[clug] Text editor

Hal Ashburner hal at ashburner.info
Sun Oct 26 02:50:39 MDT 2014

2c - if it's worth even that.

Basic vi is worth learning despite the myriad of other (possibly
better) options because it's basically always available. Eg if you get
a shell on your adsl/router, many (most?) of which run linux, they
have busybox providing the shell and core utils including vi. Old
unix, vi is there. /usr didn't mount? /bin/vi lets you fix that. Gvim
let's you do the gui thing if you want that but you don't need more
than a terminal. Windows? you can install vim on that. OSX? vim is

For me, given that basis vim meant I could use that basis to go as far
as I wanted. Emacs would have been a great option but I already knew
enough vi to get things done so could get better fast staying on that
path. It's at the point for me now where I use eclipse cdt to write
c++ at work all day every day which is fine but I got a lot more
productive when I installed vrapper to get vi keybindings to edit

Getting really good with a text editor pays for itself many times over
if you are spending more than a trivial amount of time with a
computer. You pretty much need to know basic vi anyway because one day
you'll be stuck with nothing else available and once you can survive
that you can take it to ultra-mega-guru-level or possibly simply just
get very fast at changing text in files.

The big revelation for me was how much more a real, full featured text
editor does than notepad.exe. Syntax highlighting of configuration
files so you can see from the colour if you've made a typo. 1 of a
thousand features that make life easier, more reliable and more

Definitely pick a full featured text editor and learn how to use it
well. vi, vim is a great choice for that. And just to troll a bit,
emacs is an excellent editor and people do amazing things with it and
while I didn't go that way it's clearly a great way to go (but you'd
still need a basic knowledge of vi).

On 26 October 2014 19:03, Bryan Kilgallin <bryan at netspeed.com.au> wrote:
> That's installed, thanks! I like the displayed short-cuts at the bottom.
> On 26/10/14 07:55, Ben Davies wrote:
>> Another option: you may also want to look at 'nano' for occasional
>> editing tasks. A lot of the shortcuts are just Ctrl-something. By
>> default, there are 2 lines of help text/shortcuts at the bottom,
>> including how to quit :-)
>> On 26 October 2014 00:16, Bryan Kilgallin <bryan at netspeed.com.au> wrote:
>>> I had a look at geany. But I'm having enough trouble learning the
>>> control-underscore-squarebracket... of Vim!
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