Program code is different from text documents in that it is non-linear. Therefore, it can become inefficient to annotate over printed versions of code as the reviewer must manually search through pages of code to find method declarations and object classes. Annotations should not be written directly within the IDE as a comment as they are difficult to distinguish from actual code comments.
Alternatively, reading code
within an IDE, then documenting code issues on a piece of paper or in a
separate digital file involves frequent switching between the code and
the issue list. This risking a break in concentration, while also
giving no direct reference point to the code, resulting in each issue
requiring a higher degree of description.
The ability of digital ink annotations directly in an IDE gives the reviewer a more distinguishable and intuitive annotation approach, and gives a computerized approach to improve efficiency problems seen in code review. While also retaining all the benefits an underlying code editor has to offer.
Currently two projects on IDE annotation are on progress one built on Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 and the other Eclipse.
Visual Studio 2005