Apache just received a proposal to bring AJAX tooling to the Eclipse IDE. The proposal is sponsored by IBM and Zimbra, and is championed by Sam Ruby. Toolkits that will be incorporated into the intial version include Zimbra AjaxTK and Rico. [via]
This is a huge deal. One main obstacle to widespread AJAX development is the pathetic lack of tools. It’s hard to do proper development without a proper IDE. This project aims to rectify that.
My favorite line in the proposal.
Champion: Sam Ruby
Sam Ruby is a bad-ass. He don’t need no stinkin’ mentor!
There’s a minor skirmish with the Dojo folks, who clearly feel a little sandbagged by the whole thing.
I’m quite puzzled by this proposal. As I understand it, its mainly about
a set of Eclipse plugins for Ajax applications and the Zimbra library
that, among other features, provides a set of SWT-like widgets.
Also, this proposal pops up right after I mention on members@ that
several projects at Apache are using or plan to use Dojo  and that we
talked about inviting them. I sincerely hope this is just a coincidence.
So the questions are:
– is the ASF the place for Eclipse extensions? I don’t deny the ability
to _existing_ project to host their tooling, but this isn’t the case here.
– why incubate an Ajax library that none of the current ASF projects
uses nor plans to use, unless I missed something?
I hope that this project quickly embraces Dojo (and MochiKit!) as supported libraries fairly quickly. An IDE is only good if it lets you use the libraries you want, and Dojo is hugely popular (see taking the pulse of the open source AJAX community for evidence of this).
Apache has a great heritage of kick-ass open-source projects, so I’m sure they’ll pull this one off.