Geotools is a code library which provides methods to manipulate geospatial data. The library is written in the Java programming language. While the library facilitates the creation of maps, by default, Geotools provides almost no Graphical User Interface (GUI) functionality since the library can be used for servers on the World Wide Web, as in Geoserver, or for desktop applications, for example UDig. The sections below attempt to provide documentation for new users. Unfortunately, this older documentation is a mess, mixing code examples from various different releases. The Geotools team is working on a Users' Manual which will present things more systematically.
GeoTools code is built using the latest Java tools and environments (1.4.2) and will continue to leverage the capabilities of future Java environments and official extensions when the technologies have been through the first maintenance cycle (i.e. version 5.x.1).
Geotools focuses on being a Java library, not an application - though we are pleased to interact and support the development of geospatial applications. The LGPL license is flexible enough for Geotools to be used to create both open source and commercial applications.