Air Code stability?

Hi all - I’ve done a lot of lua coding at work over the last ~10 years, but I’m new to Codea. I’m using it to teach my kids programming and it is BRILLIANT. Basically the learning environment I’ve been hoping to find for years.

We’ve mostly used Air Code because it seems like the perfect dev environment - a real keyboard and no jumping back and forth between an editor and your app, plus the live updating is very cool. But Air Code is very crashy; yesterday Codea disappeared probably two dozen times in a 3-hour coding session on a small simple app.

Do other folks see similar stability problems? If so how do most people code in Codea? Bluetooth keyboard?


@sc0tt - are you using a pc or Mac to develop on? I have used it quite a bit and find it is a little temperamental but and would be the best development environment if it was more robust. I found the answer was to save frequently and be prepared to keep loading. A little bit more work on the browser interface could make it a first class tool.

Good luck with it, plenty of support on the forums and no end of code/ideas to help you along.

@Bri_G Chrome on a Mac.

What do you mean by “save”? For me Air Code stays running & working when Codea crashes, so we got pretty good at “select all, copy, reload to reconnect to Air Code, paste” to prevent lost work. But in some cases that paste itself would cause a crash, which got tricky.

I wonder if stability would improve by being able to turn off live-update mode and only reload on demand.

@sc0tt - sorry, what I mean is to ensure you keep any code edits within the code you loaded. Sometimes I found the edits were los and sometimes pasted code into new tabs disappeared after an error. This is awkward as when you generate an error in the code the Codea project stops to show the error and you lose those edits. What I usually ended up doing was building the project on the iPad, tabs etc and skeleton code, then tickled the code on the pc/Mac browser. Depends a lot on how big your code is and how complicated.

@sc0tt I’ll try to address the Air Code stability issues

@Simeon Awesome, thanks. LMK if you need specific bug reports.

How do you reckon most people code with Codea right now?

@sc0tt As for coding, I use the built in keyboard and I do most of my coding while I’m watching TV.

@sc0tt It would be good to know how big your projects are with Air Code, the ones you have trouble with. Lots of files? How many lines of code per file on average?

@dave1707 you use the software keyboard or the iPad keyboard cover?

@Simeon This project is very small - one file and probably 75 loc. I can send it to you if you like, probably with some repro steps.

@Simeon I use the software keyboard on the iPad. I bought a Bluetooth keyboard for $3 just to try it, but I didn’t like it. Like I said, I do most of my coding while watching TV, so I hold the iPad with one hand and type with the other. I can probably code faster with one hand using the software keyboard then most people using two hands on an external keyboard.

PS. I also hold the iPad in portrait orientation so the keyboard doesn’t take up much of the screen.

@sc0tt that would be great!

@dave1707 I would love to see a screen recording of you coding in Code if you could ever do that for me. Because you are so familiar with it and use the software keyboard, seeing how you use it would probably give me some insights in how to improve the experience

@Simeon I’m not sure what a video would show. Basically I code in portrait orientation which gives me more screen area for the editor than landscape does. I use command complete or whatever it’s called whenever I can. I also do a lot of cut and paste. I can’t think of anything that might improve the keyboard. Maybe I’m just so used to the keyboard that I don’t even think about it when I use it. When I tried using an external keyboard I had a hard time with it because I didn’t like using it with the iPad sitting on a table or desk and it was uncomfortable trying to hold everything. I usually write code while sitting on the couch watching TV and I don’t think much about what I’m doing. I guess I’ve been coding for so long it’s just natural.

@dave1707 you use the small iPad in portrait orientation rather than the big iPad Pro? I imagine portrait-typing on the big iPad would be pretty tricky

@Simeon Coding on the iPad Pro isn’t that bad in portrait orientation. With the keyboard showing, the remaining area is about a high as the full screen of the iPad Air. Also, the keyboard has more keys showing. The number keys are always there. The only problem with the iPad Pro is it’s gets heavy after awhile. I guess I’m just used to the light weight of the iPad Air compared to the Pro, so I’ll use that the majority of the time.

Hi all,
Just for information, I have stability issues with AirCode even with really simples project (like, just one Main class and two craft entities I could load thanks to Simeon recent fixes on an .obj import issue).

My device is an iPhone 6S running Codea 2.8 (160) and my browser is Firefox on Windows (but if I recall correctly, I had issues on Mac too, don’t think the browser is part of the problem)

I’ve read on the forum that AirCode is not a big part of Codea but I disagree, mostly because I loose my iPads and then have to code on iPhone

AirCode is part of what makes Codea absolutely awesome : coding and seeing the result live is really something making me stick on Codea rather than Unity or Godot for example (even if I do have plans for making bigger projects on Godot)

Hi! As I’ve written in another thread (, I’m working on AirCodea : AirCode in Codea. For the moment, there is still some bugs, that’s why I haven’t shared it yet. But I will try to share it at the end of the week as an open project on Github, even if there are still bugs to allow everyone to contribute.

Thanks @HyroVitalyProtago ! Looking forward to it !
But I’m also impatient to see it stable in Codea for “Long term support”

@threads I really need to re-write Air Code (the app side). There’s just so much to do in preparation of iOS 13 coming out that it’s getting a bit pushed back.

Or course, no problem, I thought it was only a small memory issue ; what will you need to rewrite ?