How about Matisse-style-positioning?

I really like the method of positioning elements in Matisse GUI Builder (Netbeans 5.0). You don't have to worry about groups and layouts-objects, simply place elements where you want them and use the magnetic alignment lines for exact and resizeable alignment. It's simply the best and easiest concept in creating gui-dialogs I've seen until now because it combines the simplicity of traditional non-layoutmanager-based layout with the advantages a layout-manager gives you.

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Sorry, this should've gone into the 'Poll: UI Designer new features' thread.

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Hello Karsten,

KW> I really like the method of positioning elements in Matisse GUI
KW> Builder (Netbeans 5.0). You don't have to worry about groups and
KW> layouts-objects, simply place elements where you want them and use
KW> the magnetic alignment lines for exact and resizeable alignment.
KW> It's simply the best and easiest concept in creating gui-dialogs
KW> I've seen until now because it combines the simplicity of
KW> traditional non-layoutmanager-based layout with the advantages a
KW> layout-manager gives you.

The method is indeed very easy and makes for impressive demos when you're
creating a new dialog from scratch, but it stops being the easiest when you
need to make some non-trivial changes in an already complex dialog.

We're not ready to disclose the details yet, but we think that we might be
able to create something which combines the simplicity of Matisse for creating
new UI and the power of more traditional UI designers for updating existing
UI.

--
Dmitry Jemerov
Software Developer
JetBrains, Inc.
http://www.jetbrains.com
"Develop with pleasure!"


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Sure, to making certain kinds of changes would be difficult - but with a standard layout-manager like gridbag or table-layout there are these problematic situations too. I simply think that a good editor shouldn't bother the user with choosing impementation specific stuff like layoutmanagers. Maybe the 'real' layout should be decoupled from the wysiwyg-layout and compiled by the editor to the final layout (instead of only editing it). So you can edit a gui with a matisse-style method and the editor creates a maybe a gridbag-based layout from it.

Of course there is no concept which can't be improved further and so I'm looking forward to see your ideas.

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