JFXtras: lessons learned developing in JavaFX

JFXtras is my pet open source project. I like visual things, and HTML and CSS are way too frustrating, so I’m running with JavaFX. Since 2012 I’ve been submitting controls to it, simple ones at first; the ListSpinner, then the CalendarPicker (date picker), and eventually Agenda (Google Calendar) and gauges. Doing this has resulted in many satisfying moments when a control worked, but the road to that point was littered with many chunks of frustration and sometimes even scrapping whole controls and restarting on them (Agenda has three iterations).

Writing these controls in JavaFX 2 and later has teached a lot of lessons; things that work, things that didn’t work, or worked better than others, and in the end resulted in a few best practices. It’s not like I have all the wisdom on JavaFX or anything, but being on this for so long, well, at least some commonalities were found. So during Christmas holiday 2014 some of this knowledge was wrapped up in a small 1 – 1.5 hour presentation / talk, touching on some of JavaFX’s strong points, slip ups and other topics like code structure and testing JavaFX applications. It’s titled: “Lessons learned developing in JavaFX”, or “Let us make your mistakes for you”.

I gave the presentation three times and after incorporating the feedback, decided to submit it to a number of conferences. To my amazement the talk was not selected by any of them, based on that JavaFX is not interesting enough for the intended audience.

Ok. That was unexpected.

So following the three-strike-out rule, I’ve decided to not submit it to conferences anymore, and put my energy elsewhere (probably back in developing more JFXtras controls or testing JavaFX on mobile). But letting that presentation collect dust is not sitting right. So, if anyone feels like it would be of interest, if it fits in my schedule and I don’t have to lose money over it… I’m glad to run it again!

Below are the first two slides.

jfxtrasSlide1 jfxtrasSlide2

The whole presentation in PDF can be found here
JFXtras presentation

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9 thoughts on “JFXtras: lessons learned developing in JavaFX

  1. Thanks for sharing. For what it’s worth, I’d certainly be interested in this at a conference. Did you submit it to Devoxx/Voxxed? I’d also sign up for a Devoxx university session (half day workshop) on this if it were offered.

    1. I submitted it to Devoxx, JFall and JavaLand (Belgium, Netherlands and Germany). All three did not pick it. I could do a university session based on JFXtras; develop a gauge or something, but everything has been handed out already.

    2. Hmmmm, instead of showing the examples, I could of course let the attendees create their own code and run into the problems I have found…

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