By alexismp on Nov 22, 2010
With the recent JSR announcement you may have missed the release of NetBeans 7.0 Beta. Adding to the long list of server-side enhancements (Java EE 6, GlassFish, WebLogic, JBoss) described in this earlier post, support for JDK 7 and for Maven 3 are probably the two main features in this release.
Once you've installed and configured a recent build of OpenJDK, you can now select "JDK 7" as a target platform in the IDE. This will cause the NetBeans built-in parser to start using the new javac compiler and thus support new language constructs such as Strings in switch, the diamond operator, multi-catch, etc... NetBeans also integrates a number of hints to help you refactor existing code into something more terse. More details on this page. Update: Arun has pushed out a screencast to illustrate this all.
This interview will NetBeans developer Jesse Glick goes into interesting details about the full support of Maven 3 in this new release. Similar to the JDK 7 case above, the IDE does not reinvent the wheel but rather "the IDE is using the official Maven 3.0 code to parse your project" (so no "import" step required). The tool can also search Maven repositories when class definition are missing. Repository browsing & searching, graphical representation of dependencies while preserving the "compile on save" and increasing overall performance are all now part of NetBeans 7.0 beta.
You may also have missed this episode of the Java Spotlight Podcast which features an interview with the NetBeans boss at Oracle.