The Swing Model-View-Controller Architecture (MVC) is the model
behind all the swing components (JButton, JMenu, etc). You may have
noticed that there are 3 parts to the MVC Architecture:
The Model is where the data for the component is stored. For example,
in a JButton the button label is part of the button's model. In a JList,
the list data is in the List Model. Ok.
The View is the visual representation of the model. The view makes up
half the interface to a component - it graphically represents the model to
The Controller makes up the other half of the component interface, mainly
the interaction half. The Controller takes care of mouse and keyboard events.
An example/analogy might help here, so let's use a JList and a computer.
The JList has a model - in fact, it's called a ListModel. The ListModel
is pretty much a Vector of the different strings you want to display
in the JList. In the computer analogy, the model is the hard drive. In both
the hard drive and the ListModel, you can store and change data, but you
can't actually "see" it. This is where the View comes in. In a JList, the
view is the JList itself - the thing you see in VAJ when you draw it. In
a computer, the View would be the display - that was sort of obvious. Last
but not least is the Controller. In a JList, the Controller is a set of
mouse and keyboard listener functions. In a computer, the Controller would
be.....the mouse and keyboard! (bet you didn't see that one coming).
Why would anyone care about this?
Well, if all you want to do is have some buttons, the MVC architecture isn't
going to help you much. But most programs need to display things like lists
and trees and tables. The Models for these components are specifically
designed to be easy to work with. So you probably want to use them. Oh yea,
I forgot to mention - the Model takes care of telling the View when to
redraw itself. So you don't have to worry about it. Just add something to
the ListModel and the JList will change on the screen. Like Magic =)
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