Sunday Feb 14, 2010

OfficeLAF in Action Again on the NetBeans Platform

Today's YANPA (yet another NetBeans Platform application) was mentioned here last week in my blog... but now has a brand new (and interesting!) interview with Chris Bohme, its chief software architect and an updated screenshot, showing yet another example of OfficeLAF (by Gunnar Reinseth and Mikael Tollefsen from Exie in Norway) applied to a NetBeans Platform application:

Now isn't that a seriously cool looking application?

From the interview, here's the response to the question of the benefits of using the NetBeans Platform:

"On a personal level, working with the NetBeans Platform early on in my developer career has shaped my mindset around application design. As such, the NetBeans Platform source code was one of my most influential teachers when it comes to API design and architecture of large complex applications.

I started looking for similar patterns in the frameworks I was building using other programming languages and it has helped me identify designs that are “right” and those that are “wrong”. (When it comes to API design I believe that “truth, like beauty, is not a matter of opinion” :-).)

On the level of Maltego, I think the benefits are fairly obvious – there is a platform that comes with lots “free stuff” right out of the box. And hey, the best thing is, someone else improves, fixes and supports all this free stuff while you can focus on your specific problem domain.

If I were to rephrase the question to read “what in the NetBeans Platform couldn’t I live without?” – well, it would be the features related to runtime composition. The fact that components can be registered declaratively (for example in layer files) and are added as modules that get loaded at runtime shapes the overall design and maintainability and is something a modern application cannot do without.

As Maltego matures, instead of removing the dependency on some NetBeans APIs and replacing them with our own, we tend to use more and more of what the NetBeans Platform (and even the IDE) has to offer. This is a very good indication to me that a) NetBeans Platform was the right choice to build Maltego on and b) that the evolution of the NetBeans Platform is in line with the needs of its users (well, at least for us)."

Maltego has now also been added to the NetBeans Platform Showcase!


Geertjan Wielenga (@geertjanw) is a Principal Product Manager in the Oracle Developer Tools group living & working in Amsterdam. He is a Java technology enthusiast, evangelist, trainer, speaker, and writer. He blogs here daily.

The focus of this blog is mostly on NetBeans (a development tool primarily for Java programmers), with an occasional reference to NetBeans, and sometimes diverging to topics relating to NetBeans. And then there are days when NetBeans is mentioned, just for a change.


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