The Connected IDE: A Communication-First approach drives Collaboration (Part 2)

Claudio PinkusClaudio Pinkus
May 12, 2020

Introduction

In Part 1 of this series we touched on the evolution of IDE from a personal, standalone tool to a connected and networked hub of all things code. We explained how connecting your IDE to your teammates’ simplifies communication and collaboration with two specific use cases: Discussing code in general, and performing code reviews right in your IDE, eliminating the context switching and improving knowledge sharing.

In this post we will expand this to additional use cases and show how the Connected IDE is the most important step towards team collaboration in a world where we are all remote developers.

What is collaboration anyway?

There are many flavors of collaboration platforms and tools for developers, and many permutations through extensions. In the context of making your IDE more connected, we look for collaboration to enhance velocity and value for the team.  In a post updated on November 24, 2019, Geoff Stevens writes about How to collaborate like a pro in VS Code.  Since VS Code is today the most popular modern editor, we will focus on it as an example, but the analysis applies to much of the collaboration approach out there.   

In the post, Geoff looks at a list of VS Code extensions that bring collaborative features into the editor.  These include, among others:

  • Microsoft’s own Live Share that “eliminates the friction of coding together by letting you collaboratively edit, debug, and fix code in real-time without leaving the comfort of your own VS Code setup,” according to Geoff. Live share is pair programming inside VS Code, and provides an experience that is reminiscent of screen-sharing, but specifically for developers.
  • CodeStream, which “allows you to comment, ask questions, and have discussions across your codebase from within VS Code.”  Note that CodeStream now also allows you to perform code reviews in your editor
  • The Jira extension for VS Code gives you the ability to “view, search, and filter issues in Jira inside VS Code.” 
  • GitHub Pull Requests that helps you review and manage GitHub pull requests right inside VS Code.

We believe that collaboration starts with communication between developers.  Through that lens, only Live Share and CodeStream are actually delivering collaboration, while the GitHub and Jira extensions serve only to reduce friction for the individual developer by reducing context switching.  We believe collaboration is a communication-first endeavor.  The ability to view or reference other content inside my IDE makes it easier for me to collaborate with my team, but only in communicating am I actually explaining my intent and resolving conflicts, misunderstandings or misalignment.  A communication-first approach drives velocity and code quality.

Continued here.


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About CodeStream

CodeStream helps development teams discuss, review and understand code. CodeStream links comments and issues directly to the code blocks they refer to, making them instantly available to everyone on the team.  

Thank you for your interest in CodeStream.

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