Everybody has to start somewhere, and as a complete beginner in software development with Java and the Eclipse RCP, I have been, and still am, constantly on the lookout for sources of information.
The following books and websites – in my opinion – provide good starting points for people who are in the same position.
Ordered by usefulness (IMHO).
The Eclipse Book
Jeff McAffer, Jean-Michel Lemieux, Chris Aniszczyk: Eclipse Rich Client Platform, Second Edition. Boston (Addison-Wesley): May 2010. 552 pp. In English. ISBN-13: 978-0321603784.
For people who like to read books rather than websites. It is as up-to-date as can be, and is a very good and comprehensive introduction to the Eclipse RCP. Can be read back-to-back, or used as a reference. I have used this almost exclusively in my “early days” of programming with the Eclipse RCP.
The Eclipse Wiki page for the RCP
More of a hub really. Links to several other sources of information about the RCP.
Eclipse RCP How-Tos
Helpful shortcut list for a lot of standard RCP queries. A one-stop shop when you need a quick solution.
Learning by doing: The RCP examples in Eclipse
This is learning the hard way, but a good starting point, if you like learning by doing, is to simply download the Eclipse distribution for RCP (= Plug-in) development, and check out the templates.
Once you have installed the IDE, and opened it, create a new plug-in project via the menu (File > New > Other > type “pl” in the Wizard > choose “Plug-In Project” > Next > type a project name > “This plug-in is targeted to run with:” choose “Eclipse version” and pick your version from the dropdown > Next > Make sure “This plug-in makes contributions to the UI” is checked > “Would you like to create a rich client application”: Yes > Next > Choose one of the Available Templates (Hello World is obviously the most reduced one, RCP Mail Template the most sophisticated) > Fill in additional fields (depending on template)).
Have a good look at the source code and familiarize yourself with how things are done. Then start to change things around and see what the effect is. Then go to one of the other sources and read about what you have just done.
A tutorial that dives right into the action. Not a lot of background information, but gets you started quickly.
Articles on Eclipse RCP by Ralf Ebert
A collection of tutorials on the Eclipse RCP, providing solutions for different problems.
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