Amber Weinberg: Freelance Web Developer specializing in semantic WordPress, Mobile, CSS and HTML5 Development

The Blog

Review of Panic’s Coda 2

Posted on 05/24/12 in blog, development about , ,

I couldn’t sleep thanks to a lovely ear infection, so I thought I’d go ahead and download Coda 2 at 1:45am, before the majority of you geeks. I’ve always been a huge Coda fan, but this version takes the cake. Here are my thoughts…..

Layout

Upon opening the app for the first time, and after sniffing that new app smell, I was quite lost. This wasn’t my Coda! My first impression was “HOLY CRAP YES!” They’ve finally introduce lists into the sites area. I’ve been begging them for that simple feature since I have well over a hundred sites and the thumbnails thing wasn’t working out for me.

Upon going into a site – the typical layout was different, with lots of columns showing different FTP states. I liked the original Coda layout, so a quick open to the preferences and I moved my FTP sidebar back to the left and made sure the coding window was stretched the rest of the way.

The “Navigator” tab that comes standard in the top bar in the FTP window is quite nifty. I think this was in the previous version, but it seems to be a lot more useful this time around. It was easy for me to navigate through the giant 10 “tabs” I had coded up earlier today.

Code editing

I’m going to keep the syntax colours the way they are now, since they’ve been updated and I wanted to see how well I like them. It looks like my nifty WordPress extension isn’t working with Coda 2, but hopefully that’ll soon be remedied with an update to it. It was quite nice to have WordPress function completion!

I’ve never done a CSS3 gradient before (I still prefer to use images for good reasons we won’t go into here), so I had no idea of what the syntax was. I tentatively typed in “-webkit-linear-gradient” and a lovely menu popped up with the beautiful colour picker we saw in Coda 2’s two minute preview video.

Code folding happens by clicking in the blue bar before the line numbers (if you have them on – you should!) – I’m not sure why anyone would use this, but I’m sure it probably comes in handy for those of you with bad eyes are are obsessed with organisation (and I thought I was bad!).

GitHub

The biggest feature for me is Git integration – I hate having to use a separate app for Github – as I love my development process to be in completely one app. I opened a site’s “edit” pane that already had a repo and Coda had already detected it. Make sure you click on the “Home” icon in the sidebar and drag/drop the “SCM” icon to the top pane, so you can see your commit info. I couldn’t get Github to work past this, but thankfully the guys at Panic are lovely and I reported the issue, so hopefully they’ll be able to figure it out for me (I am such a Github dummy anyways) or release a fix for the bug.

Of course, nothing’s perfect!

Some thing I don’t like: upon opening a site, before any files from it are opened, I’m presented with three panes: the local files, then the local files again, then the remote files. This is redundant and I’m not sure the reasoning for it – but I guess they had to put something there before you opened anything.

Preview still never works for me – but I’m using WordPress so I suspects there’s really nothing they can do about that. The same goes for validation – will work great for a page that’s completely coded in one file, but if you’re using includes, you’ll of course get errors that you have no DOCTYPE, head, etc etc since it’s not directly in that file. Not sure if you can really do anything about that.

Moving From Coda 1

You’ll be happy to know that all of your sites and clips move over automatically. My colours and plugins didn’t move over – but that’s ok for now.

Price

I found it in the Mac App store for only £34.99 – well worth it! I’ve yet to find a better IDE :D

BAH if only Github worked right away! It’s 2:40am – I should really brave this ear ache and try to get some sleep. Happy coding times will come tomorrow. If you want a review on a specific feature, as it’s obviously impossible for me to play with them all, simply ask in the comments and I’ll try it out for ya

Amber Weinberg specializes in clean and semantic HTML5, CSS3, responsive and WordPress development. She has over 15 years of coding experience and is super cool to work with. Amber is available for freelance work, so why not hire her for your next project?

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