How Microsoft Built A Feature I Will Never Use

I just got a response on my suggestion on ladybug regarding keyword autocompletion on Visual Studio 2005:

At this point in time, intellisense allows you to get a list of available keywords and code snippets as you type. This is a very nice functionality (even though I have disabled it for the time being), but it can be improved, as these 'suggestions' are likely to break your code, syntax-wise. Take, for instance, the case where you write a public instance method that returns an instance of a type which starts with the letters "pub". Hitting Ctrl+Space after writing 'pub' for the first time completes to 'public', but the second one would do so as well, even though the keyword 'public' is illegal in that context. This is one of the only things that keeps me from enabling this option.
I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only one that's annoyed by this problem.

Jay replied:

... I hope that in the next version we'll get a lot smarter about keywords we show, which I will be a nice thing for all users, and a huge win for novice C# users.
Which, in effect, means that we will not be seeing this upgrade until Visual Studio Orcas.

This is a total waste of feature:
Imagine intellisense in the XML editor in Visual Studio. When faced with a known schema for the current file, it will let you choose the appropriate element for the context it is inserted into (if A can only be nested under B, it will only show A in the completion list when inside a B element).
Imagine the XML editor devoid of that ability - showing you every single declared element in the schema. Would you use that?

1 Comment

  • That's why I use Visual Assist. It is extremely smart about the context you're in, pays attention not only to preparsed source code but to surrounding code as well, and works both in C++ and C# (and other languages as well). I highly recommend it. Note that I am not affiliated with them in any way, just a happy customer :)

    On the other hand, Visual Assist costs $100 now, and it's one more piece of software you have to install. Being purist that I am, I was looking forward to use ONLY Visual Studio 2005, but it's not gonna happen for the reasons you state (sigh).

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