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WTP Expanded Downloads

The WTP Architecture Working Group is investigating making parts of WTP independently downloadable in much the same way the Eclipse Project makes SWT and the Jar Processor from org.eclipse.update.core available separately. When WTP was first divided into components, the Common component (incidentally now the Common subproject) was set up to house plug-ins that were required by WTP but which didn't themselves depend on WTP The thinking at the time was that these plug-ins could eventually be pushed down into the Eclipse Project, but as the releases have gone by that looks more and more unlikely. At the same time, there has been interest expressed about some parts of WTP being supplied as separate downloads. Rather than give our release engineering team a large amount of work to do that might ultimately prove unneeded, we'd like to propose a pilot program of three downloads:

  1. Faceted Project Framework - The Faceted Project Framework allows the plug-in developer to think of projects as composed of units of functionality (facets) which can be added and removed by the user. It contains mechanisms for modeling and resolving constraints between facets as well as a generalized UI for end users. It requires Java5 and Draw2D (from GEF).
  2. Snippets view - The Snippets view allows dragging and dropping of snippets of text into text editors. Users can create snippets with variables to be filled in when dropped into editors while plug-ins are free to do almost anything they want when their snippets are dropped--in addition to inserting text, importing of examples, creating other resources, even launching their own wizards or driving other UI interactions. User created snippets can also be imported and exported to be shared by a team. Requires GEF.
  3. JSDT - The JavaScript Development Tools, already available in WTP 3.0 builds, provides a full JavaScript IDE. While it also integrates with the HTML and JSP editors in WTP, a separate download would contain only the JavaScript functionality.

Of course, what we really need is feedback. We want to hear if this idea and these downloads are of interest to our adopters and our users, both from those in favor of them and those not. Use the handy Discussion link to the left and let us know what you think.

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