Re: [dev] Is there a text editor following the UNIX philosophy?

From: Maciej Janicki <>
Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2022 22:05:28 +0200

On lut 11 11:47, Daniel Littlewood wrote:
> I wonder whether there are any text-editing (particularly
> code-editing) workflows people have had success with which combine
> many small programs, rather than using a single monolith.

I highly recommend vis ( I've been
using it successfully for around 2 years now. It is minimal enough to
have a small and understandable codebase (around 20k lines C code + some Lua
iirc) and it doesn't implement unnecessary features. For example it
doesn't implement window/tab management, for which you can use tmux.
In its core functionality it's very similar to vim, the main difference
being structural regular expressions taken from sam (a very simple
and very powerful feature).

Vis is also easy to combine with other programs - I've built an
"IDE-like" experience by combining it with tmux (to manage buffers), nnn
(for a window with the filesystem tree), Python/R interpreters for a
read-eval-print loop etc.

I don't see the benefit of delegating things like syntax highlighting to
an external tool. It's a performance-critical functionality because it's
called often and I'm pretty sure that piping large files back and forth
would be slow (though I haven't tried). IMO vis strikes the perfect
balance of being small and minimalist, but containing all the necessary
features to be usable and efficient.

Best regards,
Received on Sat Feb 12 2022 - 21:05:28 CET

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