Hey folks,
I'm a student and I have been using Blue J. I have found it rather primitive and was wondering what the majority of other java programmers like to use?

I thought about Net Beans but I honestly have no idea, So what do you use ?

Really your question has many different answers depending on the individual. Personally I prefer Eclipse, but NetBeans is very popular. I used to use jEdit and I always liked it, but it wasn't a true IDE, just a text editor with a few plugins for java development.

Honestly the two big names that come to my mind are :-

  1. Eclipse
  2. Netbeans

Personally I prefer Eclipse, but NetBeans is a pretty good IDE too. But I would not recommend either if you are just near the beginner level, but if you are feeling too tied down in BlueJ may be its time to give either of the two a try.

Expand your world stephen84s, IntelliJ IDEA RULES!

Seriously now, I never used BlueJ, I did not become friend with Eclipse, but in my early days I used free version of JCreator, later on moved to NetBeans and since last year when I persuaded one of university teachers to get student licence I'm using IntelliJ IDEA.

If I may suggest, I will say go on with JCreator to learn basics and later try any of IntelliJ IDEA, NetBeans or Eclipse to find out which suites you best

PS: In responds to this post

I usually use Eclipse, but switch over to Netbeans when I do any sort of GUI.

To suggest using NetBeans as quick solution for GUI design is bad. If you do not know how to build GUI from scratch without GUI designer and drag&drop approach you know nothing

Actually I never got exposed to IntelliJ IDEA cause of the fee for the license, ever since my college days when I got exposed to Java, I had to stick to the free one available, cause my college (and now my work place) would never agree on spending cash on any development tools (and I dislike using pirated software) also I can use the same IDE at home. So I have learned to stick with the free alternatives.

And I also agree JCreator Lite was my first real Java IDE and is the recommended way to go for beginners.

Did I say I don't know how to build a GUI from scratch? What is wrong with using a tool that makes the GUI design process quicker?

Suggesting to beginner to use a tool because of easier design is not worth as they may not learn the background process involved. Same thing as somebody says "I want to learn html" and then somebody else jumps in "Use Dreamweaver, it is the best tool". Next post you see from the first poster will be "I did this in DW and it is not working! What is wrong?"

I have NetBeans that makes it very easy to create a GUI. But still there are times where I still write my GUI from scratch.
Opening the text editor and writing the code.

In that way you will learn what is the difference between a JPanel and a JFrame and how to use them.

With NetBeans it may be easy to create good GUI but all you see is some ready code, that I have no idea what it does and I don't understand it.

The GUI that I write it may not be pretty but the coding is simpler. Also there are things that you can't do with NetBeans (at least I don't know how it is done so I just write the code) and if you don't know how to write your own GUI then it would be difficult to implement them.

Also no one told you to do anything. You received plenty suggestions on what IDE to use. I use NetBeans that has a GUI editor if this is what you are looking for, download it and try it.

If you don't like it try something else.
If there is something you can't do or don't understand open a new thread with your question

If you are a beginner and would really like to take your skills to the next level, I recommend you use an Editor that offers the most basic capabilities, since it has been a personal observation that the more advanced IDEs people tend to use the more dependent they become on the IDE for the most basic of tasks.
Once you have reached a certain level of programming maturity and want to exploit the features that modern IDEs offer you can choose from among the many available. Since these have already been named here I won't repeat their names.

Having said that if you looking towards more advanced programming such as Swing GUI creation and stuff you would have to look at these right away.

It's quite annoying to edicts like those going on in here. I use Mapbasic as a basic GIS tool. There is no GUI developer and it's a pain in the arse. I genuinely believe that developers who make suggestions like 'oh you know nothing if you use a GUI designer' are just people in ivory towers; I don't know how you operate, but I have time frames to adhere to and if there's a tool that does something quicker for me, rather than doing it long hand, then it gets adopted and adopted quickly. My advice would be to find an IDE that you find intuitive (we all find them different by the way) and just get used to using it.

I guess the Luddites were quick to slam machines working for the owners as they weren't being properly hand crafted. Ad hominem attacks are spiteful and there's no place for them.

I emply a front end graphics person for my web sites. She uses Dreamweaver and the work she produces no developer could. Find an IDE you find ok to use and learn about it. Or just use what makes your life easier mate.

It's quite annoying to edicts like those going on in here. I use Mapbasic as a basic GIS tool. There is no GUI developer and it's a pain in the arse. I genuinely believe that developers who make suggestions like 'oh you know nothing if you use a GUI designer' are just people in ivory towers; I don't know how you operate, but I have time frames to adhere to and if there's a tool that does something quicker for me, rather than doing it long hand, then it gets adopted and adopted quickly. My advice would be to find an IDE that you find intuitive (we all find them different by the way) and just get used to using it.

I guess the Luddites were quick to slam machines working for the owners as they weren't being properly hand crafted. Ad hominem attacks are spiteful and there's no place for them.

I emply a front end graphics person for my web sites. She uses Dreamweaver and the work she produces no developer could. Find an IDE you find ok to use and learn about it. Or just use what makes your life easier mate.

Well phallett, in school while learning the English language we were taught one very important thing "Reference to Context".

I suggest you refresh some of that, Peter over here is obviously speaking in context to a beginner, who is just starting out with Java and hence advising him to avoid using GUI designers directly from the start and rather code his GUIs so that he would come to know exactly how the User Interface Layouts, Panels, Event Handling in Java work. For an industrial project I doubt anyone would disagree that you should opt for Graphical GUI designer but suggesting the same to a beginner student who is just starting out in Java is ridiculous, he would first of all obviously be lost in there and even if he found his way around, become paralyzed if say he had to change his IDE or had to do some GUI work without it.
So I would strongly suggest you look at the context in which the advice was given rather than simply jumping to conclusions just based on what you see is written in front of you.

Beg to differ; it's just another case of Java developers believing in their own self generated hype. Find an IDE you are comfortable with and use it, ieven if it does things you are not party to.

It's what I bvelieve to be true. Sometimes in life, it's easier and more expedient not to know everything that's going on.

I have known Java develoeprs do this throughtout my time in IT; it simply complicates an already complex issue. All I am counselling is to look at a few of them and find one he is comfortable with. It's often too easy to attack a man and not the argument. In context, and in reference to context (thanks for reminding me about School by the way; much appreciated), the statement was more related to 'lazy programmers do this, not like me, as I'm dead clever me'; it's an often, self propagated view, of a lot of java developers, most of whom, like Mushrooms, should be left in dark rooms.

But, it's just a view and not really worthy of dicussion on this thread.

Just find something you feel comfotable with and use it. Simple really. I have been writing Java for a good 13 years and have not really needed to know how some things work; sometimes they just do.

Comments
Reading comprehension fail.

That is what I was trying to say stephen84s , thank you.
phallett - I absolutely agree with you that you should choose most suitable IDE for your self once in industry or hobbies projects, however I will strongly disagree if you say to do this in early stage of learning Java.
Example, while doing my first degree and even now on my second numerous classmates in many cases do not know what they actually coding. They will come with all this wild ideas "I want my application looks like this or that and it will have such and such functionality", however they horribly fail as they not capable deliver what they promise, in many cases not even barre minimum. They struggle with the code because many of them do not know how to pass arguments between methods, not mentioning passing between classes and at least 70% of them deliver their assignments in single class.
How is this possible?

I just cannot see how someone at college can get through without knowing how to pass arguments between methods and classes. I would have thought the IDE is not the problem there. when studying java many years ago, we were simply told to go and do. Most people used notepad and command line. Now I use Eclipse and don't know what's going on half the time; I do understand the need to understand what's going on, before moving onto industry etc, but surely, hte whole object of a degree is to lerarn how these things work. I was taught at Uni that HND courses taught you how to program code, but that degree courses taught the principles of how to code and that you were simplye expected to go and learn how to code.

I just think there's too much pomposity with a lot of java developers and all throughout my career in IT have thought this.

I was just saying, there are many better ways of putting this to paper than saying 'I am better than you' which is how the original quote, that I took issue with, sounded.

Another program that is about one step up from blue j is jGrasp, from auburn university.

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