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Novocode Application Framework - History

Changes from 0.3 to 0.4

  • Separated component hierarchy, resource management and XML parsing. All components are completely XML-agnostic and the XMLResourceLoader contains no special cases for any class below NGNode.

  • Added JavaScript support via Rhino 1.7r1. This allows using JSON instead of XML for building component trees, plus more advanced model binding in JavaScript. NAF applications can be written entirely in JavaScript and started with the supplied JSRunner tool.

  • Factored out the DOM-like component tree navigation support into NGNode, a common superclass for components.

  • Implementing a marker interface is enough to make any object configurable from a NAF resource file. Attribute and element properties are defined with @ConfProperty annotations.

  • Changed implementation of dynamic widget lists: Instead of using a special model in various components you embed a dynamic NGGroup.

  • Replaced model interfaces for String, IntArray, Color and Font models with parameterized IObjectModels.

  • Simplified model handling in component implementations.

  • Improved NGTable features.

  • Added support for SWT.SEARCH style in NGText.

  • Integrated NGCTabFolder into NGTabFolder.

  • Added ChangeBroadcaster to improve performance of event propagation and to simplify the implementation of custom model classes.

  • Fixed generics warnings and generified more classes.

  • Switched logging from compile-time enabled System.out.println() statements to SLF4J.

  • Migrated build environment to Eclipse 3.3.

  • Updated the included Jaxen JAR to version 1.1.1.

  • Updated required SWT library to the Eclipse 3.3 version and removed the custom .launch files which are no longer required with the new SWT.

Changes from 0.2 to 0.3

  • Models are collected in instances of the new ModelMap class instead of Map<String, Object>.

  • Dynamic widget creation is now also supported in NGComposite, NGGroupBox, NGFramedComposite and NGShell.

  • Added new custom SizeBorder widget.

  • Added a non-native InternalShell implementation in package com.novocode.naf.swt.custom.ishell. See the new InternalShellExampleSWT on how to use it with pure SWT code (without NAF).

  • The SizeGrip widget has got a new constructor which allows you to pass in a resizable parent container (which is resized by the SizeGrip) other than the containing Shell.

  • Added NGLink for SWT's new Link control.

  • Added NGScaledImage.

  • Eclipse 3.1 or higher is required to build NAF.

  • Creating a WindowInstance from an NGTrayItem will return null if no system tray is available.

  • All SWT custom controls are now licensed under the Eclipse Public License because the Eclipse code on which they are based based has been relicensed as well.

  • The BalloonWindow widget now supports the TOOL style which makes SWT give it a drop shadow (as seen on the "fake" tooltips in Eclipse 3.1) on supported platforms where this feature is enabled.

Changes from 0.1 to 0.2

  • Integration of MVC models and persistence.

  • Requires Java 5.0. NAF makes heavy use of Generics, Annotations and Enumerations. The SWT Controls in package com.novocode.naf.swt.custom have not been modified for Java 5.0 and should still work down to Java 1.2.

  • Build environment is now Eclipse 3.1 (I20041216-1600 or newer; Older milestone and integration builds will not work!) because Java 5.0 support is required.

  • Widget attributes in XML descriptors are not parsed by the widget classes anymore. Instead the ResourceManager uses Reflection to set widget properties which are marked with an Annotation.

  • Resources are referenced via URLs instead of the URL-like file + fragment paths used in NAF 0.1.

  • The ResourceManager supports processing instructions for XSLT, so it can now load XML files which can be transformed on the fly into a NAF resource file by a suitable stylesheet. This XSLT facility can also be used as a macro / template processor for NAF. See TestExample (with test.xsl).

  • Layout creators are now NGComponents.

  • The ability to create ToolItems and MenuItems has been moved from NGWidget to separate interfaces which declare the required factory methods. The creation of ToolItems from Controls is now implemented in NGToolBar.

  • Creating a default model (via model/@create attribute) is now the default. Setting create="no" is required if no model should be created.

  • NGWidget classes are now resolved by an import mechanism which can import single classes or packages (just like in Java) instead of using a static lookup table in a properties file. The default imports for the GUI classes are contained in the resource file "default-imports.naf" in package com.novocode.naf.gui.

  • Experimental XPath support using the Jaxen XPath interpreter (http://jaxen.werken.com). XPath expressions can be used to navigate in NGComponent trees. You can try this with the new XPathExample.

  • New concise syntax for simple model bindings. See XPathExample and BrowserExample.

  • New concise syntax for FormData. See SplashExample, XPathExample and BrowserExample. This syntax can also be used directly in SWT applications with com.novocode.naf.gui.layout.FormDataCreator.

  • NAF is now licensed under the EPL instead of CPL (with some exceptions; see above for detailed licensing conditions).

  • The NAF Eclipse Project now depends directly on the required Eclipse plugins. If these are imported as binary projects into the same folder as NAF (usually the workspace), the supplied .launch files will also find the platform-specific SWT libraries without further configuration.

  • NGTable is now using the JFace TableViewer instead of a proprietary table model based on a raw SWT Table. NGTableTree has been added as a wrapper for JFace's TableTreeViewer.

  • Basic Browser support. See NGBrowser and BrowserExample.