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I decided for various reasons to use PyCharm. It was nontrivial to get the path to the Blender python modules into PyCharm, but the trick is to go to File->Settings, and look for the Project Interpreter (the setting is per-project apparently, not a global setting), which first, should point to the python you are using for the course. Then, click the Cog, click more, and click the funny icon that looks sort-of like library books but not quite to open the library files. This should show library directories in the same path as the python executable. You can then hit the plus sign to add new module directories, including the blender …\scripts\modules directory.

Then, PyCharm does autocomplete for bpy., giving context, data, etc., but bpy.context. doesn’t autocomplete to give you object, etc. I tried adding sub-directories, and that didn’t help—I don’t know if there is a solution for that.

I tried sublime as well, but you get nag messages to buy it and I’m a cheapo! PyCharm has both a free version that’s pretty good and a pay version with more features. Atom seemed to be more “work in progress” than I was wanting. Maybe in a year I’ll look again.

Emacs is what I’ve used for decades, but its primary disadvantages is poor integration with the Windows clipboard (a big thing, since I was using it to make a .gitignore by pasting together various ones displayed on the Github web pages), and you have to go searching for python autocomplete packages.

By the way, if you wonder what my .gitignore ended up looking like (made to ignore lots of stuff generated by blender, python, emacs, sublime, and pycharm–warning, copy-pasta, untested at the moment!) I show it here.

Hi Todd, and welcome to the course. Thanks for sharing this helpful information, PyCharm is great isn’t it. Enjoy the course, it will be finished (at least the first round of content) next week.

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