I recently switched over to Android Studio after months of frustratingly sitting back in my chair while Eclipse plinked around, cleaning and building the project every time I changed a few lines of code.

Thank god.

This is my first encounter with an IDE from JetBrains. It's cleaner, faster, and it just feels good to work with. It feels right. I don’t have to tinker around with the 3 perspectives I want and the 15 others that get in the way; I don’t have to slow my IDE down with plugins for vital functionality; I don’t have to wade through menus to fix dependencies and all the other miscellaneous things that go wrong in Eclipse. Android Studio comes in hot. It does what you want, when you want. It makes sense.

Android Studio is a joint effort between Google and JetBrains, and is built on JetBrain’s IntelliJ IDEA. Despite being in early access preview, it manages to be better than Eclipse in just about every way possible. It’s like that new kid in school with a fresh leather jacket and well-trimmed pompadour who manages to steal all the popular kids’ crewmates and girlfriends before simultaneously revealing his 1964 Aston Martin and dropping the pants of everyone in a 5-mile radius.

Or something like that.

One of my favorite things about AS is how dynamic it is: color previews appear instantaneously and you can view the layout of your app on a number of different devices without ever compiling the project. I often found myself waiting for Eclipse whenever I wanted to test and compare different colors and positions, and I’ve probably wasted several hours nudging padding and weights to make it perfect. While I enjoy getting paid to reddit during compilation, sometimes a man just needs to see the damn thing work so he can move on to more important matters.

My only complaint is the Logcat viewer. The only way to stop auto-scrolling to the most recent log is to click your way through an error, which automatically opens up the offending file. While I do appreciate the effort, it ends up being a nuisance to work with. There also appears to be some slowdown when attaching the debugger, which wasn’t there when using Eclipse. Hopefully we’ll see some improvements with Logcat going forward, but Android Studio manages to blow Eclipse away so completely in every other category that it’s hard to imagine going back.

In Google and JetBrains I believe.