Making several synth LookAndFeels coexist at the same time in a java swing application

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I am working on a java swing application using synth Look and Feel. There are already styles for every possible swing component

I must change the whole application's LookAndFeel, redefining different styles for every possible swing component.

I am now working on a sandbox, launched outside of the application. The sandbox loads my new set of styles, while the application still loads the old ones. No problems for now

However, I must then integrate it 'progressively' in the application. Meaning that in the same java application, some HMIs must use the old set of styles, while some must use the new ones

The difficulty being that each set of styles define synth "region" styles that automatically apply to the corresponding component, and I don't know how deal with several region styles that correspond to the same component type

Anybody has an idea of how I can do this ? I saw that in swing's UIManager, one can change the LookAndFeel, but it then changes for the whole application

Only workaround I saw on the internet was to change the LookAndFeel before instanciating a Component, then change it back, which looks like an awful solution

Thanks in advance

Apr 27, 2023 in UI UX Design by Ashwini
• 5,430 points
295 views

1 answer to this question.

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To make several Synth LookAndFeels coexist at the same time in a Java Swing application, you can create multiple instances of the SynthLookAndFeel class and assign each instance a different set of styles. Then, you can selectively apply each instance of the SynthLookAndFeel to the components that you want to style with that particular set of styles.

Here is a general approach to achieve this:

  1. Create multiple instances of SynthLookAndFeel, each with a different set of styles. For example:
SynthLookAndFeel oldLookAndFeel = new SynthLookAndFeel();
oldLookAndFeel.load(getClass().getResourceAsStream("old_styles.xml"), getClass());

SynthLookAndFeel newLookAndFeel = new SynthLookAndFeel();
newLookAndFeel.load(getClass().getResourceAsStream("new_styles.xml"), getClass());
  1. For each component that you want to style with a particular set of styles, create a new instance of SynthStyleFactory and set the appropriate LookAndFeel:
JButton oldButton = new JButton("Old button");
SynthStyleFactory oldStyleFactory = new SynthStyleFactory() {
    public SynthStyle getStyle(JComponent c, Region r) {
        return oldLookAndFeel.getStyle(c, r);
    }
};
SynthLookAndFeel.setStyleFactory(oldStyleFactory);
JButton newButton = new JButton("New button");
SynthStyleFactory newStyleFactory = new SynthStyleFactory() {
    public SynthStyle getStyle(JComponent c, Region r) {
        return newLookAndFeel.getStyle(c, r);
    }
};
SynthLookAndFeel.setStyleFactory(newStyleFactory);
  1. You can then switch between the different LookAndFeels as needed for each component:
// Apply old LookAndFeel to oldButton
SynthLookAndFeel.setStyleFactory(oldStyleFactory);
oldButton.putClientProperty("Nimbus.Overrides", oldButton.getClientProperty("Synthetica.style"));

// Apply new LookAndFeel to newButton
SynthLookAndFeel.setStyleFactory(newStyleFactory);
newButton.putClientProperty("Nimbus.Overrides", newButton.getClientProperty("Synthetica.style"));
Note that this approach may require additional modifications to handle the different sets of styles in a more fine-grained manner.

answered Apr 27, 2023 by pooja

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