There was big news in the Java world this week. JetBrains released their popular IntelliJ IDEA as an open source community edition. While, this has been heralded as a great move (and to some extent I agree with that), I feel that JetBrains kind of missed the point a little. Before I go any further, you should look at the Edition Comparison Chart.
I still think the availability of this Community Edition is important to the community, but I feel that they kind of missed out and that people are still going to look at Eclipse and Netbeans for their Java development, especially if they’re doing web development. Both Eclipse and Netbeans are free and have large corporate pockets behind them (though Sun’s acquisition by Oracle might change that for Netbeans). I know that for my personal development, I’ll still use Eclipse because I can’t get stuff I want out of the IntelliJ Community Edition. I think that if JetBrains really wants to bring people to this new Community Edition, then they need to open up some of the web development stuff and also Android. Android is free and open source so I see no reason to pay for an IDE to do development on that platform.
So, JetBrains, if you guys are listening, you need to add some features back into this Community Edition if you want to seriously compete with the likes of Eclipse or Netbeans. Other than that, I commend you on this move, I think it’s a nice step in the right direction.