Posted: 3 Dec 2018 8:03 EST Last activity: 5 Dec 2018 7:35 EST
Colorable Data Transform and Activity steps?
What are your thoughts about having the ability to highlight / color-code groups of related steps within Data Transforms and Activities?
It often takes 3 steps to accomplish a goal, for example:
When you have multiple groups of steps, such as the above, at some point, say 3 groups, you need to decide whether to create a new Transform or Activity to prevent the code from being overly difficult to read and maintain.
Creating single-purpose, non-reusable rules, though, also increases code-maintenance complexity.
It takes a sharp eye to recognize when three steps can be treated as a single logical step."Preview" helps to some extent.
Suppose a developer could choose from multiple pastel colors that can be used as the background color for a Data Transform or Activity step?
Groupings of related code would immediately stand out.
Code comprehension and maintainability would be enhanced.
In Accessibility mode the background color could be spelled out.
I'm on the same page with You when it comes to the mentioned rule types: They lack the possibilty to easily identify blocks of code, similiar to what all text-only programing languages and respective IDEs (e.g. Eclipse) offer.
But, I believe that color-coding will be tedious to leverage, to maintain consistently and even harder to read depending on the colors set (like white text on grey background).
Rather, I suggest a solution to collapse / uncollapse a defined number of steps. E.g. in DataTransforms, You'll find instances of Update Page and then in its sub-steps some special logic. This naturally becomes a fragment / unit of code. From my point of view this 'pattern' could be applied, but without its semantics like Update Page's context switch.
Next level would be even if Designer Studio allowed for a capability to automatically extract that fragment into a separate Data Transform...