aku-aku: v.. To move a tall, flat bottomed object (such as a bookshelf) by swiveling it alternatively on its corners in a "walking" fashion. [After the book by Thor Heyerdahl theorising the statues of Easter Island were moved in this fashion.] source: LangMaker.com. Aku Aku also has another meaning to the islanders: a spiritual guide.
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Napkin Swing Look and Feel
Posted by dav at 2004 September 11 06:21 PM
File under: Geek

Lots of good stuff today at FOO Camp, I'll try to post my sparse notes in a bit, but for now here's a link to Ken Goldman's Napkin Look & Feel, which is an optional set of GUI widgets for Java applications.

The idea is to try to develop a look and feel that can be used in Java applications that looks informal and provisional, yet be fully functional for development. Often when people see a GUI mock-up, or a complete GUI without full functionality, they assume that the code behind it is working. While this can be used to sleazy advantage, it can also convince people who ought to know better (like your managers) that you are already done when you have just barely begun, or when only parts are complete. No matter how much you speak to their rational side, the emotional response still says "Done!". Which after a while leads to a later question: "That was done months ago! What are they doing? Playing Quake?".

I ran across this while googling Ken during his session titled "Writing APIs as if People Used Them" (a subset of a longer talk called "Random Thoughts on Good Object Design"). I had downloaded napkin and had it running in an app I'm working on within minutes. Later in the afternoon he held a session just to go over Napkin. It's well thought out and implemented for something that is supposed to be about conveying a sense of spontanaiety :), definitely the most useful Swing Look and Feel I've run across. It reminded me of this slide presentation for the Open Dynamics Engine that I really liked.


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