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Tip of the Day
Language: User Interface Design
Expertise: Beginner
Mar 19, 1997

Changing Button Captions

Question:
How do you change a button's caption after it is created?

Answer:
Java's Button class defines two methods for getting and setting a button's caption. They are getLabel() and setLabel(). The following simple applet creates a button whose caption changes when the user presses the button:


import java.awt.*;
import java.applet.*;
 
public class ButtonLabel extends Applet {
        Button b;
        boolean active = false;

        // define a button with some initial label
        public void init() {
                b = new Button("Inactive");
                add(b);
        }

        // Change the caption when the user presses the button
        // after it has been created 
        public synchronized boolean handleEvent(Event e) {
                if (e.target instanceof Button) {
                        if (active) {
                                active = false;
                                b.setLabel("Inactive");
                        } else {
                                active = true;
                                b.setLabel("Active");
                        }
                        return true;
                }
                return false;
        }
 
        //
        // Defining a main() routine allows the applet to be
        // run as a standalone Java application also
        //
        public static void main(String argv[]) {
                Frame f = new Frame("ButtonLabel");  
                Applet a = new ButtonLabel();
                a.init();
                a.start();
 
                f.setLayout(new BorderLayout());
                f.add("Center", a);
                f.pack();
                f.show();
        }
}
 
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