December 1st 2014


Before I (Allen) started the lab, or the YouTube channel, and before I even had my first job as a programmer, I started 4coder. It was originally a side project that I was using to practice a handmade style of programming.

Early on I also wanted to explore the possibility of what I called code intelligence in the editor. The idea with code intelligence was for the editor to understand the code to make more powerful programming operations for the user. I got this idea from some comments Casey made in the Handmade Hero streams. In particular I wante dto create code intelligence for C/C++.

I didn't ultimately succeed in creating very much code intelligence in 4coder. Pretty early on the project shifted to be about having a highly expressive and easily programmable customization layer. Customizations were programmed in C++ so they could include high performance code, and were easy to write for the typical users of 4coder who were watching Handmade Hero, and were interested in C/C++.

After 5 years of working on 4coder as a side project, I open sourced the entire code base and have retired from work on it. What I learned about programming from this side project, and the initial inspiration in the idea of code intelligence, continue to be major factors in what I am doing with the lab now.