Eclipse Ecosystem

A blog devoted to promoting the Eclipse ecosystem

Monday, May 29, 2006

"indeed", some work to do in Eclipse Ecosystem is a "one search, all jobs" search portal which has a pretty cool trend feature similar to Google Trends. I'm a big fan of career data. It's relatively hard to game and indicitive of what skills organizations are actually looking for today.

The Eclipse ecosystem has a good trajectory on .Net, but our community has a way to go to catch up. For example, organizations looking for developers with Eclipse skills versus Visual Studio skills looks like this:

The data specific to Java developers is also interesting. Handicapping Eclipse with "java" on the search gives us this:

There is another interesting fact that shows up in the data. Let's take Eclipse out of the picture and and get a closer look at non-Eclipse Java developer tools:

There appears to be an aggregation effect. One's loss is another's gain, but overall things are flat. "Indeed", if you "sum" up the non-Eclipse Java tools, you see a flat, even downward trend:

- Don

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Great Java One Summary from Chief Technology Architect at Harvard

I could have written my own Java One 06' summary, but after reading Jim Farley's over at O'Reilly Net, I figured it'd be best to just link to his.

He nailed one key point I probably would have rambled on for screens trying to say (sorry Zx :)

"Eclipse was a star for more pragmatic reasons: virtually every IDE-related vendor demo and most of the non-Sun sessions were shown in Eclipse, and virtually every vendor offering an IDE plugin was offering it for Eclipse."
Don't miss the reference to GWT stealing some spotlight from Java One. And don't miss the reference that it includes SWT and JDT :-)

- Don

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The Java One Eclipse T-Shirt Metric

Last year the T-Shirts lasted until the second last hour of the exibit hall being open. This year, even with more shirts, we pretty much ran out on the first day. There are just a few XXL's left. There was a serious run on the shirts all day, and our poor little booth way at the back was constantly surrounded.

My apologies to those who didn't make it out on Day 1 for the shirts! We do have some XXL's left, but get there early! It's amazing how fast the M/L shirts went. I guess there are more svelte programmers than we thought :-)

- Don

Monday, May 15, 2006

Eclipse Career Metrics May 15

Demand for Eclipse skills continues to grow rapidly. reports today are 822 jobs seeking Eclipse skills, up from 490 to start the year. JDeveloper is at 118, up from 95 to start the year. IntelliJ is up to 37 after starting the year at 27. Netbeans is up to 39 from 30 six weeks ago, but down from 41 at the start of the year.

MS "Visual Studio" is up on the year after showing a couple months on weakness. It stands at 1474 from 1378.

It's interesting to break down the stats within certain technologies. For example, Eclipse is the clear platform of choice for SWING development. 675 job posts mention Swing. Of those, 93 are also seeking Eclipse skills, 3 are seeking JDeveloper, 2 are seeking IntelliJ and 7 are seeking NetBeans.

When you look at more recent technologies like AJAX, the numbers are even more in Eclipse's favor. Of the 630 job postings mentioning AJAX, 51 mention Eclipse, none mention JDeveloper, 4 mention IntelliJ and 2 mention NetBeans.

- Don

Friday, May 12, 2006

Random thoughts on searching for Eclipse

This blog has been in my draft list for a long time, and the release of Google Trends made me come back and take another run at it. I had a feeling that there would be a flood of blogs with all kinds of neato data this week related to Google Trends, and sure enough there has been a boat load. I've found the data to be a bit hit an miss though, especially when you start to zooming in by year, and comparing data to aggregated lists and other sources. Moreover the lack of absolute terms is a bit disconcerting too - did it grow from 10 to 100 or 10,000 to 100,000? I do appreciate the challenge in this space as I have been poking around with some "meme miner" tools over the past few months.

But I digress, and so is most of this blog.

If I ever launch a new product or company I'm going to call it "Bezawankafolzamullumba" or something equally as nonsensical. There are more and more "trend tools" like Google Trends, and darn it "eclipse" is used not only to find the technology, but also for the solar and lunar kind.

We know from our web server stats that 35% of all search engine hits we get are from people who simply search for "eclipse". Validating this is the fact that the Eclipse Foundation is ranked number 1 for "eclipse" on google and, second on and sixth on yahoo. There isn't even a close second search term hitting our site. The next most popular search click through to our site is usually "eclipse download" usually running around 2.5%. So the data is clear - by orders of magnitude and stderr, when a developer wants to find Eclipse (the technology), they simply search for "eclipse", and are usually rewarded with a #1 hit. Unfortunately, when you look at a trend tool for "eclipse", the data is perfectly washed out by the solar and lunar calendar.

With meme miners and other tools, I've tried working with various modifiers like "eclipse ide", "eclipse java" or "eclipse download" but there are flaws with that approach as well. Not only is there is never a close second to "eclipse" on web search referals, there is almost always a fairly random grouping of search terms in the 8th through 50th rankings. For example, "eclipse php" is sometimes quite high, and sometimes drops a bit lower.

The reasoning is pretty simple (and google trends validates this quite nicely) -- a lot of searching is done in response to current events. If there is a story in popular media on a hot topic, then the searches with the modifiers like "php", "rcp" or "swt" spike. Moreover, there is often strong correlations to searches of related products. When JDeveloper announced it would become free in June last year, their search trends spiked and so did Eclipse (it's hard to see in that link, but there is a clear co-incedent spike at the same time). When the marketing hype leading to Netb eans 5.0 was happening in late 2005, early 2006, there was a clear and coincident spike in searches. Bottom line - just as industry news pulls related stocks up and down as a group, there is clear indicators that search volume is similarly linked.

Another impact is the organization of your website. It's not at all uncommon to visit a website, and then revert to a search enging to look for something within the site (even when the site offers a search ability). For example, if we removed all links to the download page from, I'd bet anything that we would see a major spike in "eclipse download" search hits.

Imagine the use case - you want to download Eclipse. So, you google "eclipse", click to, don't immediately see a download link, you go back in the browser, search "eclipse download" and voila, two search hits for the price of one. Looking at the trends (not only from google, but from our own stats) it's clear - when our website is updated and refined to make it easier for people to find what they want, search traffic drops and there are fewer page hits.

So although I find search trends to be a very useful tool to understand an ecosystem, one has to be very careful understanding the data. It's why I really like to rely on sources like job postings, raw download stats and other "harder to bias" stats.

Any other factors impacting search trends? One quick thought is the obvious calendar influence. Much less searching over Christian holidays it seems.

- Don

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Eclipse Mobility - Ericsson IMS Developer Program

Ericsson has just launched it's "IMS eco-system" initiative and it's based, of course, on the Eclipse Platform. It's a great example of using Eclipse to provide complete end-to-end tools for Application Developers. There's a heck of a lot of work going on with Eclipse in the Embedded and Mobility verticals. Maybe it's time to to call some of it out more often?

- Don

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Jump, Jive and Swing with Eclipse at Red Hat Summit 2006

As Johnny Cash says, I've been everywhere, man. After a decade of road-warrior status I'm finally going to get to cross Nashville off my list.

I'll be at the Red Hat summit, May 30-June 2 in Nashville, TN. I'll be speaking on the "Open Source Dynamics" track on May 31st at 11:30. There's a lot of Eclipse at this conference. I'm particularly keen to see the "Red Hat Developer Nation" talk - there's some buzz starting to brew on this, should be interesting...

If you're heading down, drop me a line!

- Don

Monday, May 08, 2006

Spring support for OSGi

There's been a lot of interest in the Rich Server Platform proposal, Equinox, and Eclipse's OSGi support in general. Server side pluggability with Eclipse. Cool stuff.

The Spring team have a new feature open for OSGi support in Spring. You can read about it here. Very cool stuff.

- Don

Monday, May 01, 2006

My TV came with a GPL License?!

I splurged and picked up a 50" Sony SXRD a couple weeks ago and have been immensly enjoying the NHL Playoffs in HD (including the upset victory by the Oilers over the Wings!)

The biggest surprise with the TV, however, was the fact that when I opened the box there was a bright-red sticker screaming "READ THIS" on a cellophane wrapped document. Inside the wrapper was a 4 pager titled "REQUIRED PUBLIC STATEMENT FOR GPL/LGPL LICENSED SOFTWARE USED IN THIS TELEVISION". True to the spirit of GPL, the GPL/LGPL code used in the TV (with mods) is available for download at

Should be good fodder for the Colorado Software Summit this fall, as I will be giving a session on Open Source Licensing for Developers.

So if I sell the TV at some point, am I obligated to include the license? Or what are my obligations if I update the firmware myself (which is possible on this TV :)

- Don