Thursday, November 09, 2006

Some CodeRush Template Editor Ideas

As my last post indicated, I've been playing around a lot more with CodeRush's 'Template' facility.
In my recent attempts to create all kinds of CodeRush templates, I have come across a few... items which could stand a little improvement in the template editor.

1.> «Cursor» and «BlockQuote» have little icons to represent them but «FieldStart» and «FieldEnd» do not.
I'm finding that I am using these 2 little gems more and more all the time and it's getting quite annoying to have to reach for the mouse in order to select these.

2.> My next thought was simple (like so many of them). I could create a template to create the phrases and so ease my task.
except that the template editor does not consider itself part of the IDE and as such cannot run templates within itself.

3.> One common situation is one where you have a prospective template in which you hope to embed several 'fields'. These should have temporary wording in place of each with a «FieldStart»-«FieldEnd» pair around each. Further, the first of these should have a «Cursor»-«BlockQuote» pair around the outside of it so that it becomes the initially selected field.

This leads us to a situation where one would like to do either of the following:

a.> Highlight some text and use a 'Selection Embedding' to wrap the text in a «FieldStart»-«FieldEnd» or a «Cursor»-«BlockQuote» combination or perhaps even both.

Or

b.> Click «Cursor», Select «FieldStart»,Type Some Text, Select «FieldEnd» and Click «BlockQuote»

The first case is simply not supported. I have raised it as a suggestion and am waiting to hear an answer from the support center

The second case works (Sort of). What I mean is that currently there is a bug (in my opinion) wherein after one selects an item from the dropdown list of commands, the cursor in placed to the left of the inserted command (rather than to the right).

Thus the insertion of further commands without first manually reseating the cursor, result in the commands being chosen in the order 1, 2, 3 and yet appearing in text as 3, 2, 1.

Initially it is hard to observe this behaviour because although the caret's virtual position appears to be to the left, the caret itself is not visible because the focus is on the command dropdown.

I believe that this bug is responsible for people creating templates like:

-------------------------------------------------------------
SomeText«Cursor»«FieldStart»Field«BlockQuote»«FieldEnd»EndText
-------------------------------------------------------------

...when they meant to create...

-------------------------------------------------------------
SomeText«Cursor»«FieldStart»Field«FieldEnd»«BlockQuote»EndText
-------------------------------------------------------------

Then (without noticing that something is amiss) they wonder why (and in some cases ask tech-support/newsgroup residents why) their template doesn't work.

This is a minor bug but I felt that since they seem so few and far between, I should mention it to prove that I am unbiased in things DXCore based :)


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