Monday, May 21, 2007

IDEA and the Bindows RIA web framework

In Selena (the IntelliJ IDEA upcoming v7) JetBrains pushes news into our throats using their JetConnect plugin. A flashing little icon in the bottom told me, that there were fresh news. Well, it turned out to be an add for a RIA framework called Bindows and of course, a plugin for IDEA to help working with Bindows.

What caught my interest was the fact, that JetBrains are willing to call this the #1 best Ajax framework and push the news of the plugin out to the users. JetBrains makes a killer IDE and maybe Bindows is a killer too then? I set out to take a (short) look.

Firstly, I must say you are quickly up and running. Bindows is a HTML/JS based RIA framework, where you code all your UI in JavaScript or their XML format. Using the plugin in IDEA, I can easily launch my application (which is simply an xml file) in IE or Firefox. The plugin produces a html launch file, which basically executes some javascript to kickstart my RIA application.

There are all sorts of goodies like completion and stuff. Seems like a nice integration job done with the plugin. Bindows also seems nice. There is also some unit testing stuff, that I haven't had a look at yet.

The programming model seems to mirror that of flex, when you define UI in XML or JavaScript and provide logik in JavaScript/ActionScript. But Bindows does not require a runtime.

But, it is:
  • Unknown, at least to me
  • Closed and licensed for development and runtime
Would like to hear from anyone knowing Bindows...?

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