Graphical User Interface provides the user graphical means to interact with the system. GUI can be combination of both hardware and software. Using GUI, user interprets the software.
Typically, GUI is more resource consuming than that of CLI. With advancing technology, the programmers and designers create complex GUI designs that work with more efficiency, accuracy and speed.
GUI provides a set of components to interact with software or hardware.
Every graphical component provides a way to work with the system. A GUI system has following elements such as:
● Window – An area where contents of application are displayed. Contents in a window can be displayed in the form of icons or lists, if the window represents file structure. It is easier for a user to navigate in the file system in an exploring window. Windows can be minimized, resized or maximized to the size of screen. They can be moved anywhere on the screen. A window may contain another window of the same application, called child window.
● Tabs – If an application allows executing multiple instances of itself, they appear on the screen as separate windows. Tabbed Document Interface has come up to open multiple documents in the same window. This interface also helps in viewing preference panel in application. All modern web-browsers use this feature.
● Menu – Menu is an array of standard commands, grouped together and placed at a visible place (usually top) inside the application window. The menu can be programmed to appear or hide on mouse clicks.
● Icon – An icon is small picture representing an associated application. When these icons are clicked or double clicked, the application window is opened. Icon displays application and programs installed on a system in the form of small pictures.
● Cursor – Interacting devices such as mouse, touch pad, digital pen are represented in GUI as cursors. On screen cursor follows the instructions from hardware in almost real-time. Cursors are also named pointers in GUI systems. They are used to select menus, windows and other application features.