YouTubifying NetBeans IDE

I'm learning about NetBeans mobility functionality via YouTube movies, which I am watching inside the IDE while developing a mobile application. Below, you see the head of the Mobility team, Martin Ryzl, introducing a presentation, where he goes through lots of slides and demos about mobile development in the IDE (the movie was loaded when I clicked in the list shown in the top right of the screenshot below, which is a list of YouTube movies that match the search string 'NetBeans' that I typed into the text field to the left of the list):

The only real stumbling block (or 'challenge') standing between us and having this YouTube integration is... lack of native browser support in the IDE. Once we have that, the above will be possible, assuming we can bundle the YouTube Data Library (which works under the hood to let the user send queries to YouTube) with the IDE. I read somewhere that JDK 7 will fix the heavyweight/lightweight component conflict, which would simplify native browser integration. In the end, I envision situations like this—I would be designing a mobile application layout while looking at the slide (and listening to the presenter) that tells me how to do so:

I have an image in my head of Roumen, in the YouTubePlayer window, literally pointing with his finger at different parts of the IDE (kind of like Clippy, basically), or turning his head and saying things like: "Above me, you see the Projects window. It shows the logical views of your projects. Now, click Ctrl-2..." And so on... (Of course, the window could be moved around and then such instructions would be meaningless. However, if we give clear instructions about the optimal position of the window, i.e., in the Navigator view, in my opinion, I think we'd be okay.)

At that stage, many of our tutorials could be movies made available via YouTube, rerouted to NetBeans IDE via the above functionality. Similarly, if we put http://www.netbeans.tv/ movies on YouTube, we could route them into the IDE as well. I imagine that one would be able to load movies into the IDE after setting filters in the Options window and specifying whether notifications should be received when new movies belonging to specified categories are uploaded to YouTube. We would then be using YouTube as a delivery mechanism for the NetBeans IDE learning environment. It would also let NetBeans IDE integrate even more closely with the broader NetBeans community, many of whom have NetBeans-oriented movies on YouTube already. (It would be a cool way of sharing tips and tricks, for example.) Looked at from another angle—we would be opening up NetBeans IDE to YouTube. To me, this seems like a Win/Win scenario for Sun and for Google.

Comments:

The video could come with a precanned window layout (may be based on the contrib/perspectives module) which could be applied with a single button click in the viewer toolbar (say!). That way the video's instructions will remain consistent with the layout.

Have you looked at:

http://www.jpackages.com/jflashplayer/ for direct embedding.

http://www.anotherbigidea.com/javaswf/ - don't know if there is a player in it.

Posted by Sandip on December 04, 2007 at 10:51 PM PST #

JFlashPlayer is Windows only. I've used it before (http://blogs.sun.com/geertjan/entry/flash_in_netbeans_ide) but, again, it is Windows only. Plus, you need to pay for it. I haven't seen the other one you reference but when I go to the site, the last snapshot is from 2003. Flash has moved on since then and I'm sure that JavaSWF won't support the latest versions. (It also talks about Alpha quality there and documentation is stated as being rudimentary, so, doesn't look good, even assuming there's a player with it, which isn't clear.)

It basically sucks when it comes to embedded browser components, because only two I know of (JDIC and WebRenderer) support flash. The first is problematic because it works with native libraries, though that could be overcome and seems like the only solution, since WebRenderer is commercial. Unless we want to go with a commercial solution.

Your suggestion about precanned layout sounds cool. Thanks for the help with this prototype plugin, your tips in recent blog entries have really made the difference between success and failure.

Posted by Geertjan on December 04, 2007 at 11:02 PM PST #

great idea on conducting tutorials and trainings via youtube. wonder what will be when we all can attend univertsity and learn via youtube... :)

Posted by ping on December 05, 2007 at 09:55 AM PST #

I think that this is a superb idea. I can't wait for JDK 7 to become final, as I have tested it with the NetBeans platform with a native JOGL GLCanvas and WorldWind's WorldWindGLCanvas, and the heavy weight and light weight problems seem a thing of the past. My only gripe is that they waited so long to fix this issue even though we have been complaining about this for years!

Posted by Adam on December 05, 2007 at 06:40 PM PST #

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About

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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