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Do you agree with them all? Are we missing some? Let us know what you think.

Cameron Skinner and Kael Rowan on the MSR (Microsoft Research) team have built this cool tool: Debugger Canvas

  1. Give it a better name

    I think "Debugging Helicopter" might be a better name as it indicates that you are higher up... hovering above the code

    If not "Code Bubbles" would be better, but "Canvas" sounds for designers...

    debugging helicopter
    Figure: This tool kind of is like hovering over the code
  2. Help me know which methods/properties/fields are used

    debugging helicopter
    Figure: Add icons

    Seeing all the other methods/properties of a class when debugging is not super useful.

    Despite that, you may as well improve it by:

    • Using the standard method/property /field icon
    • Using some extra icon + bold if that method/property is used in the code bubble you are looking at
  3. Help me know I can click in the title bar

    debugging helicopter
    Figure: Good example - I know I can click in here because it is white
    debugging helicopter
    Figure: Bad Example - Missing a visual indication that you can even click in the title bar
  4. Allow me to color code each project


    • UI – red
    • Business – orange
    • DataAccess – Green

    Then when we are dropping into each new bubble, we know what layer we are in.

    Even better automatically align them:


    • UI – top
    • Business – middle
    • DataAccess – bottom

    This would be in the style of the architecture tools.

    Figure: I would *love* to be able to color code the layers


Adam Cogan