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Oracle® Fusion Middleware Web User Interface Developer's Guide for Oracle Application Development Framework
11g Release 1 (11.1.1.6.0)

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16 Using Output Components

This chapter describes how to display output text, images, and icons using ADF Faces components, and how to use components that allow users to play video and audio clips.

This chapter includes the following sections:

16.1 Introduction to Output Text, Image, Icon, and Media Components

ADF Faces provides components for displaying text, icons, and images, and for playing audio and video clips on JSF pages.

Read-only text can be displayed using the outputText or outputFormatted components. The outputFormatted component enables you to add a limited set of HTML markup to the value of the component, allowing for some very simple formatting to the text.

Many ADF Faces components can have icons associated with them. For example, in a menu, each of the menu items can have an associated icon. You identify the image to use for each one as the value of an icon attribute for the menu item component itself. Information and instructions for adding icons to components that support them are covered in those components' chapters. In addition to providing icons within components, ADF Faces also provides icons used when displaying messages. You can use these icons outside of messages as well.

To display an image on a page, you use the image component. Images can also be used as links (including image maps) or to depict the status of the server. You can display a collection of images in a carousel, which allows the users to spin through the collection to view each image.

The media component can play back an audio clip or a video clip. These components have attributes so that you can define how the item is to be presented on the page.

16.2 Displaying Output Text and Formatted Output Text

There are two ADF Faces components specifically for displaying output text on pages: outputText, which displays unformatted text, and outputFormatted, which displays text and can include a limited range of formatting options.

To display simple text specified either explicitly or from a resource bundle or bean, you use the outputText component. You define the text to be displayed as the value of the value property. For example:

<af:outputText value="The submitted value was: "/>

Example 16-1 shows two outputText components: the first specifies the text to be displayed explicitly, and the second takes the text from a managed bean and converts the value to a text value ready to be displayed (for more information about conversion, see Section 6.3, "Adding Conversion").

Example 16-1 Output Text

<af:panelGroupLayout>
  <af:outputText value="The submitted value was: "/>
  <af:outputText value="#{demoInput.date}">
    <af:convertDateTime dateStyle="long"/>
  </af:outputText>
</af:panelGroupLayout>

You can use the escape attribute to specify whether or not special HTML and XML characters are escaped for the current markup language. By default, characters are escaped.

Example 16-2 illustrates two outputText components, the first of which uses the default value of true for the escape attribute, and the second of which has the attribute set to false.

Example 16-2 Output Text With and Without the escape Property Set

<af:outputText value="&lt;h3>output &amp; heading&lt;/h3>"/>
<af:outputText value="&lt;h3>output &amp; heading&lt;/h3>"
               escape="false"/>

Figure 16-1 shows the different effects seen in a browser of the two different settings of the escape attribute.

Figure 16-1 Using the escape Attribute for Output Text

Effects in a browser of different escape property values

You should avoid setting the escape attribute to false unless absolutely necessary. A better choice is to use the outputFormatted component, which allows a limited number of HTML tags.

As with the outputText component, the outputFormatted component also displays the text specified for the value property, but the value can contain HTML tags. Use the formatting features of the outputFormatted component specifically when you want to format only parts of the value in a certain way. If you want to use the same styling for the whole component value, instead of using HTML within the value, apply a style to the whole component. If you want all instances of a component to be formatted a certain way, then you should create a custom skin. For more information about using inline styles and creating skins, see Chapter 20, "Customizing the Appearance Using Styles and Skins."

Example 16-3 shows an outputFormatted component displaying only a few words of its value in bold.

Example 16-3 Using outputFormatted to Bold Some Text

<af:outputFormatted value="&lt;b>This is in bold.&lt;/b> This is not bold"/>

Figure 16-2 shows how the component displays the text.

Figure 16-2 Text Formatted Using the outputFormatted Component

Text Formatted Using the outputFormatted Component

16.2.1 How to Display Output Text

Before displaying any output text, decide whether or not any parts of the value must be formatted in a special way.

To display output text:

  1. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop an Output Text onto the page. To create an outputFormatted component, drag and drop an Output Formatted from the Component Palette.

    Tip:

    If parts of the value require special formatting, use an outputFormatted component.

    Tip:

    If you plan to support changing the text of the component through active data (for example, data being pushed from the data source will determine the text that is displayed), then you should use the activeOutputText component instead of the outputText component. Create an activeOutputText component by dragging an Output Text (Active) from the Component Palette.

  2. Expand the Common section of the Property Inspector and set the value attribute to the value to be displayed. If you are using the outputFormatted component, use HTML formatting codes to format the text as needed, as described in Table 16-1 and Table 16-2.

    The outputFormatted component also supports the styleUsage attribute whose values are the following predefined styles for the text:

    • inContextBranding

    • instruction

    • pageStamp

    Figure 16-3 shows how the styleUsage values apply styles to the component.

    Figure 16-3 styleUsage Attribute Values

    styleAttribute values

    Note:

    If the styleUsage and styleClass attributes are both set, the styleClass attribute takes precedence.

16.2.2 What You May Need to Know About Allowed Format and Character Codes in the outputFormatted Component

Only certain formatting and character codes can be used. Table 16-1 lists the formatting codes allowed for formatting values in the outputFormatted component.

Table 16-1 Formatting Codes for Use in af:outputFormatted Values

Formatting Code Effect

<br>

Line break

<hr>

Horizontal rule

<ol>...</ol><ul>...</ul><li>...</li>

Lists: ordered list, unordered list, and list item

<p>...</p>

Paragraph

<b>...</b>

Bold

<i>...</i>

Italic

<tt>...</tt>

Teletype or monospaced

<big>...</big>

Larger font

<small>...</small>

Smaller font

<pre>...</pre>

Preformatted: layout defined by whitespace and line break characters preserved

<span>...</span>

Span the enclosed text

<a>...</a>

Anchor


Table 16-2 lists the character codes for displaying special characters in the values.

Table 16-2 Character Codes for Use in af:outputFormatted Values

Character Code Character

&lt;

Less than

&gt;

Greater than

&amp;

Ampersand

&reg;

Registered

&copy;

Copyright

&nbsp;

Nonbreaking space

&quot;

Double quotation marks


The attributes class, style, and size can also be used in the value attribute of the outputFormatted component, as can href constructions. All other HTML tags are ignored.

Note:

For security reasons, JavaScript is not supported in output values.

16.3 Displaying Icons

ADF Faces provides a set of icons used with message components, shown in Figure 16-4.

Figure 16-4 ADF Faces Icons

There are six default icons

If you want to display icons outside of a message component, you use the icon component and provide the name of the icon type you want to display.

Note:

The images used for the icons are determined by the skin the application uses. If you want to change the image, create a custom skin. For more information, see Chapter 20, "Customizing the Appearance Using Styles and Skins."

When you use messages in an ADF Faces application, the icons are automatically added for you. You do not have to add them to the message component. However, you can use the icons outside of a message component. To display one of the standard icons defined in the skin for your application, you use the icon component.

To display a standard icon:

  1. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop an Icon onto your page.

  2. Expand the Common section and set Name to the name of one of the icon functions shown in Figure 16-4. For example, if you want to display a red circle with a white X, you would set Name to error.

  3. Expand the Appearance section, and set ShortDesc to the text you want to be displayed as the alternate text for the icon.

16.4 Displaying Images

To display an image on a page, you use the image component and set the source attribute to the URI where the file is located. The image component also supports accessibility description text by providing a way to link to a long description of the image.

The image component can also be used as a link and can include an image map, however, it must be placed inside a goLink component. For more information, see Section 16.5, "Using Images as Links."

To display an image:

  1. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop an Image onto your page.

    Tip:

    If you plan to support changing the source attribute of the image through active data (for example, data being pushed from the data source will determine the image that is displayed), then you should use the activeImage component instead of the image component. Create an activeImage component by dragging an Image (Active) from the Component Palette.

  2. In the Insert Image dialog, set the following:

    • ShortDesc: Set to the text to be used as the alternate text for the image.

    • Source: Enter the URI to the image file.

  3. If you want to include a longer description for the image, in the Property Inspector, set LongDescURL attribute to the URI where the information is located.

16.5 Using Images as Links

ADF Faces provides the commandImageLink component that renders an image as a link, along with optional text. You can set different icons for when the user hovers the mouse over the icon, and for when the icon is depressed or disabled. For more information about the commandImageLink component, see Section 18.2, "Using Buttons and Links for Navigation."

If you simply want an image to be used to navigate to a given URI, you can enclose the image in the goLink component and then, if needed, link to an image map.

You can use an image as a goLink component to one or more destinations. If you want to use an image as a simple link to a single destination, use a goLink component to enclose your image, and set the destination attribute of the goLink component to the URI of the destination for the link.

If your image is being used as a graphical navigation menu, with different areas of the graphic navigating to different URIs, enclose the image component in a goLink component and create a server-side image map for the image.

To use an image as one or more goLink components:

  1. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop a Go Link onto the page.

  2. Drag and drop an Image as a child to the goLink component.

  3. In the Insert Image dialog, set the following:

    • ShortDesc: Set to the text to be used as the alternate text for the image.

    • Source: Enter the URI to the image file.

  4. If different areas of the image are to link to different destinations:

    • Create an image map for the image and save it to the server.

    • In the Property Inspector, set ImageMapType attribute to server.

    • Select the goLink component and in the Property Inspector, set Destination to the URI of the image map on the server.

  5. If the whole image is to link to a single destination, select the goLink component and enter the URI of the destination as the value of Destination.

16.6 Displaying Images in a Carousel

You can display images in a revolving carousel, as shown in Figure 16-5. Users can change the image at the front either by using the slider at the bottom or by clicking one of the auxiliary images to bring that specific image to the front.

Figure 16-5 The ADF Faces Carousel

carousel component

By default, the carousel is displayed horizontally. The objects within the horizontal orientation of the carousel are vertically aligned to the middle and the carousel itself is horizontally aligned to the center of its container.

You can configure the carousel so that it can be displayed vertically, as you might want for a reference card file. By default, the objects within the vertical orientation of the carousel are horizontally aligned to the center and the carousel itself is vertically aligned to the middle, as shown in Figure 16-6. You can change the alignments using the carousel's alignment attributes.

Figure 16-6 Vertical Carousel Component

Vertical Carousel Component

Best Practice:

Generally the carousel should be placed in a parent component that stretches its children (such as a panelSplitter or panelStretchLayout). If you do not place the carousel in a component that stretches its children, your carousel will display at the default dimension of 500px wide and 300px tall. You can change these dimensions.

The carousel component can display in circular mode, as in Figure 16-5, or you can configure it so that it displays only the current image, as shown in Figure 16-7

Figure 16-7 Carousel Can Display Just One Image.

Carousel with just one image displayed

You can also configure the controls used to browse through the images. You can display a slider that has next and previous arrows and that spans more than one image (as shown in Figure 16-5), you can display only next and previous buttons, (as shown in Figure 16-7), or you can display next and previous buttons, along with the slide counter, (as shown in Figure 16-8).

Figure 16-8 Next and Previous Buttons With a Slide Counter

Carousel with only next and previous

By default, when the carousel is configured to display in the circular mode, when you hover over an auxiliary item (that is, and item that is not the current item at the center), the item is outlined to show that it can be selected (note that this outline will only appear if your application is using the Fusion FX v1.2 skin or later). You can configure the carousel so that instead, the item pops out and displays at full size, as shown in Figure 16-9.

Figure 16-9 Auxiliary Item Pops Out on Hover

Auxiliary item pops out on hover

When set to the circular mode, you can also configure the space between images, and you can also configure the size of the auxiliary images. By default, the space between images is set to 0.45 times the size of the preceding image, resulting in the images overlapping each other, and the auxiliary image size is set to 0.8, so that each image is 0.8th of the size as the preceding image, as shown in Figure 16-5. You can change these settings to alter how the carousel appears. For example, if you wanted the carousel to appear more like a filmstrip, you might set the space between the images to be 1.1, and the size of the auxiliary items to be 1, so that they are all the same size, as shown in Figure 16-10.

Figure 16-10 Configuring a Carousel to Display Like a Filmstrip

Configuring a Carousel to Display Like a Filmstrip

A child carouselItem component displays the objects in the carousel, along with a title for the object. Instead of creating a carouselItem component for each object to be displayed, and then binding these components to the individual object, you bind the carousel component to a complete collection. The component then repeatedly renders one carouselItem component by stamping the value for each item, similar to the way a tree stamps out each row of data. As each item is stamped, the data for the current item is copied into a property that can be addressed by an EL expression that uses the carousel component's var attribute. Once the carousel has completed rendering, this property is removed or reverted back to its previous value. Carousels contain a nodeStamp facet, which is both a holder for the carouselItem component used to display the text and short description for each item, and the parent component to the image displayed for each item.

For example, the carouselItem JSF page in the ADF Faces demo shown in Figure 16-5 contains a carousel component that displays an image of each of the ADF Faces components. The demoCarouselItem (CarouselBean.java) managed bean contains a list of each of these components. The value attribute of the carousel component is bound to the items property on that bean, which represents that list. The carousel component's var attribute is used to hold the value for each item to display, and is used by both the carouselItem component and the image component to retrieve the correct values for each item. Example 16-4 shows the JSF page code for the carousel. For more information about stamping behavior in a carousel, see Section 10.5, "Displaying Data in Trees."

Example 16-4 Carousel Component JSF Page Code

<af:carousel id="carousel" binding="#{editor.component}"
             var="item"
             value="#{demoCarousel.items}"
             carouselSpinListener="#{demoCarousel.handleCarouselSpin}">
  <f:facet name="nodeStamp">
    <af:carouselItem id="crslItem" text="#{item.title}" shortDesc="#{item.title}">
      <af:image id="img" source="#{item.url}" shortDesc="#{item.title}"/>
    </af:carouselItem>
  </f:facet>
</af:carousel>

A carouselItem component stretches its sole child component. If you place a single image component inside of the carouselItem, the image stretches to fit within the square allocated for the item (as the user spins the carousel, these dimensions shrink or grow).

Best Practice:

The image component does not provide any geometry management controls for altering how it behaves when stretched. You should use images that have equal width and height dimensions in order for the image to retain its proper aspect ratio when it is being stretched.

The carousel component uses a CollectionModel class to access the data in the underlying collection. This class extends the JSF DataModel class and adds on support for row keys. In the DataModel class, rows are identified entirely by index. However, to avoid issues if the underlying data changes, the CollectionModel class is based on row keys instead of indexes.

You may also use other model classes, such as java.util.List, array, and javax.faces.model.DataModel. If you use one of these other classes, the carousel component automatically converts the instance into a CollectionModel class, but without any additional functionality. For more information about the CollectionModel class, see the MyFaces Trinidad Javadoc at http://myfaces.apache.org/trinidad/trinidad-1_2/trinidad-api/apidocs/index.html.

Note:

If your application uses the Fusion technology stack, you can create ADF Business Components over your data source that represent the items, and the model will be created for you. You can then declaratively create the carousel, and it will automatically be bound to that model. For more information, see the "Using the ADF Faces Carousel Component" section of the Oracle Fusion Middleware Fusion Developer's Guide for Oracle Application Development Framework.

The carousel components are virtualized, meaning that not all the items available to the component on the server are delivered to, and displayed on, the client. You configure the carousel to fetch a certain number of rows at a time from your data source. The data can be delivered to the component either immediately upon rendering, or lazily fetched after the shell of the component has been rendered. By default, the carousel lazily fetches data for the initial request. When a page contains one or more of these components, the page initially goes through the standard lifecycle. However, instead of the carousel fetching the data during that initial request, a special separate partial page rendering (PPR) request is run on the component, and the number of items set as the value of the fetch size for the carousel is then returned. Because the page has just been rendered, only the Render Response phase executes for the carousel, allowing the corresponding data to be fetched and displayed. When a user does something to cause a subsequent data fetch (for example, spinning the carousel for another set of images), another PPR request is executed.

Performance Tip:

You should use lazy delivery when the page contains a number of components other than a carousel. Using lazy delivery allows the initial page layout and other components to be rendered first before the data is available.

Use immediate delivery if the carousel is the only context on the page, or if the carousel is not expected to return a large set of items. In this case, response time will be faster than with lazy delivery (or in some cases, simply perceived as faster), as the second request will not go to the server, providing a faster user response time and better server CPU utilizations. Note, however, that only the number of items configured to be the fetch block will be initially returned. As with lazy delivery, when a user's actions cause a subsequent data fetch, the next set of items is delivered.

A slider control allows users to navigate through the collection. Normally, the thumb on the slider displays the current object number out of the total number of objects, for example 6 of 20. When the total number of objects is too high to calculate, the thumb on the slider will show only the current object number. For example, say a carousel is used for a company's employee directory. By default, the directory might show faces for every employee, but it may not know without an expensive database call that there are exactly 94,409 employees in the system that day.

You can use other components in conjunction with the carousel. For example, you can add a toolbar or menu bar, and to that, add buttons or menu items that allow users to perform actions on the current object.

16.6.1 How to Create a Carousel

To create a carousel, you must first create the data model that contains the images to display. You then bind a carousel component to that model and insert a carouselItem component into the nodeStamp facet of the carousel. Lastly, you insert an image component (or other components that contain an image component) as a child to the carouselItem component.

To Create a Carousel:

  1. Create the data model that will provide the collection of images to display. The data model can be a List, Array, DataModel, or CollectionModel. If the collection is anything other than a CollectionModel, the framework will automatically convert it to a CollectionModel. For more information about the CollectionModel class, see the MyFaces Trinidad Javadoc at http://myfaces.apache.org/trinidad/trinidad-1_2/trinidad-api/apidocs/index.html.

    The data model should provide the following information for each of the images to be displayed in the carousel:

    • URL to the images

    • Title, which will be displayed below the image in the carousel

    • Short description used for text displayed when the user mouses over the image

    For examples, see the CarouselBean.java and the CarouselMediaBean.java classes in the ADF Faces demo application.

  2. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop a Carousel onto the page.

  3. In the Property Inspector, expand the Common section, and set the following:

    • Orientation: By default, the carousel displays horizontally. Select vertical if you want it to display vertically, as shown in Figure 16-6. If you set it to horizontal, you must configure how the items line up using the halign attribute. If you set it to vertical, set how the items line up using the valign attribute.

    • Halign: Specify how you want items in a vertical carousel to display. Valid values are:

      • Center: Aligns the items so that they have the same centerpoint. This is the default.

      • End: Aligns the items so that the right edges line up (when the browser is displaying a left-to-right language).

      • Start: Aligns the items so that the left edges line up (when the browser is displaying a left-to-right language).

    • Valign: Specify how you want items in a horizontal carousel to display. Valid values are:

      • Bottom: Aligns the items so that the bottom edges line up.

      • Middle: Aligns the items so that they have the same middle point. This is the default.

      • Top: Aligns the items so that the top edges line up.

    • Value: Bind the carousel to the model.

  4. Expand the Data section and set the following:

    • Var: Enter a variable that will be used in EL to access the individual item data.

    • VarStatus: Enter a variable that will be used in EL to access the status of the carousel. Common properties of varStatus include:

      • model: Returns the CollectionModel for the component.

      • index: Returns the zero-based item index.

  5. Expand the Appearance section and set EmptyText to the text that should display if no items are returned. If using a resource bundle, use the dropdown menu to choose Select Text Resource.

  6. Expand the Behavior section, and set the following:

    • FetchSize: Set the size of the block that should be returned with each data fetch.

    • ContentDelivery: Specify when the data should be delivered. When the contentDelivery attribute is set to immediate, items are fetched at the same time the carousel is rendered. If the contentDelivery attribute is set to lazy, items will be fetched and delivered to the client during a subsequent request.

    • CarouselSpinListener: Bind to a handler method that handles the spinning of the carousel when you need logic to be executed when the carousel spin is executed. Example 16-5 shows the handler method on the CarouselBean which redraws the detail panel when the spin happens.

      Example 16-5 Handler for the CarouselSpinEvent

      public void handleCarouselSpin(CarouselSpinEvent event)
        {
          RichCarousel carousel = (RichCarousel)event.getComponent();
          carousel.setRowKey(event.getNewItemKey());
          ImageInfo itemData = (ImageInfo)carousel.getRowData();
          _currentImageInfo = itemData;
       
          // Redraw the detail panel so that we can update the selected details.
          RequestContext rc = RequestContext.getCurrentInstance();
          rc.addPartialTarget(_detailPanel);
        }
      
  7. Expand the Advanced section and set CurrentItemKey. Specify which item is showing when the carousel is initially rendered. The value should be (or evaluate to) the item's primary key in the CollectionModel:

  8. Expand the Other section, and set the following:

    • AuxiliaryOffset: Set to a number to determine how much an image will be offset from the preceding image. The default is 0.45.

    • AuxiliaryPopOut: Set to hover to cause an auxiliary image to render full-size when the user hovers over it. The default is off.

    • AuxiliaryScale: Set to a number to determine what size each image should be in comparison to the image before it. A setting of 1 means all images would be the same size. A setting of less than 1 causes each image to be incrementally smaller, greater than 1 and they will be larger. By default, the setting is 0.8, which means each image is 80% smaller than the preceding image.

    • ControlArea: Specify the controls used to browse through the carousel images. Valid values are:

      • full: The slider is larger than the current image, and displays next and previous buttons.

      • small: The slider is the size of the current image, and displays next and previous buttons.

      • compact: Only the next and previous buttons are displayed.

      • none: The slider and controls are not displayed.

    • DisplayItems: Select circular to have the carousel display multiple images. Select oneByOne to have the carousel display one image at a time.

  9. From the Component Palette, drag a Carousel Item to the nodeStamp facet of the Carousel component.

    Bind the CarouselItem component's attributes to the properties in the data model using the variable value set on the carousel's var attribute. For example, the carousel in Example 16-4 uses item as the value for the var attribute. So the value of the carouselItem's text attribute would be item.title (given that title is the property used to access the text used for the carousel items on the data model).

  10. Drag an image from the Component Palette and drop it as a child to the carouselItem.

    Bind the image component's attributes to the properties in the data model using the variable value set on the carousel's var attribute. For example, the carousel in Example 16-4 uses item as the value for the var attribute. So the value of the image's source attribute would be item.url (given that url is the property used to access the image).

    You can surround the image component with other components if you want more functionality. For example, Figure 16-11 shows a carousel whose images are surrounded by a panelGroupLayout component and that also uses a clientListener to call a JavaScript function to show a menu and a navigation bar.

    Figure 16-11 Using a More Complex Layout in a Carousel

    Carousel items have menus and navigation

    Example 16-6 shows the corresponding page code.

    Example 16-6 A More Complex Layout for a Carousel

    <af:carouselItem id="mainItem" text="#{item.title}" shortDesc="#{item.title}">
      <af:panelGroupLayout id="itemPgl" layout="vertical">
        <af:image id="mainImg" source="#{item.url}" shortDesc="#{item.title}"
                               styleClass="MyImage">
          <af:clientListener method="handleItemOver" type="mouseOver"/>
          <af:clientListener method="handleItemDown" type="mouseDown"/>
          <af:showPopupBehavior triggerType="contextMenu" popupId="::itemCtx"/>
        </af:image>
      <af:panelGroupLayout id="overHead" styleClass="MyOverlayHeader"
                           layout="vertical" clientComponent="true">
        <af:menuBar id="menuBar">
          <af:menu id="menu" text="Menu">
            <af:commandMenuItem id="menuItem1" text="Menu Item 1"/>
            <af:commandMenuItem id="menuItem2" text="Menu Item 2"/>
            <af:commandMenuItem id="menuItem3" text="Menu Item 3"/>
          </af:menu>
        </af:menuBar>
      </af:panelGroupLayout>
      <af:panelGroupLayout id="overFoot" styleClass="MyOverlayFooter"
                           layout="vertical" clientComponent="true"
                           halign="center">
        <af:panelGroupLayout id="footHorz" layout="horizontal">
          <f:facet name="separator">
            <af:spacer id="footSp" width="8"/>
          </f:facet>
          <af:commandImageLink . . .
                              />
          <af:outputText id="pageInfo" value="Page 1 of 1"/>
          <af:commandImageLink . . .
                             />
          </af:panelGroupLayout>
        </af:panelGroupLayout>
      </af:panelGroupLayout>
    </af:carouselItem>
    

    Performance Tip:

    The simpler the structure for the carousel is, the faster it will perform.

16.6.2 What You May Need to Know About the Carousel Component and Different Browsers

In some browsers, the visual decoration of the carousel's items will be richer. For example, Safari and Google Chrome display subtle shadows around the carousel's items, and the noncurrent items have a brightness overlay to help make clear that the auxiliary items are not the current item, as shown in Figure 16-12.

Figure 16-12 Carousel Component Displayed in Google Chrome

Carousel in Google Chrome

Figure 16-13 shows the same component in Internet Explorer.

Figure 16-13 Carousel Component Displayed in Microsoft Internet Explorer

Carousel in Internet Explorer

16.7 Displaying Application Status Using Icons

ADF Faces provides the statusIndicator component that you can use to indicate server activity. What displays depends both on the skin your application uses and on how your server is configured. By default, the following are displayed:

After you drop a status indicator component onto the page, you can use skins to change the actual image files used in the component. For more information about using skins, see Chapter 20, "Customizing the Appearance Using Styles and Skins."

To use the status indicator icon:

  1. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop a Status Indicator onto the page.

  2. Use the Property Inspector to set any needed attributes.

    Tip:

    For help in setting attributes, use the field's dropdown menu to view a description of the attribute.

16.8 Playing Video and Audio Clips

The ADF Faces media component allows you to include video and audio clips on your application pages.

The media control handles two complex aspects of cross-platform media display: determining the best player to display the media, and sizing the media player.

You can specify which media player is preferred for each clip, along with the size of the player to be displayed for the user. By default, ADF Faces uses the MIME type of the media resource to determine the best media player and the default inner player size to use, although you can specify the type of content yourself, using the contentType attribute.

You can specify which controls are to be available to the user, and other player features such as whether or not the clip should play automatically, and whether or not it should play continuously or a specified number of times.

16.8.1 How to Allow Playing of Audio and Video Clips

Once you add a media component to your page, you can configure the media player to use by default, the size of the player and screen, the controls, and whether or not the clip should replay.

To include an audio or video clip in your application page:

  1. In the Component Palette, from the Common Components panel, drag and drop a Media onto the page.

  2. In the Insert Media dialog, set the following attributes:

    • Source: Enter the URI to the media to be played.

    • StandbyText: Enter a message that will be displayed while the content is loading.

  3. Expand the Common section of the Property Inspector and set the following:

    • Player: Select the media player that should be used by default to play the clip. You can choose from Real Player, Windows Media Player, or Apple Quick Time Player.

      Alternatively, you can create a link in the page that starts the playing of the media resource based on the user agent's built-in content type mapping. The media control attempts to pick the appropriate media player using the following steps:

      • If the primary MIME type of the content is image, the built-in user-agent support is used.

      • If a media player has been specified by the player attribute, and that player is available on the user agent and can display the media resource, that player is used.

      • If one player is especially good at playing the media resource and that player is available on the user agent, that player is used.

      • If one player is especially dominant on the user agent and that player can play the media resource, that player is used.

      • The player connected to the link provided on the page is used.

    • Autostart: Set to True if you want the clip to begin playing as soon as it loads.

    • ContentType: Enter the MIME type of the media to play. This will be used to determine which player to use, the configuration of the controls, and the size of the display.

  4. Expand the Appearance section of the Property Inspector and set the following:

    • Controls: Select the amount and types of controls you want the player to display.

      Because the set of controls available varies between players, you define what set of controls to display in a general way, rather than listing actual controls. For example, you can have the player display all controls available, the most commonly used controls, or no controls.

      As an example, Example 16-7 uses the all setting for a media component.

      Example 16-7 Controls for a Media Player

      <af:media source="/images/myvideo.wmv" controls="all"/>
      

      Figure 16-14 shows how the player is displayed to the user.

      Figure 16-14 Media Player with All Controls

      Media player with all controls

      Following values are valid:

      • All: Show all available controls for playing media on the media player.

        Using this setting can cause a large amount of additional space to be required, depending on the media player used.

      • Minimal: Show a minimal set of controls for playing media on the media player.

        This value gives users control over the most important media playing controls, while occupying the least amount of additional space on the user agent.

      • None: Do not show any controls for the media player and do not allow control access through other means, such as context menus.

        You would typically use this setting only for kiosk-type applications, where no user control over the playing of the media is allowed. This setting is typically used in conjunction with settings that automatically start the playback, and to play back continuously.

      • NoneVisible: Do not show any controls for the media player, but allow control access through alternate means, such as context menus.

        You would typically use this value only in applications where user control over the playing of the media is allowed, but not encouraged. As with the none setting, this setting is typically used in conjunction with settings that automatically start the playback, and to play back continuously.

      • Typical: Show the typical set of controls for playing media on the media player.

        This value, the default, gives users control over the most common media playing controls, without occupying an inordinate amount of extra space on the user agent.

    • Width and Height: Define the size in pixels of the complete display, including the whole player area, which includes the media content area.

      Tip:

      Using the width and height attributes can lead to unexpected results because it is difficult to define a suitable width and height to use across different players and different player control configurations. Instead of defining the size of the complete display, you can instead define just the size of the media content area using the innerWidth and innerHeight attributes.

    • InnerWidth and InnerHeight: Define the size in pixels of only the media content area. This is the preferred scheme, because you control the amount of space allocated to the player area for your clip.

      Tip:

      If you do not specify a size for the media control, a default inner size, determined by the content type of the media resource, is used. While this works well for audio content, it can cause video content to be clipped or to occupy too much space.

      If you specify dimensions from both schemes, such as a height and an innerHeight, the overall size defined by the height attribute is used. Similarly, if you specify both a width and an innerWidth, the width attribute is used.

  5. Expand the Behavior section and set Autostart. By default, playback of a clip will not start until the user starts it using the displayed controls. You can specify that playback is to start as soon as the clip is loaded by setting the autostart attribute to true.

    Set PlayCount to the number of times you want the media to play. Once started, by default, the clip with play through once only. If the users have controls available, they can replay the clip. However, you can specify that the clip is to play back a fixed number of times, or loop continuously, by setting a value for the playCount attribute. Setting the playCount attribute to 0 replays the clip continuously. Setting the attribute to some other number plays the clip the specified number of times.

Example 16-8 shows an af:media component in the source of a page. The component will play a video clip starting as soon as it is loaded and will continue to play the clip until stopped by the user. The player will display all the available controls.

Example 16-8 Media Component to Play a Video Clip Continuously

<af:media source="/components/images/seattle.wmv" playCount="0"
          autostart="true" controls="all"
          innerHeight="112" innerWidth="260"
          shortDesc="My Video Clip" 
          standbyText="My video clip is loading"/>