Xcode is getting better with every version. Storyboards, auto layout, building custom components with code and Interface Builder without recompiling and running on the simulator, size classes, the list goes on.. Everything is better than ever, but there is still room for improvement.
One topic which isn’t officially Apple-approved, but is becoming more and more popular is customizing Xcode with plugins. They can improve visuals, add additional functionality, save time and boost productivity.
The missing package manager
Alcatraz is a minimalistic package manager for Xcode. The selection inside is diverse. There are color themes, autocompletion plugins, cocoapods menus, etc. The installation of any of them requires just a click. Here’s a list of the plugins we use every day for our projects:
FuzzyAutocomplete provides similar autocompletion to the Open Quickly menu. It improves productivity a lot and makes writing code a breeze. No more need to remember correct method names and word order. Just install it and let the code flow.
Writing documentation has never been easier. After activating the shortcut, this plugin places appropriate comment depending on the context the cursor is in. It generates everything required to describe a class, method or property and all you have to do is fill the placeholders with description.
Cocoapods integration right from within Xcode – check. No more switching windows and browsing through the command history in Terminal. This plugin adds a dedicated menu which makes life easier and saves some time.
Having smaller work area is very distracting and annoying, especially on a smaller screen. DBSmartPanels hides the Navigator, Debug and Utilities panels depending on current action and customizable settings. Don’t need the Debug area when writing code – just start typing and it will hide automatically.
Awesome image name completion plugin with thumbnail preview. Just start typing and select the image you need.
Writing a switch statement with lots of options has always been a pain this plugin is there to solve. Works with enums and options.
Plugins add a lot of functionality and make life easier and coding more enjoyable. Less time spent digging for methods, classes and images, higher productivity and better code.
Comment, tweet and share.