JetBrains, plugins + me

by Matt 20. June 2012 06:35

I've just checked, and I've been working on the xUnit.net ReSharper test runner for nearly 3 and a half years. I've always enjoyed writing tools and plugins, possibly more than server side or front end coding, the stuff that's paid the bills. I like building tools that help make people more efficient, and then gets out of the way. I love the idea of tweaking or extending a tool and making it to do new and interesting things.

One of my all time favourite tools is ReSharper. I’m a huge fan, use it constantly, and don’t know how I managed to develop without it. I know ALL the keyboard shortcuts and everything.

Which means that I'm VERY excited that from the start of July, I'm going to be part of JetBrains' .net developer evangelism team, working with Hadi, Jura and the others. Specifically, I'll be focussing on the extensibility features of ReSharper and the other .net tools (dotCover, dotTrace, dotPeek - yep, these guys are extensible too).

In other words, I'll be working on plugins.

Or rather, working with the whole plugin ecosystem. While it will involve writing, maintaining and publishing plugins, it's also a very community facing role. I'll be involved in, and provide support for, the existing community of plugin authors - helping out with issues and updates, gathering feedback, improving the ReSharper SDK. I’ll be encouraging new plugins by working on blog posts and tutorials, and participating in JetBrains events and community gatherings. Everything I can to improve ReSharper as a platform.

In some respects, this is quite a departure to what I've done in the past. I've worked in C++ and C#, a bit of Java and even some Flash (don't tell anyone). I've been a developer, team lead or architect in small code shops and several big enterprises. Now I'm going to be working from home (which beats the London commute I've been doing for the past few years), with a very social, community focussed role, working full time on the kinds of things I've been tinkering with in my spare time.

I'm massively looking forward to it.

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Assembly lists for dotPeek!

by Matt 31. May 2011 10:38

So, I guess I’m laying claim to the first dotPeek plugin. (tl;dr - get the source and a zip file at github)

I’m really liking dotPeek, JetBrains’ new decompiler. It’s not perfect – it is still in pre-beta after all - it’s a bit slow, there are things it has trouble decompiling (Silverlight reactive framework for one) but what it does have is a killer feature – ReSharper’s navigation and code analysis – go to type, go to symbol, deriving classes, show usages, etc. Everything you could need for a good bit of code spelunking.

Everything except assembly lists.

Reflector’s got a lovely feature that allows you to switch between lists of different assemblies, so I can be looking through the Silverlight reactive framework, then switch over to wander through the ReSharper API and then jump into the dotPeek assembly list. All very handy, and all very much missing from dotPeek.

Fortunately, the nice folks at JetBrains have included ReSharper’s plugin model into dotPeek. So, check this out:

image

Looks remarkably familiar, no?

It’s dead easy to install:

  1. Since dotPeek doesn’t have a standard installer, create a folder called plugins wherever it is you’ve installed dotPeek to
  2. Download this file from the downloads section of the github repo
  3. Right click the zip file, display properties and click “unblock”
  4. Extract the files from the zip file and dump them in the “plugins” folder, preferably in their own folder, such as “AssemblyLists”

Now, when you start dotPeek, you’ll get a new entry in the FIle menu, and a new button on the toolbar in the Assembly Explorer that will bring up the list management window. Add, remove or rename your lists here. They should stay up to date with whatever was last selected in the assembly explorer, and will save and load between sessions.

One word of warning – the assembly lists are stored in a shared file, and if you start dotPeek without the plugin, it WILL lose your lists.

Let me know what you think – issues and whatnot on github, or @citizenmatt on twitter. Ta!

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