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[ecf-dev] update on XCDE integration

Hi,

An hour ago, I had a twenty minute voice-chat with Andrew Craik on how
their group went about shared editing with XCDE.

What started out as a basic shared editing college project evolved
into quite an interesting and advanced shared editing environment,
with features beyond editor sharing.

Aside from feature extensions to editors, such as displayability of
multiple cursors representing users etc. their group also addressed
workspace sharing issues.

I learned from Andrew, that at its core XCDE, deals with
synchronization issues in very much the same way, as the cola summer
of code project, via operational transformations in a client-server
topology.
That is, the documentation at
http://wiki.eclipse.org/index.php/RT_Shared_Editing should still prove
helpful to understand the black magic behind synchronization in shared
editing.

What gets me thrilled, is how far Andrew, Larry, Tristan and Tom
progressed with their sharing environment.

Andrew is in the process of adopting the ECF Datashare API instead of
direct network communication as a first step for integration with ECF.

From what I can tell, one of the challenges with integrating XCDE
functionality with ECF and the Eclipse universe will be that according
to Andrew they had to hack the source of the editor APIs in order to
get to some functionality that was not obtainable in any other way.
This also seems to be the source for them needing to "port" XCDE from
different eclipse version to version.

Given time, I will have a look at the XCDE code and work through an
engineering report, that Andrew is digging up somewhere :)

Exciting times for ECF shared editing.


-- Mustafa K. Isik

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http://codesurgeon.blogspot.com