Version 0.0, Pre-Alpha

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The Short Version

A Javadoc doclet for relating source code sections to requirements and changes.

The Long Version

Jell is a Java development utility that may be used to track what is implemented where in Java source code. It is based on the Javadoc Doclet API, and uses a configurable tag to relate methods, inner classes, and variables to a list of reference numbers. The reference numbers are typically functional requirement numbers, defect tracking id's, change order numbers, or impact analysis id's.

The output is XML by default, but can be configured to apply an XML style sheet to produce a different format (html, rtf, etc.)

I got this idea when playing around with the doclet API around the JDK 1.2 timeframe. I've since used the Doclet API for a few tools, but this one is much less situation specific than the others. So here it is. I hope it proves to be somewhat handy to a few people.


Currently in pre-Alpha, but you can build from the source tree. Jell will go alpha by the middle of January, 2001.


Download the source code using the instructions here. Special thanks for the leader in Open Source Incubation, SourceForge. I mention them again because they host the CVS source tree for Jell.


Before you try Jell out, you will need to gather a few things.

Sun's Java Development Kit

Jell runs on JDK 1.2 and above. If you need support for older versions, I could always use some more hands!

Sun's Java-XML Binding library

This is currently an early access edition, but it was too tempting to ignore. Download it from Sun's Java site, and follow the ReadMe that comes with the source to find out where to place it. I strongly suggest leaving this out of your classpath or jdk /lib/ext directory. It contains an XML parser that will cause a conflict error if you already have a parser on your classpath.


OK, so I lied. It's a command-line tool, so there aren't any real screen shots per se. I'll link to an example output file shortly. Once there is an html XSL and some other more user friendly outputs, I'll add these as well.


100% Java

Jell may be used anywhere there is a jvm.


Output may be relocated, tag can be renamed.


Ah, yes, a buzz-word. Now we're getting somewhere.


Ready for international messages, errors and the like. I'll continue to add other languages after the first release.

Sample Requirements

Oh yes, and what would a requirement tracking tool be without Requirements? Well, sort of. These were actually written after the fact for this site, to demonstrate use of the tool. The reference table in the upcoming examples refers to these requirement and change numbers.


If you would like to help, right now the best thing would be to tell me if you find Jell useful. Also, I could use feedback on problems, recommended features, etc. But mostly feedback from anyone that uses the tool.


This is still mostly a one-man-band; however, I would like to thank Kevin Metzger for suggesting that Jell handle cross-referencing of requirements.

Mailing List

No need right now, I'm just getting started.

Last updated on $Date: 2002/01/07 04:56:22 $