Saturday, 4 June 2016

Textastic - An Advanced Code Editor for iPad, iPhone and Mac

Textastic is an app that supports code such as html, C++ and many more. For students, it also supports TeX and Markdown.

Personally, the features I use the most are below:
  • Markdown
  • HTML
  • C++
I occasionally use TeX, but I'm not proficient in it. I also love that HTML has auto complete, which can speed up the process of coding.

Textastic also supports over 70 different types of syntax definition, which almost guarantee that the code you are looking for will be in it.

Textastic looks great. It looks clean and fits in with iOS 9, and also gives you a shortcuts of keys you use a lot above the keyboard. If you use an external keyboard (I use a Logitech Ultrathin keyboard) they are still shown, and there are also 9 keyboard shortcuts.

Markdown in Textastic
The app if very simple to use, and is easy to get going with it as soon as you get it. You can create files, and you can also create folders to organize you files. You can close the files view, which allows you to concentrate on the coding or writing you are doing in the main window.

A great feature is the preview button, which allows you to preview your coding or markdown. I know it definitely works for HTML and Markdown, but I’m not sure about any other types of code.
The interface when you are editing a file looks amazing, and it is clean, quick and polished. I love the way that you get colour coding on certain pieces of code. You can see an example of html 5 below, and see the colouring:

Split screen has been added, which is great if you are learning code (you can have the textbook beside you) or if you want to look up some code snippets on the web or Evernote.

You can preview Markdown and HTML files by tapping on the glasses icon on the toolbar. You can also search documents, and view symbols. You can edit all the file properties, and share the file.
If you are using Markdown, I cannot find an option to export the preview. However, you can copy and paste it into an app. I think that exporting the preview would be a great thing to add.
You can also add images as a file.

For me, Textastic is the equivalent to desktop class programs, such as Codeblocks, Atom and Notepad++. The sheer amount of programming languages that you can choose from means that it is extremely unlikely that you will not find the language you want, and the reliability of the app, as well as the usefulness, will mean that you will not have to go searching for a program on your pc.

Textastic is one of the best apps I have on my iPad. I would definitely recommend you go and try it out, and you will not be disappointed.

Thanks for reading!

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