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A Brief Note on Components and Containers

Before we talk about heavyweight and lightweight components, we should mention briefly what components are. A component is an object used to represent an area of the screen, which can also be used to handle events. An example of a component is a button, which has a screen presence and can accept mouse events to click the button (or even keyboard events for that matter). A container is an extension of a component, whereby it is itself a component, with the ability to contain other components (children). For example, a button component would be placed inside a container, such as an applet. A button is not a container, however, as it cannot contain other components (i.e., you wouldn't add a text field to a button). We will look at components and containers in detail in the next chapter, "Graphics" and in , "Introduction to GUI," where we will make our own hierarchical component container GUI system. For now, we will just make our first apps windows and applets.

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