Chronicle of the Xul Revolution
Martin Weindel hacked together an Eclipse SWT ("Standard" Widget Toolkit) Luxor prototype proving that XUL works with any GUI toolkit not just Swing. Get your two-meg Luxor SWT seeing-is-believing package today.
Full story at http://www.mozilla.org/projects/xul/xre.html
Chak Nanga started the Mozilla Runtime Environment (MRE) project. Similar to a Java runtime the Mozilla runtime allows stand-alone Mozilla apps to share the core libraries sparing you from bundling the Mozilla runtime with every Mozilla app.
The Mozilla runtime includes the following libraries and services:
Core XPCOM Libraries,
DOM, Caps, Docshell, Editor, Jar Support,
Java LiveConnect, Accessibility, Embedding Support,
Layout, Preferences Support,
PSM and Wallet, L10N/I18N Support,
XML Image Decoding Libraries,
Appshell, Cookies, Find Functionality,
Necko, Plugin Support, RDF, URI Loader
Full story at http://www.mozilla.org/projects/embedding/MRE.html
Droplets Inc., a New York startup (http://www.droplets.com), going nowhere with yet another single-vendor, closed-source remote GUI toolkit dubbed Droplets, ignores Web Start and XUL.
Sun headlines a Droplet article entitled "Droplets Brings GUIs to the Internet: Droplets enable developers to combine the Web's ubiquity with a desktop GUI". Check out samplings where Droplet head honchos boasting Harvard degrees blissfully ignore Web Start:
"Droplets are apps, written in Java, that look and feel exactly like locally installed desktop apps," explains Lou Franco, chief software architect for Droplets. "They have all the speed and responsiveness and interactivity of apps that are locally installed, but they are deployed like the Web."
The need for easy-to-create Internet apps with the interactivity of desktop apps is now being met by Droplets.
Droplets enable developers to create apps that combines the convenient, instant deployment benefits of the Web's thin client architecture with the high usability and rich UI of fat clients.
Read the full article at http://java.sun.com/features/2002/08/droplets.html
An older article published in the XML Journal entitled "The Next-Gen User Interface: How remote GUIs are making old-style Web UI programming obsolete" written by Russ Atkind and Sean Harvey (Droplets Inc.) proclaims Droplets as the UI of the future outshining XUL and other contenders:
Now the attack begins:
Is XUL the UI of the future? If it could be served remotely via a thin client (like HTML), it could solve a number of "Web services" UI delivery problems. Unfortunately, its bandwidth requirements are extremely high and it can't provide the asynchronous UI updates to support interactive applications like stock watchers or IM.
Wake up boys. You can play with the XUL UI on the client as easily as with any other UI toolkit (such as Swing, Gtk# or whatever) and without any server-roundtrips.
Second, there needs to be a way to communicate between the front and the back end. Unlike HTML forms, XUL doesn't automatically send the data entered by the user back to a server whenever the user clicks on a widget. This is in fact an advantage, since there's potentially much finer-grained control over how and when that data is sent. But the plumbing has yet to be built.
Using Java you have whatever plumbing you wish for (XML-SOAP, XML-RPC, RMI, HTTP, JMS, JDBC, CORBA, IIOP, TCP, and so on) and you can even pull-down not-yet-invented plumbing automatically using Web Start.
Read the full article at http://www.sys-con.com/xml/articleprint.cfm?id=297
James Strachan, of Jaxen and dom4j fame and Guinness World Record candidate for most prolific open-source hacker kicking off an open-source project every other day, created JellySwing. James comments in his blog (http://james.weblogger.com):
JellySwing is similar to Thinlets in that XML markup is used to define a Swing UI, but JellySwing can support dynamic XML, that is embedding expressions (like Velocity or the new JSP expression language), custom tags, iteration over SQL, XML or just simply working with bean models and the like. So a single JellySwing script can create the view and bind in the model and controllers in a similar way to you might do in a web application via MVC model II.
Swing over for Jelly to http://jakarta.apache.org/commons/sandbox/jelly/jellyswing.html
Luxor tallies up 2.000 downloads in July and joins the Sourceforge 1000. Luxor will break through the 10.000 download barrier any minute now.
No cooked books. See the stats yourself at http://sourceforge.net/project/stats/index.php?report=months&group_id=28946
Can archaic, closed-source, single-vendor GUI toolkits halt the Xul desktop liberation campaign? Join the discussion in the Java lobby - http://www.javalobby.org/thread.jsp?forum=61&thread=4666 and http://www.javalobby.org/thread.jsp?forum=61&thread=4651
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