Asterisk Development API

Hey All,

We have just started with asterisk and are interested in modifying asterisk from the source. We have played with the script files (extensions.conf) and it works perfectly but we want to start writing our own apps for the scripts to call and even modifying some existing software for our own use. I have successfully changed some of the code using Test Editor. Is there any API that anyone would recommend that we could almost bring asterisks in as a project instead of editing each file separately with text editor. I am sure I could bring each file in one by one and use Eclipse but was hoping there was an easier way to manage the project.