Using Sublime Text 2 with Processing

Oct 2014

I’ve never managed to get along well with the Processing IDE. It’s well worth spending a few minutes setting up Processing’s CLI to work with Sublime, for the long-term productivity it brings.

There are a number of reasons why I feel it sucks but my main motivation for looking for an alternative solution to writing and building Processing code is the lack of the inherent and intuitive keyboard shortcuts with which I have such a strong attachment to with my native text-editor, Sublime Text 2.

This blog post assumes that the reader will be aware of the benefits that comes with a good text-editor that oneself is familiar with.

Thanks to the lovely open source community over at Github, there has been an awesome package developed which makes using Processing with Sublime text SUPER easy. Go ahead and install it via the package manager or by git cloning the package into your packages directory:

$ cd *SUBLIME PACKAGES DIRECTORY*
$ git clone https://github.com/b-g/processing-sublime/ "Processing"

You just have to hit cmd+b to build your sketches to view them as you would in the Processing IDE. NOTE: you must have your Processing sketches in the default directory to make this work.

There’s also a package for Atom.

Cloning this git repo only takes a few seconds but massively speeds up your productivity. The one major downside I feel to not using the Processing IDE is the lack of the ability to quickly open up source code and/or the documentation from inside the text-editor. For this reason, I strongly suggest that you have some kind of setup to allow you to access the documentation easily on your own accord.

It’s also a lot easier to write custom Java classes from inside Sublime. You just have a lot more low-level freedom over your code.