Friday, June 19, 2009

1 queue, 1 EDT thread, 2 full time jobs

The event-dispatch-thread has 2 distinct responsibilities and does nothing else.
1----) EDT updates the state of UI components, which propagate to the screen
2 ---) EDT runs all the event callbacks -- EDT's event queue receives events from user input which trigger other events. Those secondary events go into the EDT queue and are handled on the EDT itself.

EDT queue receives events both from the underlying peer classes and from trusted application classes.
EDT queue receives events from timers
EDT queue receives events from your custom fireTableDataChanged()
EDT queue receives events from your custom invokeLater() when you finish reading/write to DB, file system or network
EDT queue receives events from your custom invokeLater() when you return from wait(), sleep() or join()
Any potentially blocking operation should be on a non-EDT. At end of the operation, you should call invokeLater to fire event to EDT.

When EDT blocks, traffic stops both ways
- down) user inputs can't go down the system (from peer object?)
- up) updates can't show up on screen (to peer objects?).

I feel this is an event producer-consumer pattern with the queue as the buffer. Note the FIFO queue enforces strict order among the events -- http://docs.oracle.com/javase/1.4.2/docs/api/java/awt/EventQueue.html

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