Will the love last

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2005-05-20 Print this article Print

?"> However, some say they doubt the Eclipse lovefest can last. They say that with longtime rivals such as BEA, IBM, Borland and others now in the same organization, there is bound to be infighting. Timothy Cramer, director of NetBeans in the Java and Developer Tools group at Sun, said of Eclipse: "They do have a lot of momentum … but I think theyre going to end up with a lot of competing interests."
But it will remain up to developers to choose.
"This used to be a flashy debate but is losing luster with the rapid adoption and growth of Eclipse as a platform for developing rich client applications," said Benjamin Booth, a developer with webMethods Inc. "Theres no real debate here. Those who debate NetBeans versus Eclipse are out of touch with inevitability." "My basic response to NetBeans is really, Who cares?" said another developer, who asked not to be identified. "They havent built up any kind of external community to support it or that cares about it in the least. I predict Sun will continue to do what BEA did, that is, beat their head against the wall working on a proprietary infrastructure for two years. … BEA took two years; Sun will take at least that because theyve proven to be more stubborn. "Additionally, look at Suns history with development tools—theyve never been successful with any of them, ever. NetBeans wont be any different. No interest, no community, no revenue from it—dead man walking. It will just take time for Sun to go through the seven stages of grief about it." Forresters Zetie added: "Theres no doubt in my mind that as far as enterprise developers are concerned, Eclipse has won—at least outside of Microsofts sphere of influence—with major tools vendors such as Actuate, Borland, BEA and Sybase lining up to join IBM/Rational in porting their tools to Eclipse, a vibrant ecology of plug-ins, and an architecture designed explicitly to support extensibility and integration. Eclipse is more than just a development platform; it is a full life cycle platform." The Eclipse Foundations intent was to eclipse Microsoft, not Sun. Click here to read more. Meanwhile, Sun is trying to take advantage of recent NetBeans advancements with a program to entice Eclipse developers to switch to NetBeans, which preceded Eclipse. On the Web page identifying the program, Sun asks: "Are you still working in the dark?" Yet, analysts are seeing no mass exodus. Evans Data Corp. shows Eclipse as the No. 1 Java IDE and growing. Next Page: Why some prefer NetBeans.

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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