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Changing Python IDE: from PyScripter to PyCharm


Yes, I am changing my Python IDE, because I am using less PyScripter and the new IDE is PyCharm. Today you can read my reasons for that!!

PyScripter is not updating for a long time

I am using PyScripter every day (I have written several times about this software) since I started to program with Python, but actually I am moving to PyCharm since a few weeks ago.

PyScripter hasn’t been updated for several years now (since march 2012, with versión 2.5.3), and a few historic demand features are fundamental if you are dealing with big projects. That’s my case, and there are new tools. I don’t know the reason why PyScripter is not been updated, because PyScripter has a few features that make it “perfect”. Some of the are:

  • You don’t need to install anything while you can choose to work with versions 2.4 to 2.7, and also with 3.0 until 3.3. If you want to use Python 3.4, you need to do some tricks (you can read it here)
  • The debugger is the best, because you can see the values of the variables, modify their values, … and even using the console during the break (this is the best feature!)
  • Integrated Python Console, although this feature is present in almost every IDE
  • You can customize templates, according to your needs
  • Nice envoronment, highly customizable

From all, the best is the debugger!

Historic demand features to PyScripter

The fact that new Python versions are been launched, PyScripter has no updates since more that two years, and after reading that PyScripter has problems to be solved with Python 3.4 (and beyond), force me to try new alternatives. Of course, a new update on PyScripter is absolutly necesary, and my first recommendation is code folding. Of course, a lot can be improved for using IPython, and of course, with web technologies such as Django, Flask, Pyramid, jinja2, Google App Engine, ….

And last, I will add a new feature for exporting and importing configuratios, in order to use the same config in different computers, instead of using the PyScripter portable version (this feature I like a lot from Pycharm).

Pycharm 4 is now supporting IPython

I tried PyCharm version 2.0 and version 3.x, but I think that version 4 best feature is to include support for IPython. Of course, offering a community edition (you can use it for free) is a very positive aspect (you have a paid version with more features). PyCharm versión 4 has bet for Python Web developer, offereing several tools to work with Django, Flask, HTML5, CSS3, Javascript, Jinja2, …. and that is the main reason why I’m moving.

Of course, the roadSupongo que el camino que recorreran las siguientes versiones (pues desde la 4.0.0 están corrigiendo bastantes cosas y sus actualizaciones son bastante frecuentes!!) pasa por asentar IPython, Django, Flask, …

As you can imagine, the debugger is not as perfect as PyScripter does, mainly because you don’t have access to a console while the break, instead, you have a nice tool where you can see all variables, their properties and values (with no change to modify values using code). Of course, the best debugger ever is Visual Basic 6, where you could write and modify code and values while debugging.

Back to PyCharm, one thing novices need to be patiente is with Python indexing that PyCharm does everytime a new update is available, and it can take several minutes (you can notice this at the beginning, specially), but once indexed, you won’t notice anything. The most you use PyCharm, the less you notice the index process.

Features that I still don’t like from PyCharm (and I should assimilate)

There are, of course, features on PyCharm that I am not convinced at all, or at least, I need to invest ton them. The first one: invest time on preparing the environment, with patience. PyCharm has several options and if I were you, I’d invest al least one hour trying to get the best configuration of the environment (later, you have the option to export to a file and import on other computers!!).

I encourage you to do it because otherwise, every time you’ll receive a notification that Python motor is not ready, and you should config for every project.

I repit: it takes time to config Pycharm to your needs, but it worth! Invest time at the begining with the configuration, and you’ll save time!

Nothing is forever, neither perfect

As you can see, nothing is forever and everything can change and be changed. In this case, is the IDE that I normally use for Python programming.

Have a nice day!

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