Creo Darwin Set To Hot Up VDP Competition
The first impressions are really great - the native UI (Cocoa on OSX and .NET windowing on WinTel) means that no matter what your platform you get widgets that you are familiar with and work seamlessly with the operating system. That really is quite a differentiator when compared to competing products, and one that I am sure a lot of people would welcome as even from personal experience, quite a number of other solutions are using SWNG, or, god forbid, AWT in Java which are clunky and just not up to the modern users expectations.
One of the things that really is very good about Darwin is the plugin system they have devised. Whilst I currently have no information on what inner complexities one might face with implementing your own plugin, the architecture I was shown looked very open, and very friendly - which is a massive plus point in my eyes.
Creo have changed the way in which the Darwin working environment is persisted - its now a separate DVJ file. This means that when working with InSite, the system can automagically create the darwin files for you. I'd go out on a limb and say that if InSite is able to create those files, then any other system you might want to write would also be able to generate DVJ files - this could really create some interesting options for mash-up style workflows!
What About The Cons?
Ok, so all products have there cons - thats life - at the moment Darwin only supports flat file data-sources. Perhaps that will change over time, but we'll see I guess. Release is quite some time off so who knows what those guys might come up with!
Kudos Creo , this really is great work.
Another interesting article about Darwin and InSite can be found here