iPad App Review: Kodiak JavaScript IDE

Kodiak JavaScript: The Perfect IDE for web developers for iPad was released this week. As someone who spends a disproportionate amount of my time in JavaScript, I’ve been very curious to see what the developers vision of an iPad JavaScript IDE would be. I’ve had a chance to play with it a bit and thought a review would be in order.

The great

First, the things I love about Kodiak:

  1. It comes bundled with nearly 60 JavaScript libraries and frameworks making it dead simple to link to one and start coding.
  2. It has a very capable, lightening fast preview browser integrated in. Want to see that lovely data visualization you just made with d3? Just tap the preview icon.
  3. It has a navigation key — a bit like a virtual trackball — which is very useful. I’d like if this extended to highlighting test the way that Textacular’s navigation system does.
  4. It has tabbed file editing.
  5. It comes loaded with tons of great examples of many libraries in action.

The bad

Unfortunately, there’s 2 things in particular that I don’t like about Kodiak in it’s current iteration:

  1. There is no Dropbox integration.
  2. There is no Text Expander support

Good news

I can live without autocomplete, smart suggestions and smart formatting but no support for Dropbox and Text Expander are deal breakers for me to consider an application a true iPad IDE.

However, I’ve spoken with the developers and they are working on a file syncing solution and have agreed to add Text Expander support which brings me to one more thing I really like about Kodiak: The developers seem to be really responsive to suggestions and it looks like they will be actively developing the application.

The verdict

The preview system along with quick linking to frameworks and libraries makes Kodiak a great way to explore and put together quick samples. In this regard, I was reminded a lot of working in JSFiddle. You don’t build a whole website in JSFiddle, but it’s still an incredibly useful tool for quick exploration.

Kodiak has some really good features and even more potential. At the 4.99 intro price, Kodiak is definitely worth a look and I look forward to seeing it’s continued development.

You can get Kodiak here and you can check out the developers’ website here.

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