Wednesday, August 11, 2010

IntelliJ Idea like Eclipse

I always feel that the mighty IDE is a developer's most precious possession - just as a pen is for a calligrapher. It is a developer's personal choice.
But many a times it simply doesn't work that ways. You might have to switch to a different IDE when you change your employer (or when your company is acquired- Not sure if Sun Alumni use JDeveloper now - Oracle might say NetBeans is cool but JDevloper is cooler). I was fortunate enough to stick on to IntelliJ idea for more than five years now. Many a times I have made forced attempts to switch to Eclipse - but in vain. For pure Java development, the features are pretty much the same- but the difficult part is the new look and feel and the keyboard shortcuts. More than the keyboard shortcuts it was the appearance that was an issue for me - the syntax coloring and font. The other reason could have been that every time I decided to move to Eclipse - I always had some pending work or deadlines. You won't like to change your IDE when you really need to write code.

Here at IBM for reasons obvious - it's Eclipse everywhere. In fact many components check-in the .project and .classpath files into the source control. Now that I am moving to a new team, I decided this time I would give it a serious try. Luckily this time around, I seem to have settled in a bit with it. My requirement was to make eclipse *look* like Idea, rather - make the code in Eclipse look as if it was opened in Idea. Then the keyboard shortcuts.

For the keyboard shortcuts, the IdeaKeyScheme by Santosh works perfect. On top of this plugin, I have applied Idea code style, syntax coloring and comment/javadoc format defaults and added few other idea keyboard shortcuts. I have exported those preferences and can be found here.

Applying these two, and after writing code for the past week - I am now as comfortable as before on my Idea'l Eclipse.

Idea Preferences download


Surya Chaitanya Tamada said...

one thing i miss in eclipse is option to configure modules. in Idea u can setup a project with setup of modules and defining dependency between modules.

Bharath said...


You can do the same in Eclipse also. Just that a Project in Idea maps to a 'Workspace' in eclipse and a Module in Idea maps to a 'Project' in Eclipse.
So here a project can depend on another project.

Anton Tagunov said...

Hi, I'm an Eclipse person, have tried Idea a few times.

What Idea has that Eclipse doesn't: more refactorings

Example: introduce a new String field to a class. In Idea a few clicks and you can have it add for you as a constructor argument. And vice versa: add constructor argument and have Idea introduce a field for you.

I wish Eclipse could do this...

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Joshua Smith said...

Thanks for the review! Also you may turn your attention on offshore IT development outsourcing.

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Cooper Mccray said...

In Concept a few mouse clicks and you can have it add for you as a constructor discussion. And vice versa: add constructor discussion and have Concept present a area for you.

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