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Using Eclipse for Java development: A helpful introduction to the world’s most-used IDE

Introduction: Intro and History to the Eclipse IDE

This report focuses on the most commonly used Java IDE currently available to mankind. Under the spotlight is Eclipse, the most widely selected, praised and complained about IDE.

Intro and history to the Eclipse IDE

The Eclipse IDE, according to a recent report on developer productivity, is used by roughly two-thirds of the 1800+ Java developers we talked to, making it a significant player in the IDE market. With the largest user base and a vast number of plugins and integrations into the development world, Eclipse is where most developers start off when it comes to writing code.

Intro and history Eclipse IDE graph comparison

Eclipse is a self-described universal toolset for development, defined as a platform for building integrated development environments and tools for various languages. However that is a very broad description and sometimes it’s nice to see the actual trees in the forest, so here’s our take on it: Eclipse is an extremely customizable Java IDE which supports several other languages and development platforms.

Eclipse started off as an IBM Canada project back in 2001, later rolled into an open-source program with a consortium of stewards from leading companies. Since 2004, it is supported and maintained by the Eclipse Foundation, which is a non-profit organisation that is backed (i.e. funded by annual dues) by top industry companies, like Oracle, IBM, Red Hat, SAP, Google and ZeroTurnaround ;-)

The Eclipse Foundation not only keeps the infrastructure of the Eclipse IDE project running and helps set up transparent & maintainable development for projects that are willing to join the umbrella of Eclipse, but they also prioritize the care of the Eclipse ecosystem and community. The Eclipse Foundation actively markets all kinds of projects based on or using Eclipse which, combined with the availability of educational materials, makes Eclipse a solid choice when it comes to determining your next project’s platform.


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