Code Generation for GUI vs WYSIWYG design of GUI

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Advantages for Code Generation are:

  • can generate for several target frameworks, perhaps even Desktop Application and Web Application
  • can fix one problem centrally, and regenerate all screens with the fix
  • unique look&feel across the application
  • no problems with visual inheritance etc

Advantages for designing the GUI with a WYSIWYG editor are:

  • the developer can see what he/she is doing
  • easier connection of events and methods to the buttons and other controls

Option to use advantages of both:

  • the WYSIWYG editor stores the layout in way that can be picked up by the generator, and then the generator can keep the manual settings
  • both the generator and the WYSIWYG editor can use the same data format to define a screen, eg. Glade, or even the code to create the controls (eg InitializeComponent)

In the end the solution might look like this:

  • screens that always look the same, are generated
  • as much as possible, complex parts of a screen are wrapped into a user control, which can be edited by a WYSIWYG editor
  • the window frames and menu and toolbars are generated