Free IDE for Java
Bluej is an integrated development environment for the popular programming language Java. Created for educational purposes, this free development app is perfect for students and beginners in the Java environment. It includes everything you want from a Java program.
Bluej is the best choice for those who are just starting their Java programming journey. Unlike other Java IDEs, such as Eclipse and NetBeans, this app comes with a user-friendly interface that is basic to use. With this, you can quickly get the hang of it. However, since it only covers the basics, it cannot handle large applications.
As mentioned, Bluej is the best option for students who want to learn to develop Java programs. The download and setup are very fast, allowing you to start writing your Java app in an instant. The interface is simple and consists of a standard window with a simple structure. It even includes a PDF instruction booklet that has all the information you need to grip the basics.
Creating a new project is also simple as it only requires you to specify the saving directory and file name. You can create a new class and establish its name and type — class, abstract calls, applet, interface. Then, insert a "uses" relation between two classes and the "inheritance." Additionally, you can build a new package and even rebuild them. You can also add classes from a file, use a library class, and even import directories.
Helpful tools for beginners
Despite its simple design, Bluej packs everything you need to learn about Java programming. The app includes graphic and text editing and even a built-in editor. With this, you can see how objects are created and see what's in the memory. Not only that, but it also includes some debugging tools so you can practice. The app also checks for syntax errors. Even better, everything that the app teaches is officially approved.
The app also provides comments in every section of the source code, along with examples of methods. This allows you to get a deeper understanding of the programming process. Furthermore, the program packs more customizations. It lets you configure keyboard shortcuts and even change the UI language. It also allows you to customize the editor properties, such as font size and syntax highlighting. You can also reset the virtual machine.
However, if you’re knowledgeable in programming, you may find the features of Bluej less advanced. The features are also very few than what you expect an IDE offer. For instance, while it offers syntax highlighting, the function is minimal. It doesn’t even come with code completion. Also, as noted, the app can only handle simple applications. If you're working on more advanced and large programs, this will not work.
Best work as a training tool
All in all, Bluej is an app that you can use as a training application to teach students about basic programming. The app is simple and contains the necessary and sufficient elements needed to teach Java programming. It runs nicely and is set out clearly for novice programmers. However, it is aimed at beginners. It is not a comfortable environment for expert programmers.