One of the greatest tools in my development arsenal is the Eclipse Integrated Development Environment (IDE). Eclipse provides a wealth of goodies originally developed for Java developers, similar to Microsoft’s Visual Studio. The Eclipse Project has grown to be one of the largest language editors, with plugins for Ruby, Python and more. Among the newest plug-ins is the Rich AJAX Platform (RAP).
Getting Started With RAP

Based on their previous Plug-In Environment RCP (Rich Client Platform), RAP allows developers to create software using Eclipse’s workbench code. Programmers can create plug-ins to the existing Eclipse editor, or create completely independent applications based off of Eclipse’s source code. The difference between the two mainly stems from where this code is viewed. RCP creates desktop applications, while RAP creates web applications. An example of RAP in action can be found here. Two videos, care of TheScreencast.com, provide a perfect introduction to getting started with Eclipse RAP applications:

Eclipse RAP can be a wonderful venue for web developers to pursue if they are tackling new clients with large, desktop-native code bases who want to bring their code to life on the web. RAP provides a wealth of tools and help to create more feature-rich, complex applications that mimic those on the desktop. So if you haven’t started using Eclipse yet, get it here. For more info on Eclipse RAP, try your luck at the following links, and let us know how it goes!

Resources to Explore