trying to update ideas into my Java course.


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Ernest Friedman-Hill
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Joined: Jul 08, 2003
Posts: 24187
    
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Personally, I think applets have been relegated to the fringe, and don't have much of a place in an introductory course. Especially if they're being taught to a group that doesn't already have some HTML knowledge -- they'd really be a distraction.
I say Good Riddance! As soon as students start writing applets, they want to save files on the local system; as soon as you say they can't, they want to save files on the remote system, and you have to explain what that would entail. For this, and for a million other reasons, I think teaching applets to introductory students is a Bad Idea.


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Barry Gaunt
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Joined: Aug 03, 2002
Posts: 7729
You may like to take a look over at the BlueJ site. The approach used there seems to be quite successful in teaching at the introductory level.


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Dirk Schreckmann
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Joined: Dec 10, 2001
Posts: 7023
I concur with Ernest.
But to answer your questions more directly...
I once took an introductory programming course that was taught with Java Applets. I don't recall anybody being confused by the HTML Applet tag too much, as we just followed a basic template. Some students took a couple of extra thought cycles to come to terms with adjusting the Applet width and height.
Only after this course, when I'd discovered that my Applets didn't work with all browsers due to the HTML Applet tag issue, did I embark on an expedition to figure out the ultimate tag that would work on all browsers. It was never discovered. The best tag wasn't the one generated by Sun's tool. It was a combined mess of the Applet tag, the Object tag, some JavaScript, and I don't remember what else.


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