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Learn JavaFX with online courses and programs

Build a great user experience into your applications whether they are being accessed on a desktop, mobile, phone, or tablet. Learn how to use JavaFX with online courses delivered through edX.

What is JavaFX?

Software engineer Chris Oliver developed JavaFX, which was released by Sun Microsystems in the early 2000s as a way to compete with Adobe Flash and Microsoft Silverlight and create a more engaging, modern user experience beyond clicking on drop-down menus and icons.Footnote 1

First introduced as a kit, JavaFX is a standalone open source Java library for graphics and media packages that designers can use to create, test, and deploy rich client applications across the web, desktop, and mobile.Footnote 2 With JavaFX, you can build a cross-platform graphical user interface (GUI) application in the object-oriented Java programming language that runs on multiple operating systems, including Windows, iOS, and Android — a useful skill for a web developer or software engineer. 

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How to use JavaFX

With JavaFX, you can develop a number of components for your apps using shortcuts. Features of JavaFX include:

  • JavaFX Layouts: JavaFX provides layout panes to support different styles. For instance, you may use BorderPane to organize nodes into the top, left, right, center, and bottom regions. FlowPane allows wrapping when node space is tight. If you only need a single horizontal or vertical row, you may use HBox or VBox.Footnote 3

  • JavaFX GridPane: JavaFX GridPane allows users to organize GUI components (like icons, menus, and windows) in a flexible grid. Unlike with TilePane, you won’t need to specify coordinates of the target location every time you want to add a new component. You can also use JavaFX Pane for the easy setup and management of rows, columns, and tiles.Footnote 4

  • JavaFX Label: JavaFX labels are non-editable text controls that let users display short text or an image that must fit within a specific size space.Footnote 5

  • Image JavaFX: A JavaFX capability that allows users to tinker with the image class so they can load images from specified URLs.Footnote 6

  • JavaFX CSS: JavaFX CSS contains standard element styles, values, properties, and rules. With advanced knowledge, you’ll learn how to create one or more custom style sheets to enhance the look and feel of your applications.Footnote 7

  • JavaFX Text: JavaFX text includes text-based information on the interface of your application and allows you to alter its properties using the JavaFX Scene text library.Footnote 8

  • JavaFX Shape: Using a JavaFX library, you can draw a number of geometric elements, such as rectangles, cubic curves, horizontal and vertical lines, arcs, circles, and more.Footnote 9

  • JavaFX Tableview: The JavaFX TableView control visualizes a limitless number of data rows broken down into columns.Footnote 10

  • JavaFX Combobox: The JavaFX ComboBox class creates a control that lets users select from a drop-down list of options.Footnote 11

  • JavaFX WebView: JavaFX WebView offers web page capabilities. With a node to automatically manage mouse, keyboard, and scrolling events, there’s no need for a ScrollPane.Footnote 12  

  • Maven JavaFX: With automation tools like Maven, JavaFX developers can easily manage projects written in other languages like C#, Ruby, or Scala.Footnote 13

JavaFX tutorial curriculum

JavaFX may be taught in advanced object-oriented programming courses that cover exceptions, data structures, and GUIs. Learners are taught about the benefits of exceptions versus built-in error checking, as well as how to handle exceptions by catching or specifying them. 

In a JavaFX course, you may learn how to read and write simple text files from Java, understand the differences between array-based and link-based data structures, and develop JavaFX scenes with basic layouts and controls. A JavaFX tutorial may also give you the opportunity to work with the JavaFX scene builder to attach event handlers to your controls and bring scenes to life, then package these scenes into a JavaFX application. 

Professionals can grow their knowledge of web development in different ways, including earning a bachelor’s degree, completing a master’s program, or enrolling in fast-track boot camps. Standalone courses and online tutorials may be best suited for people seeking flexibility and self-paced learning opportunities. Discover all of the educational opportunities offered through edX.

Explore jobs that use JavaFX

Are you ready to put your JavaFX skills to work? If so, consider pursuing the following jobs: 

  • Software engineer or Java platform engineer: These professionals define software requirements, write clean and efficient application code, and run tests to improve the user experience. 

  • Software developer or Java developer: These professionals create, adapt, monitor, and repair software across a variety of platforms, from desktop to mobile.

An understanding of how to leverage the benefits of JavaFX can be helpful in these roles, but these positions may have additional educational and skills requirements. Before deciding the right learning path for you, research these roles and consider the requirements that potential employers are asking job applicants to meet. Then, you can decide whether a full program, like a bachelor's degree in computer science, or more specialized learning, like a coding boot camp, best align with your professional goals.

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