Exhaustion and Exhilaration
A trip to Prague is ....
Exhuasting. From the time I left my house in Austin, TX until I checked into my hotel in Prague twenty-one hours elapsed. And since I have never learned how to sleep on airplanes, I ended up being awake for thirty-one hours straight. On top of that, I'm not getting much sleep while I'm here.
Exhilarating. The purpose of my trip is to attend meetings where we discuss the set of features for the next version of NetBeans. Watching demos for those upcoming features was exhilarating - there are some very cool new things coming in the next release. So while I am tired, as the orange growers like to say, "The juice was worth the squeeze."
The NetBeans 4.1 release just went out last week and it will be a tough act to follow. It has raised some eyebrows and generated some buzz on the blogs. But this upcoming release will top it. Just a few examples:
1. Improved editor hints while coding. More functionality, better performance, and an easier to read format.
2. Improved CVS support. The current CVS support is functional, but not particularly user friendly. The new stuff is a big improvement - friendlier dialogs and "at a glance" status information.
3. More types of refactoring. Lots more. Enough said.
4. A new GUI builder. The current functionality is not bad - it helps you unleash the power of things like GridBagLayout. But the new stuff blows it away with things like hints on where to position each control and sensitivity to the look-and-feel for which you are designing.
The list above is just a sampler. There will be more. And keep in mind that you don't always have to wait for a new release in order to get new features. Some of these will end up on the NetBeans Auto Update center, which by default NetBeans checks once a week in order to show you new and updated features.
So stay tuned. The usage of NetBeans is becoming a "no brainer."