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2006 Candidate:
Todd Williams

Vice President - Technology

Nominee for sustaining member representative

I’ve been serving as Genuitec’s Eclipse Foundation representative since early 2003 and as an elected board member for both 2004 and 2005. Currently, I serve as the chairman of the Foundation’s membership committee and am also a member of the Web Tools Project’s requirements group. For the past four years I’ve been constantly evangelizing Eclipse technology through numerous consulting opportunities, speaking engagements and magazine articles, including one article written in early 2002 that became the genesis of the Eclipse rich client platform. More detail on what I’ve been doing lately with Eclipse can be found by Googling: "Todd Williams" Eclipse

email:  todd.williams at genuitec.com

Vision

Executive Summary
  • Emphasize the requirements of the add-in provider community over other ecosystem participants
  • Advocate the commercial interests of add-in providers so Eclipse continues to be a sound investment
  • Provide time to adjust to innovations by promoting managed, predictable development cycles
  • Protect add-in provider value by emphasizing flexible, extensible frameworks over commercially competitive tools
  • Promote the expansion of Eclipse into new and emerging market segments to engender new business opportunities

By most measures, Eclipse is already one of the most successful software technologies ever created. But why is Eclipse different from other similar efforts that have gone before it and failed? And, what must we do to preserve Eclipse’s uniqueness so that it can to continue to flourish? The answers to these questions should continue to drive the actions of the Foundation.

In my opinion, the success of Eclipse stems from the unique, managed balance between the needs of its three diverse communities: the committers, the add-in providers, and the end users. To gain critical mass, Eclipse began by catering to the needs of the end users. But, now that there are hundreds of products in the add-in ecosystem and an explosion of interest in the rich client platform, the makeup of the Eclipse community is rapidly changing and its needs will continue to change.

As Eclipse evolves, we must continue to delicately adjust our focus to maintain our community synergy. For example, if we were to cater to the desires of the end users too heavily, we could actually remove the incentive to becoming an add-in provider or adopting Eclipse as a platform entirely. Since the initial investment required to build and market a product is so large, commercial product investment would simply be seen as too risky given that our target markets would quickly be commoditized by our own platform. To prevent this self-commoditization, we must proactively manage the pace, transparency, and predictibility of our innovations. However, to remain viable for any of us in the long-term, the Foundation must now increase its efforts around creating and fostering commercial opportunity for its members. As a result, strongly encouraging the Foundation to focus on our shared commerical objectives will continue to be my primary concern going forward.

Eclipse is constantly expanding, evolving, and surprising all of us. By embracing its evolution and further enhancing our market synergy, I believe we can continue to expand the Eclipse ecosystem in all of its current segments while creating commercial opportunity in several diverse new markets. Software visionary Alan Kay once said "The best way to predict the future is to invent it". I agree, and that’s what I believe we’re doing right now at Eclipse.

About the Candidate

At Genuitec I run both the R&D Lab and Consulting Practice for Eclipse Technology. These dual roles provide me with a unique perspective on innovation and its commercial applications with Eclipse technology. Additionally, I have over twenty years of experience in the development of computing infrastructures, large scale distributed software architectures, and the optimization of development processes, techniques, and tools.

Affiliation

Genuitec L.L.C. is a leading provider of innovative Eclipse-based technology products, training, and consulting services. Genuitec’s flagship product, MyEclipse Enterprise Workbench, is a full-featured J2EE IDE that enhances Eclipse with hundreds of addtional features that enable highly productive enterprise Java development. A MyEclipse subscription is available for $29.95 / developer / year and includes all software updates and technical support.

Genuitec also offers training and expert consulting and development services for the Eclipse SDK and Rich Client Platforms. Genuitec joined the Eclipse Foundation early in 2003 and actively participates in steering the strategy and direction of the Eclipse Foundation as a member of its board of directors. Genuitec L.L.C. was founded in 1997 and is headquartered in Dallas, Texas.

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