Why I Use VSCodium
The editor that I use for my workflow is the open source version of Visual Studio Code: VSCodium. I use it because I am definitely not a fan of the telemetry that Microsoft puts in the version that they use. It also doesn’t help that it, in my opinion, bugs down the editor a little bit when it has to ping home to upload the data it is collecting. That being said, you can use the same extensions and settings for VSCodium as you would for VSCode.
That aside, it is pretty much the same as using Visual Studio Code. From here on out, I will refer to it as Visual Studio Code or just plain Code.
One of my favorite things about Visual Studio Code is the number of extensions that are available for it. There is a lot that you can add-on to the editor to make it more powerful and tailored to your own needs. I use a number of these plugins to help me be more productive in my code.
I have installed a number of extensions and I would love to talk about a lot of them but, I’m going to focus on a few of my favorites.
Note: emmet is amazing but, since it is included by default, I’m not going to include it on this list. But it is pretty much in my top 10 list of extensions.
My absolute favorite extension right now is the Better Comments. This extension adds colored syntax highlighting to comments based on certain characters you input. For example, you can create a todo section by setting up a multiline comment and typing out “todo” or “!” and then your comment to create an important piece of documentation and more as shown below.
/****! this is importanttodo: this is a todo***/
Indent Rainbow & Bracket Colorizer 2
This extension is pretty sweet. Indent Rainbow as the name implies, creates a colored highlight in your tabs/spaces. This makes it a lot easier to see where your code is nested. This is a pretty self explanatory extension. I also included Bracket Colorizer 2. This extension does the same as Indent Rainbow, except for it colorizes your brackets so you can see which block of code belongs to a specific, well, code block.
Settings JSON File
I love the flexibility of customizing the settings by using a JSON file. It makes it pretty easy to update, add or remove any number of settings that can help speed up the development processes. From changing font faces to changing the default browser when using Live Server (another great extension) to changing which terminal to use (this is more specific to Windows due to Linux Subsystem for Windows). It is a wonderful little file. And, even better, is you can backup this file and the extensions file and move them to new installs of Code and get back up and running on new machines fairly quickly.
I think that my all time favorite feature of Code is the ability to integrate with Git. You can either hookup your Github or Gitlab account (and I’m sure you can connect other version control software with it) and you can track all your code, make commits and push to any repository right from within the app. Its GUI is simple and easy to use and, if you need to do more advanced things, the terminal is a few clicks away as that is also built right into Code. The best of both worlds.
VSCodium (and its proprietary counterpart Visual Studio Code) is a great and powerful text editor that matches its parent IDE, Visual Studio. It has a lot of amazing features to offer and I think that most developers that use it will end up falling in love with it.
Brandon Pretelt is a student in the Digital Media Program at Utah Valley University, Orem Utah, studying Web & App Development. The following article relates to (Methods and Processes) in the DGM Field and representative of the skills learned.