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Aug. 6, 2020, 9:17 p.m.

Six reasons why you really don't have to use vi/vim editor

by: mc


Nostalgia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days. (Doug Larson)

If you are learning Unix/Linux command line, sooner or later you will find some guru that will tell that you should learn vi/vim invoking (at least) the following two reasons:

1. vi is always available even on a system with no graphical interface, like a remote server or a local system with a broken X configuration;
2. vi is lightweight and fast, easier to bring up and designed for typing speed ; a skilled vi  user never has to lift his or her fingers from the keyboard while editing

 Allow me to give you six (+1) reasons to not use vi/vim:

1. GNU nano - Until this day I have never touched a Linux machine that did not have nano installed. nano is very simple and intuitive.
2. micro - If you need some more features use this somewhat of a successor to the nano editor; a kind of nano on steroids.  
3. ne (the nice editor) - Hardly you will find anything more straightforward; just press F1 and you will have a ncurses menu under your cursor control keys.
4. Jed - Also featuring pull down menus, 'bullet speed' fast, able to emulate other editors, is designed for use by programmers.
5. Joe - A full featured terminal-based screen editor, has been the choice of many IT people since the 1990s.
6. GNU Emacs - Indispensable for the true admirers of both R. Stallman and Lisp, it is said that one can do anything from within it: read the news, play games and even cook dinner (although I suspect that this last one may be an exageration); and yes, it can run inside the terminal window by typing emacs -nw .

Special mention: ash, a modern terminal text editor for Python coders.


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