Open Source Orion 1.0 Browser based Code Editor Goes Live

OrionFrom the ‘Cloud Code editor’ files:

Back in January of 2011, the Eclipse Foundation announced the development of Orion, a browser/cloud based IDE. At the time, Mike Milinkovich, exec director of the Eclipse Foundation told me that Orion is more than just Eclipse in a browser. It’s a view that he re-iterated today with the official launch of Orion 1.0

“Orion is a completely new open source tooling platform, which provides an open, extensible tooling platform and a set of re-usable components for building web tools which run in your browser,” Milinkovich blogged.

Orion is already in use as the code editor in Firefox’s Scratchpad.

As part of the 1.0 release, the Orion developers are highlighting the site as as live production demo of the power that the Orion platform can provide.

“OrionHub is a demonstration of all the components together providing a pure Cloud based development platform,” Orion developer Ken Walker wrote. “At the heart of Orion is a client side plug-in and micro service framework and this allows secure extensibility from multiple sites completely in the browser. This seems to get missed when reviews are done comparing Orion to other web based development tools.”

Those other web based development tools include the Cloud9 IDE which also has an association with Mozilla.

Overall though what Orion signifies is the continuing trend toward development in the cloud for the cloud. While I don’t think or see developers en masse abandoning Eclipse based IDEs on the desktop this year or even next, it is a new paradigm that will see adoption over time. As the cloud based IDEs grow in power and as CIO’s make the Capex vs Opex decision on hardware to run IDEs, there is however little doubt in my mind that at some point in the next 5 to 10 years there will be an inflection point where more development is actually being coded in the cloud than not.

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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