With the Firefox browser already positioned as an open platform for applications, Mozilla is now experimenting with delivering to developers the accompanying tools and resources necessary to build applications. This is where Bespin comes in. Mozilla Labs put together and launched version 0.1, which it calls a prototype, an Alpha release and an experiment at this point in time. An experiment designed to deal with what Mozilla Labs' Ben Galbraith and Dion Almaer,
on behalf of the Bespin development team, referred to as an open, extensible web-based framework for code edition, or web-based code editor, if you will.
“We’re also releasing an early experimental prototype to demonstrate some of the concepts of Bespin and the possibilities that it opens up. Bespin 0.1, the initial prototype framework includes support for basic editing features, such as syntax highlighting, large file sizes, undo/redo, previewing files in the browser, importing/exporting projects, etc. All of the source code underlying the Bespin experiment is being released as open source software under the the MPL,” Galbraith said.
Mozilla Labs Bespin Alpha is live and can be accessed via this link. Mozilla Labs is inviting users to play around with the framework and to provide feedback. The experiment is meant to take advantage of the evolution of HTML 5 technology in order to support the extensible Web code editor. But at the same time, Bespin is an open source project. This means that developers can grab the source code and start tweaking, adding features or fixing bugs.
“Based upon discussions with hundreds of developers, and our own experience developing for the Open Web,” Galbraith added, “we’ve come up with a proposed set of features along with some high-level goals: ease of use, real-time collaboration integrated command-line, extensible and self-hosted, wicked fast, and accessible from anywhere.”