Eclipse Foundation executive director Mike Milinkovich wants to make one thing perfectly clear: Project Orion is not Eclipse.
Milinkovich even seems to brush off those inside his mighty organization who say they don't understand why Eclipse is doing Project Orion. If you don't get Orion, "it just means you're not the right audience for Orion," he tells The Reg.
In the 10 years since IBM helped establish Eclipse in 2001, Eclipse made its name as a framework for tools from IBM, Oracle, CA, and SAP.
The organization's project expertise lies with tools for server-side Java, BI, data-centric applications, and the desktop. But Eclipse has sprawled as more and more projects have been added: from seven million lines of code in 2006 to 33 million lines in last year's release. Not something you could fit into a browser.
So what is Orion if it's not Eclipse? And why is Eclipse turning its attention to the mobile web and app stores?
According to Milinkovich, tools that plug into Orion via the browser can make changes to code or artifacts on the server and have them reflected across all devs working on a project.
This is reminiscent of the shtick IDE makers like Borland Software used to spin: collaborative team development to justify the sale of big, fat IDEs on the client with a team server on the back end to check-in and check-out code, manage progresses, and "improve productivity".
Death by bloat
Marketing types spun this line, CIOs and heads of app dev bought in to it, and those doing the coding got stuck with horrible IDEs that they hated and invariably didn't use them.
Eclipse helped kill companies like Borland and forced a realignment in the tools market because its Framework code was open source and freely available. It ended the lock-in companies had tried to exert over developers and partners via their closed-source and bulky IDEs.