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RIA & Ajax: Article

Eclipse Foundation Announces Initiatives for AJAX Applications and Dynamic Languages

Projects include Eclipse Rich AJAX Platform, Eclipse AJAX Toolkit Framework and Eclipse Dynamic Language Toolkit

The Eclipse Foundation today announced three new project milestones that extend the Eclipse platform for Ajax applications and dynamic languages. The three projects include the Eclipse Rich Ajax Platform (RAP), the Eclipse Ajax Toolkit Framework (ATF) and the Eclipse Dynamic Language Toolkit (DLTK). These projects provide innovative new Eclipse-based technology to be utilized by Ajax developers and developers using dynamic languages such as Python, Ruby and Tcl.

The Eclipse Rich Ajax Platform (RAP) project provides a runtime enabling organizations to build rich Ajax-enabled Internet applications. RAP extends the existing Eclipse Rich Client Platform (RCP) by adding a series of frameworks that allow developers to quickly create Ajax applications. Based on Eclipse RCP technologies, this new initiative will allow organizations to use a common component model and platform to build both rich desktop applications and rich browser based applications. The first milestone release of RAP is now available. More information can be found at

"RAP allows us to build the next generation of our products with full Ajax capabilities, the productivity we are used to from rich client development, and without the need to write complex JavaScript,” explains Ludwig Neer, CTO of CAS AG, a leading German CRM vendor. “By using Eclipse as a platform we get a consistent development model that is all Java and can be used for Rich Clients, Ajax Clients and even for server side implementations."

The Eclipse Ajax Toolkit Framework (ATF) project provides the tools and frameworks for building an Ajax IDE. ATF makes it easy for developers to build, debug and deploy their Ajax applications. It includes a variety of components, including a Javascript debugger that supports debugging of local and network files and tools for inspecting running Ajax applications. Eclipse ATF supports a number of the more popular Ajax frameworks, including Dojo, Rico and Zimbra. The latest available download of ATF now provides support for Mac OSX, in addition to existing Windows and Linux support. More information can be found at

“Nexaweb has incorporated ATF into our Nexaweb Studio, a visual drag and drop environment for developing enterprise Ajax applications,” explains Coach Wei, CTO of Nexaweb Technologies Inc. “This is incredibly innovative technology that allows us to create innovative commercial products and demonstrates that Eclipse is well positioned to be the standard for Ajax IDEs.”

The Eclipse Dynamic Language Toolkit project (DLTK) extends the Eclipse platform to other dynamic computer languages, like Python, Ruby and Tcl. DLTK provides the frameworks and components, such as debugging and interactive console, code indexing and refactoring, to simplify the task of adding support for dynamically typed languages to Eclipse. The initial release of DLTK is now available and provides support for Tcl. Future releases will have support for Ruby and Python. More information can be found at

“Eclipse is important part of the Cisco development tool strategy and we have plans to expand its use as a development tool," said Ed Warnike, a software engineer at Cisco. "We have and will continue to contribute to the DLTK project, specifically to the Tcl, in support of several thousand engineers at Cisco and elsewhere who are using this technology.”

All three of these projects will be featured at the EclipseCon conference, March 5-8 in Santa Clara, California. EclipseCon features tutorials and technical sessions about the various Eclipse projects. In addition, the OSGi Developer Conference is being co-located at EclipseCon.

More Stories By Eclipse News Desk

Eclipse News Desk gathers and summarizes news and information from newspapers, magazines, Web sites, newsletters, and online communitities likely to be of interest to those who support the move toward a language-neutral, vendor-neutral, open-source platform for the development of integrated tools.

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