JavaOne Tokyo '05: Layout Managers
Joshua Marinicci and Scott Violet explained layout managers in their session Layout Roundup and Futures. Both shared the speaking duty as they described the various layout manager types available for desktop applications. You already know many of the most common ones:
Nothing particularly exciting there. However, they did describe a few newer, easier to use, layout managers:
The impressive part of the session is simply this: using some of these newer layouts can substantially decrease the code you write. In some cases, you're going to write less than half the code you would if you used GridbagLayout for example.
The Packer layout manager is developed as a java desktop project on java.net. If you like GridbagLayout's power, but think it's too difficult to master, you're going to like Packer.