Over the past few weeks I’ve been transitioning from my beloved Sublime Text and terminal combo to Pycharm Professional.
I’m fortunate to have more freelance work then I can handle. That’s driven me to find productivity improvements so I can complete projects faster. I also needed new database software for Postgres since PGAdmin 4 is basically unusable. After using Pycharm for a few weeks, I realize I made the right choice. These are the core reasons I’m happy with the change:
- Debugging: While in draft my code is often littered with print statements, which I use to view data structures and values during runtime. Pycharm’s integrated debugger now makes this a breeze… with no print statements!
- Project setup: I can configure my project’s virtual environments, environment variables, etc to save time when switching between projects.
- Integrated database views: I’m used to switching back and forth between PGAdmin to view changes in a database. Now I can put this right next to my code in Pycharm.
- Integrated terminal: The terminal window is right there, neatly tucked beneath my code and matched to that project.
- Realtime git differences: I love that I can see what has changed from the last time I committed.
Basically I love that I can do my work within one big window.
What I Don’t Like
I prefer to keep my virtual environments within my project folder. Pycharm is hard wired to keep virtual environments outside the project folder.
Why is this important to me? Right now I can jump into any of my project folders and type source venv/bin/activate and see an activated virtual environment. With the virtual environment outside I need to list the virtual environments to find the right name, then activate the environment. With a lot of projects this can get very tedious. I know Pycharm magically opens up the right virtual environment for you once configured, but I don’t want to be tied to a program to open my environments and need the option to activate them easily in a regular terminal window.
I also did not like that Pycharm creates additional files that I have to ignore, such as whatever is in ‘.idea’. Not sure what that is for?
Am I Glad I Started with Sublime Text?
Short answer: yes! I feel like I know how to use all of my tools the ‘regular way’ without the help of additional software. For instance, I sometimes skype with clients that do not have Pycharm installed. I would hate to tell them ‘umm I’m not sure how to push to github from the terminal, I use Pycharm for that.’
Whether you are just getting started or experienced, I recommend taking a look at Pycharm!