A whole new experience for writing JavaScript…

It seems to me that JavaScript is seeing a real boost of late, mostly due to the hype around Ajax and the many new javascript libraries available for download.  One of the things that put me off Javascript when I first started using it was that I just couldn’t get used to not having the IDE help me along.  Being one of those developers that can’t remember everything in a framework, scripted or otherwise, seems to be a curse I’ll live with forever.

I have some knowledge of the DOM and over the years I have picked up bits that I use every day but I still don’t know everything and I doubt I ever will.  So I’ve always been on the lookout for a tool that would help me along on my quest to perfect my javascript skills.  Initially I found First JavaScript Editor, a very nice IDE that gives you intellisense and debugging for your JavaScript.  It’s a paid for application and does a damn good job too, coming with some great tutorials as well as scripts to help get you started.  I found it to be an excellent application despite it’s dated looks (no disrespect here, building an app this good takes a lot of effort).

Then along came a surprise contender for my affections, AptanaAptana is an open source application, for which the source was recently released.

Aptana still has a little way to go before it includes all the features available in First Javascript Editor but it has the advantage of being free, and damn good looking.  It too sports Intellisense, spots errors as you code and additionally has an awesome project management facility that allows you to maintain some complicated (or simple) javascript libraries.  You can easily switch between different ‘perspectives’ that allow you to quickly arrange the interface to suit the current task, debugging and team synchronising being two of the options.

You can also hook it into a source control system which allows for easy sharing of projects, and coming very soon is another upgrade that will give us debugging as well as a few bug fixes.

Aptana Is available for Windows, Mac and Linux and has a plugin for the Eclipse source control system.

So if you are looking for a tool to help you get the most from your JavaScript, these two options are well worth a look.

First Javascript Editor  –  Aptana  –  Boost your Javascript productivity…

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