JavaFX on iOS and Android - are we there yet?

Richard Bair richard.bair at
Mon Oct 21 15:11:39 PDT 2013

> Personally I feel we *have* to go with the "layering" approach as I don't believe look-and-feel emulation will ever give a true native experience (as outlined in my 6 Degrees post).
> Has *any* work been done on this layering?

No there hasn't been.

> Are there other products on iOS for example that utilise a similar layering approach that we might be able to learn from?  Maybe on other platforms?

The idea is used by Safari for handling web + plugin mixing, which is a similar problem.

> Is any work being done on the graphics performance issues at the moment or is everyone tied up with getting JFX8 out the door?

Pretty much all hands on deck for JDK 8.

> I am willing to get involved with this layering development once I get my soon-to-be-released new MacPro ;-)

One thing you could start with is to get some bounds on the problem. Create a stock-n-standard Cocoa app and create as many CALayers as you can, and just see what happens to performance. This will give you some idea of how many native controls you could mix in. You might be able to do something like this as well: given GridPane with 20 controls followed by some more scene graph nodes, you could analyze the graph and notice that instead of 22 layers here (one behind, 20 controls, one above) you can get away with 3 since all the natives are on the same level. Its more complicated, but if you find that you cannot have more than a handful of layers and keep performance up, its your best bet. 

Also, it would be worth looking at the other guys (like MonoTouch). I think they all fall in one of two camps: emulation, or thin-layer over native. We're proposing a combination of the two here, which might be unchartered territory on iOS.


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