For too long the IDE has been separate from the target. That is, the IDE is running its own process, and the code written in it is running in a separate one. I don’t mean to say that this is bad on a technical low level. It is as it should be. I mean from the user experience point of view. And nowhere is that more true than web development.
WE-TIDE – Web Enabled TIDE: The two beasts are so separate for web developers, that completely different tools have emerged. On one hand are the traditional IDEs, like Eclipse and Komodo. Others are in the runtime, like Firebug and Web Inspector. As a Firebug developer, I see requests for saving changes from Firebug back wherever the source is. Many people don’t even know what or where the source is. They might be using WordPress or some other CMS or shopping cart software, and don’t know how the CSS and HTML gets created. They are sometimes surprised to hear that Firebug doesn't know either. But it could…
A while back I discussed debugging closures and, I must admit, I figured Google Chrome would have fixed the issue by now, what with their fast release cycles and all. Nope. Enter Firefox 4.0 beta: yes, it is fixed (and not just their really awful bug that made using Firefox a burden when debugging -- they fixed all instances). Sadly, FF4 is so broken as far as debugging is concerned that it is not much consolation at the moment. But that will change eventually, and definitely (I assume) by the day it ships in March (my guess). So gantlet thrown Google. Sheesh. As a big consumer of your own tools, you would think this wouldn't even be an issue.
When FF4 ships, I'll update with a Part 3. Unless there is a more interesting development before then...
Firebug 1.6 is almost ready for release, and before it goes final I want a few more people to start using, playing with, and testing my extension to Firebug 1.6 called Illumination for Developers:
It makes Firebug know all about ExtJS. And it is very very handy, and so let's discuss a few of the features:
In particular, Firefox 3.6 is really really bad. The older Firefox 3.5 and the current Chrome are just kinda bad. You would have to go back to Firefox 3.0 or switch browsers altogether to get something that is developer friendly on this particular topic (and note, I am just speaking to this topic when I say that, I'm a developer of Firebug for Firefox after all).
Let us take a simple example: