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Quoth Meikel Brandmeyer:

There is a lot of duplication between [IDE and editor] projects, because there are only so many ways to do certain things. Eg. swank and VimClojure take the same approach on source: steal it from contrib and adapt it as necessary.

This duplication can be reduced! A combined backend would provide all development environments with a solid foundation. Also new players (textmate? jedit?) could be easily extended: just provide an interface between the editor and the server. This would be a huge win for clojure. As well as for us toolsmiths: less unnecessary work due to wheel reinvention.