Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
GNU is Not Unix

GNU Christmas Gift: Free Eclipse 320

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the compile-once-run-sort-of dept.
Mark Wielaard writes "Your friendly neighbourhood GNU did it again. A year ago IBM made much noise about placing $40 million of its software tools under a free software license. Technically these tools, called Eclipse, are great for developing (java) software. There was only one catch, it was build on top of the proprietary java platform. This made it useless for the Free Software community. Luckily the GNU project has two projects that come to the rescue. GNU Classpath, core libraries for java, and gcj, the GNU Compiler for Java. We are now able to run Eclipse on a completely free platform! It is not yet complete, but you can already edit, compile and browse CVS with it. And since Eclipse uses GTK+ it also looks very nice. I setup a page with instructions on how to get this working so you can help us make it work even better or just so you can view a couple of nice screenshots."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

GNU Christmas Gift: Free Eclipse

Comments Filter:
  • ... that Eclipse is getting more "air time" on Slashdot. It's an outstanding IDE in its own right; the tools used to build it that you can use yourself (like SWT) are mere icing on the cake.
    • So another GNU team has almost managed to replicate the work done by the Blackdown team 4-5 years ago.

      Meanwhile the GNU team has almost managed to release a kernel.

      On the sidelines, Wine has almost enabled cross-platform execution, provided you don't want to do something so uncommon as opening a file picker!!! (I mean, come on! I can play video games, but I can't pick an input file to open with a utility program?)

      Lately I see a lot of "almost" me-too projects, but I'd be a lot more impressed if they didn't start celebrating until the damned things worked.

      Eclipse is free and pretty nice (need to try it again -- it was rough when I first looked almost a year ago.) Sun's SunONE Studio 4 is ok, too.

      My favourite remains JBuilder, but I just can't afford to upgrade anymore (paid full price for 3.0, paid for the 3.5 upgrade, the 4.0 upgrade, and realized I'd spent over $2000 with no end in site.)

      Despite all the fancy IDEs out there, I still do the bulk of my editing with vi(m), emacs, and text tools, then debug and fix in an IDE. I've yet to find a Java (or C++) IDE whose editor is more than barely usable. But that is another rant...

      • Gee whiz, when GIVEN all the source to Java by Sun, one team was able to port it to linux fairly quickly (when it already ran on Solaris!).

        The GCJ team has done something FAR more impressive: without *any* of Sun's sources, they've built a Java implementation from the ground up.

        But I shouldn't even bother: you've clearly made up your mind and no amount of facts are likely to change it...
  • I wish sun would just open up the java libraries, that would make open source java developement even easier.
    • Re:sun and java (Score:2, Interesting)

      by nomadic (141991)
      Because developing and giving it away for free just isn't enough.

      And the president and board of directors should come to our houses and mow the lawn every Sunday afternoon.
    • I wish sun would just open up the java libraries

      ...and while I'm at it, I wish I had a pony.

  • by lunartik (94926) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @07:24PM (#4963160) Homepage Journal
    A development tool that is built upon a non-open architecture is "useless" for the free software community? But a sort-of-working substitution remedies the problem?

    Hmm.

    • I agree. This is sort of "purist" view.

      When I looked at the patch they disable the default garbage collection. I guess that this will cause memory blow ups when loading huge projects. I suppose that the original binary with Sun's Java is the best bet for production machines. Heck, I'm perfectly happy with Eclipse's current Linux GTK+ binary.

      • You're probably better off with an IBM JVM, since they tend to be slightly better quality.

        Then again, I haven't tried Eclipse yet, so this is just a guess.

        • Well, I have a slight problem with IBM JVM in my Gentoo box. The response was slower IMHO and it trashes when compiling some classes of my project. With Sun's JVM everything's fine, though. Of course, the workaround would be to compile the problematic classes separately, but that sort of pain.

          • I'm with you there. I've always used Sun for all my java codin' and I've never had a problem. If it aint broke, don't fix it.
            I mean sure, I don't have the source code for it, but it's object oriented. If there's somethign I don't like I can write my own.
            Like I would know how to edit, let alone write, code for a compiler!
      • If by "purist" you mean "radical fundamentalist," I'm right there with you.

        I know I'm not the only Slashdotter who senses the irony of a community of people who supposedly stand for freedom declaring an entire platform to be useless because they find it politically unacceptable.
        • I know I'm not the only Slashdotter who senses the irony of a community of people who supposedly stand for freedom declaring an entire platform to be useless because they find it politically unacceptable.

          Why must you slander us and belittle us?

          "Politically unacceptable" is a poor substitute for "under a license that does not guarantee freedom from embracing and extending". It's not about politics, it's about learning a tool we can feel confident will continue to be around even if Microsoft buys Sun out in some dim future.

          The platform is useless because the strings attached are too restrictive for those of us who think about the future of software development.

          Radical fundamentalists would be the sort to smash the windows of Sun HQ or create cyber-havoc to achieve their political ends. You're smearing reasonable people who don't like Trojan gifts with a very broad brush, and I believe you owe us an apology.

          • Why must you slander us and belittle us?

            Well, come on. You do bring it on yourselves, don't you? All the high-minded talk of freedom and liberty just reeks of tall poppy syndrome. Even if your political goals weren't wrongheaded and your propaganda methods highly questionable, the "community" in general, and certain members of it in particular, think so much of themselves that being brought down a notch or two from time to time is good for them.

            That said, though, let us not lose sight of the fact that your political goals are wrongheaded and your propaganda methods highly questionable.

            "Politically unacceptable" is a poor substitute for "under a license that does not guarantee freedom from embracing and extending".

            Actually, I think "politically unacceptable" describes the situation perfectly. Here we have a platform that is free for your use, without the sorts of BitKeeper-style restrictions that created such a stink a while back. The platform is ubiquitous and unrestricted, and generally considered to be appropriate for a wide variety of tasks. And yet you (you meaning the "community") refuse to use it for no other reason than that the people who built the platform do not subscribe to your views on intellectual property and source code licensing.

            You may wrap it up in terms of "we want a tool that isn't under anybody's control," but the bottom line is that the concerns of the "community" aren't practical. They're ideological.

            You're smearing reasonable people who don't like Trojan gifts with a very broad brush, and I believe you owe us an apology.

            I am calling it like I see it. I don't think a reasonable person would conclude that Eclipse is "useless for the free software community" simply because it was built with and runs on Java. That is absolutely radical fundamentalism; it is based on the idea that anything that is not ideologically pure is "useless."

            Now I didn't speak personally, and I intended no offense, but I will not be offering any apologies, either.
            • Well, come on. You do bring it on yourselves, don't you?

              No we most certainly do not.

              All the high-minded talk of freedom and liberty just reeks of tall poppy syndrome. Even if your political goals weren't wrongheaded and your propaganda methods highly questionable, the "community" in general, and certain members of it in particular, think so much of themselves that being brought down a notch or two from time to time is good for them.

              I don't get it, what is it about freedom you don't like? Again I hear slander without specifics. You're basically saying "quit whining about your freedom, you need to be put in your place," only less succinctly.

              The platform is ubiquitous and unrestricted,

              This is a lie, and it undermines what little non-insult argument you offer. The java platform is famously non-free, under the control of Sun rather than standards bodies.

              no other reason than that the people who built the platform do not subscribe to your views on intellectual property and source code licensing.

              Let's unpack this statement. First we have the insult:

              do not subscribe to your views on intellectual property

              Clearly, we don't care. Linus works for Transmeta and uses Bitkeeper, but the GPL keeps the Linux kernel free no matter what Linus's politics are. It's not Sun's views on IP we care about, it's the license under which the gift software is offered. What you are trying to do is smear the free software community (who concern themselves with providing free alternatives) with warez kiddiez who have no respect for laws they disagree with. If the free software community didn't respect those laws even as they disagreed with them, they'd just pirate all the software rather than build alternatives. You are trying to beat on a man very much made of straw here.

              Second:
              and source code licensing.

              That's true. We don't like the license so we won't use it. You are trying very hard to make this seem unreasonable, but it is not.

              I don't think a reasonable person would conclude that Eclipse is "useless for the free software community" simply because it was built with and runs on Java. That is absolutely radical fundamentalism; it is based on the idea that anything that is not ideologically pure is "useless."

              Of course not, you're clearly not reasonable and have no idea what a reasonable person would care about.

              The idea that being concerned what license your software runs under makes you a 'radical fundamentalist' is pure slander. It's an attempt to make it sound like anyone who cares about what license their software uses sound like a terrorist. There is no other purpose to these terms, and they are not the terms reasonable people use to discuss their differences.

              Now I didn't speak personally,

              Ah, but now you have responded to my post personally, and accused me of 'radical fundamentalism' and an obsession with 'ideological purity', and I have taken it personally.

              You are coming from the perspective that a little proprietary software is ok. I understand your perspective, and I can see why you might have it. But you seem to think that anyone who has a different perspective on the appropriateness of proprietary software is a raving lunatic, and for this I fault you and continue to demand an apology.
              • I don't get it, what is it about freedom you don't like? Again I hear slander without specifics.

                Oh, man. This could take days. But the short answer is that the FSF does not stand for freedom. They stand for strictly limited freedom. They stand for "freedom except." And yet they persist in calling it "free." That's deceptive. But I really have little to say to you on this specific part of the discussion that I haven't already said in this [slashdot.org] extremely lengthy and, surprisingly, civil thread. If you want to know what I think about the FSF and what they call "freedom," please click over and read what I wrote there.

                The java platform is famously non-free, under the control of Sun rather than standards bodies.

                You're kind of proving my point here, whether you realize it or not. You have called out the fact that Java is defined by a company instead of by a committee as being a sign that it is "non-free." That smacks of the "ideologically impure" thing I mentioned earlier. Because the Java specification is not defined by a committee, the Java platform is impure, so all software that runs on Java is impure. And because Eclipse runs on Java, it is "useless for the free software community." This is, as I said before, an example of radical ideological fundamentalism.

                It's not Sun's views on IP we care about, it's the license under which the gift software is offered.

                Okay, then for the purposes of our conversation I retract what I said about the FSF's disagreements with Sun over IP. Forget I said that.

                What you are trying to do is smear the free software community (who concern themselves with providing free alternatives) with warez kiddiez who have no respect for laws they disagree with.

                Wha? I don't understand how you jumped from what I said to that conclusion. I didn't say a thing about software piracy. If you're going to argue with me-- for I do love a spirited debate-- at least have the courtesy to disagree with things that I actually say, if you please.

                We don't like the license so we won't use it. You are trying very hard to make this seem unreasonable, but it is not.

                What I consider to be unreasonable is the apparent "fruit of a poisoned tree" doctrine that is being applied here. As I said before, Java is considered ideologically unacceptable-- this is a vital distinction; not unacceptable on technological or practical terms, but purely ideological ones-- so all software that runs on Java is also unacceptable.

                It is possible to release software for the Java platform under the GPL. It is possible to build software with Eclipse and then release it under the GPL. So the objection here has absolutely nothing to do with the real world. It's purely ideological, and I consider that to be unreasonable.

                Of course not, you're clearly not reasonable and have no idea what a reasonable person would care about.

                Wow, this is getting better and better.

                It's an attempt to make it sound like anyone who cares about what license their software uses sound like a terrorist.

                Actually, it's an attempt to make it sound like anyone who considers a tool "useless" not because of its license, or because of the license of the platform on which it runs, but because of the specification of the platform on which it runs sound like a radical fundamentalist. Which is precisely what I said. If you jumped from "radical fundamentalist" to "terrorist," then I submit that you may have been watching too much television, and that you might want to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over.

                Ah, but now you have responded to my post personally, and accused me of 'radical fundamentalism' and an obsession with 'ideological purity', and I have taken it personally.

                Well... okay. Yes. If the statement, "[The fact that] it was build on top of the proprietary Java platform... made it useless for the free software community," accurately describes your opinions, then yes, I am accusing you of radical fundamentalism. I am accusing you of being more concerned with ideology than with software, free or otherwise. Most importantly, I am accusing you of cutting off your own nose to spite your face.

                If this offends you, I am sincerely sorry. I do not mean to attack your character, hurt your feelings, or insult your person. I mean only to indict your ideas in the court of Slashdot public opinion.

                You are coming from the perspective that a little proprietary software is ok.

                Actually, just to make things perfectly clear here, I am coming from the perspective that all proprietary software is okay. I disagree most wholeheartedly with the FSF's most fundamental assumption, which is that proprietary software, and by extension all intellectual property, is a bad thing. Just so there's no confusion about where I stand on the issues, you see.

                But you seem to think that anyone who has a different perspective on the appropriateness of proprietary software is a raving lunatic, and for this I fault you and continue to demand an apology.

                Whether you, sir, are a raving lunatic or not remains to be seen. You may fault me for whatever you like, and you may demand whatever you like. As I said before, no apology will be forthcoming.
                • Here's the short version of my reply: Software freedom is a practical concern because giving anyone ownerhsip of a critical piece of your software toolchain puts you at their mercy, and this is a completely separate question from whether the ip laws that allow people to own other people's ideas are legitimate.

                  They stand for "freedom except." And yet they persist in calling it "free." That's deceptive.

                  The whole notion of absolute freedom breaks down when you consider that every freedom exercised that involves more than one person constrains the actions of the other in some way. The FSF's notion of freedom tries to make some good choices about how to provide freedom for everyone most effectively in the tradition of J.S. Mill. That is, you are free to do anything you like but restrict the freedoms of others. It's the software equivalent of "your freedom to swing your fist ends at the tip of my nose."

                  You have called out the fact that Java is defined by a company instead of by a committee as being a sign that it is "non-free." That smacks of the "ideologically impure" thing I mentioned earlier.

                  It has nothing to do with "purity", it's the fact that they can take our right to use the platform away at any time they choose; they can "pull the rug out from under us" so to speak. It's not abstract ideology, it's practical management of licensing risk. But if your understanding of "purity" is anything like your understanding of "freedom"...

                  I didn't say a thing about software piracy.

                  You didn't have to. What you said was that the reason we won't use Sun's Java is that we don't agree with their view of IP. What this implies is that we are all IP thieves and that Sun is on the right side of the law. If you didn't mean it that way, I accept your clarification and withdraw my complaint. But if I may compliment you for just a moment, as much as I disagree with your claims and apparent motivations, you do not seem the sort to waste a phrase.

                  not unacceptable on technological or practical terms, but purely ideological ones--

                  No, it is unacceptable on practical terms. The platform can be broken or taken away, so it's impractical to use it.

                  at least have the courtesy to disagree with things that I actually say, if you please.

                  If you'd stop implying so much more than you say explicitly, this would be a very short conversation. But you're using words and phrases that imply more than they say, and I'm simply exposing those instances- taking issue with what you *actually said*, rather than what you claim you meant to express.

                  Which is precisely what I said. If you jumped from "radical fundamentalist" to "terrorist," then I submit that you may have been watching too much television, and that you might want to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over.

                  It becomes more and more clear to me that you have no interest in discussion. Your words were deliberate and hurtful, and the association is obvious.

                  I disagree most wholeheartedly with the FSF's most fundamental assumption, which is that proprietary software, and by extension all intellectual property, is a bad thing. Just so there's no confusion about where I stand on the issues, you see.

                  Here we are again. Distortion. The FSF needs an IP system to guarantee that people have the right to actually use the software that's produced. The FSF insists on the preservation of attribution in the GPL. It's important that credit go where it belongs. However, it is not important that we keep people from building on the ideas of others, and at a minimum, it is important that those who want to share their own work and ideas freely be allowed to without interference from those who do not want to share.

                  But most importantly, who the hell cares what the FSF's feelings about IP are? The point is that practically, using software that is not free to use, alter, and redistribute has *practical* implications in that the continued existence of any project built on a limited platform is at the mercy of the owner of that platform. And what you call "ideological purity" is actually the well justified fear that Sun's corporate interest may (will) one day conflict with the interests of developers and end users, and that this corporation, having gained a foothold into an otherwise free system will pull the plug on all the derivative free projects that didn't worry about the terms of their licensing.
                  • Okay, since you offered the courtesy of a quick summary of your argument, I'll return the favor. I am unaware of any case in history in which the right to use a software platform was unilaterally retracted by the software vendor. I submit to you that your concerns about such a possibility are unfounded in reality, and grounded firmly in the hypothetical. That's all fine and good; it's important to talk about what might happen, particularly if the consequences of those possibilities would be serious. But when you cross the line between speaking abstractly and declaring an entire tool-- a tool widely considered to be outstanding in its field-- to be "useless for the free software community," that's going too far. That's stepping over from being a person who is concerned about licensing to being a person who is obsessed with licensing. As I said before, that's cutting off your nose to spite your face.

                    I salute you in your effort to build a computer system that is free of the burden of licensed software. I don't really care about it, because it doesn't affect me at all, but I classify it alongside people who write web browsers in BASIC just to see if it's possible, and other frivolous pursuits.

                    Of course, as I said before, when the FSF comes along and starts misrepresenting their products, then I get testy. But that's a subject for a different rant entirely.
        • FSF doesn't stand for maxamizing individual freedom within a society of low collective freedoms but rather it standards for maxamizing collective freedom even at the expense of some individual freedoms. Sort of the difference between left anarchist and right anarchist economics.

        • I know I'm not the only Slashdotter who senses the irony of a community of people who supposedly stand for freedom declaring an entire platform to be useless because they find it politically unacceptable.

          I think you should s/politically/ethically/ in the above statement. There is a difference between politics and ethics, and conflating them in the way you are doing is dishonest and empty rhetoric.

          "Politics" has come to have a distasteful connotation, meaning roughly, "the arbitrary abuse of power": When the boss's lazy, incompetent protege is promoted ahead of a hard-working and competent individual, everyone complains about "office politics".This isn't the only meaning of "politics, its a special case. Politics is about who has power and how they use it. The reasons for choosing a particular arrangement of power or a particalular use of it can me ethically based, or not.

          Anti-war and anti-abortion activists both have political ends in mind, but their reasons for their beliefs and actions is based in ethics. You might disagree with the policies they advocate, or disagree with the reasoning that leads them to these policies, or disagree with their entire system of ethics, but to represent their beliefs and actions as solely political would be dishonest.

          Free software does have political implications: it rearranges the legal rights of copyright holders and software users. But free software advocates have ethical reasons for wanting to rearrange these rights in the exact same sense that anti-war and anti-abortion activists have an ethical base for wanting to change government policy.

          You might think that ethics has nothing to do with software, and that which software to use should be decided on solely on technical merit. Obviously some people disagree. As stupid as you might find their position it's wrong to misrepresent their beliefs and reasoning.

          ~Phillip


    • That certainly says something about the type of developer that doesn't adhere to the the simple philosophy of "use the best tool for the job", doesn't it?

  • by dirvish (574948)
    This is great. Hopefully Microsoft will succesfully be forced to integrate Java. The combination could help Java smother .net
    • Hopefully Microsoft will succesfully be forced to integrate Java. The combination could help Java smother .net
      I am getting really tired of Open Source zealots criticizing .NET just because Microsoft created it. I am very familiar with both .NET and Java, and IMHO .NET is a better architecture.

      .NET will soon have at least one Open Source implementation, and Microsoft has actually supported these efforts.

      People authoritively claim that Microsoft will use patents to kill these efforts if they become competitive, but there is no evidence to support this paranoia, and in-fact Microsoft does not have a histroy of abusing patents in this manner (unlike another company I could mention [xml.com]).

      • I am getting really tired of Open Source zealots criticizing .NET just because Microsoft created it.

        Ok, because, we don't agree with your stance we're zealots now? Whatever happened to free software advocates?

        I have lots of doubts with .NET because it's from Microsoft. I don't think my concerns are unfounded. They've done enough in the past, now they arouse my suspicion just by them twitching.

        How many times does a person have to screw you over before you stop trusting them? Similarly how many times does a company have to resort to shady tactics before you decide that it's probably in their corporate culture to do so.

        My arguements against .NET are not technical, other than I don't think it brings enough to the table to warrant much of interest. It's mostly that sooner or later MS will find a way to screw open source interest with it.

      • by the eric conspiracy (20178) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @09:30PM (#4963752)
        People authoritively claim that Microsoft will use patents to kill these efforts if they become competitive, but there is no evidence to support this paranoia, and in-fact Microsoft does not have a histroy of abusing patents in this manner

        Incorrect in every regard.

        Microsoft has already used patents to attack open source projects, and has also used patent licenses to attack the GPL. Microsoft's highest executives have also stated publically that they intend to use patents against certain open source projects.

        Examples

        - no translation of ASF, WMA and WMV files to any other format.
        - patent licenses granted only to non-GPL software
        CIFS implementations
        - royalty fees on file sharing extensions to SMB in Win2K and WinXP
        - Nasty letters to certain Linux kernel developers working on NTFS support.

        The Halloween documents also mention the possibility that Microsoft may use Patents to attack OS endeavors.

        We also have comments from Mr. Ballmer regarding .Net:

        Responding to questions about the opening-up of the .NET framework, Ballmer announced that there would certainly be a "Common Language Runtime Implementation" for Unix, but then explained that this development would be limited to a subset, which was "intended only for academic use". Ballmer rejected speculations about support for free .NET implementationens such as Mono: "We have invested so many millions in .NET, we have so many patents on .NET, which we want to cultivate."

        And we also have this:

        Asked by CollabNet CTO Brian Behlendorf whether Microsoft will enforce its patents against open source projects, Mundie replied, "Yes, absolutely." An audience member pointed out that many open source projects aren't funded and so can't afford legal representation to rival Microsoft's. "Oh well," said Mundie. "Get your money, and let's go to court."

        Any statement that Microsoft has not and is not likely to enforce patents in these areas is just not backed up by the history, or by public statements by MS senior executives.

        • Any statement that Microsoft has not and is not likely to enforce patents in these areas is just not backed up by the history, or by public statements by MS senior executives.
          I said that Microsoft didn't have a history of abusing patents - I did not mean that Microsoft had no patents, nor that they had never enforced a patent - nor even that they liked Open Source.

          Rather, I was referring to the particularly dastardly practice of "submarine" patents, encouraging people to code to a standard before springing a patent on the world and forcing those that have adopted the standard to pay up.

          For example, Microsoft submitted .NET to the ECMA as a standard, something that Sun has not yet done with Java (they tried but couldn't agree). In the openness stakes, that puts .NET ahead of Java IMHO - and those that claim that Java is automatically more trustworthy than .NET have failed to make their case.

      • It is not exactly Zealotry (I am typing this on a Windows 98 machine). It is more common sense, you know the kind of common sense that all those corporations and states used when they sued Microsoft. It worries me when I hear about a company that has a huge majority of the browser market (even though mozilla is better), has a nice chunk of the server software market, has control of the desktop workstation operating systems market, has a big hand in the server OSes, etc etc etc now wants to control the development market. Throw in the fact the rumors about an acquisition of Macromedia and it gets scary. No corporation should have that much control. Computers, the internet and software are everywhere and such vertical integration by one company should be avoided, especially when it comes to such an important technology.

        I have heard .net is great from more sources than just you but I would rather use another dev tool (even if some people claim it is inferior) than see control of every aspect of the the technology by one corporation...even if they aren't evil.
  • Whoopi (Score:3, Insightful)

    by The Bungi (221687) <thebungi@gmail.com> on Thursday December 26, 2002 @07:25PM (#4963171) Homepage
    Imagine how much better the world would be and how much more productive developers would become if they didn't have to wait for the 100%, pure unadulterated free-as-in-beer-and-speech tool to show up and appease the ghost of GNU.

    Yeah, let's maybe stop making that ridiculous association between software, politics, the fate of humankind and the pursuit of life, liberty and freedom. It's just software. They're just computers.

    Free: because everything else costs money and that sucks!

    • Re:Whoopi (Score:2, Insightful)

      by 3Bees (568320)
      The Bungi drooled the following all over himself:
      Imagine how much better the world would be and how much more productive developers would become if they didn't have to wait for the 100%, pure unadulterated free-as-in-beer-and-speech tool to show up and appease the ghost of GNU.

      I can't believe that this totally idiotic troll got modded up to +4: Insightful! This project is the result of very talented and motivated coders and hackers doing to opposite of waiting for a product to be released. Therein lies the difference between a passive consumer and a real member of society. These folks were quite productive and have made tremendous steps towards a tool that the rest of us can benefit from. Yet an idiot like you bitches about it, and idiot moderators mod you up. Strange that the people doing things keep getting called zealots by those who oppose their actions solely because of the philosophy that motivates them.

      • Re:Whoopi (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Otter (3800)
        I don't think he was bashing the coders who did this work, but rather the characterization of IBM's release under a free license of a powerful, extensible tool that cost them a ton to develop as "useless".

        We're always getting that mentality from the FSF -- that everything they build on is contemptible, and that they should be given complete, or at least vastly disproportionate, GNU/credit for everything they get their fingers into.

    • It's just software. They're just computers.

      When you have corporations trying to leverage monopoly positions in compter operating systems into domination of all financial transactions and industry organizations trying to extend copyright law beyond reason through lobbying activities it's a lot more than just computers and software.

      It's about personal privacy, corporatism vs. representative government and ultimately whether a middle class will survive.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 26, 2002 @07:26PM (#4963177)
    Eclipse is a nice free software tool for developing (java) software started by IBM. There was only one catch, it was build on top of the proprietary java platform. This made it useless for the Free Software community. Luckily the GNU project has two software projects that come to the rescue. GNU Classpath, core libraries for java, and gcj, the GNU Compiler for Java. We are now able to run Eclipse on a completely free platform! It is not yet complete, but you can already edit, compile and browse CVS with it. And since Eclipse uses GTK+ it also looks very nice.

    It is possible to run Eclipse with gcj since it comes with gij (GNU Interpreter for Java). It does take a little bit of work to get it running since you have to apply some patches to the latest gcj CVS verson. Hopefully the needed patches will make it into CVS soon. It is currently a bit slow (you will need a fast processor, 1Ghz+ recommended) and needs much memory (256MB recommended). And not everything will work yet (it sometimes hangs). But is already useful for gcj bug hunting and making pretty screenshots.

    If you just want to know why gcj is so cool, please read: Compiling Java with GCJ by Per Bothner (Learn how gcj can not only be used to compile java programs, but also Scheme and XQuery to native code.) If you are interested in other Free Software running on top of gcj, please checkout RHUG setup by Anthony Green. (It contains precompiled binaries of things like Jakarta Tomcat, Ant, Rhino, Postgresql JDBC drivers, Jython, Xalan, Xerces, and much more.)

    It took much effort to get this far with our free java platform. And I want to thank all GNU Classpath and gcj hackers for their years of hacking to make this possible. In particular I want to thank Tom Tromey the main libgcj maintainer for his guidance. And for being the first person to get to the Eclipse Welcome Screen, after all his hacking the rest was easy.

    I should also mention Vincent Partington and Erwin Bolwidt for explaining why I should care about Eclipse and for their bughunting help last weekend. Please checkout their free software projects, Jaxup.

    How you can help: If you write free java software make sure it works well on the GNU platform and if you like hacking on low level stuff help us make Classpath and gcj even better. And please consider to "Join us now and share the software".

    The following pages explain how to patch gcj and setup Eclipse. And show some pretty screenshots of Eclipse in action.

    What do you need

    If you want to run it yourself you should be familiar with compiling gcj from source (either current mainline or the gcc-3_3-branch) and you will need to apply the following patches.



    These patches (except the verify.cc change) should be applied to CVS soon so you might not need them.

    Update: The following new patches are highly recommended.



    That last patch will optimize classloading for Eclipse that doesn't need any natively compiled classes but should not be used for normal gcj usage. The other patches will hopefully make it into CVS soon.

    Update: eclipse.patch [klomp.org] contains all the above patches plus a few tweaks for getting Eclipse to work better on the IKVM.NET VM [weblogs.com]. With all these patches applied I was able to open, edit and compile the Jaxup Java XML Update engine project from my friend Erwin Bolwidt inside Eclipse. The new screenshot looks nice.

    When you have build and installed the new GCC you will need to make the following changes to the install.

    Go inside the bin directory of the new GCC install and make a java symlink to the gij program. (Eclipse expects a binary called java, you can give the -vm gij option, but then it won't autodetect gcj as Standard VM.)
    Copy the share/java/libgcj.jar file to lib/rt.jar. Then create a directory jre/lib/ and make another copy of the rt.jar here. (Note that these cannot be symlinks.)
    Make a directory src and copy the gnu, java, javax and org directories from the libjava source directory in it. Then create a src.zip file which contains this src directory. Put this src.zip file in the parent directory of the dir you installed the new GCC in. So if you installed in /usr/local/gcc34/, then put the src.zip in /usr/local/ (This is needed for extra WOW! in the code editing screenshot.)
    This is all needed because eclipse expects a tradition java environment. It should be easy to hack org/eclipse/jdt/internal/launching/StandardVMType. java to recognize gcj by default.

    Update: The following is no longer needed with the latest patches.
    Disable the garbage collector by export GC_DONT_GC=1. If you don't do this eclipse will not startup properly and you will find a stacktrace in the workspace/.metadata/.log file mentioning a InvocationTargetException caused by a NullPointerException.

    Finally get the latest stable Eclipse build (you want the eclipse-SDK-M4-linux-gtk.zip.) It will create a directory eclipse and comes with all the sources (and a precompiled binary and the classes in jar files).

    Running it

    Make sure that the freshly compiled gij (and the java symlink) is in your path and that LD_LIBRARY_PATH points to the newly installed lib directory. Go inside the eclipse directory and you should be able to just type ./eclipse and it will show you an installation popup.

    This will take several minutes. If anything goes wrong start it with ./eclipse -debug and/or look in the newly created file workspace/.metainfo/.log.

    After several minutes you will see the following welcome screen.

    One of the first things you probably want to do is set the correct key bindings :).

    Not everything will work as expected and sometimes you are greeted with the following dialog.
    Error
    JVM terminated. Exit code=1
    /usr/local/gcc34/bin/java -cp /tmp/eclipse/./startup.jar org.eclipse.core.launcher.Main -os linux -ws gtk -arch x86 -showsplash /tmp/eclipse/./eclipse -showsplash 600
    Which is often because the garbage collector is disabled. My machine quickly gives up after eclipse has eaten more then 600MB.

    Update: There used to be a screenshot here of the terminal window showing lots of Out Of Memory messages. But with all the new patches this does not happen anymore.
    • I write free (GPL) Java software [ostermiller.org] including some popular libraries [ostermiller.org]. A few months ago I tried to compile my code with the GNU compiler. It sucked. It didn't support array initialization using brackets. (String[] a = {"one","two","three"};) It didn't support inner classes. It couldn't compile anything linked against java.awt.* or javax.swing.*

      Unless it has come miles in the last few months, it is just a toy at this point.

  • by Apoptosis66 (572145) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @07:57PM (#4963314)
    I am not sure I understand the "Not Quite Ready" comment. I have been using Eclipse as my main IDE for nearly a year and I love it. Eclipse is just the framework to build the IDE you desire. Eclipse is complete, there are just some pluggins that aren't ready yet, however they are comming along very fast. Just last night I started using the Lomboz J2EE pluggin and so far I have been pretty impressed. http://www.objectlearn.com/ Also, I get all my plugins from: http://eclipse-plugins.2y.net/eclipse/ I might not be up on all the politics of programming, but I know I didn't pay for Eclipse and no one has asked me for anything to use it. So it appears pretty damn free to me. I recommend Eclipse to everyone.
  • by javabandit (464204) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @08:00PM (#4963327)
    As someone who has written several Swing based applications, I can say that Java sorely needs this kind of a shot in the arm for the client-side to be even remotely feasible.

    Up to this point, Sun has ignored the client-side, and rightly so. Because Microsoft and MFC rules on the client side (on Win32). Sun exploited the server-side breach that Microsoft had ignored.

    But now, Java needs to become a viable alternative to C++ based programming on the client-side. And the only way this is going to happen is for Java to have some kind of a native GUI presence on each platform it runs on. This is where IBM and the SWT libraries come in.

    Currently, the SWT libraries are still immature. The Eclipse platform itself is still immature. But they will get better and better. I predict that the SWT libraries will not only get quite expansive... but include things other than GUI widgets/toolkits.

    If IBM plays their cards right (and so far they have)... I can see them actually introducing more Java extension libraries for other things that Sun did a terrible job on. Collections. Better native threading model. Better I/O model. The list goes on and on.

    Personally, I would have no problem with writing a Java application that only imported IBM extension libraries. As long as they were well-written, and performed well.

    Sun really needs to get on the ball here. The time has come to open-source Java. Let the developers do with the language what needs to be done to bring it to the next level.

    Otherwise... companies like IBM are going to do it anyways. Just using extension libraries. If Microsoft was smart, they'd have done five years ago what IBM is doing now. Microsoft would own Java on the client-side if they would have played it right.
    • I predict that the SWT libraries will not only get quite expansive... but include things other than GUI widgets/toolkits

      SWT library already does include GUI widgets/toolkit.

      You are right though, saying that it is immature. We've been doing some serious development on SWT trying to convert full featured application from AWT to SWT. So far it's been going great.

      However, here's a warning for all of you Java developers: there's quite a few things you still can't do. All Table work is a terrible hassle, there's no easy way of changing colors in single table cells and table functionality is very, very limited. We were able to improve some of that, but that actually ment implementing our own widgets for table. Anyways, it is pretty bad. Hopefully in 2.2 version (next year) they will solve some of the problems.

      If anyone from Eclipse development community is reading, please, focus more not on the new features (cheat lists, wizards and stuff), but try to actually make SWT a reacher platform, there's a lot of work that needs to be done.

      At the end, I wanted to summarize my opinion of SWT, which is not really what this topic is about. But here it goes: it is a great platform and a great concept (using native libraries and not drawing everything like Swing does). And you are correct - this will/could be Java's savior on the client. But anyone who would want to write a serious application in SWT should think twice before that, wheigh down all pros/cons and also try writing a prototype to make sure that it you can implement anything that you want.

      One of the biggest innovations of SWT is a library called JFace, which hides a lot of basic/low level GUI functionality under an interface that is sort of a Model-View-Controller framework. This idea is brilliant, and this framework is just a pleasure to work with. ;)

      Anyways, enough with the rambling.. Happy Christmass, everybody!
    • by Stu Charlton (1311) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @11:23PM (#4964216) Homepage
      I've written quite a few Swing & server-side applications myself.

      "Microsoft and MFC rules on the client side (on Win32)".

      MFC is dead, long live .NET. And Visual Basic rules on the client Win32 side, and has for quite some time.

      "But now, Java needs to become a viable alternative to C++ based programming on the client-side."

      Absolutely not. Java's only main competitor for Win32 client-side supremacy is VB.NET and C#.NET. C++/MFC is a dead-end.

      On UNIX, I would suggest it's a toss-up between C++/Qt and C/GTK, and IMHO I think Java's more productive than either (though pre-1.4 X-windows Swing performance was unacceptable).

      Sadly, this doesn't seem to be a battle that Java will win on Win32, even with SWT, for a couple of reasons. Microsoft has the industry's talent in developing high-performance Win32 GUI framewords, which will come out for .NET first. WinForms.NET is effectively the next iteration of what was out in Visual J++ 6.0's WFC libraries.

      They also have the tools support with Visual Studio. The Java world currently has only *ONE* usable GUI building tool -- JBuilder. And that's not saying much. Eclipse won't have one for some time. The second major problem with Swing (besides performance) was this lack of tools support. I don't forsee a groundswell of tools support for SWT from multiple vendors.

      Thirdly, there isn't a whole lot of impetus behind client-side "thick" GUIs in the industry. I don't foresee IBM throwing lots of money at making SWT general-use... the open source community will probably assist in this area, but I'm somewhat skeptical about how much adoption this will generate.

      On the bright side, I'm not sure it really "matters". Windows peeps will write stuff with VB like they've always done, the C++'ers will switch to C# (they've really not much choice -- I worked at an MS shop as the Java junkie for 2 years, most C++/Windows programmers there took what MS has given them... there's a lot of shock and dismay when Borland/OWL is on one's resume). The 2nd most widely used GUI framework family will be (gasp) Carbon/Cocoa on Mac OS X. ANd rounding out the list, *nix peeps will continue head-butting between Qt and GTK+ (both of which are still gawdawfully ugly IMHO, quite apparent actually if you run a GTK+ app side-by-side with a Mac OS X application. But I digress).

      "I can see them actually introducing more Java extension libraries for other things that Sun did a terrible job on. Collections. Better native threading model. Better I/O model. The list goes on and on."

      Whoa, whoa! I disagree with each one of these. We are talking about J2SE 1.4, are we not? I'm quite happy with the collections framework (and I compare this to both stdc++ and the Smalltalk collections library), the java.nio.* package is very sophisticated, and IMHO the threading model is a matter of taste, not stemming from any particular technical disadvantage.
      • On UNIX, I would suggest it's a toss-up between C++/Qt and C/GTK, and IMHO I think Java's more productive than either (though pre-1.4 X-windows Swing performance was unacceptable).

        1.4 isn't acceptable either. Better than pre 1.4? Yes. Functional? Yes. Acceptable? Haven't seen anything yet which leads me to believe it's 'acceptable'.
    • Otherwise... companies like IBM are going to do it anyways. Just using extension libraries. If Microsoft was smart, they'd have done five years ago what IBM is doing now. Microsoft would own Java on the client-side if they would have played it right.

      Uh that's EXACTLY what Microsoft did! Extentions for COM, the WTL, delegation event model, etc. And what'd they get for their trouble? A lawsuit from Sun!

  • Just use Anjuta (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DuckWing (19575) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @08:06PM (#4963355)
    Why is there a big deal about this, other than the promise by IBM and making good that promise? Anjuta DevStudio [anjuta.org], which is one of the best GUI IDE's on Linux IMHO, supports Java. I personally havean't gotten into Java, so I could care less about this, but Anjuta is fully GPL'd already.
    • The point of Eclipse is that it's written in Java and is therefore cross-platform. Eclipse is also a java widget toolkit that's made to look like a native app on whatever platform it runs on.

      The Eclipse framework serves the same purpose as Swing. The Eclipse project is much more than an IDE.
  • Waste of Effort (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kindofblue (308225) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @08:07PM (#4963359)
    I think Eclipse is pretty damn good. If it could be sped up by precompiling critical parts using GCJ, and integrating with any good Java VM, then that would be great. However, reimplementing the entire (Java) API using "Free" code seems like an extraordinary waste of effort. Realistically, there would always be some mismatch between the official API and the free version, meaning that the Java API would be forked in a subtle way. That benefits Microsoft immensely.

    I think that the Java libraries will be very difficult to control fully by Sun, because they do not have IBM and Oracle to push around. IBM will absolutely not be backed into a corner by one of their main competitors in hardware, Sun. Because of that, I'm not worried about the Java APIs turning into a controlled arena, as Microsoft has done with Windows.

    Basically, I think the effort of the Open Source community, of those that like Java, would be much pretty spent on making GCJ integrate seemlessly with a compliant Java VM using JNI. GCJ could used to make a just-of-time optimizer. With C# and dotNet, I think there's an ahead-of-time compiler instead of a just-in-time compiler that can optimize the byte code for the target machine. Using GCJ/GCC, one could get that sort of performance boost, almost for free, if it were plugged into a compliant Java VM, meaning that it could integrate with DLL/DSOs using the Java Native Interface.

    Anyway, I, for one, would probably not waste my time using a slightly out-of-date API, on a slightly behind-the-curve VM or compiler. (BTW, I'm a heavy user of emacs, perl, mozilla, etc.) The java API, language and VM still has a LOT of room for improvement. I hope developers would rather innovate and improve the java standard than to fork off a clone.

    • Re:Waste of Effort (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 26, 2002 @08:52PM (#4963560)
      But they CAN'T innovate and improve on Java because Sun holds the ropes. I've been reading in Infoworld that Sun is looking to make more money from Java .. somehow .. and that worries me a little.

      I'd like to see a Free clone of Java, and then a community develop around the clone to CHANGE it into a better language. For instance, I'd like to see templates ("generics") added to java. I'd like to see type-safe enums. I'd like to see some "syntactic sugar" to make programs easier to write and read (hello, iterators). I'd like to see a GNU/Java implementation that has all this stuff and more, but is still backwards compatible with Sun/Java.

      I'd like to see native-code only Java. I'd like to see GTK+ bindings for Java. I'd like to see all the old library cruft cleared out of Java. Heck, I'd like to see Java pre-installed on Red Hat, without coming on a separate CD with a separate license and a crappy RPM that was made by Sun. I wish it was available on FreeBSD sooner. I wish a lot of stuff that's only possible or easy with third-party implementations.
      • Re:Waste of Effort (Score:3, Interesting)

        by kindofblue (308225)
        I'd like to see a lot of those things exactly. Generics are coming in the next java version, I think 1.5. It started out as a research project apart from Sun, named Pizza or maybe it was GJ (Generic Java), and then got folded in. Sun definately needs to relinquish more control to its community process.

        Many of the features you describe could still be done by compiling a Java++ superset language into the same bytecode or by translating to java code, like AT&T's cfront did for the original C++. The native-only stuff could be done directly on the byte code, or using something like GCJ to optimize java/java++ to machine code. Way back in java 1.0, SGI had a tool called javat which did almost that. It translated bytecode into machine code, but was not good at optimizing it. That's where GCJ/GCC would be very handy, since there's a full optimizing compiler in it. But my point is that these examples could still be done with the existing Java VM architecture. Language features, alternative syntaxes, and optimizers don't require reimplementing everything from scratch. IBM's jikes compiler is a very fast java compiler (written in C/C++) that adheres strictly to the Sun specifications, but it is buggy as hell. Reimplementing these things is not trivial.

        Anyway, I agree that rapid innovation is definately easiest when all the source is available. Mozilla, Linux, and emacs (in the 90's) are great examples of that. Rapid innovation is great for applications because the end-users can benefit immediately, and if something changes, then they can change their habits.

        However, for languages and APIs, standardization is very important. Many things depend on them: Documentation, applications, example code, tutorials, third-party books, training seminars, university courses, etc. which are all in the realm of developers. Developers suffer when source trees, APIs, or software practices become needlessly fractured. HTML and the Netscape/Internet Explorer browser wars is a great example of how web developers were saddled with two camps of HTML and zillions of incompatible dialects and implementations. We are still burdened by incompatibilities from those rapid innovation cycles.

        My ideal scenario would be that I could take JAR files from GNU, Apache, Borland, Oracle, IBM, etc. and mix them together and get an optimized precompiled (maybe native-only) executable. But some standardization mechanism is needed so they can all talk to each other, (unlike the horrible linking incompatibilities between all C++ compilers). It doesn't have to be Sun; maybe it could be Sun/IBM/ECMA/ANSI. But it will likely be some company, since non-profit standards bodies usually move very slowly. Linux, for instance, has been standardized for the corporate world by RedHat primarily, not the UnitedLinux group or even Linus (who's focus is the kernel).

        The important consideration is that there is a limited set of developer resources, even with thousands of open-source community eyeballs. Microsoft is the prime competitor to java, and Sun, IBM, Apple, etc are not. They are closer to being corporate resources and allies. As long as they remain good supporters of a unified java and don't create obstacles to the future use of these APIs/VMs, then I don't see why we shouldn't use them as resources, and thereby build upon their work instead of duplicating it.

    • It was not a waste of effort, as primarily the patches done were done to improve gcj and classpath.

      --jeff++
    • Re:Waste of Effort (Score:2, Insightful)

      by codealot (140672)

      Basically, I think the effort of the Open Source community, of those that like Java, would be much pretty spent on making GCJ integrate seemlessly with a compliant Java VM using JNI.

      I doubt that it would be practical. JNI does a lot of bookkeeping and is doomed to be far slower than whatever internal calling convention a JVM uses. You'd lose whatever advantages native compilation may have.

      I hope developers would rather innovate and improve the java standard than to fork off a clone.

      How can they innovate that for which they have no source code? The free implementation must come first. First they make it complete, then make it fast, then make it better.

  • Old news (Score:2, Informative)

    by DigitalDragon (194314)
    Sorry guys, but this is seriously old news.. You can't call this a Christmass gift or anything. Our company's been using it for a year already (with a free license) and I personally have developed couple of plugins for it.
    Nevertheless, this is the best tool I've used, and really, thanks IBM for doing such a great and generous job. My point is - this is not really news, and have nothing to do with Christmass.
    Cheers.
    • Sorry guys, but this is seriously old news.. You can't call this a Christmass gift or anything. Our company's been using it for a year already (with a free license) and I personally have developed couple of plugins for it.
      I think that the news that the author is referring to here is not about the release of Eclipse but that Eclipse can now be run using Gnu Classpath and gjc (which I doubt was the case a year ago). They are announcing this as a milestone for Classpath and gjc, not as a milestone for Eclipse. Eclipse just happens to be a hefty program that they are using as a test case, and its significance ends there. The significance of the announcement lies primarily with Classpath and gjc. That's my take on it anyway.
  • What's the difference between using GCC to compile ones Java apps, and using GCJ?
  • by Ghazgkull (83434) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @08:52PM (#4963558)
    There was only one catch, it was build on top of the proprietary java platform. This made it useless for the Free Software community.


    If you define the "Free Software community" as the zealotous 5% of free software users who refuse to use software that hasn't been blessed by RMS, you're right.

    For the rest of us, Eclipse has been useful (and free and open source) for over a year.
    • Do you not agree that the situation we are presented with today (completely free Java platform) is better than the situation we were saddled with yesterday (almost free Java platform)? Do you think this situation would have come about if RMS et al, weren't so "zealotous"?
    • If you disagree with RMS ... why don't you stop using the software he wrote with his convictions ?

      -> no linux (gcc required, you MIGHT try icc)
      -> no gnome (maybe parts of kde, IF you get it compiled without gcc)
      -> ...

      (even parts of windows 2k/xp were written by open-source "zealots" so I suggest you stay away from it too ...)

      Keep in mind that those ideals also started the cooperative development that free source code sharing enables, so indirectly he's responsible for much more software.
  • Give me a break (Score:4, Interesting)

    by leereyno (32197) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @10:00PM (#4963857) Homepage Journal
    "There was only one catch, it was build on top of the proprietary java platform. This made it useless for the Free Software community."

    There is plenty of java code that has been released under the GPL and BSD licenses. The only way that java would be useless to someone is if they turned their nose up at it. Turning one's nose up at something for non-technical reasons is usually a bad idea.

    Lee
  • The point (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AveryRegier (66592) on Thursday December 26, 2002 @10:17PM (#4963917) Homepage Journal
    I've been following both of these projects for years.

    The point that so many have missed is that this shows how close the GNU implementations are to be being a complete JDK replacement. Eclipse is a very complex beast that uses nearly all of the Java APIs. This achievement shows the quality of the years of work that has gone into these free projects. All of this work is now finally ready to pay off.

    Congratulations to the whole ClassPath and GCJ teams!

    -Avery Regier
  • I thought they were giving me a car :(
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 26, 2002 @11:33PM (#4964259)
    The GNU folks had no hope of recreating a cleanroom AWT and Swing - it was just too bloody big and complicated. It would have taken at least 4 years to create a cleanroom Swing. Then along comes Eclipse/SWT which did all the hard bits for them in C. The result - a portable and very fast Java GUI. Now folks have a very good reason to work on GCJ because they can finally see some concrete results. Success breeds further success.
    Compiling your application to a single binary (or .exe if you will) is a HUGE advantage for distributing applications. That 20 meg JRE is a complete pain in the butt for a client to download. It's much better to simply run a 5 megabyte GCJ-compiled application.
    Java doesn't suck. Java's GUIs need not be slow. It was Swing that sucked. Finally people realize where to lay blame.
    Sun - get rid of Swing once and for all! Swing is a poorly designed GUI tookit and a complete embarassment to Java.
  • Code once, debug everywhere. Although, to be fair, is that still the situation or has it improved since I last dabbled?
    • That really depends on when you last "dabbled" and what you were doing, doesn't it?

      I've been developing Java code professionally for a little over two years now, writing server-side stuff for web sites. About half of us work under Linux, the rest using either Win2k or XP, deploying the code on machines running RedHat, and we've never had any trouble.

      Of course, if you're talking about applets, then your problem isn't with Java, but with the browser producers' broken JVMs (especially the MS one, which simply isn't worth bothering with). Applets are only really of any use if you control the client environment, right down to being able to tell people to download a new JVM. No use for silly little toys on websites, but fine for more complex, bespoke stuff (although still a pain in the arse to develop, of course, especially if you're not used to creating GUIs).
  • I really hope that the gcj effort manages to implement all the classes of the standard Java API and above all that the compilation to binary becomes a reality for all Java developers. The implied importance of it being GPL is not that important to most of us who actually do use Java, the limitations, lack of AWT, Swing or a full SWT, memory consumption and speed are much more important. I wish I had the time so that I could work on this myself, because this would provide Java Developers the possibility of finally writing GUI code on Windows, Linux and Mac that could compete on a level ground with C# and .NET.

    I can already see problems arising with Mono in that I simply don't trust MS not to try and kick it in the balls with a patent suit after it has started to become widely used. .NET and C# might be easy to use and very powerful, thereby providing the "carrot"for many developers, but I think it is naive and irresponsible to think that MS will play fair. Have they ever done so before?

    Java is easy to use and secure, and at the moment, on cellphones which have Java bytecode instruction sets in their CPU's, is anexcellent opportunity for expansion. Cellphones are a booming market and present a real chance for Java on the client side with J2ME. Being able to compile to native code would make it even better suited for that purpose. MS knows how important the Cellphone market is which is why they are up to their tricks and abuse there again (Sendo) and which is why almost all Cellphone makers are giving MS a wide berth and are using Symbian, which brings the story back to Java...
  • Would you guys have pointers to start with eclipse? I downloaded and tried the IDE, but I would like to learn more on how to use SWT, but I could not find any doc on SWT (API, tutorial) on www.eclipse.org [eclipse.org]. Its probably there, but could not find it. I find that there should be more "Quick start/pointer" document on that site.

    Maybe you have books to recommend. Please provide any helpfull info you got (libraries to suggest, tricks, etc...) that would help a newbie to jump start quickly on this platform.

  • It's a software tool!?!? Dang... And here I thought I would be getting a free Japanese sports-coupe!
  • I guess their next goal would be to have GCC not target that proprietary platform, Windows...

If you aren't rich you should always look useful. -- Louis-Ferdinand Celine

Working...