August 1st, 2011
Code at the speed of thought!General Development, by nazeeh.
Coding is a challenging task. It’s what makes it super fun and rewarding though. It is, however, a very focus based task. Once you’re in the zone, you don’t want to be interrupted or taken out of that zone. When I am coding and find myself getting taken out of that “flow”, I tend to find a way to not let that happen again.
One of the things that used to do that to me where finding something in the code quickly. I would be coding something up and need to find a method in a class (not a method I can see now or else I would use F12). I would then go to the source explorer in Visual Studio and start looking for that source file. Then I would hit F3 to search for that class/method I was thinking about. I thought to myself, this is stupid, there has to be a better way. That’s when I set my work aside and started searching the web and came to find this little gem called DPack (http://www.usysware.com/dpack/).
DPack is an addon for Visual Studio 2008/2010 that is awesome. Basically, it add two very useful shortcuts: Alt+U and Alt+M. Alt+U pops up a dialog box that lets you quickly search through your source files by partial string matching. You type, it starts listing files that match so far. Alt+M is a method lookup mode that searches the current source file for any method you want.
The reason I love using this addon is that it doesn’t make me pause and get out of the flow to find something in the code. The project I am working on at the moment is large enough that it takes a few seconds to locate what you want via the source explorer. Using this addon, I jump to where I need to go as fast as my brain is going. I watch other people I work with using the Solution Explorer/F3 method and it kills me. We would be talking about some part of the code and need to jump to another area and the whole conversation is paused until the guy find the part we need.
So the morale of the story here is this: Computers are very good at repeating tasks and finding stuff. So you really should never be wasting time doing that manually. If you ever find yourself doing something over and over, find a way to not have to do that! Don’t just make it a habit of yours and live with it. Shaving a few seconds here and there really does help with your bottom line as far as productivity is concerned! We all want to be done with work early and have enough time to play games after allThanks for reading! I'd love to hear your thoughts, feel free to leave a comment below. Don't forget to subscribe to my RSS Feed!