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[ecf-dev] Distributed collaborative development with Saros

Hi Ecf-dev,

After earlier conversations with Scott Lewis and encouragement from him, I would like to introduce myself to you all along with the project I represent.

Who am I?

I am a researcher within the Software Engineering Workgroup at Freie Universität (Free University) Berlin. I manage the Saros project.

What is Saros?

Saros is a fully-functional Eclipse plug-in that enables two or more developers to work simultaneously over the Internet on a shared project and share each other's changes. It grew out of ongoing research into the difficulties posed by distributed collaborative development.

How does Saros work?

At its simplest, Saros works like a collaborative editor. After inviting a number of other users, you can jointly edit any artefact in your Eclipse project and see each other's changes. 

However, there is more. Saros provides in-built communication methods (including IM, VoIP and screen-sharing), a roster, and also simple user role management (each user can be a "driver" or an "observer", and a user can automatically "follow" another user's movements).

Exciting features currently in development include whiteboarding and version control system integration.

Any technical details?

I won't go too deep into these, suffice it to say that Saros:
  - is written in Java 
  - uses XMPP protocol for low-latency, high bandwidth communications
  - is tested in Eclipse 3.4, 3.5, 3.6 on Windows (XP, Vista, 7), Mac OSX, and Linux

So, why am I here? We in the Saros team are very intrigued by the possibilities of working closer with the ECF project, given how the goals and the technology of the ECF overlap with ours. For now, I'd like to learn more about your project and I would be happy to answer questions about mine. In time, we could exchange ideas and contributions, and so improve our software.

In the meantime, feel free to refer to the following resources:

Website:     https://www.saros-project.org
Update Site: http://dpp.sf.net/update
Saros @ SF:  http://sourceforge.net/projects/dpp

I look forward to a dialogue.

Yours faithfully,
Karl Beecher

Dr. Karl Beecher
Research Associate
Software Engineering Workgroup
Department of Computer Science
Free University of Berlin
Takustr. 9, 14195 
Berlin, Germany