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Java EditLine FAQ

Why not just use Java Readline?

For several reasons.

  • Java Readline doesn't expose enough information for completion. It exposes the token being completed and the current line, but it doesn't expose the location of the token. In applications that do context-sensitive completion, not knowing the location of the token is a problem.

  • Java Readline has not been updated since 2003.

Well, why don't you fix Java Readline, instead?

Because I wanted to start fresh, with a new API.

What about JLine or Jline2?

JLine is certainly useful, especially since it works on Unix-like systems and on Windows. However, it isn't as functionally complete as Editline. For instance, it isn't as configurable, and it doesn't support breadth of editing commands that Editline supports. JLine2 is a substantial improvement over JLine, but it's still not as feature-rich as GNU Readline or BSD's libedit.

Why use Editline, instead of GNU Readline?

Largely because of licensing. Editline is BSD-licensed, whereas GNU Readline is GNU-licensed. The BSD license is more liberal.