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Development tools for dynamic languages - Programmer picks

PHP, Ruby, Python, and beyond - developers weigh in on seven popular IDEs and tools aimed at dynamic languages

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The increasing popularity of dynamic languages has given rise to a growing arsenal of development tools tailored to developers using languages like Ruby, PHP, and Python. So widespread is the array of tools available that it's often difficult to choose the right dev tool to suit one's needs.

We asked software developers for perspectives on the some of the more popular dynamic language development tools in use today: what they like, what they find lacking. The following is a selection of development tools catering to PHP, Python, Ruby, and beyond, as described by the software developers who use them. After all, who better to aid you in making your choice than your peers?


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SapphireSteel Software Ruby in Steel

This development tool for the Ruby language integrates with Microsoft's Visual Studio IDE and also allows access to Microsoft's Team Foundation Server source code repository, says user Andrew Teare, a designer specialist at machinery maker Husky. "They did a good job of making it work in Visual Studio," Teare says. "Bottom line, it definitely helps us develop our Ruby code, especially as a big team."

Husky is using Ruby to develop a domain-specific language to describe machine configuration. Teare cites some issues with Ruby in Steel: "While its IntelliSense capability is good for a dynamic language, it's not as good as it is in C#. The Ruby debugger also is inferior to C#'s debugger."


  • Development tools for dynamic languages - Programmer picks
  • Embarcadero Technologies HTML5 Builder
  • JetBrains PyCharm
  • JetBrains RubyMine
  • Padre, the Perl IDE
  • SpringSource Groovy/Grails Tool Suite
  • SapphireSteel Software Ruby in Steel
  • Zend Studio


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