Saturday, February 12, 2005

Track Changes

The more time I spend in software development, the less time I spend actually writing code. Now I spend time thinking about code or designs or other high level things that are somehow less rewarding than actually sitting down and typing some code. Inevitably this means I spend a lot of time using Word (hey, I should really switch back to TeX if I want to feel like I'm coding). I think the track changes feature is simply great and use it all the time, even for documents I'm working on solo. It got me thinking, why not have a "track changes" like feature in your development environment? It would certainly make code reviews much easier. The reviewer could simply edit the code and add comments inline. All comments would be stored with the code itself. IMO, this would be much more convenient than conducting code reviews via email. Perhaps some nifty GUI that I'm not familiar with has this feature, but if not, it probably wouldn't be terribly difficult to build.

3 Comments:

At 9:22 PM, Blogger Jim Carson said...

MSWord gets incredibly cumbersome when you've undergone more than two iterations. (You really have to accept changes between them) For documents greater than 20 pages, or where there are significant numbers of figures, tables or images, it totally breaks down. Outline mode is horked, too, with fourth-level fonts larger and a left margin greater than the third-level.

Tex and LaTex had their issues, but I could always generate a good document from them...

 
At 11:54 AM, Anonymous Hans said...

TeX! Whoa, that brings back memories. I used to work for a database publishing company. We used TeX in the backend of the product. Awesome software. Ever read Knuth's books on TeX? Great stuff.

 
At 9:45 AM, Blogger Doug W said...

Ok, I admit it. I said TeX, but I could never handle it. I used LaTeX and I have fond memories of almost turning in a paper late because I couldn't get it to compile. :)

 

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