RAP 2.x, Top Eclipse Kepler Feature #4

June 18, 2013 | 2 min Read

As we approach the release of Eclipse Kepler, I’m counting down the Top 10 Features I’m most excited about. Number 4 on my list is RAP 2.x. Powerful, stable and well thought-out APIs is a common theme among Eclipse projects. From the early days of Eclipse, there has always been a focus on API development and RAP continues exemplifies this.

During the past year, RAP has moved away from simply being a Rich Ajax Platform to being a general Remote Application Platform. This means that RAP is a general platform for developing modern UIs,and serving them natively on a variety of different devices through the use of an Open Protocol. The open-source web based client is still available, but other clients are now being added, such as: commercial clients for Android and iOS devices.

In February RAP shipped version 2.0, and with Kepler, version 2.1 will land. With the RAP 2.x major release, the client-server protocol was finally standardized and all communication is now done using a JSON protocol. A number of new APIs were also released, including an API for creating custom widgets, an API for executing arbitrary JavaScript on the client, and an updated API for entry points and branding.

In Kepler, RAP has added Mnemonic and Accelerator support. This allows users to select and execute actions using keyboard short-cuts.

The GraphicsContext (GC) has been enhanced with GC.drawPath and GC.fillPath. With this API, you can now draw complex shapes such as quadratic or bezier curves. As Ivan showed us, you even draw an airplane.

RAP 2.x now supports multi-tabs. Until now, you had to turn off session cookies in the servlet container in order to support access to a RAP application from multiple browser tabs. This is not needed anymore. The framework can now handle multiple connections from within the same HTTP session. For every connection, a new UISession will be created.

And finally, RAP Tools has been updated and will ship with Kepler. You should install these tools in your IDE when developing RAP applications to give yourself a productivity boost. RAP tools will help you manage your target, create sample projects and launch your RAP applications.

For my Eclipse Kepler Top 10 and other Tips and Tricks, follow me on twitter.

Ian Bull

Ian Bull

Ian is an Eclipse committer and EclipseSource Distinguished Engineer with a passion for developer productivity.

He leads the J2V8 project and has served on several …