Smalltalk-style class browser for IDEA?

I've been playing recently with IntelliJ IDEA 12 EAP, because it has good support for JDK8-style lambda expressions while eclipse still has not and probably won't have for some time to come. I like the excellent code completion feature in IDEA, which is way better than in eclipse. IDEA is in many cases able to guess what I had in mind to type in next. This really saves a lot of typing I would have to do otherwise. But there is something I'm really missing in IDEA which is the Smalltalk style class browser. Here is a picture of one in case it is not clear what I mean: If you search for "Smalltalk class browser" in Google's picture search, you get many more pictures of the Smalltalk IDE. The "Java Browsing" perspective in eclipse is very similar to this one.

I lately wrote a little blog entry, why I sometimes prefer eclipse over NetBeans or IDEA for this reason: This blog entry contains some further reasoning why it would be useful if NetBeans or IDEA had such a class brwoser as well besides from being reminded of MS Visual Studio otherwise (okay, this was a real tough one). So my question is whether you people at IntelliJ would consider adding Smalltalk-IDE style features to IDEA or just think about it. I think it would be worth just thinking about it without having to come to anything. Beside that I really like the work you are doing :-).

Regards, Oliver


Hi Oliver,

Probably, the fastest way to get official response from JetBrains team is to create a feature request in Youtrack ( ), especially if feature request gets a bunch of upvotes.

Also, looks like this feature is not tightly coupled with any existing funcitonality, so it is possible to implement it as a separate plugin.


Amen, that would be a fantastic feature, there's no need to see the noise of adjacent methods when one is concentrated on fleshing out code, since most languages don't have ST like "protocols" i.e method categories , including method tagging would be great where the tags would substitute for the ST protocol/ method category pane. Also it would be cool if method boundaries where hidden from the user i..e. in the class browser e.g. in Ruby , there would be no need to show def and end just the method signature

thanks for listening



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