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Good Java Freebie

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I found an outstanding freebie that I've been meaning to post, but always had something different to say.

This one's JCreator, and it's a great Java IDE. For the longest time I'd been using Kawa as my Java IDE. One thing I'd always liked about Kawa was that it stole its user interface motif almost completely from VC++. Since I was familiar with VC++, the learning curve for Kawa was almost nonexistent. It was a good little cheap IDE and, unlike bloated slow monster Java IDE's of the time like JBuilder and VisualAge, it had respectable performance and didn't fill half of your hard drive. It didn't have any visual interface builders or anything like that, but if you just wanna hack together a quick little applet or Java application, it was perfect.

But all good things must come to an end. Kawa was purchased by Allaire, then Allaire was purchased by Macromedia. Kawa went neglected for a year, then was dropped entirely. I kept using Kawa for quite a while, but as the Java folks changed up the interfaces to their tools, it became more and more difficult to use Kawa with the newer compilers.

But then JCreator came along and solved my problems. Just as Kawa had borrowed the interface of the VC++ of the time (version 2 or 4), JCreator borrows its UI heavily from Visual Studio.NET. It performs very well and is a great product. There's a free version that's got some limitations (the biggest being the lack of interface to the Java debugger), but even the full version's price of $69 is pretty reasonable. Since I can't debug my stuff anyway without setting up a server on my machine, I'm running just fine on the free version.

So, if you need to work with Java (and I pity you if you do, frankly), check out JCreator.
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