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When coding in MPS you need to accept some differences between how you normally type code in text editors and how code is edited in MPS. In MPS you're manipulating the AST directly as you type your code. So you are slightly limited in where you can place your cursor and what you can type on that position. In general only the items suggested by a completion menu can be entered. MPS can always decide, which elements are allowed and which are disallowed at a certain position. Once the code you type is in red color you know you're off the track.

Code completion

Code completion (Control + Space) will be your good friend allowing you to quickly complete the statements you typed. Remember that CamelHumps are supported, so you only need to type the capital characters of long names and MPS will guess the rest for you.

Intentions

Frequently you can enhance or alter your code by means of predefined semi-automated procedures called Intentions. By pressing Alt + Enter MPS will show you a pop-up dialog with options applicable to your code at the current possition. Some intentions are only applicable to a selected code region, e.g. to wrap code inside a try-catch block. These are called Surround With intentions and once you select the desired block of code, press Control + Alt + T to show the list of applicable intentions.

Navigation

Whenever you need to see the definition of an element you are looking at, press Control + B or Control + mouse click to open up the element definition in the editor. To quickly navigate around editable positions on the screen use the Tab/Shift + Tab key. Enter will typically insert a new element right after your current position and let you immediatelly edit it. The Insert key will do the same for a position right before your current position.
When a piece of code is underlined in either red or yellow, indicating an error or a warning respectively, you can display a pop-up with the error message by pressing Control + F1.

Selection

The Control + Up/Down key combination allows you to increase/decrease block selection. It ensures you always select valid subtrees of the AST. The usual Shift + Arrow keys way of text-like selection is also possible.

Investigation

To quickly find out the type of an element, press Control + Shift + T. Alt + F12 will open the selected element in the Node Explorere allowing you to investigate the apropriate part of the AST. Alt + F7 will enable you to search for usages of a selected element. To quickly visualize the inheritance hierarchy of an element, use Control + H.

Inspector window

The Inspector window opens after you press Alt + 2. Some code and properties (e.g. editor styles, macros etc.) are shown and edited inside the Inspector window so it is advisable to keep the window ready.

Most useful key shortcuts

Key combination

Action

Control + Space

Code completion

Control + B

Go To Definition

Alt + Enter

Intentions

Control + Alt + T

Surround With intentions

Tab

Move to the next cell

Shift + Tab

Move to the previous cell

Control + F1

Display the error message at the current position

Control + Up/Down

Expand/Shrink the code selection

Shift + Arrow keys

Select regions

Control + F9

Compile the project

Shift + F10

Run the current configuration

Control + Shift + T

Show the type of the expression under carret

Alt + F12

Open the expression under carret in the Node Explorer to inspect the apropriate node and its AST surroundings

Control + H

Show the structure (inheritance hierarchy)

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