Last time, I did a controversial post about the benefits of IDEs over text editors.
With IDEs, I argued that the tools available far outweigh any advantages you get from text editors. For example, IDEs provide built-in tools for refactoring, auto-completion, static analysis, and testing, just to name a few.
But I must admit I’m a bit of a hypocrite. I do in fact use Vim. I use it mainly because it is just easier to open a file quickly. But that’s just me. I don’t do pure development currently, so I only need to open the occasional source file.
I guess I’m contradicting myself here. Maybe IDEs are going to be obsolete? Take a look at vi; it has been around well, since forever.
I know people are passionate about their favorite text editor, but the comments in the post did bring up some good points about the merits of text editors, such as start-up time. I think Visual Studio has made some great strides, but it is still slow in this regard. With Eclipse, I’ve learned to just always leave it up, otherwise it is way too slow. I think I actually start to rage when I wait for Eclipse to open (I should probably see someone about that).
To try to see what people are using we did a poll at the Klocwork Developer Network (select your favorite editor to see the results). The poll certainly shows IDEs are favored, especially Visual Studio and Eclipse.
Is this poll really an indication of use? Are you forced to use Visual Studio or Eclipse for your organization? Or do you genuinely love the IDE? What makes you a better programmer with an IDE? Please comment and let me know.