IT'S POSSIBLE TO PROGRAM A WIDE VARIETY of GUI applications using only the techniques covered in the previous chapter. In many cases, the basic events, components, layouts, and graphics routines covered in that chapter suffice. But the Swing graphical user interface library is far richer than what we have seen so far, and it can be used to build highly sophisticated applications. This chapter is a further introduction to Swing. Although the title of the chapter is "Advanced GUI Programming," it is still just an introduction. Full coverage of Swing would require at least another complete book.
In this chapter, we'll take a more detailed look at Swing, starting with a few more features of the Graphics class. We'll cover a number of new layout managers, component classes, and event types, and we'll see how to open independent windows and dialog boxes on the screen. We'll also look at two other programming techniques, timers and threads.
The material in this chapter will be used in a number of examples and programming exercises in future chapters. Aside from that, this chapter is not a prerequisite the rest of this textbook. If you skip it, you will not miss out on any fundamental programming concepts -- just a lot of the fun of GUI programming.
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