Online IDE for FRC

I am working on some tutorials for new members. Due to COVID-19 we are using Google Meet. I would like to run a programming session but some of the members have Chromebooks and can’t install VSCode.
Does anyone know of an online IDE that could work? I can teach Java fairly easily with some but want to access the libraries we use in FRC.

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You might pursue the preview Visual Studio Online. https://visualstudio.microsoft.com/services/visual-studio-online/

I don’t know what roadblocks still are in place for developing through it, but it would be helpful to figure it out because of the students limited to Chromebooks mostly.

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That looks fairly expensive

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My team (whose school gives them chromebooks) has been successful with code-server as an online vs-code ide. Downside is you have to host it yourself, but with the aws voucher you can have it run on an ec2 instance pretty easily.

Once you make a change, you can commit and push it your team’s Github, and pull it back down on the team’s programming laptop to push it on the robot.

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There is this great tool called Gitpod (https://www.gitpod.io/) that’s free. It’s an online VSCode editor that you can easily launch from your GitHub repos

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I noticed this, so leaving it here:

Here is a demo from Github on Codespaces: https://youtu.be/L618Pp0n7us?t=857

Codespaces is the new name of VS Online and also a new Github offering (by invitation free beta right now). There is also some movement downward in price from Microsoft for the active cloud ide services which is nice to hear. It will be interesting to see if the pricing for Github’s ends up the same and if educational users have a better deal.

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Having a similar challenge: Many students only have Chromebooks and we want to provide engaging “virtual hands-on” exercises for them. Have you had any luck with any of these proposed solutions? Thanks in advance!

I tried fiddeling with Gitpod a bit, with varied success. Got a lot working, but was stumped on making the single step debugger function… some of the gui interactions seemed a bit wonky too. I didn’t want that as a limitation, so I gave up on using it as a basis for a training environment. But, just throwing it out there as an option:

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It is a bit wonky… the wpilib extension doesn’t seem to show up but the gradle commands seem to work. However, this is actually really useful:

I don’t know how to pick an extension and artifact with the sim command without using the GUI, but if I can figure that out I could get a fully simulated robot environment working using the new halsim websocket work in gitpod.

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Yup, that’s pretty close to what I ran into - options showed up, but didn’t work as intended.

./gradlew commands worked though, so if you’re willing to use those it’s a viable substitute.

repl.it is also a good option. Features real time collaboration like Google Drive too.

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I forked your repo and built a simulation example in gitpod:

My plan is to build a bunch of simulation projects like this one for my team and other teams to use. Next step is to add physics.

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I hadn’t heard of this until I saw your comment. Thanks for sharing - I’ll probably use this in my classroom! Not necessarily for FRC, but for a coding environment with no set-up steps needed.

You might want to take a look into GitHub codespaces (still in beta). I have gotten it working with my team’s toolsuite, and it just requires github accounts and a browser.

If you are curious about setup, I have a blog post sitting in my queue of unreleased posts about this. Here is an early-access link to the post: retrylife.ca/post/2jdk02s4/

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Somewhat relevant to the discussion: GitPod recently went full open-source.

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I agree repl.it is a good choice – it is how we did our (virtual) coding camp this summer.

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