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Echo3 Web Framework & EchoStudio Beta

10.14.2008
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Echo3 is an open source, component-based AJAX framework which provides the capability to create applications using either a client-side JavaScript or server-side Java API. Client-side Echo applications run entirely within the browser, without the need for an application server of any kind. Server-side applications run within a Java servlet container, with a translation layer synchronizing the state of client- and server-side component hierarchies to provide a remote browser view of the server-based application. The second beta release is a major improvement over the initial beta; significant new features relative to beta1 include:

  • Improved layout capabilities: Layouts components such as SplitPanes can now auto-size regions to the needs of their content. Percent and text-size relative positioning is supported throughout the framework. Using these capabilities, user interfaces can scale properly with changes in font size and/or display pixel density.
  • Documentation improvements: All sections of the Echo3 (and CoreJS) developer guides are now available. The process of authoring Echo3 components that render custom HTML and JavaScript has been fully documented. Both client-side and server-side APIs are well documented.
  • Performance improvements, polish, cleanups, and testing: Echo3 is memory stable and responsive even in old browsers (IE6) on old hardware, and has generally matured since beta1.

Echo is open-source software, licensed under the Mozilla Public License (or alternatively under the GNU LGPL or GNU GPL licenses).

EchoStudio3 is an Eclipse-based tool which provides the capability to develop Echo-based user interfaces visually. As of beta1, EchoStudio3's features include:

  • A WYSIWYG, point-and-click Form Editor.
  • A StyleSheet editor for creating application themes.
  • Project creation wizards, with various project templates including an example E-Mail application.
  • Ability to run and debug Echo applications from within Eclipse using a built-in Jetty servlet container.
  • An Echo2 -> Echo3 Migration Wizard to convert Echo2 applications to Echo3. This feature DOES NOT require that the source application have been created with EchoStudio for Echo2.
  • A rendered component wizard to generate new HTML/JavaScript rendering components.

EchoStudio is commercial software, licensed per developer. The product is available as a full-featured free trial.

A demonstration application is available at http://demo.nextapp.com/echo3csjs

More information and downloads for the open-source Echo framework can be found at http://echo.nextapp.com

Information on the commercial EchoStudio product can be found at http://www.nextapp.com/products/echostudio

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Published at DZone with permission of its author, Tod Liebeck.

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