Case Study 3
Client: Sun Microsystems is a key player in the US computer
industry, a major manufacturer of high-performing servers,
and also produces software, including an operating system.
One of its most high profile activities was the invention
of the java programming language, which is the very language
used for most of our products.
Project: in 1999 Sun Microsystems required an improved navigation applet
for their flagship java site at java.sun.com.
Until that time they had used a very early java menu from an
in-house developer. The new project required a higher quality of
graphical interface and a greater scalability. They
selected our iSlide Pro Tree Type II (click to view this product),
a versatile sliding tree menu. This applet was in fact deployed and
used on their flagship java site until 2001, when they redesigned the site
and opted for conventional HTML navigation. To our
knowledge, this is the only fully third-party applet
which Sun Microsystems have publicly used. Among other positive
features of this menu, Sun needed the multi-icon capability so
that the menu would use the familiar Sun penguin logo as menu item icons.
Special notes: the Sun Microsystems usage was distinctive because
they placed the sliding tree menu into a pop-up browser window.
The user would click on a hyperlink to launch a navigation window,
and the navigation window contained the tree applet. This solution
allowed Sun to use a single java menu (without constantly reloading
the applet) and at the same time avoid using frames. The Sun team
attached a force-to-front script to the window to keep the menu
constantly hovering above the main browser window. Their force-to-front
script worked well on Solaris, but had the side-effect of completely
disabling the interfaces of Windows users. We helped the Sun team by
devising a more advanced pop-up handling script, which you can view
and download from us free of charge. (Our improved version does not disable Windows!)