Swimm Review 2024: What It Is, How to Use It & Is It Worth It?

Manage and synchronize software documentation with code changes efficiently.

Swimm logo

Markdown support for documentation

IDE plugins for in-context documentation access

Automatic outdated documentation detection

Swimm Description

Swimm is a knowledge management tool tailored for software development teams. It addresses the common challenges of maintaining accurate and accessible documentation within a codebase. Swimm allows developers to embed documentation directly into their repositories, ensuring that information is readily available where and when it's needed. By integrating with the development environment, Swimm makes it easier to keep documentation up-to-date with code changes, preventing the drift that often occurs between code and its documentation. The platform supports Markdown for creating documents, and it includes features for adding code snippets, diagrams, and tokens from the codebase. This integration streamlines the documentation process, making it less of a chore and more of a seamless part of the development workflow. Swimm's IDE plugins further enhance this by allowing developers to access and update documentation without leaving their coding environment, thus reducing context switching and improving productivity.

Starting price


  • Free plan
  • Paid
  • Free trial

Swimm Detailed Review

Swimm is designed to simplify the often tedious task of creating and maintaining software documentation. It's a tool that fits snugly into the developers' workflow, offering a way to write, update, and find documentation without leaving the Integrated Development Environment (IDE). This is a big deal because developers typically dislike context switching, and Swimm's approach minimizes this by keeping everything within reach.

The tool's ability to keep documentation in sync with code changes is a standout feature. It automatically flags outdated documentation, which helps maintain the integrity and usefulness of the information over time. Swimm's Markdown support means that documentation is both human-readable and version control-friendly, fitting naturally into the code review process. However, the reliance on Markdown could be a slight barrier for those not familiar with it, but it's a minor learning curve compared to the benefits.

Swimm's pricing model is tiered, catering to different team sizes and needs. The Free tier is great for very small teams or individual developers, especially those working on open-source projects, as Swimm is free for such initiatives. The Small Teams tier is aimed at startups and smaller development teams, supporting up to 25 developers. For larger organizations, Swimm offers an Enterprise tier with a dedicated success team, custom terms of service, and white-glove service, which includes comprehensive support and training.

Direct engagement with the Swimm team via Slack is a plus, offering real-time support and a personal touch. The dedicated success team is a resource for making the most out of the tool, and the custom integrations mean Swimm can fit into existing workflows with minimal disruption. The IDE plugins for VS Code and JetBrains are particularly useful, allowing developers to create and maintain documentation right in the IDE.

On the downside, Swimm's source code is not open source, which might be a turn-off for those who prefer fully transparent tools. Additionally, while Swimm is free for open-source projects, commercial users might find the user limit constraining and may need to upgrade sooner than anticipated as their team grows.

Another potential con is that Swimm's robust feature set might be overkill for very small projects or solo developers who don't need such a comprehensive solution. In these cases, simpler documentation tools might suffice. However, for teams that recognize the value of good documentation and are looking for a way to integrate it more deeply into their development process, Swimm is a strong contender.

In conclusion, Swimm is a powerful tool for managing software documentation, making it easier for developers to keep docs up-to-date and accessible. It's particularly well-suited for teams that are growing or have already reached a size where managing documentation becomes a challenge. The tool's integration with the IDE and the ability to automatically update documentation with code changes are significant advantages. While there are some limitations, such as the learning curve for Markdown and the closed-source nature of the tool, the benefits for team productivity and documentation quality are clear. Swimm is worth considering for any development team that wants to improve its documentation practices.