Projects plan is to develop a specialized eclipse product profile that enables non-developer users to utilize eclipse for non-programming tasks with as much automation as possible under the hood and as little ui-clutter as possible above.
In the first phase the aim is to define and set up a tailored eclipse product for (not necessarily technical) XML, near-WYSIWYG, authoring based on existing eclipse platform and some selected extending plugins.
The second phase will include some extension (by coding - that is) of the pieces gathered and optimizing them to fit as good as possible - usability for non-techies will be addressed here.
The third phase might eventually comprise some sort of round-trip to discuss possible refactorings between the different plugin projects for better integration with one another.
Functional requirements towards the pile-of-plugins to be further refined will include but not necessarily be limited to (candidates for a solution in brackets):
- basic functionality of eclipse platform (Update, Help, Workbench)
- XML editing (Vex - almost WYSIWYG)
- Automation of conversions (ANT, XSLT-Plugin, Import-/Export-Wizardry)
- Team & Publishing Support (SVN, CVS, FTP, DAV)
A basic pool of ideas is already existing and we do have a functional customized prototype installation to start from.
A tight integration with the Vex Plugin is planned and the Authoring with Eclipse
article gives a major direction and some more specific thoughts.