On Coda

I had some advance warning (after all, I've been reading Steven's blog for ages now), but Coda is... Utterly, utterly brilliant.

Sure, I've often subscribed to the notion that all you need is a shell and vim, but I've used Dreamweaver for ages now, and an IDE has a lot of advantages - from cross-referencing files to having code completion, and one when you have to cross-link files, etc.

But Coda raises the bar to an entirely new level.

I was able to edit this site over SSH seamlessly, as if I had it locally, and share editing with another Mac on my LAN (I haven't tried using the Subetha engine with someone else outside my LAN, but I expect it will work).

I love the way it looks (even down to the "Panic" font, which is like Monaco with better hinting), the way it works (with tools getting out of your way instead of getting in your way), and the nice touches like a built-in terminal and web design references. Their website is amazing too, and a pretty good showcase.

What really floored me, though, was the CSS editor, which has to be seen (and experienced) to be believed. I expect that once Panic gets through the initial impact, they will put up a few screencasts showing how great it is at taming complex CSS.

I have only three minor complaints:

  • It does not seem to deal well with Python (it identifies symbols, but auto-completion wasn't there for me)
  • It does not seem to have any sort of hooks for SCM (such as Subversion)
  • and (the deal breaker) it has trouble with my particular SSH setup (I use key-based authentication with SSHKeychain, and it does not seem to pick up the environment settings, even when I use a "local" terminal).

Failing that, it seems to be a great replacement for Dreamweaver on the Mac for just about anybody else (and I've only scratched the surface).

Now's the time to Panic, it seems. :)