I have been thinking about too and would like to see unification and ease-of use when it comes to software we produce/glue/integrate/enhance and also allow people to use the language that is on their abstraction level. Ive done many java-based services and they work but its always a hassle - config hell. I am not for or against any language but i think we should start out higher in the stack as there are literally millions of open source projects and also azimuth has already attracted some of these.
So let us define what features and tools we want in our environmental "computational science" (used to be scientific computing). Then we can start by quickly putting together "Ecco Hub or whetever we want to call it. I suggest u look best in class in open source Comp Mathematics right now, [SAGE](http://sagemath.org) and maybe also one spinoff from that [femhub](femhub.org) also open source. they can both be run as cloud service or installed on your pc/linux. SAGE can be run on the cmd line or as notebook editing (which has wysiwyg editing or source ed). its (here](http://www.sagenb.org). Theey also spun off [Cython which can compile](http://www.cython.org/) code snippets right in the notebook (which looks like mathematica).
SAGE nb allows u to [use R,numpy, GAP,maxima,octave.95 libraries in total]( http://www.sagemath.org/links-components.html) calling R(r-fn) or editing. I've tried it with octave but not R yet and we need to verify that it works. Femhub also has [added libraries](http://femhub.org/codes.php)
for CM i suggest git from [some cloud like provider](http://www.github.com) . sage uses Hg as their CM which is wonderful as it is distributed. If u dont like editing code in your browser u can use emacs, eclipse or what u are used too, and lang wise and library wise. For bug handling there are stuff like Trac, Lighhouse, Bugzilla. I've used svn/maven for Java and we were not happy with either and nor will u when u want to spend time fidgeting with params in an chaotic attracto. So forget this paragraph for a while and move up too "interactive scientific computing" and put down what kind of features u would like to be able to do. E.g. "I'd like to zoom into a Hopf bifurcation while changing lambda at the same time" to take a recent example coming up. "Not "I want F#" (functional PL from M-soft). Think more in terms of verbs than nouns.
then we can get a dyn env "Azimuth eccohub" and add eg GISTEMP newly rewritten in python and att all the scientific libraries which covers your requests and boostrapped that way we will be further along than starting from Java and if You want to program in Java or Fortran, u should be able to do that. So try out
sagenb or femhub, which are a bit slow as they are run by poor professors, PhDs who don't have money to spend on server parks :-)
Then start posting features here as soon as you can.