Data sourcing

DataFX 1.0 arrives to solve JavaFX’s data headache

Chris Mayer
Javafx.1

The data abstraction level project that works in conjunction with JavaFX has hit its first major version and is ready for real-world situations

Over the past year the rich
application technology JavaFX has arguably overcome its image
problems, after the botched 1.x series.

If the cross-section of tweets at JavaOne were to go by,
previously wary developers are now
cautiously
optimistic about the prospect of using
JavaFX for
interactive and visually appealing applications on the desktop,
mobile devices and tablets. Oracle also seem keen on making an
embedded play with JavaFX
, sending evangelist Steve
Chin

around the world
to promote
it
.

Its recent comeback could be down to JavaFX’s UI
Controls
, which welcome in a number of
different functionalities at once. But a common complaint when
creating JavaFX UI Controls is the communication between the client
and the backend when using data sources
, which
is
a pretty laborious task at the best of
times.

Back in February, Jonathan Giles and Johan Vos

released DataFX
with the intention of making
“retrieving, massaging, populating, viewing, and editing data in
JavaFX UI controls easier”, creating an abstraction level for a
variety of data sources.

Ten months on,
Vos announced this week
that DataFX is ready for
real-world JavaFX scenarios, with the first ‘. major version
release. Vos said that by creating
“a convenient
Builder class for a RestRequest” and resolving maven artifact
issues, the project was ready for the big time.

DataFX has two key functions: providing
data source
adapters
to populate controls (such as ListView,
TreeView and TableView) and provide
control
cell factories
to view and edit the incoming data.
With CSV, Java arrays and beans, JDBC, JSON,
RedFX and XML all
supported, DataFX could usher in further creativity with data
sources within JavaFX applications.

This doesn’t mean the work stops here for the DataFX team
(Vos adding that it is “not finished”), with them eager to hear
feedback and feature requests for future versions.

Download DataFX
1.0
, check out the API
documentation
to learn more,
and keep your eyes peeled too for the upcoming
JAX Magazine (landing December 18th) that contains a DataFX
tutorial by Johan Vos himself.

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