We all know the answer is “Developers, developers, developers, developers,” but who’s asking the question these days? It seems like Sun has taken up the song, according to Timothy M. O’Brien’s posting over at O’Reilly, “Surprising Contender: NetBeans as a Ruby+MySQL IDE.” Great news for all of us looking for new tools; NetBeans is shaping up to be a pretty sharp IDE.
I saw a blog post recently and neglected to bookmark it that posited the thesis that rich IDEs were bad when learning a language. A simple text editor and console can be all the interface you might need when when starting off and as your skills increased, the need for code completion, cross-referencing, inline debugging, source code control, refactoring and macros all became more valuable. Witness the training videos on http://www.rubyonrails.org where developers use a browser, a console window and the Textmate editor to build sample applications. The simplicity is appealing.