Announced at EclipseCon 2011, OrionHub is a hosted implementation of the Eclipse Orion Web development framework.
The Eclipse Foundation
announced the beta release of OrionHub, a hosted implementation of the Eclipse Orion
Web development framework.
Eclipse has invited developers to sign up for access to the beta
version of the OrionHub service. Orion is a new Eclipse initiative to
define a platform for building and integrating Web development tools.
An early release of Orion provides Web developers with an editor for
to easily link with popular Web-based tools. The OrionHub service
provided by the Eclipse Foundation will allow developers to experiment
with Orion and provide feedback to the Orion open-source community.
Eclipse announced OrionHub at the EclipseCon 2011
conference, which ran March 21-24 in Santa Clara, Calif.
"Eclipse has been around for a number of years and is known for its
tools for enterprise Java developers, but we've been less successful
appealing to Web developers." Mike Milinkovich, executive director of
Eclipse, told eWEEK. "But as more applications move to the cloud, we
need to make sure there's tooling that appeals to that audience. With
Orion, we're leveraging the browser as the way to navigate your code
More and more applications are being moved to the Web and cloud
infrastructure. A key question is how software development tools will
move from the desktop to support a Web-focused development workflow.
Orion moves software development to the Web, as a Web experience. It
implements the workflows required by Web developers building open Web
applications -- workflows that are dramatically different from those
implemented by existing desktop-based integrated development
environments (IDEs). Orion enables the creation and integration of
browser-based tools for open Web development that are both powerful and
Orion is an open-source project at the Eclipse Foundation. An
important goal of this open beta is to reach out to the Web developer
community to solicit feedback and input into the future directions of
Orion. The first Orion Planning Summit was held March 17-18 in Palo
Alto, Calif., to establish the scope and roadmap of the Orion project.
Some key features of Orion include:
- A new client-side plug-in architecture, using
the Orion client. Examples of existing integrations include JSLint and
- Orion is supported in Google Chrome, Mozilla
Firefox 3.6 & 4.0, Microsoft IE 8 & 9 and Safari 5. The Orion
browser capabilities such as tabs, bookmarks, url sharing, etc.
- Initial integration with git provides local
history for Orion projects. A new git comparison tools allows for easy
identification of changes. Future support for git commands (fetch, tag,
logo) will be added.
"It is still very early days but I expect Orion will be as important
for Web developers as the initial Eclipse Java IDE was for Java
developers," Milinkovich said. "Right now we are looking for people who
are interested in using or adopting Orion and who are interested in
participating in the community."
, maker of the popular PhoneGap
tool for mobile developers. "Orion's approach to providing
browser-based tools is something we may integrate into our PhoneGap
Build service. Adopting the Orion tools would allow us to provide our
to develop and build cross-platform mobile applications."
The Orion hosted service is open to the first 5,000 developers who sign up
In the future, additional slots may be added as the Orion community
grows. The Orion server is also available for download for developers
who want to install Orion on their own computers. The Orion source code
is licensed under the Eclipse Public License (EPL).
Meanwhile, although there are competing efforts to deliver a cloud-oriented IDE - such as the Cloud9 IDE and eXo's Cloud IDE
- the Eclipse approach with Orion is different, Milinkovich said. One
way it differs is that the other efforts attempt "to be a desktop IDE
running in a browser tab, but Orion is trying to make it feel like the
natural way you use the Web every day," Milinkovich said. He also noted
that Orion is very focused on integration and has the Eclipse community
"We hope we can see the same replication of the success of Eclipse with the Orion platform," Milinkovich said