Rob Cook


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Tooling


2024-06-09

As a C# developer I have long been accustomed to using Visual Studio for my work. Its a powerful IDE, and does a lot of things for you. I feel comfortable using it, and know how to get things done with it.

Recently I found myself working on a small side project on my home laptop - an ageing Ideapad from Lenovo. It lacks the grunt for Visual Studio, so I decided to give Visual Studio Code a try. Once the C# extension is installed, you have a very capable.NET development environment.

What I didn't expect was to find VS Code making me a more involved programmer. Adding a new project requires using the command line dotnet tool. As does linking it to a solution. New code files come pristinely empty; no boilerplate code template here. Building code, running tests, all find the CLI tool in use again. This all led to a more direct connection with the code I was writing.

Not only has VS Code replaced my previous editor of choice (Sublime Text), I find that I also prefer it to Visual Studio. I enjoy coding in it more.

Who'd have thought tooling could have such an impact.

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