Wolfram Research Announces GUIKit User Interface Development
Tool for Mathematica
July 14, 2004--Mathematica users and application developers now
have access to a powerful new technology that makes it easy to create
graphical user interfaces (GUIs) for a wide range of custom
implementations. GUIKit, Wolfram Research's latest technology
release for use with Mathematica, is a new development tool built
on Java that can be downloaded
free of charge.
GUIKit provides a high-level Mathematica expression syntax
for defining graphical user interfaces along with a runtime environment
for managing and deploying these reusable definitions. Users can quickly
build innovative applications that capitalize on Mathematica's
computational, graphical, and language capabilities. These applications
then enable end users to perform sophisticated computations with just a
few mouse clicks--without requiring any knowledge of Mathematica.
GUIKit is well suited for commercial and educational development.
With GUIKit, users can:
- Extend existing Mathematica functions with user interfaces to
facilitate easier or custom user input
- Create wizards for specific Mathematica functionality
- Build complete cross-platform applications that leverage the
computational power of Mathematica
- Create GUIs directly from Mathematica
GUIKit can be used to build interfaces to databases or to
generate interactive graphics, presentations, and simulations. A few
examples of interfaces included with the product are calculation tools
such as EquationTrekker, import tools, and search tools.
GUIKit user interfaces call on the power of Java, but are much
easier to write than if done using Java directly. GUIKit also
provides complete access to any and all Java classes and their
properties, events, and methods. And because the interfaces are based
on Java, they are completely platform-independent and will look native
on any platform without the need for changes or modifications.
Unlike programs written in C and other languages, where the parameters
cannot be changed once the code is compiled, interfaces created with
GUIKit can easily be adjusted at run time based on user input or
"GUIKit goes much further [than existing products] in terms of
disguising mostly irrelevant details and helping the user to get the job
done quickly. The event handling syntax is simple and flexible and easier
than anything else I have seen," says Ian Buckley of Rogue Trainer, a UK
financial consulting firm. "Very impressive and useful!"
"GUIKit creates a unique bridge between the power of
Mathematica and the interface control of Java," says Jeff Adams,
GUIKit lead developer. "It lets you build interactive interfaces in
record time, especially for applications involving sophisticated
computation or technical graphics. Our initial GUIKit users have built
everything from simple utility dialogs to aid their daily use of
Mathematica as a tool, to elaborate stand-alone applications.
They've taken the technology and run with it even beyond what we
GUIKit is built for Mathematica 5.0 or later. It will
be included with future releases of Mathematica and is available
for all platforms supporting Mathematica and Java. More
information is available.