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"Eclipse 3.0 is a Great Leap Forward," Says JDJ's Dudney
Can Eclipse morph successfully into a universal platform for application integration?
By: Java News Desk
Jun. 21, 2004 12:00 AM
Today the Eclipse Foundation announced general availability of the royalty-free 3.0 release of Eclipse - described by the Ottowa-based foundation as a platform "for tools integration, software modeling, and testing that has been broadly adopted by commercial vendors, academic institutions, and open technology developers."
Bill Dudney, JDJ's Eclipse editor, commented, "I am very excited about the promise of Eclipse 3.0. With each new milestone release the platform has become richer in its feature set, better performing and generally more productive to use."
"From the enhanced Java tools to the improved integration with Ant and other open source projects," Dudney continues, "Eclipse 3.0 is a great leap forward. In addition to enhancements to the Java developer tool box the whole plugin architecture has been updated to use the OSGi framework for managing plugins. Not only will this make it easier to manage the large number of plugins that are typically used by the average Java developer it will also make building plugins easier."
"If you have not been following the milestone releases of Eclipse 3.0, it is definitely time to download a copy and get started," adds Dudney.
Eclipse 3.0 is the cumulative result of 15 months of project investment by supporting members and the Eclipse community, continuing what the Foundation summarizes as "the commitment to implement open technology built upon established industry standards."
Enhancements such as the following have been made to core facilities:
The aim of these enhancements is to help make Eclipse use "more convenient, consistent and responsive."
Concurrent with this new release, the C/C++ Development Tools (CDT) project and the Hyades application verification and optimization project are shipping new versions.
The Foundation states:
Features and facets that have been used as the core of Eclipse's object-oriented development technologies have been restructured and repackaged in 3.0, making it an open, extensible platform for application construction and integration. This includes Eclipse's window-based workbench GUI, the dynamic plug-in functional extension mechanism, help subsystem and update manager.
When Java applications are constructed with Eclipse's Standard Widget Toolkit
(SWT) and deployed to different operating platforms, they adopt native window
manager look and feel. On Linux Motif or the GTK, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X,
Photon, AIX, HP/UX platforms, and other supported platforms, Eclipse users can
develop applications in Java with the true look-and-feel of the platform.
When used on the Linux and Windows platforms, Eclipse 3.0 adds the ability to
embed Swing widgets in SWT-based user interfaces. This allows integration of
Swing-based applications and tools within the Eclipse workbench and other
functionally-rich applications. New features allow Eclipse plug-in providers to
customize user interfaces and establish a branded appearance for products and
The Java Development Tools (JDT) project has improved the user experiences of
reading, writing, and navigating source code, adding improved refactoring, code
formatting and editor features such as code folding.
Eclipse was adapted to add support for the OSGi framework specification when constructing functionally extensible applications. This open standard for plug-in extensions supports installation and dynamic activation under program control, permitting fine-grain conservation of resources like memory in complex integrated tools and client environments. In addition, the Eclipse Plug-in Development Environment now supports component integration for platforms that incorporate very large numbers of plug-ins.
CDT and Hyades Project Updates
Other Eclipse-hosted open projects have coordinated their distributions with the 3.0 launch. These include extensions to the C/C++ Development Tools and the Hyades Project's implementation of the recently approved OMG U2TP Test Profile standard.
The C/C++ Development Tools (CDT) offer numerous enhancements to provide a faster, more productive user experience. To simplify code editing and navigation, the tools now include improved string searches, configurable code completion, a C/C++ class browser and a refactoring facility for automating code changes across an entire project. To speed application debugging, the debugger now presents both source code and assembly in the same view. To free developers from writing and maintaining makefiles, the CDT environment now includes a "managed build" feature.
In addition, the CDT leverages the new multi-threading support in Eclipse 3.0. As a result, operations such as indexing and building can now run in the background, allowing the developer to continue working on other tasks.
"Open Environment & Community Support Have Been Key," Says Milinkovich
"Eclipse 3.0 brings new features which will delight plug-in and application
developers that rely on this advanced platform," says Mike Milinkovich,
executive director of the Eclipse Foundation.
Distributions of Eclipse 3.0 will be available by June 30 for download from
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