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editor wars! vim vs. emacs. WIMPY vs. fullscreen. ed is the one true editor! (was Re: preferred way to setup a LAMP...)

 On 3/1/08, Derek Martin <[hidden email]> wrote: 
> > Thanks for the recommendation! I'm unfortunately in the market for a new 
> > love affair with an editor. 
> You didn't really say why, and you didn't give any hints as to what 
> about the 2 standards (vi (or vim) and emacs) make them inadequate for 
> you.  You may want to elaborate on those topics, to maximize the 
> usefulness of your recommendations. 

Well, I really shouldn't have started an editor war or anything like it. :^) 
Honestly, I just can't adapt to vim or emacs. I grew up with MS-DOS and 
Windows, and quit using Windows full time some time in the past few years. 

I have no trouble using CLI programs (non-interactive; using switches and 
pipes and all that) but I simply can't adapt to any interactive program that 
uses an interface unlike the standard so-called WIMPy interface: windows and 
pull-down menus; a smattering of keyboard shortcuts available as keyboard 
chords DISPLAYED IN THE MENUS, etc. Every program I use every day is like 
that: Eclipse, Firefox, Nautilus, Pidgin, Midnight Commander, etc. I simply 
can't get over the learning curve of vim's and emcas' UIs where you have to 
explicitly ASK for help, and absolutely must remember certain keyboard 
commands to get anything done. 

So I'm looking for a new favorite WIMPY editor, with desktop integration, 
syntax highlighting in more than a few languages, call tips, etc. But most 
importantly, it's gotta have pull-down menus. :^b 

So far, other features I DON'T like that come to mind (I said this in the 
other thread): 

* jEdit's Open/Save dialog box has strange keyboard behavior. If the 
filename textbox is focused and empty, [BkSp] changes the currently viewed 
folder up one, to its parent. Likewise, typing a path with a [/] immediately 
erases that part of the path you already typed and changes the viewed folder 
to that path. It might sound nice to you, but it's disconcerting to me and 
unexpected and not like any other desktop program I have ever known, and 
there's no "use host environment's open/save/print dialogs" switch. And the 
whole app doesn't use GNOME's color scheme right; using Ubuntu's default 
GNOME color scheme which works fine in other apps, jEdit's menu background 
and highlighted menu item background are nearly the same color. jEdit needs 
a lot of UI work. 

   I will say, though, that jEdit's search/replace, syntax highlighting and 
plugin system all rock. 

* Eclipse takes too long to start, and it's so modular, it's often unclear 
exactly what is causing or not causing a certain behavior and where you 
should go to change it. 

So, I know what I don't like and what I don't want. I'm really just a 
spoiled little brat. I'll let you know when the gods provide me with the 
nonexistent ideal editor that pleases me 100% of the time. :^) 

What do you like about editors you don't use? What do you hate about your 
favorite editor? 

Brendan Kidwell 

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