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<h1>Mobile Tools for Java</h1><br>
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Mobile Tools for Java (MTJ) is a proposed open source project under the <b>
<a target="_top" href="/dsdp/">Device Software Development
Platform (DSDP)</a></b>.<p>This proposal is in the Project Proposal Phase (as defined
in the
<a href="/projects/dev_process/">
Eclipse Development Process document</a>) and is written to declare its intent and
scope. This proposal is written to solicit additional participation and input from
the Eclipse community. You are invited to comment on and/or join the project. Please
send all feedback to the <a href=""></a>
<p>The Java programming language is becoming more and more popular in mobile
devices. Also, the richness of the device Java environment is getting better all the
time and more applications can be written using Java, instead of native
languages. As Java continues to grow in popularity, along with the proliferation
of higher functioning mobile devices, it is apparent that Java applications can
be developed to run on multiple targets, with a common set of application code.
Developing applications to the mobile Java environment presents unique
challenges to developers. Specifically, unlike the straightforward J2SE and J2EE
environments, there are a number of configurations and profiles (such as
<a href="">MIDP</a> on
top of the <a href="">CLDC</a>
and <a href="">Foundation</a> and
<a href="">Personal Profiles</a> on top of the
<a href="">CDC</a>), along with a number of JSRs
(and umbrella JSRs such as <a href="">JTWI</a> or
<a href="">JSR-248</a>) that require development tools to assist
in managing the runtimes/class libraries for development work and runtime
binding. This ability to develop for multiple targets and use common source code
with different build configurations is critical in mobile Java development
projects. In addition to this management of runtimes and the challenges it
presents, mobile Java applications have unique launching and debug requirements
and unlike J2SE or J2EE, applications are not always just placed on a server for
download as needed. Rather, developers require device emulators for
on-development-system test and debug, the ability to launch, test, debug and
analyze performance of the applications on the devices themselves, where varying
classes of these devices have different methods and levels of connectivity.
There is also the need for a robust deployment solution to deliver the code
under development to the device, and also be able to map that to a production
deployment solution. Of course, this is all in addition to the “normal” set of
application development tools (such as code creation, UI design and so on) for a
specific market segment.<br>
A common set of tooling and frameworks across these targets, and the mobile Java
space makes the development effort and cost manageable for developers.&nbsp; This is
why it is important to have robust Eclipse frameworks in place to support mobile
Java application development alongside the rich client and server counterparts</p>
<p>The goal of the Mobile Tools for Java project is to extend existing Eclipse
frameworks to support mobile device Java application development.<br>
MTJ will enable developers to develop, debug and deploy mobile Java applications
to emulators and real devices.</p>
<h3>Core features:</h3>
<h4>Device &amp; Emulator framework</h4>
<p>Normally runtimes are managed in Eclipse as a JRE. In the mobile segment, the
runtime environment is a device emulator or real device. The MTJ project will
provide features to manage mobile runtimes and provide frameworks for device
vendors to add those runtimes to the development environment.</p>
<h4>Deployment framework</h4>
<p>One vital part in mobile development is testing on real devices. To make that
as easy as possible the developer must have methods to transfer mobile
applications to handheld devices using local methods (e.g. Bluetooth, USB,
IrDA). The idea of MTJ is to develop a framework that provides an API for vendor
specific plug-ins, which then do the actual deployment. </p>
<h4>Generic and customizable build process for mobile application development</h4>
<p>The goal is to enhance normal build process with mobile extensions like JAR
and JAD file generation. With the varying configurations and profiles of mobile
Java, this is a critical feature to enable developers to manage code production.
Another requirement is to provide ways to add additional tasks to the build
process e.g. signing. This work should extend the builder frameworks of Eclipse.</p>
<p>This is related to Device &amp; Emulator framework. The goal of this item is to
enhance the current Debugging environment so that it is possible to use mobile
runtimes, either emulator or a real device. This task extends to launching the JVM
and applications(s) on the local emulator or on the device itself, and allowing
the developer to attach to that application under test. In the mobile space,
this is tightly integrated with the Device and Emulator frameworks, and will
need to provide a robust framework for device and platform makers to extend to
their devices’ specific connectivity. This work should extend the debug
frameworks of Eclipse.</p>
<h4>Application creation wizard</h4>
<p>Application wizards in general exist in the Eclipse platform. It is possible
to generate Java projects with or without application skeleton code but the
existing wizards are not usable for Mobile development. This task is tied to the
differing configurations and profiles of mobile Java and relieves the developer
of needing to worry about the boilerplate code for each of the application
configuration/profile types. One of the goals of MTJ is to enhance the existing
wizards by providing Mobile specific project wizard.</p>
<h4>UI design tools</h4>
<p>The goal of these tools is to improve efficiency (easy drag and drop without
coding) and also decrease the entry barrier for newcomers. There are already
visual designers in the Eclipse platform but they don’t contain support for
mobile devices. The target is to bring mobile UI styles, components and layout
rules to Eclipse. The idea is to create a framework that enables the use of
different kinds of UI implementations e.g. different resolutions, different
vendor specific look and feel.. Also in the scope of this project, in addition
to this framework is at a minimum. a generic UI designer implementation. <br>
A Screen Flow designer tool would provide ways to develop application logic
easily. It would provide easy drag and drop functionality to add different kind
of screens and transitions between them. These transitions are caused by mobile
specific ways like commands, list item selections.<br>
The idea is to utilize Eclipse <a href="/vep/">Visual Editor
Project </a>and extend it so that device screen
engines from different vendors can be plugged in.</p>
<p>The mobile application market is world wide so applications typically need to
be localized. Therefore, an important requirement is for tooling that makes this
task easier.</p>
<h4>Obfuscation and Code Size/Performance Optimization</h4>
<p>Mobile devices are restricted by memory so it is important that code is
compresses as small as possible. There are a number of ways this can be
accomplished. Obfuscation is one possibility, along with tooling and frameworks
to enable performance and size analysis on the emulators or physical devices,
which can be driven back into the build process or just for the developer to
streamline their own code.</p>
<h4>Signing tool </h4>
<p>Security becomes more important in mobile devices because they are open
and accessible to 3rd party developers. One solution for this is to require that
the applications be signed with an authorized signing certificate. The signing
process is very similar to signing a normal JAR signing but there are some
specific mobile needs. The goal of MTJ is to support tooling to sign mobile
applications. This signing tool will provide extensibility to add solution
specific signing tools. This is exemplary of other external tools for mobile
Java that need to be able to be integrated to a customizable build process. </p>
<p>This project is currently in proposal phase and Nokia is actively seeking
interested parties for this project. Detailed planning for initial delivery of
MTJ is underway and development is beginning.</p>
<a href="">Nokia</a>, as the submitter of this proposal, welcomes
interested parties to post to the
<a href="">eclipse.dsdp.mtj</a> newsgroup
and ask to be added to the list as interested parties or to suggest changes to this
document. The proposed project members include:
<h3>Proposed project lead and initial committers</h3>
<p>Mika Hoikkala, Nokia (proposed project lead)</p>
<p>Arto Laurila, Nokia</p>
<p>Marius Voicu, Nokia</p>
<p>Minna Bloigu, Nokia</p>
<p>+ 2 TBD, Nokia<br />
<h3>Interested parties</h3>
<h4>The following companies will participate in this project.</h4>
<li>IBM, David Reich</li>
<h4>The following companies have expressed interest in this project.</h4>
<h2>Tentative Plan</h2>
<p>The goal for the MTJ project is to have a first release simultaneous with the
next main release of the Platform. Due to the aggressive schedule, the premise
for this first release is to have the core set of functionality to provide a
project that is usable by a mobile Java developer to generate and test code.</p>
<p>It is hoped and assumed that a fair amount of needed functionality will be
contributed by Nokia and also by other project contributors. The first step for
the project is to understand scope of initial contribution and then plan what
new code needs to developed, what to utilize from contributions and how to
refactor and integrated new and existing code to one initial package.</p>
Regardless of the initial contribution, focus in the first phase is to develop
mandatory pieces from a mobile development point of view. The most important
features are Device &amp; Emulator framework, Deployment framework and Mobile
enhanced build process. This work will be immediately followed by code
development tooling such as wizards and UI builder. Then followed by other
tooling like localization and obfuscation.<p>
The working draft of the plan calls for interim milestone releases in December
2005, March 2006 with a first release level delivery concurrent with the next
major release of the Eclipse platform (at the time of this writing, this would
be Eclipse 3.2). Due to the early stage of this project this is subject to
It is a challenging task to define the content and future directions of the
Mobile Tools for Java project at this point. The high level intent is to provide
mobile tool frameworks for any interesting enhancements in the mobile world.
There will be a placeholder for any JSR or de facto standard that gets industry
acceptance. Here are a few examples:
<a href="">JSR-232</a> (Mobile Operational Management),
<a href="">JSR-249</a> (Mobile Service Architecture for CDC),
<a href="">JSR-271</a> (MIDP 3.0) and so on.</p>
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