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To the millions of developers, engineers, and users all over the world, Eclipse is an extensible platform for tool integration. To the hundreds of thousands of commercial customers using it to develop plug-ins or complete tool platforms, Eclipse represents a proven, reliable, scalable technology on which commercial products can be quickly designed, developed, and deployed.

To the thousands of students and researchers, Eclipse represents a stable platform for innovation, freedom, and experimentation. To all these individuals, groups, and organizations, Eclipse is a vendor-neutral platform to tool integration supported by a diverse Eclipse Ecosystem.

The Eclipse vendor-neutral platform is built on industry standards, which support a wide range of tools, platforms, and languages. The Eclipse Technology is royalty-free and has worldwide redistribution rights. The platform was designed from a clean slate to be extensible and to provide exemplarity tools. Eclipse development is based on rules of open source engagements. This includes open, transparent, merit-based, and collaborative development. All individuals can participate and contribute. All plans are developed in the public arena. This platform and the open source development process creates an environment for creativity, originality, and freedom. Eclipse is unparalleled in today's software-tool environment.

The software-tool industry is undergoing massive changes from the commoditization of the technology to the company consolidation. New technology efforts are being redesigned, while a common set of tooling infrastructure is adopted as an industry standard. Successful developers and development paradigms are being challenged to adopt new skills and new, more efficient methods. Old business models are being challenged with free software, and new business models are being developed.

The software-tool industry is deeply appreciative of Eric Clayberg and Dan Rubel for this authoritative book. This book provides the knowledge base so that developers, engineers, and users can learn and use the Eclipse Technology. This enables them to respond to these technology and industry change agents.

Eric and Dan leverage long careers of building software tooling. They each have extensive experience with using Smalltalk for seventeen years, Java for ten years, and Eclipse for six years. They have developed extensive vendor and customer relationships that enable them to experience firsthand the necessary elements for building successful software. They are able to combine this direct knowledge of the technology with the experiences of the users to create a book that provides an in-depth description of the process to build commercial-quality Eclipse extensions.

This book provides an introduction and overview to the new developer of the entire process of plug-in development, including all the best practices to achieve high-quality results. This is a reference book for experienced Eclipse developers. It discusses the APIs and demonstrates many samples and examples. Detailed tutorials are provided for both new and experienced developers. Eric and Dan leverage their broad knowledge of user interface (UI) development and present the Eclipse SWT UI. This establishes the building blocks for all Eclipse UI development. These authors articulate the development challenges of building tool software and establish proven in-depth solutions to the problems.

If you are a developer, engineer, or user wishing to build or use Eclipse, this book provides both a foundation and reference. It also provides the intellectual foundation to contribute to the open source Eclipse project and to develop commercial software.

Skip McGaughey

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