Adobe Brackets - IDE for the Web
Integrated Development Environment oriented toward the Web technologies
I installed Brackets (v. 1.2 on Windows 7 with 8 GB of memory; currently at v.1.4), it went out quite smoothly, just asking for the directory where to install it.
I opened it, it starts very fast.
It has a dark UI but a light editing area. Not fan of dark theme, but I will try and keep it to see if it is effective to have a contrast between the UI and the editing area.
Default syntax coloring theme looks OK so far. It can be changed with theme plugins.
Actually, the UI theme cannot be changed easily, it needs a plugin to be able to modify it.
There is no drag’n’drop of text by default, which is why I rejected this editor on my first try (before 1.0), because I use this operation a lot; but it has been introduced in this version, and the blog post about this release shows how to activate it.
There are not much settings either: you have to edit Json files to customize things. A bit less intuitive, but I am OK with that, as that’s the way I customize ScITE, my favorite (general purpose) source code editor. And not having complex dialogs to set every option also keeps the application light.
After a few weeks of using Brackets, I appreciate it a lot: it is much less memory hungry than WebStorm or Eclipse, it is flexible and easy to use.
I recommend it.
Still, I regret some base editor features are missing and must be fixed with extensions. Among them:
- Jump to matching brace (bracket / parenthesis);
- Gutter selection of lines;
- Recall previous searches / replacements;
- Autofill of search field with text under caret (text has to be selected);
- Show whitespace / end of lines / indentation guides / right margin;
- Selection to upper / lower case; and some more.
Some of these features has been addressed by adding extensions, but I feel these should be native.
I will list here a number of these extensions I found useful.
I give the links to the GitHub projects, but the best way to install these extensions is to go to the Extension Manager in Brackets, to type (paste) the name of the extension and to install it from there. The manager also checks for updated and allows to install them easily.
File Tree Exclude
- Jon Wolfe (https://github.com/JonathanWolfe/) - 0.6.3
- Excludes folders (eg. containing generated stuff) from the file tree (less noise), find in files and quick open.
Brackets Outline List
White Space Sanitizer
- Miguel Castillo (https://github.com/MiguelCastillo) - 1.2.1
- Help keep white spaces and tabs consistent. Also trims trailing whitespaces and ensures newline at end of file.
- See also https://github.com/adobe/brackets/wiki/How-to-Use-Brackets#preferences to set up tab preferences per language
- Dennis Kehrig (https://github.com/DennisKehrig) - 2.0.1
- Show indentation. Useful with the previous one…
- Randy Edmunds (https://github.com/redmunds) - 1.3.5
- Display current keyboard shortcuts in a bottom panel that can be sorted and filtered.
- See also https://github.com/adobe/brackets/wiki/User-Key-Bindings and https://github.com/adobe/brackets/blob/master/src/command/Commands.js to define (or change) your shortcuts.
Go to Matching Bracket
- David Waterston (https://github.com/davidwaterston) - 2.1.0
- Instantly locate and place the cursor on the matching bracket to the one under the cursor.
- Shortcut: Ctrl+Alt+Right Arrow
- ApptoIX Limited (https://github.com/apptoix) - 3.2.0
- Swiss knife toolset… Useful: to upper or to lower case, single to double quote and back, RGB to hex colors and back, etc.
- Shortcuts: use the Command Mapper to define them as you want. Use Display Shortcuts to see what is available or overridable.
- https://github.com/apptoix/bracketstoix - http://www.apptoix.com/fr/bracketstoix.html
Support of auto-completion, hinting & linting
- Miguel Castillo (https://github.com/MiguelCastillo) - 1.0.5
- Brings realtime JSHint/JSLint/CoffeeLint reports into Brackets as you work on your code, in form of margin indicators.
- Konstantin Kobs (https://github.com/konstantinkobs) - 1.1.0
- Auto-completion for SASS/SCSS variables.
- Miguel Castillo (https://github.com/MiguelCastillo) - 0.8.0
Removed because Interactive Linter supports them anyway
- Enable JSHint support, which can (should) supercedes JSLint. The latter is a bit too strict about “rules”. The former is very flexible.
Extensions that might be installed someday
- Various Improvements
- Add more information in the status bar, lowercase and uppercase converter, super clipboard, button close all folders in file tree, files search.