Intro to Coding: Coding Editors

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photo by People Creations

In the beginning stages of learning how to code, a coder will have to choose at one point between using a code editor or using an IDE (Integrated Development Environment). Both of those help coders build apps, but in different capacities. IDEs are more complicated than coding editors so beginner coders may find editors to be easier to use.

Why Use a Coding Editor

  • No need to download software.

Coding editors allow coders to work in their browser instead of through downloaded software. This reduces the time that would have been spent waiting for installation as well as saving memory on a computer.

  • Online editors allow for easy sharing.

The URL of the site a coder is working on with an online coding editor can be copied and sent to other developers to work on. This makes online editors flexible, which could be a relief for coders with little to no experience.

  • They are low-cost investments.

Most online coding editors are free or can be purchased at a relatively low cost. New coders will appreciate this since it allows them the freedom to practice without having to make a big commitment to using certain software or editors.

The Best Online Coding Editors

  1. CodeSandbox

This editor is customizable, contains pre-made templates, and lets coders create apps for virtually any platform with web browser compatibility.

  • CodePen

A popular and free editor, CodePen supports many different programming languages. It also has a feature called Blogging where coders can write code that looks similar to a blog page. Additionally, an account isn’t needed to use CodePen.

  • JSBin

Based on JavaScript, this online editor lets coders share their code with others. It’s free to sign up and is a good debugging tool due to its JavaScript software.


This is another free online coding editor and, like JSBin, has the feature of allowing coders to easily share their code. In fact, it’s one of the editor’s most important tools, hence the name. it also contains real-time code distribution and shortcuts for certain texts.

  • JSFiddle

Pieces of code with this editor are referred to as ‘fiddles’ and code is created through CSS, JavaScript, and HTML. JSFiddle is also called a ‘playground’ for coders. Easily customizable via its JavaScript compatibility, the editor is highly popular in the coding community.

In Summary

Online coding editors are extremely useful for new coders or coders looking to practice their skills. IDEs are downloadable software and may be free, but the commitment to using them could turn beginner coders away. That’s where online coding editors come in. They can also help coders get a feel for what layouts they prefer, as well as the tools and features that they feel comfortable using. Since online editors are typically free—some not even requiring coders to sign up for an account—they provide a risk-free, easy-access way to grow and perfect new skills. The ability to code from the ground up is extremely useful. Online coding editors are a fantastic first step for anyone serious about getting into coding.