#11: Introduction to IDEs

Context: Using IDEs

Throughout the missing semester, we have interfaced with various command line utilities: The shell, editors, version control systems, container solutions, compilers, debuggers, and more.

Being proficient with all of these tools from the command line itself greatly helps our understanding of how individual tools work. This knowledge can be highly influential for our day-to-day activities as computer scientists, especially when we are working on remote machines without any attached UI.

However, sometimes, and based on personal preferences, it may be convenient to interface with these tools through a graphical UI, rather directly from the command line. This is where IDEs (or, in long: Integrated Development Environments) come in: These are software applications aiming to ease the software development process. Oftentimes, IDEs combine a graphical text editor with various interfaces to the different command line utilities we discussed so far. For instance, they may provide text editing capabilities with quality-of-life features such as syntax highlighting together version control via git and interfaces to commodity compilers & build toolchains.

In this session of the missing semester, we will look at one especially versatile IDE: Visual Studio Code. Unfortunately, as this is a graphical tool, we will only recap some of the key points (and key combinations) in this online post, although we will showcase the different aspects in more detail during the life session.

Important Windows/Hotkeys


During the session, we will look in a couple of extensions, tying back to the different aspect of the missing semester lectures so far:

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