Thursday, October 11th, 2007

GWT Wrapper for Rialto

Category: Framework, GWT, Widgets

Supplementing GWT’s basic set of widgets with wrappers around those of existing widget frameworks has become a bit of a cottage industry. There are wrappers for Scriptaculous, JsGraphics, TinyMCE (see the GWT Widget Library for these), Ext Js and many more. Now add Rialto to that list. (For a demo of the Rialto widgets, such as the interesting GridTreeView, see here.)

One shortcoming of Rialto’s GWT wrapper, however, is that all of the widgets are subclasses of JavaScriptObject rather than Widget. A best practice that has emerged for wrapping other frameworks is to wrap a Widget adapter around a JavaScriptObject so that the wrapped framework’s widgets can play nice and integrate with other existing GWT widgets. The Rialto wrapper doesn’t do that and also implements a parallel set of event, clicklistener and other classes. This shortcoming needs to be resolved in order for this particular framework wrapping to be useful.

Posted by Dietrich Kappe at 1:10 pm

3.8 rating from 33 votes


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Great that more and more developers are realizing that GWT is quite nice, but not subclassing Widget is sort of a bummer – it would be much easier to exchange and integrate components between different frameworks if everyone extended Widget (IT Mill Toolkit 5 does that, BTW – it’s not wrapping old itmill components, though, but actually providing new GWT components)
I think I can guess some of the reasons for not extending Widget, but I do think the benefits would outweigh the problems…

(BTW: the demo does not seem to be running on GWT – correct me if I’m wrong, perhaps I clicked the wrong link…?)

Comment by Marc — October 12, 2007

Dietrich and Marc, you are true we need to improve our wrapping and subclassing Widget should be our next goal (especially that most of the methods already exist in Rialto).
Future development will also consist in implementing the drag and drop and resize behavior present in Rialto to be able to extend them to other components in GWT.
By the way the most complex rialto component can be add in any HTML parent which mean that using the setElementParent method you can add the rialto component in a GWT Element.
Be lenient, it is our first release ;-)

Cyril Balit
Co-developper of the Rialto Framework

PS:@Marc: you are also true for the demo. This demo is the global demo of rialto and it doesn’t use the GWT wrapping.

Comment by Balit Cyril — October 12, 2007

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