Java tools organization pondered

Java tools vendors may form an organization to make Java-based IDEs more interoperable, officials at Java tools vendors confirmed on Monday.

The organization, which may be called the Java Tools Community, would follow an earlier initiative, Java Specification Request (JSR) 198, which attempts to provide for Java tools interoperablity.

“It’s been talked about but there’s nothing official to say about (the organization) and we’re always working to improve interoperability in the Java standards,” said Julie Geer-Brown, an Oracle Corp. representative. The idea for Java Tools Community was first mentioned a year ago, she said.

Oracle proposed JSR 198 in November 2002 as an attempt to have the Java community develop an API for standard access to Java IDEs from multiple vendors.

A representative of Eclipse, which develops open source tools and IDEs for platforms including Java, was supportive of the initiative.

“My understanding is that what this is talking about is unifying tool vendors and consolidating their requirements and taking this through the JCP (Java Community Process) and that seems like a great idea,” said Eclipse chairperson Skip McGaughey.

Asked if the Java Tools Community presents any redundancy to what Eclipse is doing pertaining to IDEs, McGaughey said Eclipse has IDEs for multiple platforms, including Java and C/C++.

Any decision by Eclipse to join the Java Tools Community would have to be made by the Eclipse board, said McGaughey.