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how do I define absolute size and location for a layout?

I'm writing a card game in java, and I have a problem with the GUI: I defined several JPanels on the JFrame, for the card "hands", and used GridBagLayout. Whenever I add a card to the "hand", the whole dimensions of the panel change, and the whole layout changes as well.

How do I set the layout, the parameters, or anything else to define that the dimensions are absolute?
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maor
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maor
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daittCommented:
Using correct layouts and constrains will help you. It depends on your GUI design. Can you describe it here, i.e. draw the layout of your panel?
By the way, setLayout(null) will set the layout to absolute. Then use setBounds(..) to set the location and size of the components.
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maorAuthor Commented:
imagine a 6*6 grid. the 6 left squares are a panel, the 6 next to them are a panel, the 6 right squares are a panel, the 6 next to them are a panel. we're left with an area 3 squares wide, 6 squares high. the top 3 are a panel, the 3 below them are a panel. the bottom 3 are a panel, the 3 above are a panel. we're left with a 3*2 area, in which are a couple of other things. let me try and draw it:
 ___  ___  __________________  ___  ___
|   ||   ||                  ||   ||   |
|   ||   ||__________________||   ||   |
|   ||   | __________________ |   ||   |
|   ||   ||                  ||   ||   |
|   ||   ||__________________||   ||   |
|   ||   |                    |   ||   |
|   ||   |                    |   ||   |
|   ||   |                    |   ||   |
|   ||   | __________________ |   ||   |
|   ||   ||                  ||   ||   |
|   ||   ||__________________||   ||   |
|   ||   | __________________ |   ||   |
|   ||   ||                  ||   ||   |
|___||___||__________________||___||___|

did this help to explain things?








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maorAuthor Commented:
naturally, ascii art has no place in experts-exchange :)

so try using a bit of imagination here... :)
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daittCommented:
I can copy and paste into notepad and imagine your layout.
I'm in a hurry now I cannot test my idea, but try this:
You have three columns GridBagLayout: (2 left panels),(middle panels and areas), (2 right panels).
Use GridLayout to arrange 2 left panels, and another gridlayout to arrange 2 right panels.
Use GridLayout (3 rows) for the middle area: (2 top rows), (middle area), (2 bottom rows).
Use some other GridLayouts for the squares.
Gotta go. Goodluck
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maorAuthor Commented:
I'll give both ideas - gridlayouts and setlayout(null) - a try.
however, I still suspect I might have some trouble when adding a card to one of the gridlayouts. any thoughts on how this can be solved?
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maorAuthor Commented:
It has been ages since this question went up, and this answer didn't work well.  I have decided to give up on this layout, and switched to a simpler one.
However, breaking this down into panels inside panels inside panels, has provided a partial solution, and it has made my life easier with the new layout.

sorry it took so long, enjoy the points, and thanks :)
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