Form with different layout than FormLayout


I am currently evaluating Vaadin and so far it seems like a good alternative for Flex/BlazeDS combination.

I’m little bit confused about using Form and it’s layouts. Default FormLayout is neat but in my opinion, restricted because it allows me to show fields only in vertical order. In real life you often have so many fields to show that you run out of space soon if you cannot arrange some components next to each other horizontally.

Certainly I can use some other layout with form but then I lose some convenient features like required and validation indicators and left side rendered captions.

So what do you guys suggest to do for making complex forms. This is quite big issue for us because our users are used to fluent and eye pleasing forms of Flex.

You could use multiple FormLayouts side by side. Or if you are used to wysiwyg layouts in Flex, you can use AbsoluteLayout in Vaadin. Maybe even together with WYSIWYG plugin (that is admittedly not that great yet).

In my opinion, FormLayout should not be a layout in itself, but more of an parameter that you can apply to any layout, so that you could get the labels in front of the fields etc.

A little bit what was done when ExpandLayout was depricated and setExpandRatio came to the Layout interface.

In theory - any layout is free to position captions, description and errors in any way the layout wants to. It would be possible to add the proposed parameter to some layouts, but requiring all layouts to implement such a parameter would make creating new layouts even harder.

Inspired by this post, I wrote a prototype for KISS HTML template based form layout. Please comment on