The Web Tools Platform (WTP) Project is, in many ways, an Eclipse success story. The goal of the Eclipse community and the Eclipse Foundation is twofold: to cultivate both an Open Source community and an ecosystem of complementary products, capabilities, and services. Over the past two years, this project has made great progress on both fronts. WTP has been adopted by a broad crosssection of the industry as the platform for their Java EE and Web tools: BEA WebLogic Workshop, CodeGear JBuilder, Genuitec's MyEclipse, IBM Rational Application Developer, JBoss IDE, and SAP NetWeaver, to name just a few of the prominent ones. (You can read the full list in Chapter 16.) By any measure, WTP has been very successful in achieving its goal of providing a common tool infrastructure for the Java EE development world.
On the Open Source project side, WTP has garnered contributions from many organizations and companies. To list just a few of the prominent ones: WTP has active participation from ObjectWeb Lomboz developers such as Naci Dai, it has been ably led by Tim Wagner from BEA, it has seen contributions of code and committers from Oracle in both the JavaServer Faces (JSF) and objectrelational persistence (Dali ORM), and-last but not least-has had major support from IBM in terms of code, committers, and leadership from Lawrence Mandel, Arthur Ryman, David Williams, and others. For the full story, I highly recommend reading the WTP Is Born section in Chapter 2.
In short, Web Tools has been a wonderful community effort, an effort that has been rewarded with many shipped products. And in the Eclipse community, this is truly the measure of a successful project.
The simple fact that so many organizations-many of them fierce competitors in the marketplace-cooperate on the development of WTP and ship products on top of it is a testament to the WTP project leadership. It is also one of the strongest proof-points that the Eclipse community's model of "collaborate on the platform and compete on the product" is the correct one for today's world of highly complex software, faster time-to-market requirements, and shrinking development budgets. Each of the products listed earlier (WebLogic Workshop, RAD, JBuilder, NetWeaver, and so forth) is highly differentiated, yet they share the same Eclipse Web Tools Platform base.
Since the project's inception, the WTP team has been working toward creating both a strong set of tools for developer productivity and a stable platform on top of which tool builders can ship products. Neither of these are simple goals, and that WTP has been successful on both fronts speaks volumes about the hard work of the committers on the project. Both topics are covered in the book, with Part II focusing on using the tools, and Part III describing how to extend WTP for additional servers, filetypes, and the like.
I hope Eclipse Web Tools Platform: Developing Java Web Applications will make you a more productive Java developer. Please pay special attention to the Contributing to WTP section in Chapter 2. Eclipse is all about active community involvement, and we hope to welcome you soon as an active contributor to WTP and other projects at Eclipse. As you work with WTP and the capabilities described in this book, I'd encourage you to communicate your successes back to the community, and perhaps consider contributing any interesting extensions you may develop. The WTP Web site may be found at
It includes pointers to the WTP newsgroup, where you can communicate and share your results with other WTP developers, and pointers to the Eclipse installation of Bugzilla, where you can contribute your extensions.