Tuesday, June 26, 2007

A cool downloads page - just in time for Europa

The Phoenix team (well, mostly Nathan) has been working on a new "main" downloads page prototype to replace the existing one. The purpose here is to a) highlight the user-oriented Eclipse packages created by the EPP and b) to highlight some of the Eclipse distros that commercial vendors are offering the community.

I think the page looks great. There's a good mix of information, useful links and visual aids without overcrowding the page -- something I valued dearly when I originally redesigned the main downloads page in early 2005. With this new page, the newcomer should (finally) have a better idea what to start with, whereas the veteran Eclipse hacker should already know where to find the hot-off-the-build-machine nightly build for today's testing.

Let's focus a bit on a) and b) if you will.

a) represents a cornerstone for our website - I mean, this is absolutely HUGE. HUGE! Users have been insulting asking us for user-oriented (and solutions-oriented) packages for YEARS, and thanks to our friends on the Packaging project, this is becoming a reality. There is still no native installer (yet) so we still need to contend with unzipping Eclipse, but just having an all-in-one package for the C developer, or the JSP developer, is notable progress. Someone just needed to step up to the plate and do it.

b) is also an interesting concept. Here we have commercial entities, companies that exist to turn a profit, who are essentially packaging Eclipse and offering free downloads. Of course, they will include links to their commercial offerings and trial versions, but the overhead is very lightweight: no upselling, no required registration, no pesky advertisements and no opt-outs. They're spreading the word about their commercial products by playing nice and being useful. Coolness all around.


Anonymous Kim Moir said...

Yes, definitely an improvement on the old downloads page. Phoenix and packaging projects - thanks for all your hard work. Eclipse Classic? Is that like Coke Classic but sweeter?

3:49 PM  

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