[wingide-users] Word completion and refactoring support

Geoff Bache geoff.bache at jeppesen.com
Tue Jul 3 14:13:58 MDT 2007


I've recently been trying out Wing (and a couple of other IDEs) after 
many years of developing in emacs. It seems a stable and solid product
(unlike e.g. Komodo!) However, it's yet to convince me that it's a clear 
gain over emacs. I noted the following:

(1) I miss the emacs "word completion" feature a lot. (Autocomplete 
words found in open files irrespective of whether they are correct 
syntax or not)
Am I correct in thinking Wing has no support for this?

(2) I was hoping autocompletion or refactoring support would make up for 
this, but it seems the autocompletion only has scope of one method,
which limits its usefulness. For example, consider this method:

def method(self, param1):
    list = []
    val = self.otherMethod(param1)

If I append to this method, I will get a drop-down list of methods for 
"self" and "list" here (or any modules I might use), but not
for "param1" or "val", even if the type of these is totally obvious from 
adjoining methods in the same class. Is this to be expected?
In practice this means I get much more help in typing from emacs than I 
do from Wing.

(3) Reading the list of feature additions in Wing 3.0 made it seem to me 
like the bulk of the effort is being put into improving the
debugger. To me this seems a shame when more and more people are moving 
away from using debuggers towards driving development
with tests. Personally I would far rather spend my time writing 
automated tests or improving system logging than running a debugger: 
these things
stay with the system, whereas debugging sessions are transient. My 
debugging session now is not going to help any other developer of the 
nor is it going to help me a few months from now.

In contrast, eveyone needs a slick editor: in fact I'd have thought 
that's the main point of an IDE for most people. Improving auto-completion
and introducing decent refactoring support would likely move Wing ahead 
of the competition. For example, the open source Bicycle Repair Man project
could be revived and integrated...

Geoff Bache

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