6. Building Tools on Pliny

All the code developed for Pliny is open-source and anyone who wishes may download the code and work on it, subject to the modest constraits of the Eclipse Public License. Be aware, however, that Pliny operates in the context of the Eclipse plugin environment, and unless you are already familiar with how to develop software in this environment you will find that there is a significant amount of work involved in equipping yourself to do software development there.

The beginnings of some documentation to describe Pliny from the perspective of a Java programmer can be found here, including some pointers to Eclipse-provided architecture documentation to help you get started with plugin-development. Source code for Pliny is available from http://sourceforge.net/projects/pliny. If you are not a software developer, there is no need to look at either the source code or the progamming documentation.

An important part of toolbuilding in the context of Pliny -- and a part of the reason why Pliny is built on top of the Eclipse platform -- is that Eclipse's plugin model is an important aspect of Eclipse's architecture that promotes community-driven collaborative tool building. I'd be interested in hearing your ideas about this. Please contact me at john.bradley@kcl.ac.uk. I expect that many Java programmers wiill find the decision to build Pliny as an Eclipse plugin to be controversial. I'd be interested in hearing what you think the development task would be like if Pliny has been built using the more conventional Sun-Java (AWT/Swing) approach.

John Bradley
Center for Computing in the Humanities
King's College London