JetBrains OMEA going free and open source

Prior to my current experiments with the IE7 RSS platform, my blog reader of choice was Omea Reader. However, despite the popularity of RSS, Omea Reader somehow never made it beyond a small niche, as I know from my own web stats. The company has just announced that the product is now free and will become open source.

Oddly, I can’t find a valid url for the announcement, though it turned up in my blog reader. Here’s the quote:

After collecting your opinions and having long internal discussions, we have finally decided to move Omea Pro into the open source domain.

This will definitely take some time, but the first step has already been made – from now on, Omea Pro is available free of charge.

Thank you for your input, and you are welcome to contribute to Omea Pro development when it goes open-source.

— The Omea Team at JetBrains

I am sorry that Omea Reader has not been a big commercial success, especially as I admire the work JetBrains is doing with its Java IDE IntelliJ IDEA and with ReSharper for Visual Studio. Even so, a big thank-you to JetBrains for doing the right thing and open-sourcing OMEA rather than freezing it as so may companies do with their abandoned products. I think the Omea code will be interesting as a .NET sample project even for those who do not want to use it. I will be intrigued to see how much PInvoke code is in there.

As an aside, one thing I notice when I talk to IDEA users is satisfied they are with the product. They feel it gives them an edge over competitors working with more popular tools like Eclipse and NetBeans. By contrast Eclipse users almost always have some grumbles. Same with NetBeans though I don’t hear so many complaints since version 5.x.