Google Wave is still rough around the edges, but it has a lot of potential in terms of becoming a great collaboration tool. As a developer, your first question will probably be: “How do I add code highlighting to my waves?”. The answer is straightforward, however not very easy to find if you google it. I hope this post will help fellow developers who are experimenting with Google Wave.
The following steps are required to obtain syntax highlighting for your code:
Create a new wave and add the Syntaxy robot to your wave. Use the wave address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reply to your first message or within it, thereby creating a reply (called “blip” in Google lingo).
Specify your code’s language, prefixing the name with a hash and exclamation mark, like #!python or #!ruby.
At this point, as you type the code in your blip it will be highlighted by the Syntaxy bot as shown in the picture below:
More advanced automatic syntax highlighting bots will probably appear as Google Wave progresses, but this one should do the trick for now. On a side note, if you copy and paste code from XCode, the code formatting will be kept in your waves and blips without the need for bots.
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Antonio Cangiano is a Software Development Manager at IBM. He authored Ruby on Rails for Microsoft Developers (Wrox, 2009) and Technical Blogging (The Pragmatic Bookshelf, 2012, 2019). He is also the Marketing Lead for Cognitive Class, an educational initiative which he helped grow from zero to over 1 Million students. You can follow him on Twitter.