gwt-yui-ext – update #1

Some minor updates:

– Added default column sorting types for grid.
– Added ability to define custom formatting for columns.


gwt-yui-ext is my (partial) wrapper around (some) of the yui-ext components. The yui-ext library is built upon the YUI library by Yahoo which is a javascript library of routines for page layout and animation (among other things). Jack Slocum has taken this and developed an amazing set of controls including a layout with sliding panels and a blinding grid control which could take on any commercial library. So… I like his controls and I thought was it possible to wrap them in a way that GWT could use them? Well the answer is yes but now I am not so sure it was really worth the bother. On reflection I don’t think this is _entirely_ what Google had in mind for their JSNI mechanism. I suspect they were hoping that people would write cool controls like this in GWT. Well it aint happened yet so I suppose some of the gwt-yui-ext will suffice in the meantime.

I started off on this with the BorderLayout control and fairly quickly got something to work. A lot of debugging later I realised that basing the control upon a ‘ComplexPanel’ would do a lot of the things that I was having to reproduce in my code. One rewite later and it seem to be sortof complete with a few funnies hanging around:

– The right panel doesn’t seem to force a resize of the central panel unlike the left??
– Grabbing the split-panel resize bar is a bit hit and miss??

I was going to publish this then I had the thought ‘who actually wants this layout’. I can’t see it anywhere other than Jacks blog, where it integrates well, but I was still having a kind of ‘what’s the point’ feeling.

Enter the ‘grid’ control. Everyone loves a data grid. The yui-ext grid is a cracker with lots of functionality and looks the business.

So, I have made a start on this. The sorting function for the columns is the last piece of the jigsaw but I have held back to have a think about how to do this in a way that can hook into GWT and let people write their own.

Here is the demo. Either it’s good idea or a bad one. Developers please mail me at

Also, if you are interested in getting involved in implementing a particular feature then mail me.

GWT:Simile Timeline HOWTO

If you look up to the right under the ‘pages’ section you will find a link to a HOWTO page for the GWT Timeline which details all the information you should need to get up and running with the GWT Simile Timeline widget. Any feedback on this is welcome. I think I have covered (almost) all of the questions I have been asked about the widget so have a look.

For an instant idea of the GWT Simile Timeline click in the this link here Timeline Test

There is an existing issue about loading the timeline from a XML string but I have yet to find out how to do this. I _thought_ it was simple but it turns out it is not that easy! If anyone resolves this then mail me and you will be credited in the code. I want to know…


I have been working on a GWT Wrapper API for Jack Slocum’s javascript GUI component library yui-ext. In Jack own words this is a ‘library of reusable JavaScript widgets and classes that extend the Yahoo! UI Library’.

Sidu Ponnappa has an example of yui integration here but his drag and drop example doesn’t look like the sort of thing I would use (yet) and also layout managers are the major thing that drove me to start using GWT in the first place.

So, I have been casting an envious eye over Jacks particular layout manager for quite a while now and after the Simile Timeline GWT Wrapper I have started to get an eye for what can be wrapped easily and what can’t.

There is a lot to yui-ext but it’s usage can be boiled down to the examples on the documentation page which means that is my main target. So far it’s just the BorderLayout stuff and the theme setting but it’s getting there.

Here are some screenshots. I see my home town of Milngavie appears to be hemmed in by golf clubs.

Map tab


Map tab

You can zoom in using IE ctrl+/- or in Firefox right click and choose ‘View Image’.

I am hesitant to create a Google Code project as I am unsure (a) what Jack will make of this and (b) I don’t want to starting having to field questions about yui-ext when I am far from an expert (hey at least I’m honest).

I could have just published the layout manager as it was on the first cut but I went on to insert some real controls into the central panel (Google Map and GWT Simile Timeline). Quite a lot of redesign later (ComplexPanel based now) and I am struggling with the thorny issue of getting the controls to resize correctly into the central panel.

I don’t know when this will be ready for the big-time but I thought I’d point out that I am working on it anyway.

Roadworks and VMS

My web stats indicate not many people actually look at the VMS signs data layer which is probably just as well as there is an issue with the XML feed. The roadworks is not up to date either but this is less of an issue as they are mostly long running types of events which are unlikely to have changed much from 1 Dec when feeds went down.

I am working on this.