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Eclipse Touting Application Development

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The Eclipse Rich Client Platform (RCP) has seen significant growth as a choice for desktop application builders.

Despite all the chatter about web services and browser-based applications, there is still a need for desktop applications that work well on a PC. A LinuxWorld report on Eclipse ECP cited Eclipse executive Mike Milinkovich, who said people still require applications that can thrive with or without an Internet connection.

A local application has all the benefits of the system’s resources as well. For Eclipse, the operating system should not matter when it comes to development, especially when RCP is in use:

RCP features Equinox, which is a component framework based on the OSGi standard, and the ability to deploy native GUI applications to several desktop operating systems including Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Also featured is an integrated update mechanism for deploying desktop applications from a central server.

While RCP can be used for building Windows applications, Eclipse views it as a competitor to the Windows platform. “[RCP] has the additional advantage that you can take applications and run on Linux, Mac, and Windows, but we definitely see this as an alternative to Windows .Net,” Milinkovich said.


Eclipse won’t ignore the boom in web services and startup companies betting on interactive online applications, though. The article noted Eclipse has the Rich AJAX Platform project getting under way.

That platform is listed as being in the validation phase. Attendees at the EclipseWorld conference in Boston this week should get a closer look at RAP during a tutorial session.

PHP programmers still have to wait until the fourth quarter before they might see the PHP IDE project arrive. Milinkovich said in the LinuxWorld article he expected the PHP IDE, Mobile Tools for Java, and an embedded RCP project to be shipping in that timeframe as well.


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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

Eclipse Touting Application Development
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