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Red Hat CTO on Eclipse: 'Not just a Java initiative'

(Anaheim, Calif.) -- The Eclipse tools plug-in environment may succeed where other attempts failed to create a universal framework because Eclipse can bridge open-source and Java community efforts, Red Hat Inc. CTO Michael Tiemann told attendees at EclipseCon today.

He called the Eclipse organization ''a tipping point in the making'' because it represents a fundamental change in the way future software will be developed by programmers in those two communities. Tiemann added that he expects developers using many languages will embrace Eclipse, moving it into the mainstream of the computer science academic world in the next two years. He compared Eclipse to Tim Berners-Lee's invention of the World Wide Web and Linus Torvalds' creation of Linux.

Besides providing integration for the tools developers use to model, code and test, Tiemann envisions Eclipse as providing the framework for an eventual integration of multilevel security. This has the potential to curtail the current plague of viruses and worms, and provide a killer app that would make Eclipse ubiquitous in the corporate world.

''Eclipse gives me hope that it can provide a framework for the Holy Grail of multilevel security,'' he said in his keynote address Wednesday in a packed ballroom at the Disneyland Hotel, where EclipseCon, the Eclipse group's first technical conference, is being held this week.

In bringing a variety of developers together, Tiemann stressed that Eclipse is not just a Java initiative even though it is being adopted by members of that community. Tiemann, who made his first major open-source contribution over a decade ago with his work on the GNU C++ compiler, said he joined the Eclipse Foundation because it also accommodates C, C++ and other languages such as Python. An IBM representative at the show pointed out that Big Blue, the prime mover behind Eclipse, even has a Cobol project in the works.

For more Linux news, go to ADT Linux Page.

For more Eclipse news, go to ADT Eclipse Page.

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Rich Seeley is Web Editor for Campus Technology.

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