. .


Dave Buck on Fluid Positioning in VisualWorks

March 21, 2012 15:15:49.732

Dave Buck is presenting some interesting work he's been doing - fluid positioning. We've talked about this some on the podcast, but it's a topic well worth exploring in more depth. There's also a video Dave put out last summer. The basic idea: allow widgets in a VW window to be laid out relative to each other, and seamlessly reposition themselves (in the GUI builder) as you move things around.

The baseline goal - make it all easy to work with in the UI. In casting about for other work on this subject, Dave needed something that worked the way he needed it to work - Aukland was something he had to push off. He's now on his second iteration of the work, because his first stab "almost" worked. Almost just wasn't good enough :)

At this point, you'll have to wait for the video to see the first iteration - it's a demo.

Issues? Undo doesn't work right with groups. Heck, undoing a group loses properties s-is :)

in algorithm two, he's not dealing with groups or oriented composites. Instead, he's modeling the layout explicitly. His new take on this looks much cleaner, and doesn't force groups on the UI (which lets the developer add them for their own purposes later). In this demo, it's clear that there's still work to do - widgets sometimes get oddd sizes based on his layout calculations.

Still work to do on save/restore, dealing with existing specs, and the one layout issue. One big lesson: tests help, but they aren't enough here - some it relies on the "mark one eyeball" :)

posted by James Robertson

 Share Tweet This