Chapter32 - 32 Some O-O techniques for graphical...

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32 Some O-O techniques for graphical interactive applications Famous Designer has recently designed an automobile . It has neither a fuel gauge , nor a speedometer , nor any of the idiot controls that plague other modern cars . Instead , if the driver makes a mistake , a large ? lights up in the middle of the dashboard . The experienced driver ”, says Famous , will usually know what went wrong ”. Unix folklore. (Instead of “ Famous Designer ”, the original names one of the principal contributors to Unix.) E legant user interfaces have become a required part of any successful software product. Advances in display hardware, ergonomics (the study of human factors) and software have taken advantage of interaction techniques first pioneered in the seventies: multiple windows so you can work on several jobs, mouse or other fast-moving device so you can show what you want, menus to speed up your choices, icons to represent important notions, figures to display information visually, buttons to request common operations. The acronym GUI, for Graphical User Interfaces, has come to serve as a general slogan for this style of interaction. Related buzzwords include WYSIWYG ( What You See Is What You Get ), WIMP (“Windows, Icons, Menus, Pointing device”) and the phrase “direct manipulation”, characterizing applications which give their users the impression that they work directly on the objects shown on the screen. These impressive techniques, not long ago accessible only to users of a few advanced systems running on expensive hardware, have now become almost commonplace even on the most ordinary personal computers. So commonplace and popular, in fact, that a software developer can hardly expect any success from a product that uses just a line-oriented interface, or even one that is full-screen but not graphical. Yet until recently the construction of interactive applications offering advanced graphical facilities remained so difficult as to justify what may be called the Interface Conjecture : the more convenient and easy an application appears to its users, the harder it will be for its developers to build. One of the admirable advances of the software field over the past few years has been to start disproving the interface conjecture through the appearance of good tools such as interface builders.
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SOME O-O TECHNIQUES FOR GRAPHICAL INTERACTIVE APPLICATIONS § 32.1 1064 More progress remains necessary in this fast-moving area. Object technology can help tremendously, and in fact the fields denoted by the two buzzwords, GUI and O-O, have had a closely linked history. Simply stated, the purpose of this chapter is to disprove the Interface Conjecture, by showing that to be user-friendly an application does not have to be developer-hostile. Object-oriented techniques will help us concentrate on the proper data abstractions, suggest some of these abstractions, and give us the ability to reuse everything that can be reused. A complete exploration of O-O techniques for building graphical and interactive
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Chapter32 - 32 Some O-O techniques for graphical...

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