Icenium Mist is a browser-based IDE which you can use to develop hybrid mobile applications on the Icenium cloud platform. If you've spent any amount of time in IDEs like Visual Studio, WebStorm or Eclipse, then you'll certainly have no issue figuring out how Mist works. I wanted to put together a few tips, though, of things you might not notice immediately.

1.) Upload Archives

Mist allows you to upload an archive, and all of the contents of the archive will be extracted relative to the location to which you upload. For example, let's say I have this project structure locally:

I'd like to take that structure and apply it at the root of a blank Icenium project:

Instead of uploading each file one-by-one (YUCK!), I can zip up the local directory structure I have, right click the root of my Icenium project, choose "Add", then "From Archive":

From there, I just have to select the local archive I want and upload it. Voilà! Instantly extracted and ready to roll (note that you will be prompted with a warning that items in the archive will overwrite existing items):

2.) Connecting to Remote git Repositories

When you use Mist or Graphite - your code is stored in a git repository under the hood. You may have noticed the "Version Control" menu option at the top:

Even if your code never left Icenium, you have the option to commit, revert & view the history of the git repository. However, it's not terribly realistic to think your code wouldn't leave Icenium. You may want to clone it to a local repository – or you may have an existing repository you'd like to clone into Icenium. This is easy to do! We just need to tell Icenium how to access the remote git server. To do this, we choose the "Configure Remote Repository" option from the "Version Control" menu. We'll be prompted to enter a publicly accessible url:

Now, if we want to push to (or pull from) the remote repository, we choose that option from the "Version Control" drop down. It's a safe assumption that your remote repo is password protected, so you will likely see a prompt for your credentials:

You'll see a progress indicator similar to this as Icenium interacts with the remote git repsoitory:

It's worth noting that the repository I configured above was not only password protected, but it's private on github - so you can use public and private repos, no problem! Once your code is pushed to an external repo, it's a simple matter of cloning it locally if you want a local copy.

3.) Moving Blocks

Moving code blocks around in your application is a handy feature of many IDEs like Visual Studio and WebStorm. Mist can do this as well. Highlight the code you want to move, and use Alt + Shift + Up/Down Arrow:

4.) Useful Keyboard Shortcuts

While we're on the subject of keyboard shortcuts, pressing "Ctrl + Shift + /" in Mist will bring up the Keyboard Shortcuts Map:

Of course, you can view that at any time for reference – however, the commands I find myself using most from this list are:

  • Cmd + F6 -> Runs iPhone Simulator
  • Cmd + F7 -> Runs Android Phone Simulator
  • Cmd + F8 -> Runs iPad Simulator
  • Cmd + F9 -> Runs Android Tablet Simulator
  • Cntrl + ` -> Selects Next Tab
  • Cntrl + Shift + ` -> Selects Previous Tab

Where To Go For More

There are many more features in Mist related to provisioning, plugins, publishing to app stores, etc. – we're just scratching the surface with these tips. If you're interested in learning more about the other features, be sure to read through the documentation.


About the Author

Jim Cowart

Jim Cowart is an architect, developer, open source author, and overall web/hybrid mobile development geek. He is an active speaker and writer, with a passion for elevating developer knowledge of patterns and helpful frameworks. 

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