Embace Java, kill the noise and add some sugar

Eclipse Xtends olive branch to Java

Chris Mayer

Developers says it compiles to readable Java code

The Eclipse Foundation rather quietly brought out a new language
this week in
– insisting that it wasn’t yet another alternate language
added to the JVM but would embrace Java and modernise it.

The subproject from the XText project is slightly different from
the plethora of other available options (Scala, Clojure etc) by
compile to straight readable Java code, resembling its
syntax. Xtend will come with the latest Eclipse IDE support
and relies purely on the JDK library. The standard IDE features
will crossover too such as colouring, refactoring and so on.

The people behind the new language state that Xtend’s raison
d’etre is to ‘kill the noise’ by addressing the common bugbear of
writing Java – reducing redundant code but keeping it static.

Xtend will also create advances or as they call it ‘add some
sugar’. Closures are finally on the agenda with Xtend, as well as
extension methods, greater support for multi-line string literals
and an improved Switch expression. All of which are detailed
further on the Xtend

This nifty intro video really highlights what Xtend is and what
it plans to do…

Xtend Intro from Xtext Team on Vimeo.

Streamling seems to be the order of the day here – a noble
cause. It may not seem like a huge development in the grand scheme
of things, but small changes don’t half make a developers life
easier in the long run, and it shall be interesting to see how many
adopt Xtend and Xtext as an alternative.

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