What is the best IDE for coding?

“Spoiler alert”
NONE

Wait, that can not be right?
Is the title misleading?

I will be honest, yes it is.

Now, before you start judging, let me clear few things upfront :
* I am not against IDEs. As a matter of fact I use IntelliJ Ultimate edition as my daily driver.
* Writing code in a notepad is a stunt performed by daredevils and should “not be attempted at home (and definitely not at work)”.

So here’s what happened.
Couple of days ago I had to let go of my Macbook Pro for repairs and use a Macbook Air for the time being. So, I thought of using a light weight IDE to keep things going.

Few minutes into it, I was frustrated, lost and craving for IntelliJ.

Yep, IntelliJ is that good.

No code autocompletes? No code generation ? No auto clean up ? No import optimisation ?
That can’t be right, right? 🤔

After few blog reads, the answer was Plugins and Extensions.

Did it solve it ? No.
Did it make it better? Yes, a bit.

BTW, did you know `syso` is not the default for `System.out.println` ?

After some more fidgeting with code syntaxes and autocompletes, I stopped and stepped back.

Then I remembered this scene.

If you nothing without your IDE, you should not have it.

It was indeed true. I was having difficulties without IntelliJ.

So I forced myself to use a bare bones IDE with no fancy plugins. After few initial difficult days, it got better. I got better.

IDEs are really great, they help us to build softwares in a better way, take away some mundane tasks, auto configure things need to run the apps and at times cover up our silly mistakes to keep everything running.

They are really helpful, they truly are. But we should also be careful of the fact that these IDEs should not become mandatory to code.

With these modern day IDEs, you don’t even need to know new language. The IDE corrects you, suggests you and at times also generates code for you.
All these really spoils you and the moment that IDE is taken away from you, you are lost.

Using bare bones IDE makes you think about all the code you write and think about all the decisions you make.

Smart refactor is not available, remember ?

So, coming back to the original question, which IDE is the best for coding ?
It does not matter. You shouldn’t need to worry about it. Pick anything.
It is as good as you can make use of it. 🙂

Yeah, I know probably not what you came for. But it is true.

Stay safe. Stay home.

Creator, developer and tinkerer. Loves to read books and play badminton. Keeps things simple.