Integrated Development Environment (IDE) Information

IDEIntegrated development environment (IDE) applications are comprehensive programming platforms for authoring, modifying, compiling, deploying, and debugging computer software. Some IDEs are for single programming language; however, multi-language IDEs are also available.


Typically, an IDE includes:

  • a source code editor
  • a compiler or interpreter
  • automation tools
  • a debugger

Sometimes, versioning control is included to help computer programmers manage the development of a graphical user interface (GUI).


An IDE for object-oriented programming (OOP) usually features a class browser, tools to produce class hierarchy diagrams, and an object inspector. Specialty IDEs are also available. Software developers use an integrated development environment (IDE) to maximize programming productivity. By using such a comprehensive tool set, coders can perform less mode-switching and access more system resources. Programmers can also compile code as it is written and review any syntax errors. Graphical IDEs with windowing features can enhance programmer productivity. Visual IDEs enable software developers to arrange building blocks and code nodes to produce structure diagrams and flowcharts. Often, these flowcharts are based on unified modeling language (UML), a standardized general-purpose platform for creating visual models called UML diagrams. Such a visual integrated development environment (IDE) is also a feature of distributed programming, a field of computing that uses autonomous workstations and other distributed systems.


IDE suppliers provide products for programming languages such as:

  • Ada
  • C/C++
  • C#
  • Eiffel
  • Fortran
  • Java and JavaScript
  • Pascal and Object Pascal
  • Perl
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Ruby
  • Smalltalk

Ada IDE specifications include static code analysis and compatibility with other platforms and various operating systems (OS). The inclusion of a tool chain, profiler, and an auto-complete function are important considerations when selecting a C IDE or C++ IDE. Software companies that supply an integrated development environment (IDE) for C# (C Sharp) offer imperative, functional, generic, and component-oriented tools. An Eiffel IDE may be available through a GNU general public license (GNU GPL). Computer programmers who work with Fortran, Java or JavaScript, Pascal or Object Pascal, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby, or Smalltalk may use an integrated development environment (IDE) for a specific language, or use an IDE for multiple languages.

Related Information

CR4 Community—Design Platform Suits Next-Generation Wearable Tech

Electronics360—Arduino Goes Pro

Electronics360—ARM Upgrades IDE Analysis for MCUs, RTOS

Electronics360—IDEs for IoT

Image credit:

Basicbrian / CC BY-SA 3.0