This week I will be looking at the web 2.0 application ‘codingground’ which is a perfect example of an online ‘Rich user experience’. ‘codingground’ is a free online programming tool provided by ‘tutorialspoint’. The platform allows users to write, compile, debug (although I wouldn’t recommend it) and run programs, partially or entirely, online. Without even registering, users can access 88 different IDE’s and 12 Terminals for various platforms and systems. Everything from Lua, C++ and even Matlab (MathWorks sells a Matlab IDE for $2,850.00 AUD) is made available to anyone with a web browser that supports html5 and an internet connection. While these were obviously designed to be used in conjunction with ‘tutorialspoint’ free and premium online tutorials there are no restrictions on the use of these IDEs or Terminals.
The ‘codingground’ provides the user with a great combination of online and desktop experiences. By Default the IDE will appear similar to many desktop applications such as Bloodshed Dev-C++. Users have the ability to develop using the same interface as a desktop application with the added bonus of being able to use any machine with an internet connection. This provides the functionality of a desktop application with the mobility of a mobile device. Users also have the ability to compile and run programs through the interface just as they can with desktop based IDEs.
The service also offer users with the ability to directly access external source control services which is a great example of how ‘codingground’ matched the technology usage to the requirements. There is built-in functionality allowing users to pull their projects from cloud services including Dropbox, Github, Google Drive and One Drive. These projects can be saved directly back onto the users cloud storage giving the user full control over where their project is saved. Users are also able to upload and download projects or files directly from their computers.
The ‘codingground’ was obviously designed with usability and simplicity in mind. The application does not have additions like Microsoft’s ‘IntelliSense’ (which will warn the user of error in their code before they have compiled it). While compilation errors will still be descriptive enough to find code faults (similar to some IDE’s such as vanilla Bloodshed Dev-C++) new users will not be overwhelmed with a multitude of errors every time they write a line of code. The exemption of this type of feature is also likely to prevent new programmers from becoming reliant on tools such as these.
Despite a few limitations ‘codingground’ remains to be fantastic example of a ‘Rich user experience’. The vast number of different IDEs is impressive and allowing users to access these tools without registration or limitations makes ‘codingground’ a great web 2.0 application. I am excited to see how this website and other online IDE platforms will develop into the future.
BloodshedSoftware. (2015). Dev Cpp. Retrieved from Bloodshed Software MathsWorks. (2015). MathWorks Store. Retrieved from MathWorks Microsoft. (2015). Using IntelliSense. Retrieved from Microsoft Developer Network tutorialspoint. (2015). codingground. Retrieved from codingground.
tutorialspoint (2015). tutorialspoint Logo. Retrieved from http://www.tutorialspoint.com/images/logo.png