In the previous chapter, we described most of the components that Swing offers for building user interfaces. In this chapter, you’ll find out about the rest. These include Swing’s text components, trees, and tables. These types of components have considerable depth but are quite easy to use if you accept their default options. We’ll show you the easy way to use these components and start to describe the more advanced features of each. Later in this chapter, we’ll also give an example of how to implement your own, custom components in Swing.
Swing offers sophisticated text components, from plain-text entry boxes to HTML interpreters. For full coverage of Swing’s text capabilities, see O’Reilly’s Java Swing. In that encyclopedic book, several meaty chapters are devoted to text. It’s a huge subject; we’ll just scratch the surface here.
Let’s begin by examining the simpler text components.
JTextField is a single-line text editor and
JTextArea is a simple, multiline text editor. Both
JTextArea derive from the
class, which provides the functionality they have in common. This includes methods
for setting and retrieving the displayed text, specifying whether the text is
“editable” or read-only, manipulating the cursor position within the text, and
manipulating text selections.
Observing changes in text components requires an understanding of how the components implement the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architecture. ...