The Eclipse Foundation, best known for its Eclipse IDE, is moving into funding its open source projects via donations.
Previously, all Eclipse development was done by individuals and organizations contributing their time. "Today, we are significantly lowering the barriers for companies and individuals to actively invest in the ongoing development of the Eclipse platform," Eclipse Executive Director Mike Milinkovich said in a recent blog post.
Funding for the development work will come from individuals and corporate users, he said. "Earlier this year, Ericsson provided the Eclipse Foundation funds to improve the Eclipse platform, which resulted in SWT, GTK3, and PDE improvements available in the Mars release. Ericsson is a large user of Eclipse and they see the value of investing in ongoing improvements. We hope other large corporate users of Eclipse will follow Ericsson's lead." Mars was the name of this year's release train of Eclipse technologies, which occurred in late June.
Milinkovich said Eclipse has had a community of users benefiting from Eclipse technology, most without the time required to participate in an open source project. But they do want ongoing improvements and investment. Therefore, Eclipse has begun funding development work in Eclipse projects. "The initial focus is on improving the core Eclipse platform, JDT, and Web Tools. As the program expands we expect the list of projects will grow too."
Eclipse is still developing a process for allocating funds, which can be donated at the Eclipse website. Donations to the "Friends of Eclipse" program, which totaled more than $120,000 last year, will be allocated to Eclipse development work as well.