Development of an OpenGL edtior plugin for Netbeans

OData support
Somogyi Ferenc Attila
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

Nowadays, software development is nearly unimaginable without using integrated development environments (IDE), for they provide several useful features that help us during coding. For example, they do syntax highlighting, point out syntax errors, or rename variables in multiple locations - in short, they make coding more efficient.

There is no such development environment which supports all the languages. Fortunately, development environments are usually extendable by using plugins, therefore, additional languages can be supported.

The GLSL shader language is frequently used for graphical programming, nonetheless, relatively few IDEs support it. In the Java world, even fewer GLSL editors are available. It is not surprising since graphics-intensive applications are usually written in C++, due to performance reasons. However, in some cases, running a GLSL shader program from a Java program is definitely easier.

The goal of this thesis is to create a plugin for the Netbeans IDE which supports the GLSL shader language. In order to be able to process a GLSL code snippet, I needed to create a grammar which covers the syntax of the GLSL language. To achieve it, I used the ANTLR parser generator.

My plugin provides an environment within Netbeans which includes the most important language features: syntax highlighting, pointing out syntax errors, and code completion. Furthermore, it supports several other helpful features such as code formatting, goingto the definition of a variable or function, or displaying the relevant part of the documentation.

After presenting this project, I draw conclusions based on my experiences and the problems I encountered. Moreover, I also compare the capabilities of my plugin with other GLSL editors.


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