Macca Blog

My life experiences with code and design

Switch worlds from JavaFX to WPF and the designer workflow

Posted on by Mark

As some of you may be aware, for a long time I have been eagerly following JavaFX. Playing with it, getting involved in the entire JavaFX world.

It was easy for me to get into it because at work I was also heavily involved in Java work. I was writing a Gwt application that used a Java back end and was working in an Ubuntu development environment, not to mention surrounded by other Java enthusiasts.

Over the last few years, I had really become more and more aware of front end technologies and the emergence of new UI/UX/Front end frameworks, such as Silverlight, Flex, JavaFX, JQuery, Dojo, etc… Seeing a pattern, I took it upon myself to ensure that I understood how each and every one worked (at least to some degree) and went from there.

Originally having a .Net background, I expressed my interest “up the chain” for some more .Net project work and was given the opportunity to work on an exciting new .Net WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation) project.

Very quickly it was detailed that UI/UX was of high importance and the skill sets that our team had, while very strong, lacked in some of the finer points of UI (at least from a creative point of view).

Over the last few weeks I have been really beginning to understand the value of the Designer/Developer workflow. Microsoft have done a wonderful job with the Expression Suite of tools that tie in Visual Studio and WPF apps together.

The one thing that I now know, is that in order for JavaFX to succeed, (which it has the potential for) Sun MUST create a powerful and complete work flow for designer/developers to with.

I know all about the plugins for JavaFX and Photoshop, but that’s not enough. What it really needs is the full designer, which must incorporate all attributes of JavaFX such as binding, styling, time lines (at a creative level) as well as the technical side.

I look forward to having a play with the designer that is currently under development and seeing where that is (which is looking freaking sweet).

(thanks to for the pics)

At the moment however, it really feels like JavaFX has a lot of catching up to do, and with the release of WPF 4 just around the corner (beta 2 just being released), the benchmark is set high.

Final thought
The next year for JavaFX will make it or break it. The adoption rate must pick up and a complete stack, from development to creative must exist. I do, believe that it can be done, and I will be along for the ride pushing JavaFX where I can, especially to my colleagues and fellow onliners…

This entry was posted in Designer, Developer, Flex, JavaFX, UI, UX, WPF. Bookmark the permalink.

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