back in 2000 when i was first getting into java i wrote an applet that used a canvas to display various images depending on the users choice. now we do that on a JPanel instead. however i notice that several years later i was still importing java.awt and java.awt.event(im not going to take the time to find out why)
so my question really is how much do we still use awt?
and how much of it is obsolete?
The actual GUI components are all obsolete and have been for years. They lingered on for a while because people were writing applets which they expected might be run by pre-Java-2 JVMs, but when Microsoft finally stopped their JVM shenanigans in 2004 that was the end of their usefulness.
The underlying plumbing classes, like events and so on, are still used because they weren't affected by the re-architecting process that resulted in Swing.
Swing is built on top of AWT. As Paul said, only stop using the component and window classes, and you should be fine.
There's one big exception to this rule - java.awt.TrayIcon in combination with java.awt.PopupMenu, java.awt.Menu and java.awt.MenuItem. When you need to have an icon in the system tray, those are your only option (apart from a third party library).