Open Source is playing an increasingly important role in the world of software platforms: Linux, Eclipse, Android and Symbian are prominent examples. Platform adopters have benefited from the greater transparency and openness of the Open Source model. Open Source is very responsive to general community needs. Now, with eco-system driven Open Source Communities like Eclipse, it is possible to engage directly with the producers of the technology and drive specific directions.
EclipseSource coined the term sponsored development to describe the collaboration between adopters and producers. Adopters gain committed dates for the functionality they need. Producers benefit from the financial contribution to development and from active input on requirements. The community as a whole gains from improvements in the platform. Everyone wins.
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* limited to functionality that is consistent with the platform
The Eclipse RAP project has benefited from numerous sponsored development engagements, for example Preferences, Activities support, and widgets like DateTime, ExpandBar and Scale. Also the cell editor support which is being developed as part of the RAP 1.2 release is co-financed by an enterprise sponsor.
Allianz has sponsored the development of a RAP version of the Nebula Grid widget. The RAP version of the widget supports a large subset of the original Grid functionality, e.g. rows with different height, col-span and row-span, multi-line headers and much more.
Multi-Attribute Widget in the EMF Client Platform
The EMFStore project has also been extended through sponsored development. In this example, the sponsor requested framework support for Multi-Attribute types, e.g. a list of integers. These types of attributes can now be versioned with EMFStore. As part of the sponsorship, the EMF Client Platform was also extended to render these attributes.