rc3.org

Strong opinions, weakly held

Visual Studio is deficient

Check out Jeff Atwood’s description of developing in C#:

The second is the C# compilation tax. When working in C#, I’m constantly compiling the solution to ensure that I haven’t broken anything. It’s a ridiculous productivity tax in an endless loop: Write some code. Compile. Write a little more code. Compile. Change a function. Compile. Rename a variable. Compile. Refactor some methods. Compile. Then compile again, just to be sure. Wait a second.. did I compile this yet? Compile!

I am shocked and amazed that Visual Studio doesn’t build a semantic model of your code and proactively let you know whether your code is going to compile. I almost can’t believe that this is true, given that every decent Java IDE does this and has been doing it for years. Eclipse, IntelliJ IDEA, NetBeans, JBuilder, you name it. If you use any modern Java IDE, you are never surprised by a syntax error at compilation time, because your editor lets you know that your code is broken as soon as you make a mistake. Heck, they’ll even warn you about all sorts of other common mistakes that lead to bugs, like unused local variables and uncalled methods.

Apparently some third party C# IDEs provide this functionality, but I am literally stunned that Microsoft hasn’t built it into Visual Studio. I’m blown away.

3 Comments

  1. hmm. In XCode (at least AppleScript Studio), syntax checking seems to happen at save time, so there’s some penalty, but it’s a cmd-S penalty and I should be saving the damn stuff anyway.

    I’m not sure it’s a semantic model, though.

  2. I am shocked and amazed that Visual Studio doesn’t build a semantic model of your code and proactively let you know whether your code is going to compile.

    Well, it does– especially on the VB.NET side. But the C# IDE only does some basic syntax checking, not a full background compile check. I wish it did! Why bother with static languages if you’re not going to harness the full power of compilation?

  3. Jonathan Dickinson

    May 17, 2007 at 4:35 pm

    The new IDE, that is 2005, does do that. It even gives you squigglies like with MS Word.

    I am a since-beta-1 C# veteran, that being said, I am a 1 week ruby nuby: and I decided I hate C#… Today I started programming a CMS, tomorrow I will probably finish it.

    What have I been wasting my time with?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

*

© 2016 rc3.org

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑