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The editors of Java Developer's Journal are in a unique position when it comes to Java development. All are active coders in their "day jobs," and they have the good fortune to getting a heads up on many of the latest and greatest software releases. They were asked to nominate three products from the last 12 months that they felt had not only made a major impact on their own development, but also on the Java community as a whole.

The following is a list of each editor's selections and the reason why they chose that product.

Alan Williamson
Editor-in-Chief
LISA from iTKO Corporation

LISA is a tool for developing and staging Web and XML-based regression and load tests.
www.itko.com/lisa

"This is a truly beautiful piece of software that fits snuggly into anyone's testing environment. The ability to simply record and playback test results was the easiest thing I have seen in a long time."

Thinlets
Thinlets is a GUI toolkit, a single Java class that parses the hierarchy and properties of the GUI, handles user interaction, and calls business logic.
http://sourceforge.net/projects/thinlet

"This framework proves that there is life in AWT after all. If only AWT could have provided this from the start, then Flash may not have gotten the foothold on the browser that it did."

jEdit
jEdit is a cross-platform programmer's text editor written in Java, and developed by Slava Pestov and others. jEdit is released under the terms of the GNU General Public License.
www.jedit.org

"The plugin architecture alone wins my vote, even beating Eclipse's. To say this is just a text editor for code is definitely underselling this wonderful example of software engineering."

Joe Ottinger
J2EE Editor
IDEA from IntelliJ

IDEA is a Java IDE. Its development features includes industry setting refactoring support, and intelligent code editing assistance.
www.intellij.com/idea

"This is the editor that gets out of my way. It's actually changed how I write code, after being fairly set in my ways about code generation for over a decade. Going to any other editor is a chore for me now."

Orion Application Server
The Orion Application Server provides your application with a foundation that is robust, scalable, and easy to develop with.
www.orionserver.com

"Orion, like IDEA, does things the way I think they should be done: directly, with little fuss, and very quickly. Deployment in Orion is very simple, and the lack of required server-specific files means that I tend to develop on Orion and deploy on other servers...if I have to."

Ant from Apache
Apache Ant is a Java-based build tool. Ant is extended using Java classes.
http://ant.apache.org/

"Ant is the hammer of the Java world: without it, civilization might have progressed, but much more slowly than it has. Ant is one of the most useful build tools I have ever had the pleasure to use."

Jason Bell
J2SE Editor
Eclipse

The Eclipse Platform is designed for building integrated development environments (IDEs) that can be used to create applications as diverse as Web sites, embedded Java programs, C++ programs, and Enterprise JavaBeans.
www.eclipse.org/

"After being anti-IDE for so long I've finally caved in. It has nice CVS utils, project frameworks, code refactoring, and 'sensible' code generation (especially for beans). Add industry backing and a very fired up user base and you have one winning product."

Orion Application Server
The Orion Application Server provides your application with a foundation that is robust, scalable, and easy to develop with.
www.orionserver.com

"Any J2EE-compliant server where the installation is "java -jar orion.jar -install" gets my vote any day. More fiddly than Tomcat but much faster."

Thinking In Java (3rd Edition)
by Bruce Eckel. Prentice Hall PTR, 2002.

"I've lost count how many times I've advised people to get hold of this book, whether by download or in print. I still suggest print as it very rarely leaves my side for those all important core Java tips."

Glen Cordrey
J2ME Editor
The Personal Profile, JSR-62

JSR-62 provides Java APIs for devices requiring a high degree of network connectivity such as applications for the home and office.
http://wireless.java.sun.com/personal

"I vote for Personal Profile, if only for the fact that it was finally completed. But I also think it's a pretty significant, and good, spec (for a first version)."

JBoss
JBoss is a Java application server developed in open source known for its ease of use, modularity, and simplicity.
www.jboss.org/index.html

"JBoss provides production quality for free, although it's still a bit rough around the edges."

Eclipse
The Eclipse Platform is designed for building integrated development environments (IDEs) that can be used to create applications as diverse as Web sites, embedded Java programs, C++ programs, and Enterprise JavaBeans. www.eclipse.org

"Again, free goes a long way, especially with the support piling up behind it."

Jason Briggs
Contributing Editor
JAMid (JAM interactive device)

Based on J2ME MIDP, the JAMiD accelerated Java platform will run MIDP 1.0/2.0 games and other multimedia MIDlets. Includes a built-in MP3 player.
www.jamid.com

"For bringing J2ME, specifically MIDP, to the GameBoy Advance - just plug the JAMid cartridge into the GBA and you've got instant access to MIDP games on your handheld console."

Netx
Netx is an implementation of the Java Network Launching Protocol (JNLP). It downloads code over the network for applications and applets, caches it, and runs it in a secure environment.
http://jnlp.sourceforge.net/netx

"For bringing shared applications to the same VM - something Sun should have done a long time ago. Save memory by launching Web Start-style applications in the same virtual machine."

Tomcat from Apache
Tomcat is the servlet container that is used in the official Reference Implementation for the Java servlet and JavaServer Pages technologies.
http://jakarta.apache.org/tomcat/index.html

"For ever increasing performance - it's the one product that, every time I download a new version, manages to eke out a little more performance."

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