Now that the dust has settled a bit in my life, let me provide some additional details on Nimbus.
First off, I apologize for the problems people had viewing the mockup and the specs on Flickr I linked to in my earlier blog entry. I had forgotten that Flickr makes you log in to see them in their original size. So, without further ado, here are some links to the full-size pics:
Second, let me talk a bit about where the project is at and where it’s headed. Right now, Nimbus is an early alpha release. The team hasn’t yet finished initial rough cuts of the various widgets in the Nimbus spec, much less polished them into final implementations. So to those that have tried out the Nimbus SwingSet2 demo and come away unimpressed, take it easy. There’s tons more work to come. I personally feel SwingSet2 is an easy way to look at individual widgets but a very poor way to get a feel for how a look-and-feel might look in real applications.
We’ve a goal to reach beta on the project by JavaOne ’07, but that’s just two months away and will take some doing to get there. What is certain is that Nimbus will be ready for use in Java 1.6 projects by the of the year. We have a major goal to back-port to 1.5, but that may not make release grade by year’s end (though I very much hope it will).
Is 1.4 compatibility important to you? Let me know (comment on this blog entry).
Third, I want to talk a bit about why I’m so excited about Nimbus. I believe that the designs Sun came up with are better than any other Swing look yet implemented and will allow Swing applications to be competitive visually with Aqua and Aero. Nimbus will include some innovations, including an easy way to chose from three different standard widget sizes (inspired by Cocoa and improving on Quaqua’s implementation); it will make healthy use of Chet’s timing framework for nice effects (though some of these may be optional); it will go to great pains to guarantee cross-platform fidelity; it will provide a great reference implementation of a Synth skin; and more that I’ll talk about as time goes on.
Thanks for all the kind words and interest so many of you have shown, and watch this space (and others) for more details on Nimbus as the project progresses.