Interview with Ian Skerrett, VP of Marketing and Ecosystem at Eclipse Foundation

Eclipse Neon: “We have been getting better at integrating automated error reporting into Eclipse”

Dominik Mohilo
Eclipse Neon
Ian Skerrett

Eclipse Neon has just been released. We talked to Ian Skerrett, VP of Marketing and Ecosystem at Eclipse Foundation, about the strengths and weaknesses of this new release and the Eclipse Foundation’s plans for 2017/2018.

Eclipse Neon is up and running, so we asked Ian Skerrett, VP of Marketing and Ecosystem at Eclipse Foundation to dive into its strengths and weaknesses. We seized the opportunity and asked about the Eclipse Foundation’s plans for 2017/2018 and tried to clear the air about the discussion regarding dropping the release names like “Mars”, “Neon” and “Oxygen” and instead use something like “Eclipse 2017.1”.

JAXenter: Eclipse Neon has just been released. Of course every release is special, but I need to ask: What is special about Neon?

Ian Skerrett: It always feels great to see the Eclipse community come together and produce another release train. This year some of the highlights include a re-boot of the Eclipse JavaScript Development Tools (JSDT) project to significantly improve the tools support for JavaScript developers, including a JSON editor, integration with the Chromium v8 debugger, support for Grunt and Gulp, and NodeJS integration. Eclipse PDT 4.0 is also now available for PHP developers and represents a major release to support the new PHP 7 language. Finally, there is lots of new features for Java developers in the Eclipse Platform and the Eclipse Java Development Tools (JDT).

The Eclipse Foundation is also introducing into Neon the concept of an Eclipse User Storage Service (USS).

JAXenter: There are over 80 projects included in the Simultaneous Release. In your opinion, which one is the most promising?

Ian Skerrett: With 80 releases it is often difficult to simple out one or two projects. One thing we have been doing is getting better at integrating automated error reporting into Eclipse. In the past year, over 3 million error reports were automatically submitted by over 350,000 individuals. The cool thing is that 7800 problems were fixed based on these error reports. The Eclipse Foundation is also introducing into Neon the concept of an Eclipse User Storage Service (USS). This will allow individual users to save information with their Eclipse account. For instance, in the Neon release of Marketplace Client (MPC) you will now be able to save your favorite plugins from Marketplace on the Eclipse USS. This will allow you to be able to easily reinstalled these plugins into new Eclipse installations.

JAXenter: What was especially challenging about the Neon release train?

Ian Skerrett: Given the fact that 84 project teams and 69 million lines of code are involved, it is remarkable how few challenges show up during the release train. The distributed nature of the Eclipse development process really limit the number of bottlenecks.

JAXenter: There is a discussion going on about dropping the release names like “Mars”, “Neon” and “Oxygen” and instead use something like “Eclipse 2017.1”. What is your take on that?

Ian Skerrett: It seems like an interesting proposal but I think some more community discussion needs to take place. Both options have benefits and disadvantages.

Outside of the core Eclipse platform we have a number of communities that are starting to take off.

JAXenter: The Foundations Friend of Eclipse Enhancement Program (FEEP) provides the organization with capacities to improve the IDE. Will new projects also be funded with this money? And if yes, what kind of projects can users expect?

Ian Skerrett: For now we are focused on the core Eclipse Platform and JDT. We don’t have any short term plans to expand to other projects.

JAXenter: What else does the Eclipse Foundation have in store for 2017/2018?

Ian Skerrett: For Java developers, Java 9 support will be a big thing. There is an early release available for Neon. Outside of the core Eclipse platform we have a number of communities that are starting to take off, such as our Eclipse IoT Working Group, LocationTech, Eclipse Che, etc. The big thing about the Eclipse community will be the continued diversity of the technology and community. It is going to be an exciting time.

Thank you very much!

Author
Dominik Mohilo
Dominik Mohilo studied German and sociology at the Frankfurt University, and works at S&S Media since 2015.

Comments
comments powered by Disqus