Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tabs or Spaces

Some programmers have strong opinions about whether to use tabs or spaces to indent code.
This is what I use. In Visual Studio 2010 choose
Tools\Options\Text Editor\All Languages
Select Smart Indenting
Tab size and Indent size = 4
Select "Keep Tabs"
If you use Shift+Tab when in front of 4 spaces, it will delete the 4 spaces the same as if you press backspace in front of a tab character.
To convert a file one way or another there is "Tabify Selected Lines" and "Untabify Selected Lines" under the Edit\Advanced menu.

View White Space

Use the following Menu in Visual Studio to view the white space characters
Edit->Advanced->View White Space
This allows you to see whether the white space is tabs or spaces.

For me these characters are too prominent. So I dim them by choosing
Environment->Fonts and Colors
Select "Visible White Space" from the Display Items.
Select Silver. Then Click the Custom Button and use the darkness scale to choose the right amount of darkness.

In Beyond Compare you can select the following from the View menu:
Show White Space
Ignore Unimportant Differences

They are useful when dealing with differences in white space.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tech Support Cheat Sheet

From xkcd, here is one great secret to computer tech support. Click on the picture to enlarge the flowchart.

I have written out some of the diagram so I can more easily find this post when I need it.
Google the name of the program plus a few words related to what you want to do. Follow any instructions.