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New and Updated Desktop Features in R2008a

R2008a is here and there are a number of great new features in the desktop. I’m only going to give a brief introduction to each of these shiny new features, though in future entires, we’ll explore them in greater detail.

If you see something that’s particularly interesting, leave a comment. The more comments about a feature, the sooner we’ll blog about it!

Customizable Toolbars
The Desktop and Editor now allow you to customize their toolbars. You can change the order of toolbar elements, or remove things you rarely use.Customizable toolbars will really help stream-line your workflow, as you can arrange your toolbars based on how you use MATLAB.

Publish Configurations
Publish Configuration’s allow you to specify options to be passed to the publish function when you press the publish button. Publish Configurations work very similarly to Run Configurations, in that they can be edited in the Configuration Editor and are associated with a particular file.In previous releases, there was one set of preferences that applied whenever you pressed the publish button. Now, you can create multiple sets of options for a given file. For example, you can have a configuration that publishes to Word and another that publishes to HTML.

Code Folding
We’ve added a whole bunch more foldable constructs. Here’s the complete list of what you can now fold in the MATLAB Editor:

  • Block comments
  • Cells used for rapid code iteration and publishing
  • Class code
  • Class enumeration blocks
  • Class event blocks
  • Class method blocks
  • Class properties blocks
  • For and parfor blocks
  • Function and class help
  • Function code
  • If/else blocks
  • Switch/case blocks
  • Try/catch blocks
  • While blocks

Data Brushing and Linked Plots
Data brushing is a new feature that lets you manually select data on a plot. This tool really fosters manual interaction and exploration of your data.Linked plots are graphs that respond to backing data changes. The underlying data and plot are tied together, so a change in one, causes a change in the other. This is useful if you have multiple plots representing the same data, as you need only update the data in a single place in order to update your plots.

Variable Editor (previously Array Editor)

The Variable Editor now provides enhanced editing of Structures and Objects.
Directory Comparisons
The File Comparisons tool has been enhanced to support directory comparisons. Its name has also unsurprisingly been changed to the File and Directory Comparisons tool.
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