BEA to join Eclipse open source tools foundation

BEA Systems on Friday confirmed its plans to join the Eclipse Foundation open source tools consortium.

The company will participate as a top-level "Strategic Developer" member, paying as much as US$250,000 per year in dues, and is vowing to ship a commercial product based on Eclipse within one year, Eclipse said. BEA is proposing to lead a language development tools project based on the company's Javelin compiler framework for Java, according to Eclipse.

BEA has pondered participating in Eclipse previously. However, the company has its own IDE as part of its WebLogic Workshop toolkit, viewed as potentially competitive with the Eclipse IDE. But BEA previously has worked with Eclipse on Pollinate, an open source incubator project that links Project Beehive to the Eclipse IDE. Project Beehive is an open source development based on Workshop.

BEA's participation in Eclipse leaves Sun Microsystems and Microsoft as perhaps the only major vendors not participating in Eclipse, which was founded by IBM in 2001 but has since become an independent entity.

"Absolutely, I'd be thrilled to have either (Sun or Microsoft) join the foundation," said Mike Milinkovich, executive director at Eclipse.

BEA's formal announcement of its participation in Eclipse will be made March 1 at the EclipseCon 2005 conference in Burlingame, Calif.

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