In 1981, Xerox company released the first-ever GUI called ‘Xerox Star’ as a consumer. This was a significant launch since it marked a shift away from existing text-based interfaces. This consisted of images, colours and buttons.
A GUI or Graphical User Interface, is an interface through which users interact with electronic devices such as computers, tablets, smartphones, and other machines. Unlike text-based interfaces where data input and output are text-only, GUIs offer graphical icons, visual indicators, and interactive elements, such as buttons, menus, and windows.
Table of Content
- What is GUI?
- GUI control components
- Interaction between Graphical User Interface and users
- Advantages of GUI
What is GUI?
GUI full form is graphical user interface (GUI) is an interface through which users interact with electronic devices through visual and audio indicators or graphical icons. GUIs display information and user control graphically. The representations in Graphical User Interface are manipulated by pointing devices such as a stylus, trackball, mouse, or finger on the touch screen.
A GUI consists of graphical elements such as cursors, icons, and buttons that are enhanced with sound and visual effects. Through these objects, users can use a computer without knowing the commands. The following are the elements of Graphical User Interface:
- Dialog box
- Menu Bar
How does Graphical User Interface work?
The design of the Graphical User Interface (GUI) conforms to model-view-controller software pattern. It separates the internal representation of information from information that is presented to the user. This results in a platform that shows users those functions that are possible.
Users interact with this information by manipulating the visual widgets without the need for command codes. These widgets are designed in accordance with the data type that they hold and support actions that are necessary to complete the user’s task.
Whenever the user initiates any interaction, Graphical User Interface uses some signal to respond. This may be in the form of a signal, such as a size or colour change in the clicked element, sound, or any other effect. Once the signal is given, the system performs the requested action.
The operating system appearance may be redesigned since GUI is independent of application functions. In addition, the already existing GUI elements in the OS applications implement their unique GUI elements. Usually, a Graphical User Interface includes standard formats to represent graphics and text. This makes the data sharing between applications running under common GUI software possible.
Abstraction is a major concept used in GUI operating system. The user can use the pointer to click on an icon which in turn, will initiate a series of actions. The functionality will get started and the user will have to provide input to generate the desired action from machine.
GUI translates the user language comprising of simple one-line commands and single or double clicks to machine or assembly language. The machine will understand the machine language and response to an initiated task, which will be translated to use language and communicate to user via GUI.
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GUI Control Components
These are the primary elements of the Graphical User Interface that are necessary for enabling interaction with a user. They are the subclasses of the component’s class. A GUI control component is created by calling an appropriate constructor [JButton guiComponent = new JButton ( “ON” );]. This GUI control component is then added to a container with the help of a layout manager.
For this, the overloaded method add() is invoked on a container having Graphical User Interface control component as an argument [guiFrame.add ( guiComponent );]. Listeners can receive events when they occur since they are registered with GUI components. GUI components generate events in response to user action.
Interaction between Graphical User Interface and Users
Using simple functions such as clicks, users interact with Graphical User Interface. This triggers GUI to understand the requirements of the user and translate them into assembly language. Graphical User Interface displays the actual process in action, the response from the machine, the amount of memory used, file size, etc. A single click is enough for a user to select a particular process, and a double click will start an application. Right-click will show properties and application details. The pointer helps in continuing to multitask desired operations and get information.
Advantages of GUI
The following are the advantages of a Graphical User Interface:
- The graphical User Interface is visually very appealing and detailed oriented.
- It ensures that people with little or even no knowledge of computers can use it and perform basic computer functions.
- Graphical User Interface is easy to use since it does not require the user to use any command.
- Through Graphical User Interface, each and every response from the computer is visually communicated.
- A good Graphical User Interface offers freedom to users.
- It makes the entire design more attractive and allows developers to have more control over visual customization to improve user experience.
- Users can easily and quickly finish tasks using Graphical User Interface, unlike in CUI, which requires multiple typed commands to complete a task.
These days, every operating system has its own Graphical User Interface. Often different GUIs are layered inside one another. Software applications even use their own GUI in addition to the already provided GUI. Every internet browser allows users to navigate through websites having their own Graphical User Interface. In short, users are interacting with several GUIs while navigating.
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