An IDE (Integrated Development Environment) helps Java programming professionals to significantly cut down the amount of time it takes for them to develop code. However, they can also help beginners to learn Java. That’s right! How can it help someone new to the language to learn Java?
Here are three reasons why those learning the Java programming language should try learning it with an IDE.
1. IDE’s greatly speed up coding time.
The less time spent coding, the more time you can be spending to learn Java. Practicing your coding skills is important, but there’s no point sitting in front of the screen trying to remember the name of one of Java’s methods. Because most IDE’s come with auto-complete, you will get a drop-down list of possible method calls you can make from one of your objects. This feature makes it really easy to start coding away without having to remember or look up even the most obscure commands.
2. IDE’s help to structure your Java code.
With a regular editor, there’s no syntax highlighting. That means all of your text is of the same color, so you can’t tell what parts of the code are keywords and which are not. Not to mention that the code all looks like a jumble when it’s all one color! It’s easier to learn Java when you can clearly tell where your variables are and which words happen to be keywords. Another nifty feature of IDE’s is that they will auto-complete closing brackets for you. Finally no more mess in figuring out where you left out one little closing bracket. Finding bracket mismatches is not really required to learn Java, so why bother with such a tedious task when a tool can take care of that for you?
3. IDE’s help find errors.
The biggest time waster for those beginning Java is finding errors in their code. Most IDE’s nowadays find errors in real-time, highlighting in red the parts of the code that are wrong, without needing the programmer to hit compile. Not only do you get pretty good descriptions of the code, you also get to see immediately on what line number the problem is on. Because the IDE checks for errors in real-time, you will know immediately when you have made a mistake because the line you are working on will mark itself as an error. In some cases, the IDE may even know what the problem is and be able to correct it for you.