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The state of the Union, pardon, of the Tidalwave projects

Posted by fabriziogiudici on July 9, 2009 at 6:07 AM PDT

Yesterday I've been interviewed by Sun Microsystems Radio (yes, Sun has got a radio) about my take on JavaFX.

Since Chhandomay Mandal asked me about my current and future projects with JavaFX, I think it's a good opportunity to recap the state of my FLOSS projects and their plans. So maybe I can understand what I'm doing.

  • blueMarine: my primary project, that spun off most of the other ones. It's a desktop application for managing media. The latest release dates back to more than 1.5 years ago; the development continued until March; since that time I'm completely focusing on quality. I still have some serious troubles, especially with Linux portability and 32/64 bit compatibility. I want to possibly solve this stuff once and forever (?) before proceeding with the new release.
  • blueOcean: is a sort of server-side blueMarine. Rather than being a complete application, it's a collection of modules that I'm using for a couple of projects. One is for a customer; another is blueBill (see below). blueOcean is one of the pretty rare web applications based on the NetBeans Platform, and I'm working to OSGify it (while still using the NetBeans Platform).
  • blueBill-Server: is a web application for managing bird observations (and related digital media). It is based on blueOcean and it's my first application architected on semantic technologies (it uses a RDF store rather than a SQL database).
  • blueBill-MobileFX is a JavaFX application for connecting to blueBill-Server on a mobile phone, and it's my first serious application based on JavaFX. blueBill-Mobile (without the FX) is an equivalent for JME, thus it will be able to run on a huge number of current mobile and smart phones.
  • blueBill-Desktop is a blueBill plugin for blueMarine. Currently only in my mind.
  • windRose is a mobile/smartphone application for GPS recording and map rendering. The plan is to expand it to make it a sort of a "digital assistant" for the serious tourist (that is, the guy that wants to know a lot of things about the places it visits). This part is still in my mind and the one I was referring to in the interview; it will have a JavaFX counterpart for mobile phones (going to merge with in some way with blueBill-MobileFX as soon as I'm able to set up a decent software factory for JavaFX) and a JavaFX applet companion for the configuration.
  • Mistral is a meta-framework for image manipulation. Meta-framework means that it doesn't contain a new imaging engine, rather it can use existing ones (Java2D, JAI, ImageJ, whatever) under a simplified API. It also contains an embryo of cloud capabilities (well, indeed already three years ago it used to run on the Sun Grid, now dropped, and Jini; I have to port it to Amazon EC2 and Sun Cloud (when it will be available). Mistral has got a deep reorganization, and it's now mavenized and decently managed under Continous Integration. August should see v1.0 with a freeze of the API.
  • jrawio is a ImageI/O plugin for reading many proprietary "camera raw" formats. It has gone the same reorganization (Maven, CI) as Mistral.
  • BetterBeansBinding is a fork of BeansBinding, since that Sun projects is currently frozen. It's the only project I'm doing that did not originated from the blueMarine ecosystem, but it's a thing that I need in many places of my applications so I decided to maintain it.
  • CapeCanaveral is a customized launcher for application based on the NetBeans Platform. It originated from a paid work for a customer, but it will be soon used by blueMarine.
  • OpenBlueSky is a collection of NetBeans Platform modules used by blueMarine and blueOcean.
  • ForceTen is a collection of the geographic components for blueMarine and blueOcean.
  • PlatformX is a NetBeans Platform project where I'm giving a small contribution, putting some code that has been polished and stabilized from OpenBlueSky.

There are still a few projects that I'm not mentioning since they will be probably merged as plugins of some of the above ones.
The most serious issue I'm facing now is that the tests for the projects are killing my servers (even though some of the heaviest jobs are kindly hosted by Felipe Gaucho on his Hudson). Creating some slaves on Amazon EC2 would solve a lot of problems, but I'm currently unable to run them for some strange things (probably mistakes of mine).

While this might sound as a mess (and probably is), it's all part of the original vision I had for blueMarine (that I'd like to link here, but some Hudson job has just crashed the server again - I'm adding the link later).

PS I'm really in a hurry now, so please forgive me as I'm not putting links :-) But my projects are either on or (PlatformX is on


wow! you've been busy!