Java Application Programming Interface
How the API Is Organized
There are three levels to the API:
- All Packages
- All Classes (within a package)
- This Class (selected class).
Level 1 - All Packages
This level of the API provides links to the packages in the 1.0 release.
Level 2 - This Package
This level provides links to the classes and interfaces in a given package. There are three catogories in the listing:
Level 3 - This Class/Interface
This level begins with an index, followed by the detailed API. There are three categories at the class level.
A category is omitted when a class has no applicable entries.
Within these categories there is additional color coding as follows:
- Instance Variables
- Static Variables
- Instance Methods
- Static Methods
How to Locate Items
- To Browse A Package
- To Locate a Class
- To Browse a Class
- To Locate a Method
A Closer Look at the Class-Level API
Take a look at class String in the package java.lang. The navigational anchors are at the top. This is followed by the fully qualified class name and a representation of its position in the
The next entries are links to the superclass and the interfaces, if
any. This is followed by a description of the class, taken from the
class comment. Notice how the programmer has embedded some code
samples using html tags.
The author also chose to include a See Also entry to another
class. Following the class-level entries for See Also, Version, and Author,
the index begins.
Each class/interface begins with an index of its variables, constructors and methods, sorted alphabetically. The entry consists of the declaration and short description. The description is the first sentence of the doc comment for that item. The index entries are linked to their corresponding entries in the application programming inteface which immediately follows.
The Detailed API
The index is followed by the complete API for
Within the three categories: Variables, Constructors, and Methods, the entries are presented in the order they
appear in the source. This is done to preserve the logical groupings established by the
Where Are All the Links in the API?
- At the top of each class/interface there are navigational anchors to the other levels and to Previous and Next (class or interface).
- There are links in the class type of every method and variable definition.
- At the top of each class/interface there is a drawing of the tree structure down to the current class/interface, in which each superclass is a link.
- Every method contains a list of exceptions that it may throw.
These are linked to the appropriate class.
- The superclass and interface references at the beginning of the class are links.
- Every See Also is a link.
- When a method overrides a method in the superclass, the API has the entry "Overrides: foo in class bar." Both foo (the method name) and bar (the class name) are links.