My main design thought was to try to maintain a sense of the page. I saw one viewer that would expand each frame up to the entire screen, and even though the image was nice and large, not knowing what was around it kind of didn’t feel right for a comic-book reading experience, to me. Maybe others disagree?
The second design thought was to make the viewing as mindless as possible, so that one isn’t distracted from the story while trying to navigate the panels. So, I set things up where the viewer “advances” to the next view automatically when you click “Next” or hit or . Getting the viewer to make good choices was a bit of a geometric-puzzle challenge.
The Java part is the interaction with the database, where we have images and panels and their dimensions organized, and using the controller code for maintaining state when changing pages. I also made an auxiliary Java app for encoding the panel locations and ordering.
Eventually, the comic book author will have his own site with links to the viewer (it’s very bare bones at this point), so only those links will require a port# in the address.
Also, I’ve put very little creative effort into the GUI for the viewer. That is not something I feel particularly good about designing, in terms of the look.