Yun Young Lee – Temporal Code Completion and Navigation

For the awesome girl that brought you DNDRefactoring, there is another paper at ICSE.

Understanding the history of a code base is a hard problem. For instance, suppose you go on a holiday and the method you need is suddenly gone. What happened? Maybe it was commented out because it contained an error. How will you find it and solve the problem?

This is why Yun suggests adding the temporal dimension to code completion, to also show previous code completions that are no longer valid. They are shown in grey, so it is easy to see what was possible.

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This way, you don’t have to make an expensive context switch to go to your GitHub or SVN and find out what happened to your method. Yun also added Temporal Code Navigation, so you can easily browse the temporal code in a read-only window.

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What an awesome idea, again! This tool helps programmers to understand how the program changed and helps to get the information you need in the context where you need it.