The upcoming release of RSyntaxTextArea will support syntax highlighting and code folding for .htaccess files. This was just added in SVN commit 814.
Does anybody really need Java 1.4 support anymore? RSTA is one of the few remaining, active Swing libraries that supports this ancient version of Java. It reached its EOL in 2008 (almost 5 years ago!), and even its extended support ended in February 2013. Being a syntax highlighting text component, there hasn’t really been anything added to the JDK from Java 5 onward that would benefit it, so I’ve been keeping its minimum JRE version back at 1.4, just to keep it as “compatible” as possible. However, there are a few drawbacks because of this:
- There is one API change in the JDK that occurred between Java 1.4.2 and 1.5 that affects RSTA. The code in the repository builds cleanly when built with a true 1.4 JDK, but you will receive an error for XmlParser.java when building with Java 5+ (even if you set -source 1.4). When building RSTA with the included Ant build scripts, you will get a big fat explanation of this spit to stdout, so you know rectify the situation if it happens to you (just add a throws-clause to a single method), but Java novices may not fully understand what’s not working. Moving the bar up to 1.5 will clean this issue up entirely.
- One area where the JDK does offer nice new functionality for an editor like RSTA is XML parsing. We could add schema-based squiggle underline validation to XML files.
- It would be a little nice to modernize the code base.
If anyone feels strongly that we should keep releasing pre-built versions of RSTA that run on Java 1.4, please let me know, preferably in the forums.
Because I haven’t had much time to work on RSTA lately, I’ve been thinking about making a list of work items in an attempt to get motivated. So here’s what’s on the list so far for the next RSTA release:
- Performance improvements, particularly for word wrap with very long lines. This has been asked for a couple of times in the forums. I’ve done some work, that will be available in the next SVN commit, that will improve performance to some degree. One of RSTA’s primary issues here is that modelToView()/viewToModel() calculations are relatively expensive, and for very long word-wrapped lines, they are called literally dozens of times whenever text is inserted or the window is resized. As a first pass, I’m refactoring things a bit so that the data used by these method calls is cached much more aggressively; this seems to improve things quite nicely. Moving forward, I might also try to minimize the number of calls to these methods in general, though that will be a more difficult task. There were also some performance improvements made to WrappedLineView.java in the JDK, around the Java 5 timeframe, that RSTA may be able to learn from/graciously borrow.
- Syntax highlighting for R.
- Syntax highlighting for .htaccess files.
- API in AutoComplete libarary to specify the expected type of arguments in a parameterized completion.
Any other suggestions?
Have you ever been interested in integrating syntax highlighting for your own, custom language into RSyntaxTextArea? Now there’s finally a guide to help you do just that!
This “developers documentation” section describes in detail how syntax highlighting is implemented in RSTA, and multiple ways that you can add your own. In the future, it’ll have similar documentation on adding code folding, code folding, and squiggle-underline parsing.
Feedback is welcome!
RText 2.0.7 was released last weekend on SourceForge! Here’s a list of what changed:
- Pretty-printing now works for JSON in addition to XML and HTML.
- The system console plugin now auto-completes file names on pressing tab.
- HTML, PHP, and JSP have new option, “Automatically add closing tags for HTML tags that require them,” as well as enhanced syntax highlighting.
- The text editor now includes an option to use the system selection colors for selected text and its background.
- The file chooser and File System Tree plugin now include “Paste” option to copy/paste file lists.
- Added Visual Basic syntax highlighting.
- Various code editor fixes and performance improvements.
RSyntaxTextArea 2.0.7 was just released on SourceForge! Here’s a list of the cool new stuff:
- setBracketMatchingEnabled(boolean) now checks for brackets “to the right” of the caret if one is not found “to the left.”
- Added API for applications to create custom hyperlinks in RSyntaxTextArea, though this API should not be considered stable.
- Added “mark occurrences” support for XML. Currently just highlights the tag name at the current caret position and its match.
- Fixed issue when auto-inserting spaces for tabs.
- Major refactoring of rendering code.
- “Traditional” selection rendering is now supported; that is, selected text can now be rendered as syntax highlighted tokens with a “selection” background (as it was previously), or as text as a single color with the “selection” background (as standard text components do). See RSyntaxTextArea.setUseSelectedTextColor(boolean).
- Fixed performance issue in FoldingAwareIconRowHeader when it paints “active regions.”
- Added some new token types to better differentiate markup tokens from “regular” language tokens. This allows for better syntax highlighting for stuff like HTML, JSP, and PHP.
- Added Visual Basic syntax highlighting.
- In RSTAUI, a new TextFilePropertiesDialog was added. This dialog shows the currently edited text file’s path, size, word count, encoding, line terminator, and more. Further, when using a TextEditorPane, you can modify the file’s encoding or line terminator directly from the dialog.
- RSTALanguageSupport: HTML, PHP, JSP and XML now have an option to automatically add closing tags when opening tags are typed (e.g. add “</foo>” when “<foo>” is typed). By default this option is enabled. HTML, PHP and JSP only auto-close tags closeable in the HTML 5 spec; XML closes all tags. This option is separate from the XML “auto-complete closing tag name when ‘</’ is typed” option.
Below are a couple of screenshots showing off the new JSDoc syntax highlighting and code completion. The first one shows auto-completion kicking in after typing “@” in a documentation comment. The second screenshot shows the parameterized assistance you get for “@param”:
Go check it out!
Syntax highlighting for Visual Basic was just added into SVN. I probably won’t bother with code folding support for VB any time soon, since I don’t ever write code in it, but if you’re itching to contribute, I’m always willing to take patches!
If you grab the latest from SVN, RSyntaxTextArea has improved theming support. First, RSTA supports the following new token styles:
- Markup language comments (i.e. “<!– … –>”)
- CDATA delimiters, separate from the CDATA content itself (e.g. “<![CDATA[” and “]]>”)
- Entity references
Note that all of these are related to markup languages, such as XML, HTML, JSP and PHP. Previously, the lexers for each of these languages identified and colorized all of these constructs, but re-used token styles for other token types when rendering them. For example, entity references were previously rendered using the “variable” token style. This wasn’t optimal, as it meant that theme designers had to be aware of this token-style re-use when creating custom Themes, if they wanted their Themes to be as pretty as possible. Not so any longer!
Another new feature is that RSyntaxTextArea now supports the standard editor behavior of selected text using a different font color than unselected text. Previously, selected text always still rendered using the proper syntax highlighting styles. Now, this is configurable via the setUseSelectedTextColor(boolean)/getUseSelectedTextColor() API. Theme XML can also specify how a theme wants this property set. Below is a screenshot that compare the “dark” default theme, which has this property set to false, and the “eclipse” default theme, which has this property set to true:
Themes can also now use a special value “default” for selection foreground and background colors, which means “use the LookAndFeel’s (not system’s!) default for these values). Check out the theme DTD for specifics.
These changes do unfortunately mean that themes created for older RSyntaxTextArea versions will no longer work with (the upcoming) 2.0.7+, as they will not pass validation against the DTD. They can be easily updated however, so I don’t see this as much of an issue.
Finally, all of the sample themes have been updated to use the new features above. Also, a new sample theme was added to the mix: idea! Thanks to Mikle Garin for this theme. This is obviously based off of IntelliJ IDEA‘s default theme.
Who knows, maybe a theme based off of its new Darcula will show up next.
If you do any work with JSON, you may well run into scenarios where you’re looking at some data for debugging purposes, but can’t make heads or tails of it because it’s either all on one line, not indented, or otherwise simply poorly formatted. With the upcoming RText 2.0.7 release, this will no longer be a problem. Its “Tidy” plugin (now being rebranded to “Pretty Printing”, since it’s a more general term) is gaining JSON pretty-printing support, powered by the jsonbeans library.
You’ll be able to control the indentation style (either tabs, or some number of spaces), as well as the actual format of the output. The format choices are:
- JSON: Strict adherence to the JSON standard, keys wrapped in double quotes.
- Minimal: No double quotes around anything. Useful if you want the data in as simple of a format as possible, even if it isn’t technically valid.
Simply set up your formatting preferences in the Pretty Printing Options dialog panel:
And when editing JSON, simply select Edit -> Pretty Printing. Simple as that. Don’t forget that a shortcut can be assigned to this menu item via the “Shortcuts” panel in the Options dialog if you use it frequently.
RText 2.0.6 was just released! Here’s a rundown of the major changes:
Syntax highlighting and code folding for JSON. Folks doing a lot of work with web applications will appreciate this.
Improvements to the UI when a Substance Look and Feel is installed. All trees and lists now use Substance’s striping and rollover effects, and colors used in miscellaneous custom components were tweaked to better fit in with the current Substance skin.
Fixed a ClassCastException when adding a JRE in the Java options panel. This was bug 3600567, and was accidentally introduced with the last refactoring of the Java language support.
Updated the Turkish and French localizations. Thanks to Burak and Pat!
A major side effect of the improved Substance support is that compilation is now done in two phases. RText has always only required Java 1.4, but Substance requires Java 6 or newer (we’re actually shipping with Insubstantial, which is an active fork of Substance, since the original author stopped working on it). To get around this, all of the “core” RText classes are built with Java 1.4, and all of the classes requiring Substance are built with Java 6; these classes are only referenced from the application via reflection to avoid a hard dependency. If Java 1.4 or Java 5 is detected, RText will never load anything Substance related.
When will RText drop support for 1.4? Probably not for awhile, especially when I can easily use functionality in newer versions easily enough via reflection as I’m currently doing (and only then for Substance, opening a browser/system editors for files, and for the scripting API). And performance improvements are received via simply running in a newer JVM, not from compiling with one. Perhaps when Java 8 GA is released this September, it might be time to consider moving to Java 5.
Anyway, the list of new features going into the next release is already growing! More on that soon.