Romualdo Dasig February 8, 2019
Building microcontroller projects is now made relatively easy with the use of Arduino board and the Arduino Integrated Development Environment (Arduino IDE). With Arduino IDE, you could write basic codes like blinking an LED, controlling some relays, and other pretty simple projects. But, for complex projects, you would need a better IDE to help you in debugging your code, unit testing, and utilizing code completion. For that, you'll need VSCode with PlatformIO IDE extension.
VSCode is great for writing programs in C/C++, Python, Java, PHP, and other popular programming languages. Extending it with PlatformIO IDE, it becomes a very capable tool for building IoT projects, not just for Arduino but also with for other ARM-based microcontroller projects. PlatformIO IDE requires C/C++ Extension, so it will download and install it first before installing PlatformIO IDE.
Here's a video for installing VSCode, PlatformIO IDE extension and compiling a basic Arduino sketch.