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why are IDE frowned upon?

william chaple
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Joined: Mar 08, 2013
Posts: 119
I got a new job as a system developer and they asked me why I am using an IDE, or netbeans? To me, netbeans gets the job done and is just the same as using VIM or GEDIT.

I pretty much have the application at /var/www/html (root) and I just use netbeans to open those files. So what exactly is the difference?
Henry Wong
author
Sheriff

Joined: Sep 28, 2004
Posts: 18847
    
  40

william chaple wrote:I got a new job as a system developer and they asked me why I am using an IDE, or netbeans? To me, netbeans gets the job done and is just the same as using VIM or GEDIT.

I pretty much have the application at /var/www/html (root) and I just use netbeans to open those files. So what exactly is the difference?


Well, I don't think that it is frown upon -- especially, since you are only using it as an editor. I have a question though. How do you edit a file, that is on a headless server, halfway around the world? You will be surprised at how common this situation is.

Henry


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Steve Luke
Bartender

Joined: Jan 28, 2003
Posts: 4181
    
  21

If you ask me I don't think they should be frowned upon assuming you already know how to program in java (or your language of choice) and know what goes into building and running the application.

In fact ides can make you more productive if you know how to use them. But therein lies their problem, you have to learn to use them and sometimes learning how to integrate them into a specific build system or development environment can be a lot of work. So often people will question whether their learning curve is worth the benefit they provide.

And I guess the answer to that depends a lot on how you use it (the ide) and how stable your environment is. If you have six different build systems then maybe an ide is just not worth it.

Steve
Ali Gordon
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Joined: Apr 30, 2014
Posts: 164

Steve Luke wrote:If you ask me I don't think they should be frowned upon assuming you already know how to program in java (or your language of choice) and know what goes into building and running the application.

In fact ides can make you more productive if you know how to use them. But therein lies their problem, you have to learn to use them and sometimes learning how to integrate them into a specific build system or development environment can be a lot of work. So often people will question whether their learning curve is worth the benefit they provide.

And I guess the answer to that depends a lot on how you use it (the ide) and how stable your environment is. If you have six different build systems then maybe an ide is just not worth it.


And becoming an expert at an IDE can come only from (a lot of) experience. I don't know if there is a single go to source which teaches you all the most commonly used features like debugging, accessing databases etc.


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Ulf Dittmer
Marshal

Joined: Mar 22, 2005
Posts: 41896
    
  63
A question like "why are you using an IDE?" is only acceptable if it means "I know nothing about IDEs; please educate me". Any undertones of "I think you would be better off using X" presumes that whatever works for the person asking the question will also work for someone else - not a correct assumption, work styles and preferences are too personal for that. As long as the outcome ties into whatever build system is used, the choice of development tools should be a personal one.


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Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
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Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 61232
    
  66

What Ulf said. I've worked at a number of places where the tools are dictated from on high and that's just dumb.

Around the Ranch, you'll generally find novices dissuaded from starting with IDEs because learning the intricacies of the IDE at the same time as learning a new language can be daunting. Also, frequently IDEs will do work for you that you should learn to do yourself. But I don't know if anyone would say never use an IDE.

One exception I make is for web development: I use an IDE for what it provides (editing assist, refactoring, etc), but run the web environment outside of the IDE. I find that the limitations and complexity of running the container within the IDE is a hindrance rather than a help, and doesn't reflect how the app will run in the real world. As always, YMMV.


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J. Kevin Robbins
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Joined: Dec 16, 2010
Posts: 963
    
  13

Bear Bibeault wrote:
One exception I make is for web development: I use an IDE for what it provides (editing assist, refactoring, etc), but run the web environment outside of the IDE. I find that the limitations and complexity of running the container within the IDE is a hindrance rather than a help, and doesn't reflect how the app will run in the real world. As always, YMMV.


I agree with this. Before I even install an IDE (I use NetBeans) I install the standalone version of Tomcat and get it working using the startup and shutdown batch files. After it's working to my satisfaction I install the IDE and uncheck the boxes where the IDE offers to install Tomcat or Glassfish. Then within the IDE project configuration I point it toward my existing Tomcat installation. I've found this to provide a lot cleaner setup.


"The good news about computers is that they do what you tell them to do. The bad news is that they do what you tell them to do." -- Ted Nelson
 
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