Join Lynda.com Staff for an in-depth discussion in this video Using practice environments, part of How to use Lynda.com.
- [Voiceover] Hey there! This is Ray Villalobos, Senior Staff Author at Lynda.com and I wanna talk to you about our practice environment. They're available in some of our courses and can help you follow along with the instructor in a safe and full featured editor. Look for the practice environment next to the other utility links around the video player. It's labeled Code Practice. Now although you can use this link to open the practice environment, it's better to use the link within each video. That way, they automatically launch with the files that are relevant for that video already opened up in the editor.
I'm gonna scroll down to chapter two and look for the video called Working with variables. Next to the video name, you'll see a link to the practice environment. I'm gonna click on that. The practice environment will open up the files you need to work on that video. Now this is a full featured live editor where you can open and edit files and see the results of those modifications on a preview pane. So, for example, if I open up the style.scss tab right here and I make a change to my background color, the editor will automatically update to show that change.
I'm gonna undo that command with Command + Z, so your normal editor command keys will also work. Now the practice environments have three main panes: the file tree on the left, the editor pane in the middle, and the preview pane on the right-hand side. There are three icons in the top right of the screen that let you zoom the editor or the preview pane. You can also access this functionality through the View menu. You can see that the editor also has a traditional set of menus at the top.
Let's take a look at those. In the File menu, you can see that there is an option to add files or folders. To create a file or a folder, you simply go to this menu and select Add File or Add Folder. I'm gonna create a new folder. I'll call this folder new. I'm gonna hit the Enter key. And the file list will automatically update to show my new folder. If I want to move that folder into a subfolder, I simply click and drag to move that into the sass folder. Like with any other editor, you can double-click to open additional files or use the tabs at the top to switch between open documents.
If you want the folder or file to be created inside an existing folder, you can simply right-click in the tree view on top of the folder and choose New File or New Folder. In the Settings menu, you can configure the editor to fit your own style. You can, for example, change the size of the font in the editor, as well as the theme that is used to display items within the editor. You can also change how the indentation works, whether you want to indent with two, four, or eight spaces, and also whether you indent with spaces or tabs.
In addition to that, you can change how the word wrapping works, show invisible characters in your document, or choose to highlight the active line or even the auto complete functionality in the editor. That will make it quicker to type some of the code into your editor. So, for example, if I want to type in a paragraph and type in a beginning paragraph tag, the editor will automatically complete the tag for me. Now there's a couple of other advanced tabs in this editor. The Preview window allows you to switch the server that is currently visible in the preview pane.
In most courses, you won't have to switch to a different server. The functionality is there just in case you need it. Of course, the Reset menu allows you to reset the practice environment. All of your settings will be lost if you do this, so that's not something I do all the time. In the View menu, there's also a way to access the console. The console is for advanced users who want to see what's happening at the background. For example, in this course, I'm using the gulp.js build tool to handle the conversions between Sass and CSS.
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