Getting Started with 'jFormTK'

The "Main" 'jFormTK'

To develop an application using the Java Form Tool Kit ['jFormTK'] you must produce the application "main" Java Class as a Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class. The 'jFormTK.Main' Class is designed to initialize the components of the 'jFormTK' Application. It establishes the 'jFormTK' FrameWork. [ see ]. This Application Main subclass MUST invoke the 'Main.init' method to setup the initial 'jFormTK' Database [JFormTKDB] , the Application Database [AppDB], the Application Common Database [AppCommonDB], the Control Buttons Order, the "Controls" TAB in-Application Documentation and the Application Forms Database AppFormDB].

The following 'jFormTK'.Main' Super-Class methods are designed to setup the 'jFormTK' Applications Database's parameters and Look and Feel parameters. These methods set the 'jFormTK' default parameters and shall be overridden by the 'jFormTK' "Development Team" to establish load time parameters unique to their 'jFormTK' Application specifications.

'jFormTK.Main' Method Overrides
loadAppDB_Ordered_Pairs
loadJFormTKDB_Ordered_Pairs
loadAppCommonDB_Ordered_Pairs
loadControlButtonControls
loadAppForms_Parameters
loadDocScript
doWhateverElse

The 'jFormTK' Application developer may override any of these Super-Class methods to initialize the Application in accordance with their requirements.

NOTE:
These methods use String Arrays so that, in effect, the setup of a 'jFormTK' Application may be setup via a "Text Script". In the near future, PCS shall produce a 'jFormTK' "Visual" Development environment designed to build these String Array's as a function of Application Data Entry Form requirements.

Each 'jFormTK' Application Form is defined in a Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.JFormForm' Class. Therefore, the 'loadAppForms_Parameters' method must be overridden because it is the method used to define all the 'jFormTK' Application Form's.

The 'jFormForm' Sub-Class 'init' Method:

Each 'jFormTK' Application Form is defined via a Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.JFormForm' Class to uniquely identify each "forms fields" and "Look and Feel". A template is provided with the Java Form Tool Kit ['jFormTK'] distribution. This template consist primarily of the 'init' Override method. This is where the 'JFormField' instances are defined and laid out.

loadAppDB_Ordered_Pairs Method . . .

This method is designed to set the 'jFormTK' Application Database [AppDB] Parameters during the 'jFormTK' Application initialization phase. This method uses a String Array of the 'AppDB' Ordered pairs. This Method is generally overridden in the Application's Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class.

This 'jFormTK' database contains parameters specific to the Application such as the Application name, logo and developer company name, address, etc.

This 'jFormTK' database is used as a "Static" database, i.e. it is defaulted in the 'jFormTK' delivered .Jar and may be adjusted at 'jFormTK' Application initialization time Only via an Overload of this method.

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loadJFormTKDB_Ordered_Pairs Method . . .

This method is designed to set the 'jFormTK' System Database [JFormTKDB] Parameters during the 'jFormTK' Application initialization phase. This method uses a String Array of the 'JFormTKDB' Ordered pairs. This Method is generally overridden in the Application's Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class.

This 'jFormTK' database is used as a "Static" database, i.e. it is defaulted in the 'jFormTK' delivered .Jar and may be adjusted at 'jFormTK' Application initialization time Only via an Overload of this method.

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loadAppCommonDB_Ordered_Pairs Method . . .

This method is designed to set the 'jFormTK' Common Database [CommonDB] Parameters during the 'jFormTK' Application initialization phase. This method uses a String Array of the 'CommonDB' Ordered pairs. This Method is generally overridden in the Application's Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class.

The 'AppCommonDB' contains the registration parameters and the following "Look & Feel" 'jFormTK' control Strings:

  • promptPhraseList
  • messagePhraseList

"This 'jFormTK' database is used as a "Dynamic" database that may be used by the run-time pre / post processor methods and the "action" button methods to save temporary values to be referenced by other run-time methods.

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loadControlButtonControls Method . . .

The 'loadControlButtonControls' Method is designed to enable the 'jFormTK' developer to control the left to right order of the buttons in the "Button Panel" do the "Forms" TAB display. This method uses a String Array of control button indexes. This Method is conditionally overridden in the Application's Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class.

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loadAppForms_Parameters Method . . .

The 'loadAppForms_Parameters' Method is designed to load an Object array that contains an entry for each Form of the 'jFormTK' Application under development. Each Object array element contains an instance of a 'jFormTK.JFormForm' subclass for a specific data entry form.

The following is a list of the parameters supplied to each 'jFormTK.JFormForm' subclass constructor as the Java 'new' operation is applied:

  • category - Form Category
  • Form File Name
  • # of Columns
  • # of Rows
  • Title
  • *DEBUG - Built_In_Test Flag
  • *DEBUG - Focus Trace Flag

NOTE:
Each form in a 'jFormTK' Application is uniquely identified by it's "Form ID" that is constructed as the concatenation of the form's Category and File Name parameters listen above.

This Method override is always Required in the Application's Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class since the 'jFormTK.Main' method defaults are for the DEBUG "Hello World" test case.

If the 'JFormField' 'jFormTK' Class is the nucleus of the 'jFormTK' kernel, then this override method is the 'glue' that controls the integration of each 'jFormTK' Application.

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loadDocScript Method . . .

The 'jFormTK' kernel contains the Professional Computer Solutions 'JDocTK' package designed to embed documentation into a Java stand alone Application. Actually, the 'jDocTK' was developed with the 'jFormTK' kernel and SHALL be extracted into a marketable Java package because PCS recognizes that it will be an attractive tool for other Java application.

What is 'jDocTK'

'jDocTK' is a script driven feature that displays a slide show of .jpg OR .txt files to the 'jFormTK' end user. The 'jDocTK' script file is designed to identify .jpg file sets using a folder tree as follows:

  • Book . . . . . Required
  • Chapter . . . Required
  • Section . . . Optional

The 'jFormTK' uses the 'jDocTK' to present embedded reference manual and embedded help presentations. The feature is available via the "Documentation" button on the "Controls" 'jFormTK' TAB.

The 'loadDocScript' Method is designed to build the 'jDocTK' script file and may be overridden by a method in the Application's Sub-Class of the 'jFormTK.Main' Class. Another method override option is available if the 'jFormTK' is required to use some of the 'jFormTK' "Book | Chapter | Sections" that are distributed with the 'jFormTK' .Jar file as well as "Book | Chapter | Sections" slide sets peculiar to the 'jFormTK' Application under development. There is an 'adjustJDocScript' method that may be used to make 'jDocTK' script adjustments. This method is invoked after the default 'jDocTK' script is loaded from the 'jFormTK' .Jar distribution file.

NOTE:
The embedded documentation provided with the 'jFormTK' distribution .jar file is written in a generic way so that the documents may be included in a 'jFormTK' stand alone Application if required by the 'jFormTK' Application development team. For these slides the Application references the generic "jFormTK Application" in lieu of a specific Application, e.g. the Survivors List PLUS Professional Computer Solutions Application.

There is a set of "helper' methods designed to ease the programming of the 'jDocTK' Script in the coding of either the 'loadDocScript' override method OR the 'adjustJDocScript' method. On the Professional Computer Solutions list of "Things To Do" there is a need to develop a visual tool [buildJDocScript] for creating and editing the 'jDocTK' Scripts. Once 'buildJDocScript' is available, the 'jFormTK' shall be changed to enable the 'jDocTK' Script as a function of a text data file, i.e. truly a "Script" file…

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doWhateverElse Method . . .

The 'jFormTK' Package is designed to enable a "Non-Java" aware person to develop a robust "Form Centric" Application. However, the writing of Java Code is not prohibited. The 'doWhateverElse' method is a Java Method that shall be invoked after all of the 'jFormTK' Databases and Look and Feel Parameters have been initialized. It is a place holder where a Java Programmer can insert any code that is required to achieve their own Java stand alone Application requirements.

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