Developing Game-Changing Applications with JavaFX Technology
JavaFX technology, according to Sun, is particularly suitable for "projects that must handle complex logic inside a polished user interface, and require a proven and scalable deployment mechanism that the Java platform provides." The applications developed for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games certainly fit that description. The Vancouver Organizing Committee for Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) wanted to do more with its Olympic medal data than display it in the usual static, two-dimensional tables. They wanted rich client applications that would both inform and entertain. The applications had to execute flawlessly. And designers and developers had to work together in a virtual environment under a tight schedule.
Using JavaFX technology, Sun and VANOC collaborated to develop two rich-client applications: The Medal Wheel, an application that runs on the Vancouver2010.com website, and the Results Widget, a standalone application that can run on a user's desktop. The Medal Wheel provides a highly graphical user interface which allows users to explore data for all Olympic games since 1924. The application accesses real-time data using the Java API for RESTful Web Services to make asynchronous calls. The Results Widget, which works even when the browser is closed, provides users with access to event schedules and top line information in a single compact view.
Designers and developers were able to work fast using JavaFX. They benefited from the wealth of standard Java APIs and features built into JavaFX, such as data binding. Existing Java applications can easily be migrated to the JavaFX platform, and JavaFX applications can take advantage of Java features such as the Java Runtime Engine (JRE), which is installed on 80-90 percent of all desktop computers. This successful project confirms that JavaFX technology can be trusted to deliver "game-changing" applications with challenging requirements on a rigorous schedule.