some people blame swing (and netbeans) because it doesn't have a native look-and-feel on its running platforms. they think SWT (and eclipse) is better. some people even start to think even SWT is not so native these days (sorry, forget the link). but how important is native look-and-feel. on the apple platform, it may be important, because it did have a consistent l&f. what about others? windows? we can see every flavour of l&f there. windows media player has a cold blue round corner, real player is a little greener, and apple has its iron gray itunes, while other programs can just be skinnified in all ways. so, are they all to be blamed? i always believe ms office is the UI pioneer inside microsoft. in every version of office, you will find something not so native but will be native in the next version of windows. in office 5 we have toolbars, in 6 the toolbar goes flat and there's tabbed dialogs, then we see coolbars, and then fancy animated menus. nobody says office doesn't have a native look and feel. so why blames swing? in the old days, the CDE metal on windows may looks some ugly (mainly because windows guys are not familiar with big screens ;) ). now we have ocean and synth, and they're so beautiful. the look and feel problem is not a native or not problem, it's a slick or not, or fast or not, or clean or not one. it's time to appreciate the slick and fast and clean of swing now.