Visual Studio Code bolsters command search

Visual Studio Code 1.83, the latest monthly release of the Microsoft-built code editor, improves command discovery, via enhanced command palette searching.

With more than 2,000 commands in Visual Studio Code and with popular extensions driving the number even higher, finding the appropriate command can be a challenge, Microsoft explained in a bulletin on October 4. Thus a new section has been added to Command Palette search results called “similar commands.” A query no longer must “fuzzily” match to show up in results, and results include extension-contributed commands. Anticipated future improvements include command matching based on the non-visible description of the command and better handing of synonyms such as “toggle and “turn on/off.”

Visual Studio Code 1.83, aka the September 2023 release, was quickly followed by an update, version 1.83.1, that fixes issues such as broken C# syntax highlighting. Developers can download Visual Studio Code for Windows, Linux, or Mac via the project website. VS Code 1.83 follows last month’s VS Code 1.82 release, which featured built-in port forwarding.

Other new features and improvements in VS Code 1.83:

  • The JavaScript debugger now can debug code compiled to WebAssembly if it includes DWARF debug information. To enable this, developers must install the WebAssembly DWARF Debugging extension.
  • Icons now can be associated with a profile. The icon will be shown in the Activity Bar in place of the Manage gear icon. This capability is useful when developers have multiple profiles and want to quickly identify the active profile.
  • A workbench.editor.pinnedTabsOnSeparateRow setting has been added, in which pinned tabs are displayed on a separate row above other tabs. The editor tabs automatically pin or unpin when dragged between tab rows.
  • When notebook.gotoSymbols.showAllSymbols is enabled, the Go to Symbol Quick Pick is populated within all code symbols in a notebook.
  • The Color Theme picker now shows the localized name of the color theme and its string identifier next to it, helping users who use a non-English language pack but only know the English name of the theme.

Microsoft also announced changes to two VS Code extensions. The DebugPy extension, for debugging Python applications, has been renamed Python Debugger, in order to improve discoverability in the Visual Studio Marketplace. An update to the GitHub Copilot Chat extension improves /tests for the Chat view and inline chat. The /test slash command now is better at detecting the testing framework being used and will generate new tests in the same style. And it should do a better job of suggesting names for new test files, such as for and bar.test.js for bar.js.

Copyright © 2023 IDG Communications, Inc.


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