This is just a general question I'd like to throw out there to see what the opinion of the IDEA community is at large.
Eclipse has a nice feature where it allows a user to run unit tests even when there are compile errors in the codebase. As long as the execution of the test doesn't hit those areas where there is a compile error, the test can run fine. I suppose it uses the existing bytecode for the affected classes, and only recompiles the test.
This seems to me like a really useful feature that potentially revolutionises the way one writes unit tests: it enables the programmer to properly do 'test-first' development where he can write the new feature, test it, and only then incrementally fix the knock-on effects in other parts of the code. Eclipse maintains a list of 'problems' that is updated as the background compilation fails-- but this doesn't stop the test running.
As far as I can tell, IDEA cannot do this, and it would be hard without background compilation. I would like to get the community's opinion... Is it acceptable (or even a feature) that we require the whole codebase to compile before running a test? Or should JetBrains consider adding this sort of thing?